The biggest difference I have noticed in this pregnancy compared to my first one is my insatiable desire for sweets. And while I am a big believer in having my cake in moderation, I needed to figure out a way to curb that sweet tooth that likes to hit me up mid morning. Or mid afternoon. Or middle of the night. Whatever. #pregnantprobs
And since I have a toddler running around me who insists that snacks are his life source (check out healthy snack alternatives for your toddler here) and a husband I like to cook for, I needed to figure out a healthy way to tame the sweetness I was craving all the time while keeping my sanity in feeding everyone else. Mamas, I give you my ultimate easy peasy smoothie hack.
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The secret to these smoothies is to freeze the yogurt ahead of time in ice cube trays.
Why is this a hack for me? Because when it comes to smoothies, having frozen fruit is somewhat easy because that can sit in your freezer. Having greens to throw in isn’t too bad because I keep salad around usually. I like to keep a variety of yogurt cup flavors in my fridge but good o’l plain Greek yogurt for smoothies? Nope. It will go bad before I get around to using it most of the time!
The other key to making these smoothies easy peasey and grab-on-the-go ready is a 15 minute plan ahead session. Seriously, besides buying the items at the grocery store, it only took me about 15 minutes to put these smoothie bags together ahead of time and voila! When the cravings hits, I put a bag of my smoothie goods in the blender and within minutes I’m drinking some healthy sweet goodness.
HERE’S WHAT YOU’LL NEED AHEAD OF TIME:
1 large container of yogurt + ice cube trays
6 bags of frozen fruit (Aldi has great priced frozen fruit that make the perfect serving size of two!)
1 bag of frozen spinach (also found at Aldi!)
1 batch of Kale, stripped from the stems
Flax Seed (because I need that extra boost of Omegas!)
12 Quart sized Freezer Ziploc bags
Orange Juice or Coconut Water to help liquify your smoothie at the time of blending. Both can be found at Aldi of course!
FREEZING THE YOGURT TIP
I highly recommend freezing yogurt in ice cube trays and I personally love these silicone ones. It makes blending simple and quick. You can buy whatever yogurt suits your fancy–greek, nonfat, plain, vanilla, etc. I prefer whole milk vanilla. Just divvy out a whole large container yogurt into some ice cube trays and let them freeze.
One large container made exactly 24 cubes for me, as you can see below.
Once they are done in the freezer get ready to assemble your smoothie bags! I use 2 cubes of yogurt per bag which makes me 12 smoothie bags. Score!
TIP ABOUT THE FROZEN FRUIT
I would plan to get two big handfuls of fruit from each bag which will give you enough fruit for 12 smoothie bags (so for me, that’s 6 bags of fruit). The fruit is not an exact science so eyeballing it is no biggie. If you’re like me, you might buy a variety of fruit so you can mix and match or just buy whatever the heck you want!
TIP ABOUT THE SPINACH & KALE
I just cut up the frozen spinach into 12 cubes. It works out rather nicely since the frozen spinach from Aldi comes as a square block. You can always zap it in microwave while you’re setting up to soften it a smidge to make cutting easier.
The kale does not have to be pretty at all. I just wash it and quickly strip it from the stems using a knife. This handy video shows you an easy way to do it which is what I prefer. My batch of cut kale filled the size of a medium bowl. I still had a little bit left over that I just used in a salad. I wouldn’t worry about chopping it super fine since it’s going to end up in the blender anyways.
HERE’S WHAT YOU’LL PUT IN EACH SMOOTHIE BAG
2 frozen yogurt cubes
1 cube of cut from frozen spinach
Handful of kale
1 TBSP of Flax Seed
Handful of your frozen fruit
TIP TO GET AIR OUT OF YOUR BAG FOR FREEZING
If we have them around, I stick a straw down in the bag and seal it around the straw, then suck the air out of the bag to make it as air tight as possible. If you don’t have a straw, you can seal the bag until you have just a little hole open at the top and put your lips up to it to suck the air out. It still works that way too!
When it’s time to blend everything. all you need to grab from the fridge is your frozen smoothie bag and your liquid of choice. You can gradually add your liquid of choice until you reach a consistency you like.
THAT’S IT! I love the way the bags look when I’m all done. I know, my type A personality is showing.
There you go Mamas! I hope this tip helps you in whatever season of motherhood you’re in. And if you like this, join the tribe to receive updates like this straight to your mailbox. You can also always PIN IT for later. I’d love to hear how this method worked for you. Once you try it, come back and let us know how it went in the comments below!