I've searched old threads but haven't found what I need. I want to make fruit smoothies for my teens b/c they're tempted to skip b'fast w/ the time crunch b4 school. What's the best sweetener to use? I've seen conflicting info on refined sugar vs. honey (whether honey's truly any more healthful or is metabolized differently); I won't use any artificial sweeteners for my kids; and I've found thru searching that agave nectar is good but it would require a special store trip for me (my teensy grocer carries very few unusual ingredients) so I was hoping to stick with something more readily available. But if agave nectar is the way to go, you don't use that much per smoothie anyway, I suppose, so keeping it on hand could be the answer.
Any thoughts? My kids are incredibly healthy--slim, muscular; no obesity problem here--but there's not much point in training their palates to only like very sweet smoothies, esp. w/diabetes in my mom's family tree. I imagine that throwing some strawberries into every smoothie would help, since strawberries are so sweet, but we have a bumper crop of blackberries in the freezer & since the kids did the picking, some of them were picked a little early & are a bit tart.
Also, do you think I could sub vanilla yogurt (lowfat for me, doesn't matter for the kids) for the milk, to make the smoothies more substantial & filling? I have a couple of good recipes that use, of all things, a small amt. of ricotta cheese; I love these recipes but again they're not sweet enough for the kids to enjoy them as much as I'd hoped.
And how do you get protein into a fruit smoothie? I thought protein powders (don't know; have never bought one) were one of those non-FDA-regulated things that we don't want pumped into our kids--?
Thanks for your comments.