Happy St. Patrick’s Day! In honor of the holiday (and my kid’s obsession with leprechauns), tonight I whipped up a super easy and healthy dessert. I guess I was grossed out by all the mentions on TV and Facebook of this Shamrock Shake from McDonald’s. I mean, don’t get me wrong, it’s not like my kids NEVER go there, but I knew that today, of all days, I had an excuse to sneak some healthy greens into the festivities, instead of some artificially colored and flavored, non-dairy weirdness.
Chia seeds are all the rage right now, and rightfully so…they have a whopping 6 grams of fiber and 3 grams of protein per tablespoon! They are also pretty unique in that they absorb liquid and take the form of a gel after a couple of hours. So you can basically make any kind of smoothie you want and turn it into a pudding, just by adding these magic little power seeds.
Kale gave it that perfect green color, along with a host of vitamins. One cup of kale contains 5 grams of fiber, 15% of the daily requirement of calcium and vitamin B6 (pyridoxine), 180% of vitamin A, 200% of vitamin C, and 1,020% of vitamin K. It’s one of those nutritional powerhouses that I try to get into my kids as often as possible, but smoothies are usually my most succesful, especially with Miles.
Now, you kind of have the like texture of tapioca or rice pudding to dig this treat. But my Shamrock Pudding was a total hit – so good in fact, I’m pretty sure it will make another appearance at the table before next St. Patrick’s Day.
2 cups unsweetened, vanilla almond milk
1 banana (ripe)
2 cups chopped kale
1 1/2 Tablespoons pure vanilla extract
2 Tablespoons Pure Maple Syrup
1/2 cup chia seeds
Directions: Combine almond milk, banana, kale and vanilla in a high-speed blender and process for 1 minute (until all bits of kale have disintegrated into the liquid). Pour liquid into a bowl, stirring chia seeds in. Let sit in refrigerator for 2 hours, until pudding is set. Makes 6 1/2 cup servings.