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Fermented Cranberry Soda :: A naturally probiotic rich, kid friendly, real food soda!

December 17, 2016

Kids and adults alike can celebrate the holiday season with this bubbly, naturally probiotic rich fermented cranberry soda!

Fermented Cranberry Soda :: A naturally probiotic rich, kid friendly, real food soda!Product links in this post are affiliate links. It does not cost you anything and helps maintain the free information on this site, as well as answer the questions of “what brand do you use?” Please know I never personally recommend any product I wouldn’t use on my own family.

I remember the year like it was yesterday…

My oldest was 2 1/2 and we were enjoying a delicious New Year’s dinner platter of raw cheeses, crackers, fruit, olives – the works! My husband and I had glasses of wine to ring in the new year and my toddler was all of a sudden not as excited about her glass of milk!

Fermented Cranberry Soda :: A naturally probiotic rich, kid friendly, real food soda!Listen…kids love to celebrate just as much as we do!

Creating amazing memories for them while they are little so that the smells, the people, the traditions, and the food have a warm, nostalgic feeling every time the holidays come around builds family pride and appreciation.

After that year we started making sure that the girls had something special to drink with us as we rang in the new year as a family! (They also love having these fun swing top bottles to make them feel like they have their own special drink!)

Fermented Cranberry Soda :: A naturally probiotic rich, kid friendly, real food soda!

Naturally fermented, bubbly cranberry soda became our New Year celebration tradition!

While some years I chose the easier route and served store bought Kombucha as I sleepily nursed newborns, or tended to crabby witching hour toddlers, we are now in a really cool season of kids that actually sleep through the night (most of the time!), and a couple of older kids that really love to help in the kitchen and truly appreciate real food.

Fermented Cranberry Soda :: A naturally probiotic rich, kid friendly, real food soda!Use real food to make real, bubbly soda!

All you need to make a traditionally fermented soda is a fermenting medium such as whey, a ginger bug, or brewed water kefir or kombucha, a little sugar for them to feed on to grow, and a really fun seasonal fruit to flavor it! You can choose whatever fermenting medium you wish, and the cranberries give this soda the most vibrant, beautiful red color you have ever seen! It is also helpful to have these grolsch/swing top type bottles to make your fermenting happen easily!

Fermented Cranberry Soda :: A naturally probiotic rich, kid friendly, real food soda!

A note on the sugar

The sugar in the recipe is for the probiotic bugs, not for you! While there is some sugar left behind, the amount is completely up to you! The longer you let the drink ferment, the less sugar there will be, as the bugs in the fermenting medium (the whey, ginger bug, or brewed water kefir or kombucha) eat up the sugar.

The beauty is in being able to taste it along the way. I check the bottles every couple days and decide when it’s done. It’s pretty cold up here so fermenting happens slow in the winter – if you are in a warmer climate I would recommend checking for taste daily.

Fermented Cranberry Soda :: A naturally probiotic rich, kid friendly, real food soda!Fermented drink newbies, this part is for you!

If you are new to fermenting drinks, don’t be intimidated! It is so easy!

If you are just starting out and don’t have a fermenting medium such as a ginger bug, water kefir grains, or a SCOBY for kombucha, simply strain off some whey from a container of quality yogurt and you’ll be good to go! Put a thin towel over a bowl, scoop a 32oz container of plain, whole milk yogurt into the towel, and then tie the towel up to a cupboard door handle. The whey will drip out into the bowl – you’ll need about 1 cup to make this drink recipe and that should take about an hour-ish to drip if you squeeze it a little. The leftover yogurt in the towel is essentially “Greek yogurt”, or, if you strain it completely, it is like cream cheese!

(If you are interested in getting into more fermenting, here is my full tutorial about getting into water kefir brewing, and I love these tutorials from The Nourished Kitchen on making and using a ginger bug, as well as how to brew kombucha.)

Fermented Cranberry Soda :: A naturally probiotic rich, kid friendly, real food soda!Happy New Year from my family to yours!

Have the kids help you bottle up something special to ring in the new year! The hands on time is pretty minimal – once it’s bottled it just needs some time to sit and work it’s bubble magic!

Fermented Cranberry Soda :: A naturally probiotic rich, kid friendly, real food soda!

5.0 from 6 reviews
Fermented Cranberry Soda :: A naturally probiotic rich, kid friendly, real food soda!
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 8 cups fresh cranberries
  • 2 quarts of water
  • 2½ - 3 cups organic pure cane sugar
  • 1 cup whey, OR 1 cup ginger bug, OR 1-2 quarts brewed water kefir or kombucha
Instructions
  1. Put the cranberries, water, and sugar into a large soup pot and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer until the cranberries soften and burst. You can use the back of your wooden spoon or a potato masher to squish them up.
  2. Pour the cranberry sugar mixture through a strainer over a gallon jar to strain the cranberry pulp from the sugary cranberry syrup using a fine mesh strainer. Use the back of your wooden spoon to push the liquid through the strainer, spreading the pulp around. The leftover pulp can be blended into a smoothie or stirred into yogurt or soaked oats.
  3. Let the cranberry syrup cool to lukewarm/room temp and then stir in your fermenting medium (The whey, ginger bug, or brewed water kefir or kombucha). If using the whey or ginger bug, you'll have to add water to top off the gallon jar leaving a couple inches of head space
  4. At this point, you can either put a tight lid on your jar to ferment, or transfer to swing top/grolsch style bottles to ferment. Leave the soda at room temp for a few days to a week, checking for taste daily. The rate of fermenting greatly depends on the environment in which you live. This time of year where I live the fermenting takes 7-10 days since it is so cold here (we do have heat but it is still quite cool - this week we were in the single digits for wind chills!). I leave the flip top bottles up in a high cupboard where the heat rises in the kitchen near my stove. I do find that my ferments finish up faster using the flip top bottles versus a jar with lid. A Pickle Pipe on your jars work just as good as flip top bottles in my experience too. (I love my Pickle Pipes!)
  5. Once your cranberry soda is the taste and amount of natural carbonation you like, transfer your jar or bottles to the fridge to slow down the fermenting. They will keep in the fridge 3-4 weeks.

More real food recipes you might like ::

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Water Kefir Basics

June 27, 2016

Water kefir is an easy to make, naturally fermented drink that is allergen friendly and loaded with probiotics, B vitamins, and food enzymes.

Water Kefir Basics :: Water kefir is an easy to make, naturally fermented drink that is allergen friendly and loaded with probiotics, B vitamins, and food enzymes.

Water kefir is one of our favorite household ferments!

This mild, lemony, kid friendly drink is not quite as strong as other popular fermented tonics like beet kvass or kombucha so it tends to be a nice way for newbie real foodies to introduce probiotic-rich food into their home.

How does water kefir work?

Water kefir grains are small, gelatin-like structures made up of various beneficial bacteria. These grains will thrive and even multiple indefinitely when kept properly, living in fresh mineral rich sugar water. The bacteria and yeasts in the water kefir grains feed off of the sugar and minerals in the water, infusing the water with loads of probiotics essential for gut health along with an array of B vitamins and enzymes.

