Monday, April 16, 2012

Sweet, Sweet Spring Strawberry Smoothies

Warm weather set in big time this weekend and inspired some spring and early summer dreams. We live in a fairly rural area so farms, and home-grown produce are big around here, as are U-Pick farms where you pick your own - usually berries. I love the idea of supporting our local growers, and we needed to get out of the house to burn some energy so we went-a-pickin'...strawberries!

I got some great pictures of the day, and we made some great smoothies for dessert. Read on, friends!

Inside the shop at the farm we visited. So classic, so country.

She was such a pro - and it was her first time, too! I told her one time to "grab the stem not to berry, and we want the *very* red ones," and she was pickin' them out and pluckin' them better than I could have.

On a mission to find the best ones.

"There's a good one!"
This was actually a great learning trip for us. We talked about farming and growing food.

There were a few bugs on some of them so we talked about bugs and animals eating the berries too.

V wanted to pick some as well ;) Baby pickin'

Farmer Alexis.

She said "Mommy, I'm such a good farmer!" before anyone ever mentioned a farmer. She's so smart, I'm so proud :) Can you tell??

I haven't been strawberry picking since I was pregnant with her. That seems like so so many moons ago!

Our haul. Time to take these home.

I couldn't stop photographing these berries! They were so big AND deep red and juicy. A lot of times, the really big berries are deceptive because they end up being filled with a lot of flavorless, dry, white pits but these were perfect. Rich all the way through. Good strawberries make for good recipes and these were amazing.

Chop chop!

Fresh cut...

...and someone couldn't wait to eat them! She kept taking them as I was cutting them. I told her to slow down or we wouldn't have any left to make treats with! You can just see how juicy they's all over her face!

Smoothie Time!

Lots of berries - we are on berry overload in our house right now!
(blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, strawberries)

Add some ice, milk, and yogurt...
(See recipe below)

and blend.

Yummy :) SO yummy! In fact, I'm actually craving more sitting here writing this post. I usually don't crave the food I blog from the pictures (though it's all worthy of it ;)  ) but these were SO fresh, it was heavenly.

She loved them too. She didn't even want the whipped cream, which is usually her favorite part.

We had these for dessert tonight. Usually we wait a little bit after dinner before we have dessert (if any), but tonight, I hadn't even finished cleaning up dinner before we were making these. We couldn't wait to test those berries!

To make the smoothies, you'll need:
A good berry assortment - I used 10 large strawberries, and about 1/4 cup each of blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries.
1 cup ice (cubes)
3/4 cup milk
3/4 cup vanilla yogurt
1 tablespoon sugar (OPTIONAL, if your berries aren't quite ripe enough. We didn't need any in ours.)

Put all ingredients in a blender and blend well.
Serve, and top with whipped cream if you want.

This recipe made 2 FULL 16 ounce mason jars worth, and it was fairly thin and drinkable (thinner than milkshakes, thicker than juice). Just the way we like them around here!
You can tweak your amounts of milk vs. yogurt to get the desired thickness, but you will need about 1 and 1/2 cups between the two items.

This is definitely one dessert I don't feel too bad letting my child indulge in. You wouldn't know by all the sweet treats I post but health and the amount of sugar my family gets is super duper important to me.  These are pretty much blended berries with a few other ingredients so I can sleep at night knowing I didn't give my baby loads of sugar and junk food.

Hope you enjoy as much as we did!!



  1. I love it, especially the "farmer alexis" ones!

    I haven't figured out what I'm going to make with all our fresh strawberries...some sort of dessert and lemonade drink I think :)

    1. Mmmmm lemonade sounds delicious! I keep (almost obsessively) brainstorming ideas, something really great and unique to make that really showcases the strawberries. Hmmm???

  2. WOW! Those strawberries look so yummy! You know, I've never been strawberry pickin' before. When does strawberry season start anyway? I'm absolutely sure my kids would love it. And I totally bet they'll fill their little bellies before they can even fill their baskets! haha!

    1. Thanks! You know, I'm not really an expert, I just pretend ;)I believe strawberry season starts in early to mid April and goes through May. Not sure though. I know a lot of the U-pick places around here are opening this week and some, including where we went, actually opened as early as last week. The difference in the berries is so tremendous between the ones we picked and the ones you can buy pre-packed at the store!