Move over kale! There’s a new green juicing veggie in town, guaranteed to be a hit with the entire family! Zucchini Green Juice!
I know what you’re thinking! “Zucchini Green Juice??? Is this gal crazy?!?!”
Well… I’m crazy for green juice and zucchini is a great way to get a ton of delicious green juice bang for your buck.
Here’s why I love to juice with zucchini:
1. Zucchini has a very mild flavor and picks up the flavor of whatever you add to it. Mix a little bit of berry juice with a bunch of zucchini juice and it will taste like the berries, not the zucchini. This reason makes it the perfect veggie for getting your kids to drink green juice.
2. One medium sized zucchini produces a ton of juice. Have you ever juiced a big bag of kale only to have a couple of tablespoons of kale juice to prove for it? Zucchini is the exact opposite. Those suckers gush juice when you put them through your juice press.
3. Zucchini is packed full of all kinds of good stuff! Protein, calcium, omega-3 fatty acids, calcium, magnesium, folate, potassium, Vitamin A, B1, B2 and B6… I could go on and on and on!
4. Zucchini is easy to grow at home. Have an area around your house that gets some sun? Throw a couple of zucchini plants in pots or directly into the ground and come summer you’ll have a plethora of zucchinis to juice!
5. Don’t have an area to plant your own? No worries. Zucchini is readily available in the produce section of grocery stores (at least in my neck of the woods) and is usually very reasonably priced… and remember… a little can go a long way!
Kid Friendly Green Juicing Tips and Thoughts:
If you read the site regularly, you’ll probably remember that I went back to school last year to get my culinary nutrition expert certification. For my final project I did a workshop with kids who’s parents identified them as “picky eaters”. During the class we did a “Taste The Rainbow Challenge”, where we tried a variety of fruits and veggies that were every color of the rainbow, followed by a “Boost of Juice Challenge”. In the Boost of Juice Challenge I challenged each child to create their own cup of juice using 1 or 2 fruits and veggies they knew they liked along with 1 or 2 that they weren’t so sure about.
The results were amazing. The kids had so much fun using the juicer and were so excited to try the juice that they created. We had kids juicing aging from 3 years old to 10 years old! At the end of the class, every single child asked their parents for a juicer for Christmas.
I have two kids who drink green juice. One would drink it by the bucketful if he could. The other is less adventurous and will only drink a small amount at each serving… but at least she’s drinking it!
Here are my kid friendly green juicing tips:
1. Let them help with the juicing. Teach them how a juicer works, how to safely use a juicer, where you keep the fruits and vegetables in the fridge or pantry, how to wash produce, which produce needs to be trimmed before juicing, etc. Find age appropriate jobs for each of your children. Older kids can do juicing start to finish by themselves, from getting out the juicer, to cleaning it after, drying it and putting it away. Younger kids will enjoy dropping the fruits and vegetables down the juicing chute and watching their juice pour into the pitcher.
2. Start slowly with no expectations. Let’s be honest, most adults who are new to juicing would probably be more open to trying a strawberry mojito juice than a kale green juice. The rule with juicing is “the more veggies the better” but not everyone has the palate for it. Start your kids off with lots of fruit and a bit of veggie and slowly increase the amount of veggies as their palates adjust to the taste.
3. Get them involved in the grocery shopping. The next time your kids are at the grocery store with you, let them pick out a couple fruits and veggies that they’d like to try running through the juicer. Kids will be more likely to like something if they feel like they had a hand in it’s creation.
4. Make it fun. Make juicing a game! Challenge your kids to pick 1 or 2 fruits and veggies they like and 1 or 2 that they aren’t so sure about. Make a “juice shot” of each combination. Try their concoction with them, talk about the flavors and praise them for the amazing juice they created and how proud of them you are!
5. Make it a family event! Get the whole family in the kitchen juicing together. Pull out the produce drawer, give everyone a chance to create their own juice concoction and then have everyone try it! When everyone does something together, it’s not so scary anymore!
Ready to start juicing? Read on for my My Favorite Kid Friendly Green Juice Recipe- Strawberry Zucchini Juice!
My Favorite Kid Friendly Green Juice Recipe- Strawberry Zucchini Green Juice!
A note on the produce you use: If you ask the “experts” there is a wide variety of opinions on if you need to use organic produce when juicing or if you can get away with conventionally grown produce. I think that Joe Cross said it the best, “Whenever possible know where your produce is coming from.” There are many local, family run farms that have organic growing practices but aren’t certified organic. I love to support them as often as possible when buying my produce. I find the quality and the price is better than that at the grocery store. I personally buy a mixture of organic produce, locally grown produce and conventional produce. I do my best to stay on top of the Dirty Dozen and Clean 15 lists, and know which produce, like strawberries, are heavily sprayed and contain high levels of pesticides. Strawberries are the #1 offender on the Dirty Dozen list, so especially when juicing, I try to buy organic strawberries. Since green juice is such a concentrated form of your fruits and vegetables I try to use produce that was grown using organic growing practices as often as possible when juicing and save my conventionally grown produce for other forms of eating.
-1 medium zucchini (mine was 10 ounces)
-6 to 10 large strawberries (approximately 1 cups worth)
-Optional: 1/2- 1 lime, peeled (this gives the juice a nice added zing which I love, but which you might want to work up to when juicing for kids.)
1. Wash your produce well. Trim the stem off of your zucchini and cut the peel away from your lime. I put my strawberries through with their leaves on.
2. Feed your produce through the juicing chute. Watch with delight as your juice pours into the pitcher!
3. Pour into a glass and enjoy.
Makes one large glass of juice.
Print or save it for later:
- -1 medium zucchini mine was 10 oz
- -6 to 10 large strawberries approximately 1 cups worth
- -Optional: 1/2- 1 lime peeled (this gives the juice a nice added zing which I love, but which you might want to work up to when juicing for kids.)
- Wash your produce well. Trim the stem off of your zucchini and cut the peel away from your lime. I put my strawberries through with their leaves on.
- Feed your produce through the juicing chute. Watch the juice pour out with delight!
- Pour into a glass and enjoy.
A note on the juicer we use:
We’re a big fan of Breville kitchen appliances in my house. We juice with the Breville Juice Fountain Cold Centrifugal Juicer. The huge 2-litre jug is perfect for juicing with a family, it’s easy to take apart and clean and the cold spin technology allows for heat free juicing which helps maintain the delicate vitamins and minerals found in fruits and veggies. I feel comfortable letting my kids use it (with adult supervision of course), they both know that nothing goes down the feed chute besides fruits, veggies and the juicing plunger (aka no hands or fingers in the chute). It’s also very reasonably priced and a good way for people to get into juicing.
Disclosure: Thank you to Breville for sending us the Breville Juice Fountain Cold Centrfugal Juicer to try out. As with all posts on Hello Creative Family, all thoughts and opinions are 100% our own.
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