Water Kefir Basics :: Water kefir is an easy to make, naturally fermented drink that is allergen friendly and loaded with probiotics, B vitamins, and food enzymes.

Ok super cool! What’s the commitment here?!

Every 2-3 days your water kefir grains will need fresh sugar water since the bacteria eat it all up! It takes me 5 minutes of time to switch out the water every few days. It is a fantastic project or chore chart item for appropriately aged kids – my 2 older girls (aged 5 and 7) help me still – I would imagine slightly older children could do it themselves. It is a bit like having a “pet” and it is a fantastic, on-going science project to explore!

I’m ready to get started! Where do I get my water kefir grains?

If you hop on any “crunchy” Facebook group in your local area and ask for kefir grains, I have found many to be very willing to share! Especially in the warm summer months, those grains multiply like crazy when fed well, and people are more than willing to split theirs.

I have been using Cultures for Health water kefir grains for years, and they have always been so plump and healthy – very easy to work with!

How to make water kefir

Equipment

The first step is to find a jar for your water kefir grains to live in. You’ll want a to use a quart or half gallon mason jar, and an air-lock lid or Pickle Pipe (I use a Pickle Pipe). A traditional style fermentation crock or even a Fido jar works well too. A fine mesh strainer for straining out the grains after brewing will be needed too.

While you can get a decent ferment with a mason jar and regular lid or cheesecloth, after reading this article from my friend Jessica a number of years ago, and doing some research, it seems these type of ferments do best in an “anaerobic” (no oxygen) type environment. I was shocked at how bubbly my first ferments were after making the switch to using an anaerobic seal. The Pickle Pipe is so easy to use, and really easy (read: quick!) to clean. It automatically “burps” your ferment so the gasses don’t build up too much, and I love not having to think about that! Your Pickle Pipes can be used for fermenting other things like sauerkraut, kimchi, pickles, etc too. They are one of my favorite real foodie tools!

Water Kefir Basics :: Water kefir is an easy to make, naturally fermented drink that is allergen friendly and loaded with probiotics, B vitamins, and food enzymes.

Brewing the water kefir

Water kefir thrives best with mineral rich water and sugar. Since most of us do not have water that is rich with minerals, it is a good idea to supplement your water with a little sea salt and ConcenTrace. Both are teaming with minerals that will give your kefir grains what they need to grow and thrive.

Water Kefir Basics :: Water kefir is an easy to make, naturally fermented drink that is allergen friendly and loaded with probiotics, B vitamins, and food enzymes.

Water Kefir Basics
Author: 
 
½ cup water ¼ cup organic pure cane sugar ⅛ tsp sea salt ⅛ - ¼ tsp ConcenTrace ¼ cup water kefir grains
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Heat the ½ cup of water stovetop and while that is warming put the sugar, sea salt, and ConcenTrace into a quart mason jar. (If you have more than ¼ cup of water kefir grains, simply double this recipe into a half gallon jar).
  2. Pour the heated water into the jar with the sugar mixture and stir with a wooden spoon to dissolve. (Note that when working with ferments it is advised not to use metal utensils as it can disrupt the environment. I always use wooden tools)
  3. Fill the jar the rest of the way with fresh water, leaving a couple inches of headspace at the top. This is your sugar water! Add your kefir grains to the sugar water and put your lid on.
  4. Let the water kefir ferment at room temperature for 2-3 days. This ferment prefers to be in the dark so I place mine in a kitchen cupboard. A closet works too. The warmer the air temp, the faster your ferment will go so keep the weather in mind especially in the summer. If you live somewhere cold, it may take longer.
  5. After your kefir has fermented to your taste, make another batch of sugar water, strain out the grains and place the grains into the fresh sugar water to ferment again. The fermented water kefir left behind can be consumed right away (I like it with a squeeze of lime or lemon!), or chilled in the fridge to drink later. You can also do a "second ferment" on your finished water kefir to flavor it, creating a bubbly, "soda-like" drink.

“Second Ferment” tips

Doing a second ferment on your finished water kefir creates a bubbly, soda-like drink that you can flavor any way you like! Whatever fruit is in season makes for a fun, flavored drink that really feels like a soda pop.

Tools for creating a second ferment

Your second ferment will become bubbly with a tight fitting lid – I prefer to use grolsch style (flip-top) bottles as I have gotten the best result with them. A narrow funnel is also a good tool to have on hand to pour the water kefir into the bottles.

Water Kefir Basics :: Water kefir is an easy to make, naturally fermented drink that is allergen friendly and loaded with probiotics, B vitamins, and food enzymes.

Brewing a second ferment

You’ll need:

  • 1/2 cup of chopped fruit or fruit juice (do 1/4 cup if using lemon or lime juice)
  • 1 quart brewed water kefir

Instructions:

  1. Put the chopped fruit or juice into your flip-top bottles and use a funnel to pour the brewed water kefir into the bottles. Close the lids.
  2. Place the bottles in a dark cupboard or closet for 1-2 days. You may want to “burp” your bottles once a day to let some of the air out or your ferment will overflow upon opening! I tend to forget this part and just open my bottles slowly because they do get very, very bubbly!
  3. After 1-2 days of fermenting, move your bottles to the fridge to chill.

Water Kefir Basics :: Water kefir is an easy to make, naturally fermented drink that is allergen friendly and loaded with probiotics, B vitamins, and food enzymes.

How to introduce water kefir into your diet

Water kefir is really considered more of a health tonic. While it makes for a really fun drink especially for kids to drink, making it a soda replacement isn’t advised. Starting out with 2-3 ounces for kids, and 4-6 ounces for adults is a good starting point. I tend to start toddlers/kids out with a couple ounces watered down a bit. Some to be sure they stomach the new bacteria ok, and some to tame the sweetness for young palates. Adults and big kids ought also heed starting out small to introduce the new bacteria to the gut. Once you know your body is tolerating the new bacteria well, enjoy a cup or so everyday – your gut will thank you!

A note about the sugar and alcohol content

Since the bacteria in the grains consume the sugar in the sugar water, the sugar content is actually quite low. Undoubtedly there will be questions about whether raw honey, coconut sugar, or other sweetener might work for the sugar and it really just doesn’t work. The beneficial bacteria feed best off cane sugar.

As with all fermented drinks, there is a small amount of alcohol produced when brewing water kefir. I have read anywhere from 0.5% to 0.75%. The longer the kefir is brewed, the higher the alcohol content.

Cold & Flu Season Drinks Feeding Babies Natural Remedies Nourishing Staples Real Food 101 Real Food Tips

Post Tummy Bug Recovery Smoothie

March 25, 2016

You’ve made it through a tummy bug, and are ready to eat – but what do you eat on a sensitive empty tummy? This smoothie is not only gentle, but is loaded with minerals and nutrients to nourish your family back to eating again!

