Real Fresh, Real Delicious, Really Green Smoothie
With Saint Patrick’s Day around the corner, spring in the air, and the produce section at my neighborhood Brookshire Brothers overflowing with fresh seasonal produce, what better way to celebrate than with a tasty green treat?  No need for artificial food coloring when you can use nature’s pantry to create a delectable green smoothie that will please kids and adults alike. Plus, smoothies are a quick and tasty way to get in your daily fruits and veggies!
Healthy Shamrock Smoothie Recipe
The art of the smoothie is all about the combination of ingredients. At my local Brookshire Brothers, I spotted plenty of farm fresh produce for inspiration. I decided to blend fresh apples and cucumbers in my recipe, but feel free to swap out ingredients and make it your own. You can sub in fresh oranges, bananas, kiwi, blueberries, strawberries, double the frozen fruit, or whatever you feel inspired to do!
Shamrock Smoothie Ingredients: Fresh Kale
For a sweeter drink, choose frozen mango or frozen pineapple and use coconut water or 100% juice for the liquid component.  For a mildly sweet lower calorie smoothie, I used an almond/coconut milk blend.  If using the drink as a meal replacement, try using regular milk or half yogurt half milk to boost the protein.
DON'T FORGET: Check your weekly ad for special savings on these ingredients!
Shamrock Smoothie Ingredients: Coconut Water
I added a spoon full of chia seeds for some healthy omega-3 fats, but flax seed works as well or you can skip them all together.  For the green stuff, try hand fulls of fresh spinach, kale, or Swiss chard to make it as beautiful as it is healthy.
Healthy Shamrock Smoothie Ingredients
As you can see, there are plenty of ways to make your own pot of (green smoothie) gold at the end of the rainbow.  Wishing you good luck and good health!  Enjoy!
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Healthy Shamrock Smoothie RecipeIngredients
1 cup frozen mango, pineapple, or other frozen fruit of choice
Two small or one large apple, cored and cut into chunks
1/2 cucumber or one mini cucumber cut into chunks
1 cup almond milk, coconut milk, regular milk, yogurt, coconut water, or 100% juice of choice
1 tablespoon of lemon juice (or half a lemon squeezed)
1 Tablespoon of whole chia seeds or flax seeds (optional)
Two big hand fulls (about two cups packed) of fresh spinach, kale, or Swiss chard
Find a nearby Brookshire Brothers to pick up any ingredients you don't already have on hand!
Add all ingredients to blender and mix until well blended. Add greens in batches as needed.  
Makes 4 cups (32 ounces)

Angela Larson
Angela Larson is a registered dietitian (RD) who works with Brookshire Brothers promoting real fresh, real delicious foods and nutrition education to the community. She is also a clinical dietitian representing Woodland Heights Medical Center in Lufkin where she does outreach education on food and nutrition. Food is her passion, so Angela loves trying new recipes and exploring the more holistic side of nutrition. Angela loves to cook, garden, and spend time outdoors. In addition to the Brookshire Brothers blog, look for Angela's monthly articles in Charm East Texas. 
St. Patrick's Day Lucky Shake

Hiland Milk has gathered all of the leprechauns and four leaf clovers to bring you a tradition you'll be wanting to adopt! Try your luck at this Lucky Shake recipe and if you're really lucky, you won't want until next St. Patty's Day to try it again!

Lucky Shake

2 cups Vanilla Ice Cream
1/ 1/4 cups Hiland Dairy Milk (any variety)
1/4 teaspoon mint extract
8 drops green food coloring

Combine all ingredients in a blender. Blend until smooth - enjoy!


How to Make Green Beer

Learn the tips and tricks you need to create the perfect pint of green beer while avoiding common pitfalls (looking at you, flat turquoise beer). 

Green Beer with St. Patrick's day date and decorations

What you’ll need: 

  • Beer
  • Pint glass
  • Green food coloring

How to:

  1. Use a light-colored beer such as a pilsner or pale ale. The lighter the beer, the brighter the color. A dark beer will require more food coloring, which leads to green teeth.
  2. Add beer to the coloring. To avoid flat beer, grab a pint glass and squeeze in 3- 5 drops of green food coloring. Slowly pour beer from a 12-ounce can or a 16-ounce bottle into the glass. Watch the color mix as the beer goes in. Want more color? Add a drop or two more of food coloring. If you put the beer in first, you’ll have to stir it, which will make the beer go flat.
  3. Stick with liquid green food coloring that comes in the little squeeze bottles. Adding blue to yellow-hued beer seems like a clever alternative, but we don’t recommend, because you’ll end up with turquoise beer.


Sweeten the Pot

Mini Grasshopper Cheesecakes

Crushed cookie crumbs make up the base of these easy, tasty cheesecakes.

