make-ahead smoothies

make-ahead smoothies & a wolf gourmet giveaway |

There’s nothing worse than a cheap blender.

You know, the kind that grinds, rattles, and shakes across the kitchen counter every time you go to use it?

Not to mention, you don’t have the time to fuss with a kitchen appliance that’s supposed to do it’s job. I mean, that’s why you bought the darn thing!

Just blend.

Luckily, I have a surprise for you….

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blackberry ginger smoothie

blackberry ginger smoothie |

Hibiscus flowers and blackberries inspire early mornings smoothies…

We recently visited Long Island’s North Fork, something we do every summer to pick berries at our favorite farm. I’ve previously mentioned that my kids are master berry pickers and this year proved to be no exception. It was cute to watch Dillon teach his younger brother the art of foraging. You can only pick the black ones, not the red ones… he would scream (kids have no volume control). But Jake listened without protest. Before I knew it, we had oodles of berries spilling out of our woven baskets.

My mind was brimming with recipes….

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fresh cranberry yogurt drink

fresh cranberry yogurt drink | The Clever Carrot

I am that crazy lady with the screaming kids at the grocery store.

Yes, that shrieking horn-like sound you hear blaring down the aisles? It’s all coming from my shopping cart. I love my boys dearly, but we’re like a clown car. And for sanity’s sake, I will do whatever it takes to get out of there alive fast, even if it means letting my 2 year old eat raw cranberries out of the bag! Don’t judge, OK? Tantrums suck.

As predicted, my little guy chewed (and spewed) the berries all over the floor, and while I was cleaning it up I couldn’t help but wonder…

a little bowl of cranberries | The Clever Carrotfresh cranberry yogurt drink | The Clever Carrot

Would raw cranberries taste good in a smoothie?

Now, let’s be clear- raw cranberries are very, very tart. But when combined with yogurt and banana, I find that the tartness mellows and the overall flavor becomes pleasantly crisp. Any additional tartness can be rounded out with a drizzle of honey. Cranberries are quite the super berry too; they’re packed with an incredible amount of antioxidants and are most beneficial when consumed raw and unprocessed (no cranberry cocktail, please). Stock up and get them while they’re fresh!

More importantly, the 2 year old palette approves.

frozen cranberry yogurt drink | The Clever Carrot

If you have any leftover, you can make ice pops for the kids or freeze the liquid in silicone muffin cups (pictured above). Just add extra liquid to reconstitute, or keep it slushy for a healthy sweet treat. My friend Kelly taught me this trick, isn’t it cool? It’s great for busy mornings and saves on waste too!

You see, I can find inspiration in all things… even spewed cranberries bites only a mother could love ;)


  • I like to buy fresh cranberries for this recipe. I freeze some for smoothies, and save the rest for jams, sauces, and these sparkling beauties. Frozen cranberries will also work too.

fresh cranberry yogurt drink
Prep time
Total time
Serves: 2
  • ¼ c. frozen cranberries
  • 1 frozen banana, sliced
  • ½ plain yogurt
  • ½ c. apple juice
  • 1 tsp. chia or flax seeds (optional)
  • 1 tsp. honey, agave or maple syrup + more to taste
  1. Place all of the ingredients into a blender, and process until smooth and creamy. Run the machine for an extra minute or two to break up the seeds (if using).
  2. Add additional sweetener to taste.