I actually posted this recipe last March, but since St. Patrick’s Day only comes around once a year, I thought I’d repost it for those who are actually tempted by the “Shamrock Shake” posters hanging in the McDonald’s windows this time of year.
I have to admit it. I used to love Shamrock Shakes (the McDonald’s variety). That’s an awful admission, isn’t it? And when I think about what those Shamrock Shakes are made from, it makes me feel even worse. But then when I consider what ingredients make up my Shamrock shake substitute, it warms my heart! There is nothing but wholesome stuff here- and even the minty green color is naturally made by the ingredients (no food coloring here!). If I took the time to run a nutritional analysis on it, it would leave the original Shamrock Shake in the dust!
And this is such a yummy smoothie option, many of you will want to consume it year round. You might want to call it “Minty Green Smoothie” or something like that if you want to avoid the holiday and McDonald’s association, but I think we’ll continue calling it “Shamrock Shake” in our home.
Avocados have been such a good buy recently that I’ve stocked up and been playing around with a “Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream” variation of this recipe. I’ll try to post one later this week. (My poor family will have to suffer through a couple more trials!)
Shamrock Shake/Minty Green Smoothie
1 cups water
1/4 cup walnuts (presoaked, if possible)
1/2 avocado, peeled and pitted
A handful or two of fresh baby spinach (or a couple of romaine lettuce leaves)
1/2 tsp. peppermint extract (or 3-4 drops of peppermint essential oil)
opt: 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract (this is an uncommon ingredient in my recipes and can be left out)
2 frozen bananas
opt: 1+ Tbsp. honey or maple syrup (combine honey with water before adding cold ingredients or you’ll have difficulty blending it)
Process all but bananas in a heavy-duty blender until smooth. Add frozen bananas and blend just until smooth (keeping it as frosty as possible). Makes 2 medium servings or one super-size one!
Variation: Add 1 Tbsp. carob powder (or 1/2 Tbsp. cocoa powder and a bit more sweetener) for a chocolate mint version.