A Healthy Shamrock Shake

March 16th, 2013 | Posted by Alison Spath in Morning Craziness

A few days ago my dad (who is also a runner) asked if I was going to run the “Johnny’s Runnin’ of the Green” on Saturday, the annual St. Patrick’s Day race here in Rochester.

I said no, I was too busy with half marathon training – and besides, I’d rather be Eatin’ of the Green.

(I didn’t really say that last part.)

Fast forward to this morning, in the car and less than 2 minutes away from my yoga class, I discovered the road I was about to turn onto was closed – blockaded by cop cars with flashing lights and caution tape. It was then that I noticed all the runners dressed in green costumes, green shirts, hats and sparkly shamrock antennae.

(No running Gumby though.)

It was the Runnin’ of the Green!  Or more accurately, The Runnin’ Over The Bridge That I Need to Take to Get to Yoga Class On Time.  A yoga class that was about to start in 5 minutes.

The yoga studio is less than a half mile from the bridge that was closed. I was SO close to the studio, but still so far away if I couldn’t cross that bridge!  Any other bridge I might have used as a detour would have taken me 10 minutes out of my way, I didn’t have that kind of time.  I finally concluded that I might not be able drive over that bridge with green clad runners, but I could run over it.

And so I parked the car where I was and as turns out, I did run the Johnny’s Runnin’ of the Green today!  Except I was not wearing green.   I was wearing a purple down coat.  And carrying my yoga mat.  And running in the opposite direction as everybody else.

But I got to class on time!  It was a Day Before St. Patrick’s Day miracle.

So that’s my St. Patrick’s Day story for you. Now it’s time for a St. Patrick’s Day smoothie.

NOT ANOTHER GREEN SMOOTHIE – I can already hear you. YES, of course it’s another GREEN SMOOTHIE!  It’s The Greener March Challenge for crying out loud!  But don’t go just yet, this is a really good one.

Today’s green smoothie impersonated a certain St. Patrick’s Day green dessert drink from a certain fast food restaurant chain.  I’m certain you know what I’m talking about.

Healthy Shamrock Shake

The Shamrock Shake! You got it!  (The title of this post gave it away.  Dammit.)

You know, I’ve never even had a Shamrock Shake – but I can venture a guess how they taste.

Cold, green, minty – amiright?

Well we can definitely do cold and green.

Avocado and Frozen Banana

We’ll need some frozen bananas and avocado. Spinach too of course.

So now we just need to do something about that “minty” part.

Minty Green Smoothie

How about we stop at the Co-op after yoga and snag a little bottle of peppermint extract?

(That says Peppermint “flavor”, but the only two ingredients are Peppermint Extract and Sunflower Oil – works for me.)

A cold, minty green smoothie made today after an (unplanned) half mile run and a (planned) hour of heated Vinyasa flow.  The frozen bananas (a la banana whip) made it cold, creamy and sweet.  The avocado helped with the creaminess and the greeniness.  The spinach helped with the green too.  The peppermint made it minty.  A couple glugs of milk made it a drinky.

A Minty Green Smoothie

To make a Healthy Shamrock Shake for two you’ll need two frozen bananas (slicing them before freezing will make it easier on your blender) half an avocado, one handful of spinach, 1/2 c or so of milk (dairy or non-dairy is fine) and 5 – 6 drops of peppermint.  I recommend adding the peppermint two drops at a time, blending and tasting before carefully adding more peppermint – it’s strong!

I loved this, Zak did too – I’m still amazed at the way a little peppermint can make such a yummy, dramatic difference in a smoothie that’s basically the same avocado, spinach, banana smoothie I made a couple of times this week already.  It was like a completely different drink!

You could easily leave the avocado out of this drink if you aren’t an avocado fan. You could even leave out the spinach if you’re strongly opposed to greenery in smoothies (GASP!) and just go with frozen bananas, milk and peppermint extract.

A cold, minty, (and optionally) green treat that’s good for you too?  It it’s a Day Before St. Patrick’s Day miracle!


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