Post Tummy Bug Recovery Smoothie :: You've made it through a tummy bug, and are ready to eat - but what do you eat on a sensitive empty tummy? This smoothie is not only gentle, but is loaded with minerals and nutrients to nourish your family back to eating again!

We made it through the whole winter with no more than a little cold bug…until last week.

The weekend spring began to be exact! How ironic!

I went on a field trip with my preschooler on a Friday morning and listened to the teacher’s warnings to the mothers there that 6 or 7 kids plus 1 teacher were out with the flu that week…

Post Tummy Bug Recovery Smoothie :: You've made it through a tummy bug, and are ready to eat - but what do you eat on a sensitive empty tummy? This smoothie is not only gentle, but is loaded with minerals and nutrients to nourish your family back to eating again!

And my 6 and 4 year olds ended up with buckets at the bedside by Saturday morning.

What a drag!

It’s bound to happen – our kids don’t live in bubbles right?!

We do what we can to keep their immune systems boosted during the winter with quality cod liver oil, whole food sourced quality vitamin C, eating nourishing food and getting quality sleep, and here and there do rounds of daily elderberry syrup when there are viruses going around in herds in the classroom.

But sooner or later the body does a little house cleaning and a bug takes over.

We spent the greater part of the next 24 hours nursing the 2 girls’ high fevers with yarrow baths and cool washcloths, hourly elderberry syrup doses, sips of homemade electrolyte drinks and nettle tea, and lots and lots of sleep and rest.

By Sunday morning the girls perked up a bit, fevers had been broken, and {most importantly!} there had been no throwing up since late Saturday morning.

We were in the clear to try a little bland food at the girls’ request, and I typically start with sea salted bone broth. They both had a tea cup full that morning which stayed down well, and they were ready to try more.

Post Tummy Bug Recovery Smoothie :: You've made it through a tummy bug, and are ready to eat - but what do you eat on a sensitive empty tummy? This smoothie is not only gentle, but is loaded with minerals and nutrients to nourish your family back to eating again!

I decided to try a gentle smoothie to start while I worked on getting more bone broth made to make some soup for later that afternoon.

Here are the components and purposes of the ingredients:


Mineral Boosting Liquid Base

The purpose here is getting the liquid part of the smoothie to do some work for you in replenishing the little ones electrolytes without being too heavy. While raw milk and coconut milk are great in smoothies, when you are just coming off a tummy bug you want to ease into those heavier fluids. Coconut water or nettle tea work well. Or even just water with a big pinch of mineral rich sea salt, Celtic salt, or pink salt works great.


Gentle Mineral Rich Veggie

While we love green smoothies, the focus here is getting the digestion up and running again. Gentle veggies like sweet potatoes or any of the squashes (yes even zucchini) are loaded with minerals and (in their cooked form) are very easy to digest as well as provide a slow burning carbohydrate to the mix. Just use whatever you have on hand. I had mashed sweet potatoes leftover from dinner earlier in the week so I used that. You can steam up a little sweet potato or squash in just 20 minutes time.


Easy To Digest Fruit

Fruit makes the smoothie palatable for little ones without adding any extra sugar. Because we are talking gentle ingredients while recovering from a tummy bug, I chose to use mango and banana. Both are low in pectin which can irritate sensitive tummies. Banana also contains amylase which is helpful in carbohydrate digestion. All in all it is just a great choice to not only make the smoothie taste good after coming off a nauseating tummy bug, it is nice and easy to digest. Papaya is another low pectin fruit if that is more readily available to you. Most of the time I purchase frozen mango in bulk at Costco, though sometimes I catch a sale in the fresh produce department.


Grassfed Collagen

Not only does a quality grassfed collagen add an easy to digest, natural protein source, it is also fantastic for repairing stomach lining and just over all digestive support. I have been using Perfect Supplements grassfed collagen since early fall last year and I couldn’t be more pleased. Zero taste, blends in perfectly, and great price point.


Gentle Fat Source

This boosts the satiating part of the smoothie balancing out the fruit sugars and protein to make it well rounded. Just a small splash to start digestion running is all you need and really you could choose whatever you wish. I typically add egg yolks to the girls’ smoothies but I ended up using avocado oil this time just to keep it simple and smaller in portion size. Melted coconut oil works well too and is extremely nourishing.


Optional Add-Ins

If you have kids that are tough to get probiotics or vitamin C into, this is where you can get a dose of those in easy. My 4 and 6 year olds swallow probiotics and C’s without issue but I know there are some that don’t! You can add a quality probiotic and vitamin C to the smoothie and they’ll never know 😉


 

Post Tummy Bug Recovery Smoothie :: You've made it through a tummy bug, and are ready to eat - but what do you eat on a sensitive empty tummy? This smoothie is not only gentle, but is loaded with minerals and nutrients to nourish your family back to eating again!

5.0 from 5 reviews
Post Flu Recovery Smoothie
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 1½ cups coconut water (Other options for mineral boosting fluid would be plain water with a big pinch of sea salt, or brewed nettle tea. The fruit will mask any flavor.)
  • 3-4 TB sweet potato mash (or about ¼ cup cubed and cooked sweet potato - I just used leftover mashed sweet potato from dinner earlier in the week. Squash is gentle and would work too)
  • 1 banana, fresh or frozen
  • 1 cup mango or papaya, fresh or frozen
  • 2-3 TB grassfed cold soluble collagen
  • 2 tsp avocado oil or melted coconut oil
Instructions
  1. Everything into the blender and blend until smooth. Serves 3 small child sized servings. Can also be poured into ice pop molds for popsicles.

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15016020524_098c8da6c5_z

 

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Nettle Infusions For Kids!

January 9, 2016

A kid friendly, hydrating & mineral rich herbal infusion made with busy kids in mind!

Nettle Infusions For Kids!

Links in this post are affiliate links. It does not cost you anything and helps maintain the free information on this site, as well as answer the questions of “what brand do you use?” Please know I never personally recommend any product or service I wouldn’t use on my own family.

An almost daily staple in our home, I can’t believe I haven’t posted this nettle infusion recipe before today!

This nourishing nettle infusion stands right alongside bone broth in our home as mineral rich boost for busy bee kids and is one of the first teas I like to introduce to their palates to develop a love for herbal tea.

As little ones, I like to give sips right off my tea cup or glass around 6 to 9 months old. Obviously not a replacement for breastmilk, letting baby take tastes of an infusion like this helps create a taste palate for tea for later in childhood. I can’t tell you how nice it is to have a toddlers that willingly drink a cup of mineral rich tea with their lunch, or sip on a healing herbal tea when ill.

Nettle Infusions For Kids!

But wait!

If you have big kids this is for you too!

Even if you have a big kid or teen that has never had a cup of tea before today, I left instructions on how to slightly tweak the recipe to make it palatable for them. Nettle infusions are a fantastic way to hydrate and boost minerals for kids that are busy with school all day, in sports, or are just busy outdoors playing! It is a great replacement for working on getting juice out of the routine in the house, and a little lemon and raw honey make it taste really good.

