This red velvet smoothie is the perfect match to a midweek dinner. But, don’t hold out to serve it as dessert. Bribing with dessert is a strategy that backfires in the long run with kids. When we put dessert on a pedestal we make the main meal a begrudged battle zone. They might love making the dessert to go with mains with you and this spinach and strawberry smoothie is so easy.

#Foodisfood is a great mantra to help level the playing field. And if you are still trying to reconcile how to move away from bribes or the lure of dessert, serving dessert at the same time as the mains at your family meal is a great strategy endorsed by research and feeding professionals. Sure, in the mean time kids may eat dinner “backwards” and they will push and prod to work out these shifted boundaries. Progress with other foods may feel like a long way away. But it happens! And the best part…. Meals are less stressful in the meantime.

We aren’t a big dessert family, so serving something like this red velvet smoothie with dinner works well for us. With only 3 ingredients, you may be happy to try it too.

Our actual dinner from my Instagram storiea.
We serve up easily from the middle of the table and the kids help themselves to whatever is on offer.

Red Velvet Smoothies

Difficulty: Easy


Prep time


Cooking timeminutes


  • 1 cup chocolate flavoured almond milk

  • 1 cup frozen strawberries

  • 4 tbsp frozen spinach


  • Put all ingredients in a blender and blitz.
  • Serve in a tea cup with a spoon as they will be icy (a great sensory and motor planning experience.)


  • Spinach is a source of iron, yet, combining it with a calcium source may mean iron absorption is not optimal, so the vitamon C on the strawberries can help promote absorption. This is a bit of why it doesn’t always help to focus on one nutrient. Instead, focus on variety and positive exposure.

Let me know if you serve dessert alongside your main!

And if you are looking for further inspiration, have a look at my Instagram feed where I post lots of #realfamilymeals. And my colleague Natalia Stasenko uses the hashtag too!

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