If you are like me, St. Patrick’s Day always brings back fond memories of slurping McDonald’s Shamrock Shakes as a child. The green-tinted ice cream, the cool mint flavor, the whipped cream, the yum! I think it was also a welcome reminder that spring was right around the corner.
As a kid, I never worried about what nasty ingredients might be lurking in my shake. I just knew it tasted good. But now living in the information age as an adult and mom to two kids, I am more conscious about the things we put into our bodies. Sure, we eat “junk food” now and then, but I generally try to keep healthy foods in our home so we can easily make good choices.
When I saw the HuffPo’s article about the 54!!! ingredients (including High Fructose Corn Syrup, Red 40, Yellow 5, Blue 1, and artificial vanilla flavor), 820 calories, 135 grams of carbs and 115 grams of sugar in McDonald’s Shamrock Shakes, I knew I could make a healthier and just as tasty version at home with far fewer ingredients and no artificial dyes or HFCS. (Read a post I wrote about the problems with artificial colors.)
I used organic vanilla ice cream, 2% milk, mint extract, and a bit of frozen spinach for color. There were 10 ingredients in the ice cream, plus the milk, mint flavor (three organic oils) and spinach makes a total of 15 ingredients! If you add whipped cream on top, that’s about 5 more ingredients or less if you whip your own from whipping cream.
Homemade Shamrock Shake Recipe
- A few large scoops of vanilla ice cream
- About a cup of milk (add more if needed)
- Several drops of mint extract
- A handful of frozen or fresh baby spinach (for coloring)
Blend until well combined and pour into glasses. Add whipped cream on top if desired. Serve and enjoy!
The kids, hubby and I all agreed that they were better than McDonald’s version (which *ahem* we did recently partake in) and so easy to make at home.
Now you don’t have to wait for St. Patty’s day to roll around once a year. You can enjoy delicious mint shakes year-round!
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