Nettle Infusions For Kids!

Those who follow my Instagram account know that I often pack nettle infusions in my first grader’s lunch for school. While the students take a mid morning break for a quick snack that includes water, as I have volunteered in the room I notice just how little the children drink during the morning! You can physically watch some of them start puttering out by lunchtime…including my daughter who gets a very nourishing breakfast every morning. They need a big re-fuel at lunchtime and that includes hydrating.

Nettle Infusions For Kids!

Giving them an extra mineral boost with an herbal infusion works great – and I have seen my own daughter perk right up for the rest of the day after her meal and infusion. (To follow our lunch ideas and routine, you can search the hashtag #rgnschoollunch on Instagram to follow her lunches!)

You don’t need fancy equipment to get started – just the loose herb and a quart mason jar is all I used for years. I have a dedicated French Press that I have been using just for infusions for a couple years now, and I love how convenient they make tea making. No straining or fuss. Just push down and pour. I even have a smaller French Press so that my 2 and 4 year olds can do it themselves!

Links in this post are affiliate links. It does not cost you anything and helps maintain the free information on this site, as well as answer the questions of “what brand do you use?” Please know I never personally recommend any product or service I wouldn’t use on my own family.

5.0 from 2 reviews
Nettle Infusions For Kids!
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 3 tsp nettles
  • 2 tsp hibiscus
  • 1 quart of hot water
  • Juice of ½ lemon (Optional - leave this out for babies as the acid can be irritating for sensitive digestion)
  • 2 tsp raw honey (This is optional for using for those bigger kids that might need a little sweet to make it more palatable. Leave this out for the babies and toddlers to work at developing their palate for tea without honey. We use a local raw honey - the linked brand is a good one if you don't have access.)
Instructions
  1. Put the loose herbs at the bottom of your mason jar, French Press, or other glass container or teapot.
  2. Pour the hot water over the herbs and let them steep anywhere from a couple hours to overnight. You can steep up to 24 hours if you wish. My routine is to make the infusion at night before I go to bed and then I strain it off in the morning for school lunches and myself so that I can make another infusion for the afternoon that steeps all morning. Do what works for you!
  3. After the infusion has steeped, strain off the herbs and enjoy. You can add a squeeze of lemon (my favorite!) and for the kids new to herbal tea you can drizzle in the raw honey. Just shake up the infusion and honey in a jar and it will dissolve. The hibiscus herb gives a slightly sweet and tart flavor to the bitter nettles so you actually might be surprised at how much they like it without the honey. It is certainly enough with just the hibiscus herb for young palates in babies and toddlers.

For more nourishing staples in our home, you can follow my Nourishing Staples board on Pinterest!

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Vitamin C Gummies

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DIY Electrolyte Drink

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6 School Lunch Ideas *Besides* Peanut Butter & Jelly :: Plus a PlanetBox Review!

Drinks Real Food 101 Real Food Tips

Fermented Cherry Almond Soda

July 18, 2015

Turn those juicy, sweet summer cherries into a fun bubbly fermented soda filled with nourishing probiotics!

Fermented Cherry Almond SodaCherry season in Michigan is, hands down, my favorite of the summer fruit seasons.

There is nothing like these beautiful, sweet cherries right off the tree. Our area is known nationwide for the cherries – and they just burst with flavor.

Fermented Cherry Almond SodaThere is also nothing like those juicy, sweet cherries putting a smile on the girls’ faces!

Fermented Cherry Almond SodaThis year we froze and ate fresh the majority of the cherries. The frozen ones make for great soaked oatmeal or smoothie add-ins on busy mornings, and stir into yogurt too! I did manage to swipe enough for cherry pie though 😉

Fermented Cherry Almond SodaAnd I couldn’t pass up on making cherry almond soda! This is my very favorite of the summer sodas we enjoy on the weekends in the summer.

Fermented Cherry Almond SodaI hope you can get a chance to make this amazing cherry almond soda this summer!

Fermented Cherry Almond SodaProduct links in this section are affiliate links. It does not cost you anything and helps maintain the free information on this site, as well as answer the questions of “what brand do you use?” Please know I never personally recommend any product I wouldn’t use on my own family.

Fermented Cherry Almond Soda
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 5 cups pitted cherries
  • 1 cup organic pure cane sugar (I get this brand at Costco)
  • 7 cups of water
  • 2 TB almond extract
  • ½ cup whey (Just scoop a container of plain whole yogurt into a dishtowel, tie it up onto a cupboard door and let it drip into a jar - the liquid dripped off is probiotic rich whey! The leftover yogurt in the towel is like Greek yogurt or cream cheese - yum! If you are dairy free you can use water kefir grains or a ginger bug.)
Instructions
  1. Put the cherries, sugar, and water in a large pot and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer about 15-20 minutes.
  2. Squish the cherries in the pot (I use a potato masher), and pour the cherry sugar water through a fine mesh strainer into a large bowl.
  3. Add the almond extract and whey to the cherry sugar water in the bowl and stir. Pour the soda mixture into flip top bottles and set in a warm area of your home.
  4. After a couple days you can open a bottle to check for taste and let the fermented gasses out so it doesn't build up too much. Fermentation can take anywhere from 2 days to a week. Move the bottles to the fridge once they are ready.

For more nourishing drink ideas you can follow my Drinks board on Pintrest!

More real food recipes you might like:
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Fermented Strawberry Soda

July 11, 2015

The perfect summer drink for those fresh, ripe strawberries! This fermented strawberry soda is crisp & bubbly, strawberry sweet, and filled with nourishing, gut friendly probiotics!

Fermented Strawberry SodaA few weeks ago we visited our local strawberry U-Pick and loaded up 30 pounds of beautiful, bright red juicy strawberries!

It is always a bit of work tending to all those strawberries, but every year I never regret it. The girls always have a ball, and I can really tell they are starting to understand where their food is coming from.

Fermented Strawberry SodaPutting away about half of what we pick to the freezer to enjoy throughout the year is a big reward…and so is this amazing strawberry soda. It took about a week to ferment fully this year since it has been so cool, but it is always worth the wait.

Fermented Strawberry SodaThis is a great recipe to use up strawberries that are starting to get too mushy to eat. You can also pull out strawberries that you have already frozen to make the soda. The hands on time is super minimal, and there is no need to have water kefir grains if you don’t have them. Just some simple whey dripped from some yogurt to culture it is all I use.

Fermented Strawberry SodaWe don’t have “regular” soda around the house, so this is a big time treat for my girls – and I hope you can give it a try this summer. It sure puts a smile on the faces around here!

Fermented Strawberry SodaProduct links in this section are affiliate links. It does not cost you anything and helps maintain the free information on this site, as well as answer the questions of “what brand do you use?” Please know I never personally recommend any product I wouldn’t use on my own family.

