Summery Fast Food

by Jeanne

Summertime makes us all busier than usual. Grabbing a piece of fruit or a container of yogurt often stems the hunger pains for a bit. With just a few minutes time and a blender there are a range of tasty, quick and portable drinks that are healthy, if made with low-fat ingredients such as tofu and fat-free yogurt. These drinks are an excellent way to get extra fruit into your diet and fulfill or even exceed the five-a-day recommendation for fruits and veggies. Refreshing and tasting good is just an added bonus.

With a lighter consistency and texture than the American milkshake licuados, pronounced lee-kwa-dos, can be found throughout Mexico and Central America. A combination of cold milk and fruit juices such as mango, apple or plantains these drinks can be a snack or a light meal. Okay, this one is not entirely low in calories but isn’t chocolate suppose to be good for you?

Peanut Butter Deluxe Licuado

Serves 2

1 1/2 cups milk
4 REESE’S® Peanut Butter Cups
1 banana, sliced
4 tbl chocolate powder
1 cup ice

Place all ingredients in blender or food processor. Blend until smooth. Serve chilled. Extra portions can be refrigerated, or frozen for a fast, healthy snack.

More liquado recipes:


Lassi, pronounced luh-see is the milkshake of southern India. Aruyvedic healing practices suggest that this drink aids in digestion. Made with cold yogurt, water or crushed ice and flavored either sweet or salty, with rose water, mint, cumin, cardamom, pistachios, and/or fruit or fruit juices.

Sweet Strawberry Lassi

Serves 1

2/3 cup fresh yogurt
1 1/2 cups pure cool water
1 large pinch cardamom
1 cup diced strawberries
Turbinado sugar or honey to taste

Blend all ingredients together in a blender for about 2 minutes. Strain and taste.
If using honey, add it after you pour the lassi into a glass, and stir briskly with a spoon.

Agua Fresca

Agua frescas, are easy-breezy Mexican fruit drinks, simply flavored waters with fruit. They can be made with any fruit. These days watermelon is in great abundance and are a snap to prepare.

Agua Fresca de Sandia

Serves 6

8 cups loosely-packed seeded watermelon chunks
1/4 cup packed fresh mint leaves
12 ounces sparkling water
Ice cubes

In a blender, purée the watermelon in batches, adding the mint leaves to one of the batches. Strain through a fine mesh sieve while pouring the watermelon juice into a large pitcher. Stir in the sparkling water and taste. Add 1 tablespoon or more of sugar if needed. Chill for at least 1 hour. Pour over ice into glasses.