Mini Grasshopper Cheesecakes

Prep time: 20 min
Total time: 3 hr 40 min
Ingredients: 7
Servings: 18

1 roll Pillsbury™ refrigerated sugar cookies
3/4 cup butter, melted
2 packages (8 oz each) cream cheese, softened
2/3 cup sugar
3 eggs
One teaspoon peppermint extract
4 to 6 drops green food color

Topping: Sweetened whipped cream and chocolate shavings, if desired


  1. Heat oven to 350°F. Cut cookies into slices as directed on roll. Place 2 inches apart on 2 ungreased large cookie sheets.
  2. Bake 14 to 16 minutes or until cookies are deep golden brown and crispy. Cool 1 minute; remove from cookie sheets to cooling rack. Cool completely, about 10 minutes. Crumble about half the cookies into fine crumbs to make 2 cups cookie crumbs.
  3. In small bowl, mix cookie crumbs and melted butter. Place foil baking cup in each of 18 regular-size muffin cups. Press about 1 tablespoon cookie mixture in bottom of each baking cup. Reduce oven temperature to 300°F. Bake 5 minutes.
  4. In large bowl, beat cream cheese and sugar with electric mixer on medium speed, scraping bowl frequently, until smooth and creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until smooth after each addition. Stir peppermint extract and food coloring. Pour about 1/4 cup of the filling on top of each of the cookie crusts.
  5. Bake 20 to 22 minutes or until edges are set and centers are still slightly jiggly. Turn oven off, and open door slightly. Cool cheesecake in oven 30 minutes. Remove from oven to cooling rack; cool at room temperature 30 minutes. Refrigerate about 2 hours or until cheesecakes are chilled. Top with sweetened whipped cream and chocolate shavings.

End-of-the-Rainbow Cookie Parfaits

Kids and adults will flip for these easy rainbow parfaits that are easy to make and over-the-top delicious!

Rainbow Parfaits

Prep time: 30 min
Total time: 55 min
Ingredients: 6
Servings: 12

1 roll (16.5 oz) Pillsbury™ refrigerated sugar cookies
2 eggs
Red, orange, yellow, green and blue gel food colors
1 pint whipping cream
3 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla


  1. Heat oven to 350°F. Spray 10 regular-size muffin cups with cooking spray. Let cookie dough stand at room temperature 10 minutes to soften. 
  2. In large bowl, break up cookie dough; add eggs. Beat with electric mixer on medium speed until smooth and well combined. Divide dough evenly into 5 small bowls. Color dough with red, orange, yellow, green and blue food colors, stirring until well combined.
  3. Scoop dough into muffin pans, making 2 cupcakes of each of the 5 colors, for a total of 10 cupcakes. Bake 15 to 18 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan 5 minutes. Remove cups from pan to cooling rack to cool completely, about 30 minutes. 
  4. Meanwhile, in medium bowl, beat whipping cream, sugar and vanilla with electric mixer on medium high speed until stiff peaks form.
  5. Crumble each of the cupcakes, keeping the colors separate. Sprinkle red cake crumbles into each of 12 glass parfait cups, glasses or small jars. Pipe whipped cream on top of each. Repeat process with orange, yellow, green and blue cake crumbles, finishing with the blue cake crumbles. Serve immediately, or refrigerate until ready to serve.

Mini Whoopie Pies

It doesn't get much easier than these 5-ingredient whoopie pies made with Pillsbury® sugar cookie dough!

Green Whoopie Pies

Prep time: 20 min 
Total time: 50 min
Ingredients: 5
Servings: 34

1 roll (16.5 oz) Pillsbury™ refrigerated sugar cookie dough
2 eggs
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon green gel food color
1 cup cream cheese creamy ready-to-spread frosting (from 16-oz container)


  1. Heat oven to 350°F. Line 2 large cookie sheets with cooking parchment paper. Let cookie dough stand at room temperature 10 minutes to soften.
  2. In large bowl, break up cookie dough. Add eggs, flour and green food color. Beat with electric mixer on medium speed about 30 seconds or until well blended. Place mixture in decorating bag fitted with tip, or place in resealable plastic food-storage bag and cut off 1 corner. Pipe batter into 1 1/4-inch circles 1 inch apart on cookie sheets.
  3. Bake 8 to 10 minutes or until cookies are set and spring back when touched. Cool 2 minutes on cookie sheets. Remove to cooling racks to cool completely, about 30 minutes.
  4. To make 1 whoopie pie, pipe frosting between 2 cookies.

Tips: Give these whoopie pies extra-special flavor by filling them with your favorite homemade cream cheese frosting!

St. Patrick's Day Dinner Party

Celebrate the holiday at home with a meal that says "St. Patrick’s Day" from start to finish. Greet guests with some good Irish beer options and nibblers. Crackers and Irish cheddar cheese or dip and green veggies, such as broccoli and zucchini, are a good bet. No luck of the Irish needed. Though it's always a welcome bonus!

Cauliflower Dip

Special St. Patrick's Day Touches

Pump up the St. Paddy's Day soirée with these Irish-oriented party ideas including music, decorations and more.

Blarney Rock Play Irish music in the background. Go with traditional Irish folk songs or more current rock from artists like U2, The Pogues or Van Morrison.

Double-Duty Centerpiece Green candles in multiple sizes and strings of green plastic beads strewn about make for easy, inexpensive and pretty table dressing. Plus, you have a little something on hand to ensure everyone has a touch o' green.

Sláinte Stock Irish beers such as Harp, Guinness and Kilkenny, or make your own green beer with a few drops of green food coloring. The lighter the beer, the better the result.

That's Crafty Decorate plain napkins, paper coasters or place mats with a shamrock stamp dipped in green ink. Make your own stamp by carving a shamrock shape into a potato half or by using a heart-shaped stamp three times—one for each leaf—then drawing in the stem.

Pretty, Patriotic Get helium-filled balloons in green, white and orange, the colors of the Irish flag. Let them dangle throughout the party.

Grown Green Choose flowers in different shades of green such as chrysanthemums, hydrangea, calla lily, carnations, eucalyptus or orchids. Make an arrangement, or tuck single stems in select spots.