{healthy} Banana Cream Pie Smoothie

I love my sister. Well, I love all 5 of my sisters, but I’m especially close with Janessa who is exactly one year and four days older than me. We didn’t always get along, you know the cliche teenage years fighting over clothes and boys (and one epic pop-tart fight), but now that we have grown up and I’ve forgiven her for taking my favorite plaid shirt to college with her, it absolutely kills me to be all the way on the other side of the world from her. Our bi-monthly skype sessions just don’t cut it. But I love that she has started a food blog too, there’s just something about making her recipes and knowing that she made the same thing in her kitchen that just makes me feel close to her.  And it helps that every recipe of hers that I’ve tried has been nothing short of amazing. When she posted this recipe a little while ago I know it would be an instant hit. I mean, she had me at Banana Cream Pie Smoothie. I would have made it even if it did have like 500 calories, but the fact that it’s pretty healthy is just an added bonus. It really is just as good as she claimed it would be. The rich flavor makes me think I should feel guilty, but with natural sweeteners (okay, unless you splurge and go with the vanilla wafers and a dallop of whipped cream on top, which are both optional but for all intents and purposes, you MUST include them 🙂 ), it’s okay to slurp this one down guilt free. Bottoms up!

This Banana Cream Pie Smoothie isn't just delicious, it's HEALTHY too!!

2 bananas, sliced and frozen (make sure they are frozen before hand to get that creamy texture)
1/3 cup low-fat vanilla Greek yogurt
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups vanilla almond milk
4 vanilla wafer cookies (optional-we don’t have vanilla wafers here so I used graham crackers that my sweet husband brought back all the way from the States)
1 1/2 tablespoons honey
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
6 ice cubes (more or less to fit your desired consistency)
Whipped cream (to garnish)

*Makes one smoothie

Directions:
Throw all ingredients in the blender. Blend thoroughly until smooth and creamy. Top with dollop of whip cream and crushed graham cracker or vanilla wafer, if desired. Serve immediately.

Source | Six Little Chefs

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{copy cat} Nesquik Mix

I love a good copy cat recipe. It’s like a little taste of home. I was excited when I came across this recipe and the kids were even more excited when they came home from school and found this waiting for them. Super easy, super cheap and definitely going to be a staple in our pantry from now on!

1/3 C cocoa powder
2/3 C sugar
pinch of salt

Mix well then add 1-2 tablespoons to a glass of milk (you do need to stir it a little extra so that the sugar dissolves). Store mix in an airtight container.

Source | Saving With Shellie

Berry Detox Smoothie

I’m a creature of habit. I eat the same thing every day for breakfast, lunch and my afternoon snack. Yes, I feel like a kid having a scheduled afternoon snack. But honestly, between 2-3:00 I become ravenous. I get the munchies in a real bad way and if I’m not conscious about having a healthy snack prepared then I will dig through the pantry and come up with all the junk food that I can find. So for like the past year this has been my go-to snack.  It is sweet enough to satisfy my sugar craving, but with all natural ingredients I can eat it without feeling guilty. I’ve found that if I sprinkle about 1/4 cup muesli (or granola) on top then it gives it a little more substance so that I feel full after eating it. I know there are about a million and one smoothie recipes out there, but this is my absolute favorite, so I thought it was worth sharing!

1 large banana (best if cut into chunks and frozen)
1/2 cup baby spinach leaves
1/2 cup frozen blueberries
1/2 cup almond milk (or more, depending on how thick you like it)
1 Tbs ground flaxseed, ground linseed, protein powder or wheat germ- just something to give it a little extra nutrition
1/4 cup muesli or granola
fresh berries to top (optional)

Add the banana, spinach, blueberries, almond milk and flaxseed to a blender and pulse until smooth. Pour into a glass and top with muesli/granola and fresh berries.

*makes one smoothie

Pink Hot Chocolate

I don’t know when this tradition first began, but having pink hot chocolate with our Valentine’s Day breakfast has been something we’ve loved for years now. It’s fun having a novelty food that becomes a special part of the holiday. This hot chocolate is just dreamy and we could easily drink it all winter long, but I like to keep it as a special treat for the kids to look forward to and get excited about. I won’t lie, I get just as excited to drink it as they do! And even though it’s still technically summer over here, we woke up to a cold, rainy, overcast morning. The kind of morning made for slippers and hot chocolate. Especially if it’s pink. Happy Valentine’s Day!

1 heaping cup white chocolate chips
1 c. heavy cream
4 c. half and half
½ tsp vanilla
approximately 7-8 drops red food coloring

Pour the cream into a large saucepan over medium heat and stir until heated through. Whisk in white chocolate chips until melted, stirring until completely smooth. Whisk in the half and half, vanilla and food coloring. Continue stirring until heated through, but don’t bring to a boil. Serve in mugs, topped with mini marshmallows or whipped cream.

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