Thursday, December 19, 2013

Peppermint Bark Mocha Shakes...Featuring Bolthouse Farms Peppermint Mocha

The holiday season means many things: time spent with family and friends, baking, holiday music, shopping, decorating and wrapping gifts. Oh yes…and indulging in goodies.  I try my best to eat healthfully as possible and avoid excess calories where I can between Thanksgiving and New Years Eve. That’s not always easy to do when you’re surrounded by tempting food. However, I recently discovered a way to indulge without overindulging when it comes to enjoying holiday beverages. Bolthouse Farms recently introduced a trio of healthy seasonal holiday refrigerated beverages that can be enjoyed solo or used to create delicious holiday-inspired drinks. Their three seasonal flavors are Peppermint Mocha, Holiday Nog and Pumpkin Spice Latte. All three are low in fat, high in calcium and taste fabulous! It’s nice to know you can save a few calories without sacrificing flavor in the process! Bolthouse Farms recently sent me a bottle of each variety to enjoy…and to create a healthier holiday recipe to share with you. 

If you spend any time here during the holiday season, it quickly becomes evident that I'm crazy for peppermint. Whether it's in baked goods or beverages, I'm a certifiable peppermint freak! I decided to use the chilled Peppermint Mocha beverage to create delicious reduced-fat Peppermint Bark Mocha Shakes. Bolthouse Farms Peppermint Mocha has only 2.5 grams of fat per serving, so I wanted to keep the rest of my shake ingredients on the lighter side too. This shake is made with lowfat frozen yogurt, crushed peppermint pieces, a bit of white chocolate, chocolate extract and Bolthouse Farms Peppermint Mocha. I prefer a milder coffee taste, but feel free to add a bit of espresso powder or instant coffee if you prefer a more pronounced coffee flavor. This treat is super quick to whip up and enjoy as you watch your favorite holiday movie by the light of the Christmas tree. A festive glass rimmed with white chocolate and more peppermint takes a few extra minutes, but this extra little step makes a really impressive presentation!

Peppermint Bark Mocha Shakes
A Weekend Gourmet Original
  • 1 cup Bolthouse Farms Peppermint Mocha
  • 2 cups vanilla lowfat frozen yogurt
  • 1/3 cup crushed peppermint candy canes [NOTE: To save time, you can purchase bags of pre-crushed peppermints at most major grocery chains]
  • ½ cup white chocolate chips
  • 1 tsp. chocolate extract
For garnish:
  • 1 cup white chocolate melting discs or chips
  • ½  crushed peppermint candies
  • Whipped cream (if desired)
Step 1: Add the shake ingredients to a blender in the order listed above. Blend on high speed until the shakes are thick and the chocolate chips have been completely incorporated into the mixture. NOTE: you may have to stop and tap the blender container a time or two if the mixture seems a bit thick.
Step 2: Carefully pour the shake into two glasses. Top with whipped cream and more crushed peppermint if desired. To make the cute peppermint bark rims on your glasses, do the following steps BEFORE you blend your shakes: (1) place two holiday glasses or wine glasses in the freezer to chill while you melt 1 cup of white melting disks or chips in a shallow bowl, (2) place ½ cup crushed peppermint on a small plate and (3) when the discs are melted, quickly dip the rims of the chilled glasses into the melted white chocolate, then immediately into the crushed peppermint. Set the glasses aside while you make the shakes.
These festive shakes are so delicious that you’ll never guess they lower in fat than a typical milkshake…and the peppermint flavor is very prominent! We especially loved how festive these drinks looked in our holiday glasses. The peppermint bark rim is pretty and flavors every sip of the drink. FYI…Michael carefully ate the bark off the rim of his glass after his shake was gone. I didn’t want to risk broken glass in my mouth, so proceed at your own risk if you decide to indulge in the bark rim! If you’d like to recreate my shakes in your kitchen leading up to Christmas next week, make sure to print out a coupon to save $1 on a bottle of Bolthouse Farms’ seasonal beverages . To find the Peppermint Mocha at a store near you, check out their handy Store Locator via their website. I’m planning to make another batch of these minty mocha shakes tonight…and I hope you’ll give them a try too…they’re a winner!

Disclosure: I received a sampler of Bolthouse Farms products and seasonal baking goodies to facilitate this post. I received no further compensation, and all opinions expressed are my own.

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