Rainbow Striped Smoothie Popsicles

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Fun to make with kids, nutritious and delicious, these rainbow striped smoothie popsicles are a real crowd-pleaser for summer parties. The look on the kids’ faces, when they pulled the popsicle out of the mold, was worth the extra time to make the layers. They also really enjoyed the measuring and careful layering while using the molds. A great summer activity for kids and totally delicious to eat once made!

rainbow striped smoothie popsicles recipe
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Summer Science Activities and Food

It’s summer, and not only is it hot but I’m also trying to come up with activities to keep the kids busy. They are really into science at the moment and have a couple of different science experiments and color science kits. I noticed watching them the other day that they really enjoy the measurement side of science. Measuring an exact amount of liquid to pour into something else. Measuring jugs, syringes, and droppers; this kind of kit is fun to use. And if you end up with something you can eat, even better! With it being Pride month I was looking to make something rainbow colored and then I thought… what if we made something they can geek out over with measurements? Rainbow striped smoothie popsicles it is.

Using silicon popsicle molds
The kids really enjoys measuring the layers and using the syringe

If your kids enjoy using molds and using foods for coloring, try making my healthy homemade fruit snacks from scratch.

Foods for Rainbow Coloring

Coloring used for these specific smoothie popsicles

If you want to eat the rainbow, you’re going to have to incorporate a number of different fruit or vegetables. At the same time, I don’t want the cost of these homemade popsicles to spiral out of control. There are many different foods you can use for color but to keep this activity on a budget I personally used these ingredients for color:

  • Red: Strawberry
  • Orange: Peach and strawberry mix
  • Yellow: Peach
  • Green: Peach and spinach mix
  • Blue: Blueberry and blue food dye
  • Purple: Blackberry and blueberry

If you spotted it… yes, I used blue food dye. If you want a natural alternative, blue spirulina powder is your best choice. Personally, I didn’t want to spend the extra money and it’s only a little dye in one layer. We also kept the price down by buying a mixed bag of frozen fruit. I found Target has a mixed bag of strawberry, peach, and blackberry. I also bought some blueberries because my kids love them.

Ingredients for homemade popsicles
We used vanilla yogurt for its flavor and sweetness

Other foods you could use to color rainbow-striped smoothie popsicles

  • Red: Beets, raspberries, cherries
  • Orange: Orange juice, mango, passionfruit
  • Yellow: Banana, pineapple
  • Green: Kiwi, spinach, kale
  • Blue: Blue spirulina (blue is the trickiest color!)
  • Purple: Grapes, purple cabbage, purple yam

Popsicle Molds

We used silicon molds from Target. Call me old-fashioned but I like traditional wooden sticks, but I do like the flexible nature of silicon so this set makes the best of both worlds. The kit comes with 16 sticks but it’s easy to source extras. There are plenty of alternative mold kits and I’ve included my favorites (including the one we use) below:

silicon molds for popsiclesDual plastic/wooden stick molds (10 popsicles)
popsicle moldsPlastic handle molds (6 popsicles)
12 pack popsicle moldsWooden stick molds (12 popsicles)

Making Defined, Even Stripes

How to stop rainbow striped smoothie popsicle layers from mixing

Ideally, you want to be freezing each layer before adding the next color to get the perfect rainbow striped smoothie popsicles. However, this does take a lot of time, especially if you do six layers like us. We waited an hour between each layer. The smoothie was not completely solid but it was firm enough to give separation between colors. The longer you wait, the more crisp the boundary between colors will be.

Measuring the depth of each stripe

The molds we used at 3oz(89ml) each, which most similar molds are. We used a medicine-style syringe to measure each layer to equal volume. We took each popsicle to be 90ml, divided into six layers (one for each color) giving us 15ml per layer. In reality, when we went to add the smoothie to the mold we realized the molds are sloped towards a slight point at the end, meaning if every color was the same volume, the top (first poured) layers would look thicker. We went with 10ml for the first three layers and 20ml for the last three layers but you may want to totally geek out and calculate the volume needed to make your stripes exactly even in depth.

homemade rainbow popsicles for kids
Our last layers went a bit skew, but overall the rainbow layers turned out great!

Adding the sticks

When you’re making single-colored popsicles, you’ll fill the mold, pop the silicone lid on and push the stick through the allocated holes before freezing. When you’re dealing with multiple layers frozen over time, things get a little trickier. We added the stick after the third layer because the second layer was still soft enough to push through. After that, we peeled back the silicone lid minimally to add the next layers with the syringe, disturbing the sticks as little as possible. Overall, the sticks will set at the end when everything is done so you don’t need to be too precious.

rainbow striped smoothie popsicles
I had five left from my eight popsicles. Three kids devoured the others quickly.

Rainbow Striped Smoothie Popsicles Recipe:

I hope the popsicles are a hit with all. Ours didn’t last long and the kids are already scheming what popsicle creations we can make next. What I particularly love about these colorful treats is the nutrition in them really is great. If your kids love treats that taste like actual treats but are really good for you, I recommend trying my chocolate zucchini brownies recipe.

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About the author

Katherine is an electrochemist, hiking enthusiast, and family lifestyle blogger. As a mom of three, including twins, she enjoys DIY, travel, and eating good food. British born, Katherine moved to the US in 2014, and now called Las Vegas home.

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