Smoothie History

Smoothie History

Here’s a bit of smoothie history. Smoothies have long been a favorite of Americans, young and old. Join me as SmoothieRecipe.TV looks at all the ways you can enjoy the blended ice-cold delight that is a Smoothie.

For as long as 100 years, Americans have enjoyed these cold concoctions, including the milkshake, fruit smoothie, slushie, protein shake and meal replacement shakes. If you don’t want to make a smoothie in your smoothie maker, use it to create margaritas, vodka drinks or any other frozen drink.

The Milkshake

smoothie history

Long before there was a smoothie, the milkshake was a popular drink. The milkshake must have been around prior to 1885, since it was mentioned in a newspaper dated that far back. A couple of years after that, the malted milk came onto the scene.

The early milkshake was considered a hangover treatment, thanks to the addition of a bit of whiskey. Malted milk was also considered a health beverage, being marketed as a supplement for infants.

Most of these early smoothie drinks were served in specialty shops — today’s pharmacy. With the invention of the blender in 1922, soda fountains became malt shops. In 1937, Fred Waring invented a new blender, and the era of the homemade milkshake began.

The Fruit Smoothie

Smoothie History

Although the fruit smoothie didn’t become popular until the 1960’s, there was a banana smoothie recipe for the 1940’s era smoothie maker — the “Waring Blendor”. These early versions of a fruit smoothie were mainly ice, fruit juice and fruit.

In the 1970’s, ice milk was added to form the “fruit shake”. These drinks were mainly served to health-conscious folks in health-food stores and restaurants.

In the 1990’s, most smoothies started using frozen yogurt to give the smoothie a creamy, thick, milkshake-like texture. Other common ingredients include honey, fresh fruit, soda pop, and alcohol.

Due to their fruit content, a traditional fruit smoothie is high in vitamins, antioxidants, and dietary fiber. This high nutritional value makes them a favorite of health food enthusiasts.

With the increased popularity of vegetarian and vegan diets, “green smoothies” have also become popular. You can make a smoothie like this with kale, spinach, lettuce and other green leafy vegetables.

The Slushie

Photo of Slushie DrinkYet another spin-off of the smoothie is the slushie. The first known slushie came into the world when Omar Knedlik had a problem with his soda fountain. This was back in the late 1950’s. Knedlik put his soda into a freezer to keep it cold, and this caused the soda to ice up and become “slushy”. His customers loved it, and the rest is history.

A slushie is really just flavored ice. To make a slushie, a machine grinds ice to a nearly snow-like consistency. This ice is scooped into a paper cone, and a flavored syrup is added to the slush to create the slushie. The two most popular brands of slushie are ICEE and 7-Eleven’s Slurpie.


Photo of Four MargaritasOne thing that Americans seem to be able to figure out is how to add alcohol to things to make them better. When it came to a frozen drink, that special combination of ice and alcohol became margaritas.

While the exact inventor of margaritas remains a mystery, the popularity of the drink is great. Margaritas were originally made with shaved ice, tequila, lime juice and salt. But with the invention of the margarita machine and commercial margarita mix, margaritas became popular drinks everywhere across America.

Frozen Drink — Vodka Drinks

Picture of Pina ColadaVodka Creamsicle PhotoMargaritas aren’t the only popular frozen drink and tequila isn’t the only popular alcohol for a frozen drink. There are also many popular frozen vodka drinks, including Frozen Lemonade, a Creamsicle, Vodka Orange Juice and a Harvey Wallbanger. Trust me… tequila has nothing on these vodka drinks!

The Protein Shake

Girl Drinking Protein ShakeYet another class of smoothie is the protein shake. Processed protein supplements have been available since the late 1930’s. The recent growth in fitness and muscle building has brought the protein shake back into popularity. Commercial protein powders – both whey and soy – have made it easy to create protein shakes in your home for post-workout nourishment.

Meal Replacement Shakes

Man Drinking Meal Replacement ShakeFinally, my favorite smoothie drinks are meal replacement shakes. The powdered shake mixes contain most of the nutrients you’d get in an average 300-400 calorie meal. Meal replacement shakes contain a commonly recommended ratio of protein, carbohydrates and fats. Most meal replacement shakes also contain a wide range of micro-nutrients to round out your dietary needs.

So whether it’s a milkshake, fruit smoothie, slushie, protein shake, meal replacement shakes, or an alcohol-based frozen drink such as margaritas or vodka drinks, SmoothieRecipe.TV will teach you how to make a smoothie in your smoothie maker. I hope you enjoyed your smoothie history!

Learn more about The Milkshake as thanks for reading Smoothie History.

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