5.0 from 1 reviews
Fermented Strawberry Soda
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 5 cups strawberries
  • 1 cup organic pure cane sugar
  • 7 cups of water
  • ½ cup whey ((Just scoop a container of plain whole yogurt into a dishtowel, tie it up onto a cupboard door and let it drip into a jar - the liquid dripped off is probiotic rich whey! The leftover yogurt in the towel is like Greek yogurt or cream cheese - yum! If you are dairy free you can use water kefir grains or a ginger bug.)
Instructions
  1. Put the strawberries, sugar, and water in a large pot and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer about 15-20 minutes.
  2. Squish the strawberries in the pot (I use a potato masher), and pour the strawberry sugar water through a fine mesh strainer into a large bowl.
  3. Add the whey to the strawberry sugar water in the bowl and stir. Pour the soda mixture into flip top bottles and set in a warm area of your home.
  4. After a couple days you can open a bottle to check for taste and let the fermented gasses out so it doesn't build up too much. Fermentation can take anywhere from 3 days to a week. Our home has been quite unseasonably cool this month so it took mine more like a week. Move the bottles to the fridge once they are ready.

For more nourishing drink ideas you can follow my Drinks board on Pintrest!

More real food recipes you might like:
Fermented Lemonade

Simple Fermented Lemonade :: Bring that classic summertime drink up a few notches with a big probiotic boost from this simple fermented lemonade! Refreshing *and* nourishing all in one!
Strawberry Quinoa Granola

Strawberry Quinoa Granola
Strawberry Birthday Cake

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Fresh Strawberry Ice Cream

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Drinks Nourishing Staples Real Food 101 Real Food Tips

Simple Fermented Lemonade

June 27, 2015

Bring that classic summertime drink up a few notches with a big probiotic boost from this simple fermented lemonade! Refreshing *and* nourishing all in one!

Simple Fermented LemonadeFermented lemonade is a fun summertime tradition in our house every year!

I can’t think of many other things more “summer” than lemonade, but if we are going to be sipping on something more than a couple times a month during a season, I want it to have some nourishment to it.

Simple Fermented Lemonade :: Bring that classic summertime drink up a few notches with a big probiotic boost from this simple fermented lemonade! Refreshing *and* nourishing all in one!Letting your lemonade sit for a few days with some probiotic-rich whey to ferment fills it with gut nourishing floraand it tastes really good!

Simple Fermented Lemonade :: Bring that classic summertime drink up a few notches with a big probiotic boost from this simple fermented lemonade! Refreshing *and* nourishing all in one!You can ferment lemonade a couple different ways. I find using just simple whey to be the easiest for me to handle right now. With 3 very young children, I tend to forget about water kefir grains too easily and then end up having to revive them…again more time! And ginger bugs are great too – but again it’s more time to make, and to keep it alive for more batches they need to be kept fed just like kefir grains…I have enough mouths around here to remember to keep fed, so right now lacto-fermenting (using whey dripped off from yogurt) is the simplest method for me! If you have water kefir grains or a ginger  bug alive you can use that versus the whey! (That is also how you will want to ferment if you are dairy free.)

To get your whey, just scoop a container of plain whole yogurt into a dishtowel, tie it up onto a cupboard door, and let it drip into a jar – the liquid dripped off is probiotic-rich whey! The leftover yogurt in the towel is like Greek yogurt or cream cheese – yum!

Simple Fermented Lemonade :: Bring that classic summertime drink up a few notches with a big probiotic boost from this simple fermented lemonade! Refreshing *and* nourishing all in one!This batch makes a good gallon of lemonade. It is so delicious right after the first ferment – or you can bottle it and give it a second ferment to give it a bubbly, fizzy finish!

Simple Fermented Lemonade :: Bring that classic summertime drink up a few notches with a big probiotic boost from this simple fermented lemonade! Refreshing *and* nourishing all in one!Product links in this section are affiliate links. It does not cost you anything and helps maintain the free information on this site, as well as answer the questions of “what brand do you use?” Please know I never personally recommend any product I wouldn’t use on my own family.

4.8 from 6 reviews
Simple Fermented Lemonade
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 2 lbs lemons (I get 2lb bags of organic lemons at our grocer - usually around 9 of them total)
  • ¾ cup to 1 cup organic pure cane sugar (Note - honey, maple syrup etc will not work as effectively - the probiotic bugs in the whey feed on the sugar the best)
  • 1 cup whey (Just scoop a container of plain whole yogurt into a dishtowel, tie it up onto a cupboard door and let it drip into a jar - the liquid dripped off is probiotic rich whey! The leftover yogurt in the towel is like Greek yogurt or cream cheese - yum!)
  • Water to fill a gallon glass jar
Instructions
  1. Put your lemon juice, sugar, and whey into a gallon glass jar, and fill the rest of the way with water leaving a few inches at the top.
  2. Put your lid on the jar, shake it up carefully, and leave it in a warm spot in your house for 3 days. If it is extra warm/humid you may only need about 2 days. The longer you leave the lemonade the more sugar the bugs will eat up - you can taste it every day if you want to test for sweetness.
  3. Transfer your fermented lemonade to the fridge - I like to transfer mine into swing top bottles (fills about 6 of my swing top bottles) to keep it fresher - and because I like to give them a second ferment to make it bubbly! You can do this by leaving your fermented lemonade in the swing top bottles for about 3 extra days. Just add another tablespoon of sugar to each bottle to feed the bugs. The second ferment may take longer if the temperature in your house isn't very warm. Just test it after a few days to see if it is where you like it to be. It will get fizzier with time.

 For more real food drink ideas, you can follow my Drinks board on Pintrest!

More real food recipes you might like ::
Rehydrating Electrolyte Popsicles


5 Nourishing Summertime Popsicles

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Antioxidant Rich Berry Gummies

Antioxidant Rich Berry Gummies

Tropical Blender Sorbet

Tropical Blender Sorbet :: Refined Sugar Free & Dairy Free

Batch Up Meals Breakfast Ideas Condiments Drinks Real Food 101 Real Food Tips school lunches

DIY Coconut Milk :: No Gums, Fillers, Or Sweeteners

February 3, 2015

DIY Coconut Milk :: No Gums, Fillers, Or Sweeteners
I started making coconut milk years ago during our first year of having a raw milk share. Our milk share decreases in supply from January until May during the winter months. At first I was disappointed as we were really enjoying our raw milk. However, if there is one thing I learned from having and healing gut disorder, it would be that it is wise to take a break from certain foods during their “off season”. The practice of eating with the seasons gives the gut a break and allows for different foods to be used for nourishment.

DIY Coconut Milk :: No Gums, Fillers, Or Sweeteners
We ended up really becoming accustomed to the coconut milk in the winter months, and it makes enjoying our fresh raw milk in the spring just that much sweeter! My girls have quite an affinity toward coconut milk and will gladly drink glass after glass just plain, in smoothies, or poured over oatmeal. It is very creamy and indulgent!

