At this point in their five and eight-year-old lives, I’ve finally faced it: my kids are picky eaters. As much as my pre-motherhood self believed that I’d have the adventurous eaters who would love sushi by age two, the reality is that they’d both prefer plain hamburgers with lots of ketchup. And you know what? It’s yet another reminder that, as much as we think we have control over who our children become, they’re very much their own people. We can guide them towards kindness and expose them to diverse experiences, but we also must respect their natural passions, interests, and yes, even dislikes. But even with my evolved approach to raising children (lol), I still come back to the question: what do you feed a picky eater for breakfast? Day after day after day…
For me, school morning breakfasts need to be quick prep (as in, under five minutes) and healthy fuel that’ll help them feel energized through the morning.
After years of struggling to find healthy breakfasts my kids will actually enjoy, we finally settled on this tropical smoothie recipe that’s bursting with crowd-pleasing pineapple, strawberries, and bananas. I slip in avocado for fiber and healthy fats, plus ginger for a happy zing (and antioxidants.)
Scroll on for a few power smoothie tips and the story behind this one…
Last summer, our dear friend and former nanny, “Miss Cheryl,” babysat the kids a few mornings a week while Adam and I got our work-from-home on. Two mornings in a row, Phoebe came home raving about Miss C’s smoothie. By the second day, I asked her exactly what was in this magical smoothie, and she immediately rattled off, “Pineapple, strawberries, bananas (but just a little), avocado (and I don’t normally even like avocado!) ginger (LOTS), and orange juice. Mom: DO NOT use milk. It has to be orange juice.)
Mmmkay…. so the next morning we made it ourselves, and both kids happy drank it down. I can’t overstate the inner joy I felt from seeing them sucking all those vitamins and minerals through their straws. From then on, it’s been our house tropical smoothie recipe, and thankfully Adam and I love it just as much as the kids.
A few tips for making the best smoothies:
- For that thick, milkshake consistency you get from smoothie shops, use frozen fruits and veggies when possible, and add a handful of ice to make it even thicker.
- A little honey goes a long way – we like our smoothies a bit sweet.
- Avocado provides a little richness and a more “pudding” like consistency – play with more or less, depending on your personal preference.
- If you want to get ahead the night before, add all your fruits, veggies, and ice to the blender and pop in the freezer. In the morning, just add orange juice and honey, and blend!
One added benefit to this smoothie? It’s dairy-free, nut-free, gluten-free, vegan… in fact, it works with just about any of the most common dietary restrictions, which is great for all the families juggling different allergies for different family members. Be sure to check out our smoothie files for lots more AM recipes, and I’d love to hear if you give this tropical smoothie recipe a try! Don’t forget to rate, leave us a comment, and tag us on Instagram.