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how to make this high-protein, high-calorie shake delicious?

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Ok, how do I make this taste less like the inside of a GNC store thrown into a blender (which it is), and like something delicious? It's from the Mayo Clinic website.

I think it might need to be thicker, and banana might need to be replaced as the person it's for doesn't really like banana. any thoughts? I was thinking of adjusting the yogurt/milk ratio to thicken it up, and maybe adding some sort of vanilla or almond extract to complement the fruit, any thoughts? Maybe throw in some sugar?

The purposes are just to help someone get some calories, protein and vitamins ASAP.

1 cup vanilla yogurt
1 cup 2 percent milk
1 medium banana, cut into chunks
2 tablespoons wheat germ
2 tablespoons protein powder
1 tablespoon flax seed oil

In a blender, combine the yogurt, milk, banana chunks, wheat germ and protein powder. Blend until smooth.


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  1. Are you not too concerned with the calorie content? If so, I'd add whole milk. Also, the type of yogurt can make a huge different-Stonyfield vanilla nonfat yogurt is the best tasting vanilla yogurt-no sour flavor to it at all and to make the shake thicker, I'd add more than a cup. You can also add sugar or splenda to sweeten it up. You might have to use a lot of sugar-flax seed oil can be bitter. And since the patient is not a huge fan of bananas, just throw in some really ripe strawberries and pineapple. I don't like using plain vanilla extra in my smoothies/shakes. I typically use a splenda sweetened vanilla syrup instead. Also, if you can find a vanilla-flavored protein powder, that can make the shake taste a lot better.

    1. My morning shake is a cup of yogurt (plain, full fat), a cup of partially thawed frozen fruit, a cup of fresh or frozen blueberries and a handful of sliced almonds, and a scoop of whey protein powder. I'd skip the wheat germ and flaxseed oil; this combination has plenty of protein and fiber and calories. I don't mind the tartness of the yogurt but you could add sweetener - honey would be good. I also add cocoa powder or cinnamon sometimes.

      If the purpose is to get someone to ingest some nutrition, it needs to be really delicious so it all gets down. I'd concentrate on that rather than specific ingredients.

      1. Honey and sugar or maple syrup can help the flavor, as well as an additional banana. Vanilla or almond extract is good, too. But I'd add some crushed ice to the blender; the mixture seems too heavy and thick to drink easily through a straw. Thinning it out a little might make it easier to swallow.

        1. If you are seriously going for a way to get it all down, and not concerned about calories or fat, add some good quality, organic vanilla ice cream.

          1. I make smoothies almost daily.
            I like to freeze the fruit first. Keep sliced bananas, sliced strawberries etc. handy. Then add the rest of the ingredients. I like the taste of wheat germ, and I understand that it is needed for vitamins, same as the flax seed oil (which has a flavor which I'm not crazy about-experiment, maybe half the amount..?) I would make smoothies different ways and make sure that I like it first before giving it to someone else. I highly recommend maple syrup which adds flavor as well as sweetness; I would not add extract of any kind.
            You may want to vary the flavor too, to avoid boredom!
            Sometimes I take plain yogurt (which I freeze myself in sheets then break up into blender), add soy milk (unsweetened) and 2 tablespoons of green tea powder. Or banana, froz. yogurt, milk and honey. Or strawberry&banana, yogurt and soy milk. You get the idea, try different ways (adding the nutritional stuff you need to add) until you get some really good combinations! good luck! it'll work!!

            1. I'd visit your local homebrew shop and pick up some powdered malt, which will sweeten it as well as adding depth of flavor. I made "skinny milkshakes" daily when I was nursing my second child - malt enhances milk production, but it is also very delicious.

              You can use liquid malt as well, but I preferred the flavor of the powdered.

              1. I would add another fruit, to disguise the banana taste. Blueberries or peaches both come to mind, as they are in season right now (and I am eating some at my desk as I type). If you cut the banana into chucks and freeze them before making the smoothy, they give it a nice thick texture i enjoy.

                Of course, Chocolate syrup and/or peanut butter never hurt a smoothie, IMO.

                And, and others have said, ice cream or frozen yogurt will improve the body and add some sweetness.

                As for the protein powder, I recommend whey. I just finished a smoothie made with soy powder, and it was fairly nasty. Also unsweetened, the lady at the health food place informed me it was tart because it was organic. It's amazing how ignorant people are.

                1. For added vitamins, throw in a handful of baby spinach. It will turn the whole concoction green, but you can't taste it at all. I've found that this works best if there's some chocolate flavoring in the mix somewhere (cocoa powder, chocolate syrup, etc).

                  1. Instead of flax seed oil, you can add flax seed meal - not such a strong taste, although it does result in little brown specs. My kids will eat things with the meal in it without issue.