There are only 1 or 2 brands of canned coconut milk without BPA packaging, and without questionable gums and fillers. And those 1 or 2 brands are so pricy for my budget. Especially when making your own coconut milk is just so simple and cost effective!

DIY Coconut Milk :: No Gums, Fillers, Or Sweeteners
Coconut milk subs equally for whole milk in most recipes, and I use it in my cooking in the winter when our meager raw milk supply dwindles at the end of the week. I also prefer to use coconut milk when cooking certain cuisines like Thai or if I need to give a soup a creamy texture with a slightly sweet taste.

This recipe makes a quart and a half of coconut milk. I purchase coconut shreds from the bulk refrigerated section at our local health food store and they come in bags that equal about 7 cups – where ever you end up getting your shreds from just use a 1:1 ratio of shreds to water and you will be good to go!  Also! I don’t have a high powered blender so don’t worry if you don’t have one. The only blender I have is a Magic Bullet and it works just fine for the blending part! I have to do the blending in batches but it works just as well!

Product links in this section are affiliate links. It does not cost you anything and helps maintain the free information on this site, as well as answer the questions of “what brand should I use?” Please know I never personally recommend any product I wouldn’t use on my own family.

DIY Coconut Milk :: No Gums, Fillers, Or Sweeteners
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 7 cups unsweetened coconut shreds (shreds work better than flakes in my experience)
  • 7 cups water, brought to a boil
  • Optional splashes of vanilla or almond extract to flavor
Instructions
  1. Put the coconut in a large mixing bowl, and pour the boiling water over the coconut shreds.
  2. Cover the bowl with a towel and let it steep 2-3 hours.
  3. Pour the water/coconut shred mixture into a blender and blend about a minute.
  4. Pour the blended coconut/water mixture into a cheesecloth or tea towel over a bowl and squeeze out the milk.
  5. Store the milk in the fridge for a week, or in the freezer for months. Shake the coconut milk before serving –the cream will separate.
  6. Save the leftover coconut shreds to use in your baking (granola bars, energy bars, etc), your smoothies, your oatmeal, or dehydrate and grind into coconut flour.

Let me know how the coconut milk making goes!

This post was shared at Fat Tuesday!

Cold & Flu Season Drinks Herbal Recipes Natural Remedies Real Food 101

DIY Electrolyte Drink :: Natural rehydration for colds, flu, food poisoning, & physical exertion

December 28, 2014

DIY Electrolyte Drink :: Natural rehydration for colds, flu, food poisoning, & physical exertion
Every winter it is bound to happen. Those sad little glassy eyes wake up and pout “momma…I don’t feel good”.

We certainly don’t live in a bubble, and as diligent as I work at keeping the girls’ immune systems built up to fight the bugs efficiently, once or twice a winter the immune system has to clean house and we have a bug sweep through. (I love THIS post about why this is a good thing!)

I am a big believer in listening to our kids when they are sick – if they don’t feel like eating that is fine by me. Let their bodies use energy to fight the infection instead of digesting food! But they do need to stay hydrated so their organs and immune system can do their job.

DIY Electrolyte Drink :: Natural rehydration for colds, flu, food poisoning, & physical exertion
While mineral rich bone broth is always my first drink offer, even my girls who like bone broth won’t likely sip on it all day. A few years back when my first daughter got her first cold I did a quick freak out at the ingredient list in the Pedialyte isle and decided I would just make my own.

DIY Electrolyte Drink :: Natural rehydration for colds, flu, food poisoning, & physical exertion
A mixture of cleansing lemon and energy giving raw honey was welcomed by my little one at the time. And the sea salt packed a mineral punch that kept her electrolytes in balance while she fought off her first cold.

DIY Electrolyte Drink :: Natural rehydration for colds, flu, food poisoning, & physical exertion
In the last 2 years I have nailed down the ingredient amounts I like to use – AND made it an efficient and quick process to make. This momma of 3 doesn’t have much time for playing around with mixing, measuring, and heating. This recipe is literally dump the ingredients in a pint mason jar and give it a shake. Done.

DIY Electrolyte Drink :: Natural rehydration for colds, flu, food poisoning, & physical exertion
I actually had this post planned for about mid to late January, but one of the girls ended up with food poisoning this weekend, and since I had it made up,it seemed like a good time to get it out! Please note this drink is not suitable for babies under the age of 1 considering the raw honey and acidity of the lemons. Babies under 1 should be nursing as much as possible during illness, and if baby is not nursing you can use coconut water to hydrate.

Product links in this section are affiliate links. It does not cost you anything and helps maintain the free information on this site, as well as answer the questions of “what brand do you use!” Please know I would never personally recommend any product I wouldn’t use on my own family.

4.9 from 8 reviews
DIY Electrolyte Drink :: Natural rehydration for colds, flu, food poisoning, & physical exertion
Author: 
 
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Everything into a jar with a lid and shake well to combine. This recipe fits perfect in a pint mason jar.
  2. Store in the fridge up to a week.

Tips:

  • This recipe makes a pint mason jar perfectly. My girls are younger and typically won’t drink more than this amount in one day while they are ill. It is a nice amount to make for them to sip on in small amounts during the day. If you have older kids, or will be using it for yourself while ill you can double, triple, or more into a pitcher. When I make it for myself I double it into a quart mason jar.
  • Make the mixture into popsicles! Perfect for scratchy throats too! (And might I add teething toddlers?!)
  • Since most of the immune system resides in the gut, I also like to add probiotics to the jar if I haven’t been able to get them in any other way during the day.
  • I have one of these super simple lemon juicersit’s quick enough for busy momma!
  • These elderberry popsicles are another great idea to have on hand during illness.
  • For more info on managing flu symptoms see THIS POST.

This post was shared at Fat Tuesday, Real Food Wednesday, and Allergy Free Wednesday!

Drinks Holiday Recipes Occasional Treats

Winter Wassail

December 14, 2014

Wassail :: A warm celebration of winter
The Winter Solstice is next weekend, and I can hardly wait!

The darkest day of the year?!

Yep. I love it. For years this beach-bum dreaded the shortest day of the year…until I realized that really all it means is that it can’t get any darker! In other words…longer days, signs of spring, and warmer weather are on their way!

Wassail :: A warm celebration of winter
We still have a good 3 months of snowy winter left where I live. But every fall when our huge magnolia tree in the front sheds its leaves everywhere, it leaves behind its reminder that spring will come again. When we first moved here I remember wondering what those large, fuzzy buds were on this beautiful bare tree. Come May those buds are one of the first things to bloom in our yard like a big, warm hug for making it through our harsh winter. During blizzards of snow and frigid temps I often look to those buds to cheer me up!

Wassail :: A warm celebration of winter
So for the last handful of years, we celebrate the darkest day of the year instead of dreading it! Because we do need winter. A time to rest, rejuvenate…and pull out big warm blankets, fuzzy wool socks, and enjoy the silence of the snow.

