Summer is the season of freezy-cool drinks. But so many of them pack in WAY too many sugary calories. So stock up on the ingredients below, courtesy of Hungry Girl, and make your own guilt-free versions! No laziness allowed...
Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk or Light Vanilla Soymilk
These days, fat-free dairy milk is not your best bet for guilt-free shakes... especially when you can get creamier, flavored milk for less than half the calories! Our favorite is Blue Diamond Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Breeze (known as UVAB around here). It has just 40 calories per cup and is extremely delicious! And we appreciate the fact that you can find it in shelf-stable boxes. With 70 calories per cup, light vanilla soymilk is another great option and can be used interchangeably with UVAB in recipes. Take your pick...
No-Sugar-Added Frozen Fruit
Although fresh fruit is great in smoothies and slushies, frozen works even better. It's more convenient, less expensive, and adds to the chill and texture of your drink. Just let it thaw a little first, so it's easier to blend. Keep your freezer stocked with bags of whatever you like -- strawberries, dark sweet cherries, mango chunks, peach slices, mixed berries... They're all super-good!
More from Hungry Girl: Double-0-Strawberry Quickie Kiwi Smoothie!
Torani Sugar Free Syrups
With more than 30 zero-calorie flavors to choose from, there's something for everyone. And just a little syrup goes a long way. Our top flavor picks are Vanilla, Coconut, Black Cherry, Mango, and Raspberry. You can find the vanilla-flavored syrup in the coffee aisle of select markets (make SURE it's the sugar-free kind!), but if you want something more adventurous, you'll have to search a few stores. Cost Plus World Market carries TONS of flavors. Or order online. So worth it!
Fat-Free Ice Cream
When it comes to eating ice cream on its own, we go for the slow-churned light stuff -- so rich and creamy! But as an ingredient for shakes and smoothies, fat-free ice cream works great and keeps calorie and fat counts in check. You'll definitely want to keep a tub of Breyers Smooth & Dreamy Fat Free Creamy Vanilla ice cream in the freezer. Each 1/2-cup serving has just 90 calories and an added bonus of 3g fiber and 3g protein. Nice!
More from Hungry Girl: A banana pudding shake!
Sugar-Free and Fat-Free Non-Dairy Powdered Creamer
Not only is this stuff great in coffee, but it's also an easy way to give a boost of sweet creaminess to blended beverages! Just 1 teaspoon can do the trick (but be sure to dissolve the creamer in a small amount of hot water first so it's not lumpy). The sugar-free kind is slightly lower in calories than the fat-free stuff, but they're both amazing and can be used interchangeably. We're partial to the Coffee-mate ones -- French Vanilla ROCKS.
Single-Serving Containers of Fat-Free Flavored Yogurt
Single-serving containers (usually about 6 ounces) are perfect for recipes -- just the right amount for one shake or smoothie. The basic fruit flavors work best in smoothies, and the dessert-y flavors are amazing in shakes. They add tons of flavor and thicken up your drink of choice for 110 calories or less. So stock up -- they're also great snacks!
More from Hungry Girl: Tropical A.M. Smoothie!
No-Calorie Sweetener Packets
While there's a time and a place for real sugar, it's not in guilt-free smoothies and shakes. Save calories and stick with zero-calorie sweetener packets. Just pick your no-calorie sweetener of choice! We like Truvia (for an all-natural option) and Splenda. You'll typically only need one packet per beverage.
Fat Free Reddi-wip
Make your shake truly decadent by topping it with a squirt of Fat Free Reddi-wip -- just 5 calories per 2-tbsp. serving. So awesomely delicious and free of guilt. In fact, we often top our drinks with TWO servings. YEE-HAA!!!!
More from Hungry Girl: For a daily dose of guilt-free tips, tricks, food finds, recipes and more, visit hungry-girl.com and sign up for free daily emails!
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