Build a Smoothie Station (Make-Ahead and Freeze)

Freezer cooking doesn’t always involve cooking! One of the things that I did this week was build up our smoothie station.¬†

My eldest son really loves to make his morning smoothie. Now that he’s working out on a regular basis, he takes his nutrition pretty seriously. He beefs up his smoothies with protein powder and counts on his mom to keep milk or juice in the fridge and a supply of frozen fruit in the freezer.¬†Though he probably could add the ice cream that is there, he rarely does.

At least to my knowledge.

This last month, I created a dedicated drawer in our freezer for smoothie supplies. It made sense to me that all that stuff be located in one place. This week, I added to the collection.

You can fill your drawer with anything that you like to include in smoothies:

  • frozen berries
  • chopped and frozen bananas
  • frozen stone fruit, like cherries, peaches, or plums
  • sorbet, gelato, frozen yogurt, or ice milk
  • even frozen spinach

I typically chop and “flash freeze” any fruit that we have that is getting very ripe or those that I find a great deal on. So, we’ve got several bags of home frozen fruit as well as a commercially packaged bag.

Today I chopped and froze some ripe bananas. While I was at it, I decided to freeze little lumps of Greek yogurt.

You can do this with ice cube trays, but it’s easier and less messy just to dollop your yogurt onto a piece of plastic wrap on a tray. Once the yogurt is frozen, it pops right off and you can store all your little yogurt gems in a freezer bag in the freezer. This is a great way to use up some yogurt that might be too close to the “best buy” date as well.

Having a smoothie station works really well for our family and encourages my kids to eat/drink more fruit and dairy.

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Comments

  1. Allie Zirkle says:

    I prefer fresh smoothies so this smoothie station setup works well for us too. I keep flax meal in my station. I don’t chop bananas, I peel and break in half and freeze that way. Loose leaf spinach from the freezer section is a big hit for “Hulk” green smoothies and everyone loves them. Pineapple, coconut, and mango are also big hits in our house. We keep our protein, shaker bottles, and blender all in the same cabinet for ease of use.

    I love the idea of adding in sorbet. Yum!!

  2. I love the yogurt dollop idea. Thank you!! I like to buy the larger plain yogurt containers, but we don’t usually go through it all fast enough. I’ve started buying individual containers because of this, so you have just saved me money. Not sure why I never thought of this.

  3. I love the frozen yogurt dollop idea. I am going to try it tomorrow!

  4. My 14yo will be so excited. I freeze my bananas for bread but didn’t think to freeze them for the smoothies–duh. And I definitely didn’t think to do the yogurt thing. Brilliant, especially with the healthier yogurt that doesn’t ever seem to get used up as fast like the sugary stuff. And the more frozen stuff the better for smoothies! Know what to add to my list for next week! How much greek yogurt does he use in a smoothie–I haven’t used it too much so it would be a nice to have a starting point.

  5. Freezing the greek yogurt is GENIUS! What a great idea!

  6. Stupid question here…do you have to thaw the fruits/yogurt first or can you just throw it into the blender frozen?

    • @Allyson, not stupid. Since you chop/make them smaller, they should blend well if there’s enough milk or juice. You can also let the mixture set for a few minutes before blending. It really depends on your blender and the texture that you like your smoothies. Adding crushed ice is something else we do.

  7. To reiterate some other comments – genius on freezing yogurt!

    I wanted to mention that adding frozen anything (fruit or yogurt) will make your smoothie thicker and obviously, cold. I think it has to do with the water content of the fruit being frozen, so it’s kinda like adding the fruit plus miniscule ice cubes to the smoothie… but that’s my non-scientific answer, lol. Still just as nutritious and delicious!

  8. Love this idea!

  9. I make a smoothie every day to take to work. I do 1 cup frozen fruit (mango, pineapple, strawberries) to 1 cup greek yogurt and a little milk. I use my immersion blender so it’s quick and easy, and very little clean up. Then I pour it into my “to go” smoothie cup and pop it in the freezer while I finish drying my hair, etc. I pull it out 5-10 minutes later and it’s perfect for the drive to work!

  10. This is a great idea! Such a good way to use up that food that is *almost* on its way out.

  11. Candice M. says:

    such creative and useful tips, thanks

  12. Angela Lierman says:

    What type of protein powder do you use??? I blindly go some at the store – added it to our smoothies and the kids hated it!!! Too gritty and chalky!! What are some favorites??

  13. This is probably a stupid question, but what kind of liquid do you usually use with your frozen ingredients? Do you always use juice or does water sometimes work? Do you ever use soy milk?

  14. What type of blender do you have? I need to purchase one that could handle smoothie making and need some recommendations.

  15. Thank you for sharing! I just LOVE the frozen Greek yogurt idea..AWESOME!!! ;) A friend of mine gave me this idea that has worked out wonderfully for my family, & maybe it would for you! Even though smoothie making is not really time consuming..it could be streamlined. I take individual baggies & fill with the following, spinach, kale, frozen fruit, & flax, maca, cacao, ect. Then, all you need to do is grab a baggie, toss it in your juicer/blender, & add your liquids, raw honey & cinnamon. For me, time is of the essence, so anything that can save even a moment, is good to me!!! ;)

  16. Love the yogurt and banana ideas!! Gonna try that! We keep frozen fruit on hand for smoothies! We have a hard time keeping bananas around long enough for smoothies, but maybe if I get them in the freezer before little hands can eat them!!

  17. MORGAN GIBSON says:

    Where do you find ice milk. I have not seen it in years.

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