Wassail :: A warm celebration of winter
Wassail is a simple mulled cider and wine, and now that we have a house full of little ones that like to celebrate the seasons with us, I keep the drink spiking to just the mugs for my husband and I. It is such a simple way to make the house smell amazing and give your family or guests coming in and out a warming drink to celebrate the winter season.

Wassail :: A warm celebration of winter
So cozy up to the fire, and say cheers to the darkest day of the year!
5.0 from 5 reviews
Traditional Winter Wassail
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 7 – 8 cups organic apple cider
  • 2 cups organic cranberry juice
  • 10 whole cloves
  • 10 allspice berries
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 organic orange, sliced into rounds (if organic is unavailable, just use a conventional one BUT you will want to peel it first.)
  • *Optional: 1 cup dark ale or wine of your choosing, OR ½ cup rum or brandy in the pot. If you don’t want the whole pot spiked, you can do splashes of the alcohol in each mug. Since I serve this to my girls too I just add wine to the mug that my husband and I drink from.
  • *Optional: organic honey to sweeten if you desire – I usually don’t, but it is good!
Instructions
  1. Tie up the cloves and allspice in a cheesecloth or small piece of tea towel using kitchen twine.
  2. Put everything into a large soup or stock pot and bring to a low simmer.
  3. Lower the heat and very low simmer the mixture for 2 hours before serving. Keep it on low or use a crockpot on low if serving over hours.

Product links in this section are affiliate links. It does not cost you anything and helps maintain the free information on this site! Please know I would never personally recommend any product I wouldn’t use on my own family.

Tips:

  • You could use a slow cooker instead of stovetop to make this too. I would go on low for a good 4 hours or so, and then you can just keep it on low or warm for serving.
  • This is a great drink to double up and keep on the stovetop while guests arrive for holiday gatherings. Not only does it make the house smell amazing, but it is a pretty allergen friendly, crowd pleasing drink to serve.
  • These are the glass mugs I love to serve our wassail in! I also found these pretty smaller glass mugs that would be nice to have a couple sets of to use for serving at a family gathering or party.
  • For tying up the spices I just use an old kitchen tea towel that I have cut up for this sort of thing – they wash out nice and I can re-use them. Cheesecloth works really nice too!

This post was shared at Fat Tuesday, Real Food Wednesday & Allergy Free Wednesday!

Drinks Holiday Recipes Occasional Treats

Simple & Quick Eggnog

November 30, 2014

Simple & Quick Eggnog
We got cozy next to our freshly decorated Christmas tree over the weekend with our first batch of eggnog.

It is something that usually just my husband and I enjoy together. I first met my husband during a fall semester at college, and that December I remember walking into a room to him chugging down a carton of eggnog from the fridge.

For real.

I had never had eggnog at that point, but years later as I learned about real food, I decided I better figure out how to make real eggnog instead of stand by and watch him down loads of pasteurized toxic milk, fillers, gums, and preservatives.

But it’s just once a year, right?

Well yes. But not only is homemade eggnog super simple, it tastes amazing! It is really just an ice cream base with cinnamon or nutmeg without putting it into an ice cream maker!

Simple & Quick Eggnog
And with nourishing ingredients like real and raw milk and cream, and yolks from pastured chickens, this is really a holiday drink you can feel good about.

You can leave the splash of bourbon out and make some for the kiddos too! It’s like a nutmeg ice cream milkshake!

Simple & Quick Eggnog

5.0 from 1 reviews
Simple & Quick Eggnog
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 1 ½ cups organic cream (Preferably grassfed and raw)
  • ½ cup organic whole milk (Preferably grassfed and raw)
  • 3-4 pastured egg yolks (If you don’t have access to pastured eggs just leave this out)
  • 2 TB raw honey
  • 2 TB pure maple syrup
  • ⅛ tsp grated nutmeg or cinnamon
  • ⅛ tsp cloves
  • Optional splashes of organic bourbon if you wish
Instructions
  1. Everything into a small mixing bowl and blend to combine. Sprinkle the top with nutmeg if you wish!

Tips:

  • This batch makes enough for my husband and I each to have a good sized glass. You can certainly double/triple up for a holiday party or gathering.
  • Traditionally, eggnog is made with the whole egg, not just the yolk. Raw egg whites are a bit rough on the gut to digest, so I leave them out. Raw yolks from a trusted farmer that keep their chickens on pasture is safe. If you are uncomfortable with this you can leave them out or soft cook the yolks like a custard before you put them in.
  • Play around with the sweet to your taste – sometimes I like the richness of all maple syrup.
  • Quality cream gets really hard to find around here this time of year, and our milk supply gets shorter for skimming off cream, so if we don’t have access to the cream I just make it with all milk and add a couple more egg yolks.
  • Get your eggnog into an ice cream maker for eggnog ice cream! It is so good!
  • Are you dairy and egg free? No problem! Here is a great recipe for you to try!

This post was shared at Fat Tuesday, Real Food Wednesday, & Allergy Free Wednesday!

Breakfast Ideas Cold & Flu Season Drinks Herbal Recipes Lunch Ideas

Immune Booster Smoothie

October 26, 2014

One simple, delicious smoothie with a powerful immune boosting punch from elderberries, vitamin C, and gut building probiotics! Very kid friendly in taste too!

Immune Booster Smoothie

Product links in this post are affiliate links. It does not cost you anything and helps maintain the free information on this site! Please know I would never personally recommend any product I wouldn’t use on my own family. Please also note that I am not a doctor, nor claim to be one. The recommendations in this post are based on my own research and what has worked really well for keeping my family’s immune system boosted.

I am pretty sure every library storytime and preschool drop off we have been to this fall there are one or two kids there with croupy coughs and drippy noses. And in the 2 months since kindergarten started, I have already had reports from my “little momma” that so-and-so was out sick today, emails sent home about pink eye, and on and on.

Since I don’t have a newborn this year, I’m still getting the girls out and about, and I’m really not sweating it. I know my kids’ bodies are ready to fight infection, and I don’t want them kept in a bubble.

We will, and certainly have, come in contact with cold bugs, and probably even the flu. My goal in the fall and most of the winter is getting immune supporting bone broth in the girls daily. Whether in soups or mugs, bone broth is my weapon of choice to battle bugs.

Sometimes, however, I feel we just need a big boost in addition to that. If it has been a long week and I know the girls are tired or run down. If I know there is a cold or flu bug going through the classroom that my daughter spends 7 hours a day in. Or that kid from library time that just loves babies gives her a runny nosed hug.

Immune Booster Smoothie
This immune booster smoothie is great for breakfast or lunch. Full of friendly fats from coconut oil and whole raw milk, and filling protein and gut supporting grassfed collagen. You could also freeze it into popsicles!

