After a workout -- or anytime of the day -- thirst-quenching sippers sweetened with fruit or veggies offer a burst of refreshing flavor plus a bonus of nutrients.
Fizzy Iced Tea Teens get a boost of antioxidants in this brew. Steep 4 green tea bags in 2 cups boiling water according to package directions. Discard tea bags. Stir in a 12-ounce can of frozen juice concentrate (such as cranberry-raspberry or apple-cherry). Cover and chill. To serve, fill a glass of ice one-quarter full with the tea mixture. Top off with chilled club soda. Add fresh berries. Makes 6 to 8 servings.
Frosty Fruity Milk Use fruit as the base for a frothy "milk shake" full of calcium, protein, and fiber without ice cream. In a blender, place 1 cup fat-free milk, 1 cup frozen fruit (such as blueberries and/or peeled peach slices), and 1-2 teaspoons vanilla. Cover and blend until smooth. Pour into glasses and top with fresh berries. Makes 2 servings.
Melon-Mint Water Mom will love a soothing splash of this refresher after her workout. Cut a small, clean, unwaxed cucumber into slices. Place slices, a few wedges of peeled honeydew melon, and a handful of mint leaves in a large pitcher. Fill pitcher with water. Cover and chill up to three days. Strain water, reserving melon and cucumbers to nibble on. Pour water into tall glasses over ice. Makes about 8 servings.
Garden Veggie Splash Spice up Dad's day with lycopene-rich garden veggies. Seed and cut up 1 jalapeno pepper and one-quarter of a red bell pepper. Add to blender with 1 1/2 cups chopped tomato, the white part of a green onion, and the juice of half a lime. Cover and blend until smooth. Add salt, pepper, and bottled hot pepper sauce to taste. Top with a pickled banana pepper. Makes 2 servings.
Originally published in Better Homes and Gardens magazine, September 2004.