IMMUNE BOOSTING PLAYERS:

  • VITAMIN C: Vitamin C supports the immune system, and when you source it right, it really can enhance your body’s ability to fight infection fast. Please note just simple ascorbic acid is not what we are talking about here. You can read more about why the type of vitamin C you supplement with is so important HERE.
  • PROBIOTICS: Since your immune system resides mostly in the gut, having your good bacteria up to par is very important. There needs to be balance in the bacteria population so I like to rotate our probiotics to introduce new gut flora. I like to start with THIS one, and then rotate with THIS, and then THIS.
  • ELDERBERRY SYRUP: Specifically beneficial in helping support the body during viruses, elderberry syrup is great for colds and flu. It also has a very pleasant taste so it helps sweeten the smoothie.

Immune Booster Smoothie

5.0 from 3 reviews
Immune Booster Smoothie
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • ¾ cup frozen organic blueberries (could use any frozen berries)
  • 1 cup whole, raw milk, yogurt, or coconut milk (water works too in a pinch)
  • 1-2 TB organic coconut oil, melted (depending on your taste)
  • Juice of ½ lemon
  • 2 TB cold soluble grassfed collegen (See Tips section for more info on this)
  • 1 TB homemade elderberry syrup (if using store bought, follow the serving directions for 1 dose)
  • Vitamin C & probiotics per supplement dosing directions
Instructions
  1. Everything into your blender and blend until smooth.

Tips:

  • This makes 1 “adult” sized smoothie – my 3 and 5 year olds split one. I have been making a little extra for my 1 year old to have and she has been really liking them.
  • I really love having the cold soluable grassfed collagen around for smoothies. Not only does it give a protein source to smoothies very easily (just dump it in!), it is also very helpful in restoring gut lining to normal.
  • Add or subtract the supplements as you feel necessary. You can read more about the vitamin C I like to use for immune boosting HERE.
  • If your kiddo is already feeling ill, you can make the smoothie on the blander side if they are recovering but can still get a small amount of food in. Leave out the milk and use water. Maybe back off on the coconut oil. Maybe add a pinch of sea salt to add some minerals for electrolyte balance.
  • I just use my simple Magic Bullet to blend this all up! This serving fits perfectly!

This post was shared at Fat Tuesday, Real Food Wednesday, and Allergy Free Wednesday!

Drinks

Momma’s Honey Lemon Rejuvenation Tea

March 31, 2014

Momma's Honey Lemon Rejuvenation Tea
Confession.

I love coffee.

There. I said it. Real foodies *gasp* if you will, but it’s true.

I don’t even love it for the caffeine if you must know, although this momma of 3 under 4 years old certainly benefits from it some days. I just love the taste. I love the warmth. It is my happy place some chaotic days. Most days I just have a cup in the morning and I’m good. Some days I need a little place of happy in the afternoon, but while I’m nursing and also trying to replenish my body from pregnancy/labor/delivery/nursing a baby, it probably isn’t the smartest thing I could be drinking more than once a day.

So it’s 1:07 p.m.

Kids have been up since 6:41am.

It is blessed naptime, and I have not stopped since the instant those children opened their eyes.

Time to catch my breath. Read through a few emails. And let’s be honest, scroll through Pintrest or Facebook for an hour…*ahem*…a few minutes.

Lately instead of grabbing another cup of coffee to sip on while I rest for a few minutes, I have been making this honey lemon tea. It isn’t really a “tea” as there are no herbs steeped, but it is warming and just as satisfying as coffee for an afternoon drink.

Momma's Honey Lemon Rejuvination Tea
Not to mention accomplishing my goal of working on healing and replenishing *me*. I spend so much time talking about how to nourish our kids, but there is no way we can focus on nourishing them if momma isn’t healthy.

In all honesty, I am actually dealing with some thyroid and adrenal issue exacerbations since my last delivery, and I have been in denial about needing to focus on taking care of myself. Giving myself a break. Letting myself sit for a while during naptimes to recoup instead of picking up the living room floor or scrubbing that pot. And zeroing in my attention on specific areas of need that my body has.

Lemons are not only great sources of vitamin C (which we could all use when our bodies are under the stress of lack of sleep and fighting cold bugs from the germy preschool drop off), but lemons flush out the liver and help with digestion. There are a myriad of other benefits to having lemons in your daily routine, and just getting the water in too is great. There are so many days where I get to naptime and can’t even remember if I had anything to drink since breakfast – and I can tell I’m dehydrated.

Momma's Honey Lemon Rejuvination Tea
The pinch of sea salt is there for your adrenals. I am willing to bet just about everyone (especially just about every momma) can benefit from a little adrenal help. Stress comes with the territory of momma-hood, but that doesn’t mean you can’t do anything about it. When you can’t do much about the fact that you are up in the night with babies, just take the extra step of doing what you *can* do to replenish your adrenals. Real sea salt will balance electrolytes, minerals, and adrenal function.

Momma's Honey Lemon Rejuvination Tea
Raw honey is another good source of minerals to replenish your body, along with some vitamins. It can also aide in digestion. It isn’t just added in there because it tastes good! But it does help, and keeps me from reaching for something sweet to snack on in the afternoon. If you can find local raw honey that is going to give you the most benefit. Ask around at farmer’s markets. We have local raw honey at our markets but I go to a local health food store about 20 minutes away for large tubs at a better price.

Momma's Honey Lemon Rejuvination Tea
You could also give a stir of coconut oil into your drink. I especially do this if I need an energy boost like I would get from coffee. It works everytime – I can literally feel myself perk up within 15 minutes of having coconut oil. It also helps keep milk supply up for breastfeeding.

So a few simple ingredients and my mood is picked up, my adrenals are nourished, my body is refreshed. And I’m ready to take on the rest of the afternoon filled with 4 year old questions, poopy diapers, quarrels over who gets to go first, spilled glasses of milk, crayon on the table…and on and on!

5.0 from 2 reviews
Momma’s Honey Lemon Rejuvenation Tea
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 1 ½ cups hot filtered water
  • Juice of 1 lemon (I get large bags of organic lemons at Costco)
  • 1-2 tsp raw honey (local if possible)
  • Pinch or 2 of sea salt to taste (I try to get in as much as I can and it ends up being a good ⅛ tsp)
  • Optional tsp-ish of coconut oil if you are especially in need of an energy boost
Instructions
  1. Everything into the hot mug of water and give a stir.

Tips:

  • HERE is some good sea salt if you don’t have access locally. I get this sea salt at just our grocery store cheapest. Anything that has some color to it like Celtic sea salt or pink Himalyan salt is good.
  • HERE is some good raw honey if you don’t have access locally.
  • This drink is also fantastic when you (or the kids) are feeling ill – skip the pedialyte and Gatorade – this works better and doesn’t have all the junk.
  • Pack it up hot in a thermos to take with you at work for that 2pm slump.
  • I love my simple lemon juicer 🙂 I don’t have anything fancy but this sure gets all the juice out of those lemons! And it’s a quick rinse off to clean up!

So here is my challenge to this momma tribe! Come back to me this week and tell me how you have taken care of yourself! Doesn’t have to be this – it could be a nap, a walk around the neighborhood, a bath after bedtime!

This post was shared on Fat Tuesday and Allergy Free Wednesdays!