How I got my kids to eat spirulina…

Okay, I know what you’re thinking.  I can hardly get my kids to eat a carrot and here she is bragging that her kids eat spirulina.  Show-off.

Well, it’s not like that at all.  I, too,  can hardly get my kids to eat vegetables, but I can get them to eat spirulina… thanks to this recipe.

And it all started with Woody Harrelson.


Last year, I was reading an article about Woody Harrelson and he was talking about being a vegan.  When asked what his favorite vegan recipe was he said, “My wife makes this thing called painted fruit that I love.”  I wondered, What is painted fruit?  Sounds intriguing, but since no recipe followed, my Woody Harrelson painted fruit trail ran cold.

Until about a month ago.  I bought Kris Carr’s cookbook, Crazy Sexy Diet, (I love this book) and I came across a recipe called, “Green Paint with Assorted Fruits”.   I couldn’t believe my eyes when I read, “While working on a film with Woody Harrelson, his wonderful wife Laura introduced me to this simple snack.”  So painted fruit, we meet at last.

I can’t tell you how delicious and healthy this snack actually is — and my kids totally love it.  Partly because it’s green and you get to “paint” it on fruit, but mostly because once you have a bite, you just can’t stop eating it.  And it’s sooooooo simple.  Just five ingredients.


Painted Fruit

1 cup of your favorite nut butter — cashew or almond are the best, but peanut butter also works.  (FYI, I don’t like the term “nut butter”.   It’s sounds so unappetizing, like something you’d have on hand at a porno set.  “Quick,  we need more nut butter for the post office scene…”  But I feel like I hear people say “nut butter” more and more, so I’m afraid it’s a term that’s here to stay.)


3 tablespoons of spirulina (Spirulina is a dark green algae that grows on ponds.  It’s high protein, loaded with beta carotene and vitamin k and a great source of iron.)


1/4 cup of agave (or maple syrup)

1/4 cup almond milk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract


Mix all ingredients in a medium bowl until you have a dark green, smooth, paint-like texture.  Serve with your favorite sliced fruits. (apples and bananas work great.)


Try it as an afternoon snack…


It’s great for a playdate…


And when you’ve run out of fruit, you can just eat it with a spoon (like Buck always does.)


And if there’s any left over, I spread it on toast the next morning for me.  Even after a sleepless night with the kids, it gives me so much energy.  So thanks Woody, for getting my kids to eat what is technically healthy pond scum.  And next time you talk about a recipe, please don’t be so mysterious about the ingredients!



  • Von says:

    Finally managed to get spirulina powder on my tiny little island. Have everything required except almond milk but almost there…think I’ll just substitute normal cows milk since I’m not vegan.

    • Holly Hester says:

      Cows milk will work just fine I think. Hope you like it! Let me know.

      • Von says:

        All three of us ate it but I think it would be nicer with the cashew or almond butter as I found the peanut flavour in the peanut butter took over a bit. My son really liked it. I’m going to try it again once I get the other ingredients. It was good that the taste of the spirulina wasn’t noticeable as the spirulina tablets I take smell a bit of pond.

        • Holly Hester says:

          I’m so glad your son liked it! yes, spiralina does smell like pond — I think it’s technically pond scum… yum!

  • Lyn says:

    Well we made some! Although I was fresh out of spirulina powder, I did have my wheat grass powder so I substituted & 1 kid loved it. 1 was hesitant but still ate several. The 3 of us polished off 3 apples dunked in the green stuff!

    • Holly Hester says:

      That’s great! I bet the wheat grass powder works just as well. Buck likes it best with peanut butter instead of almond or cashew…

  • Lyn says:

    Holly! I am so making this TODAY!!!! My kiddos will love it! I think!

  • Von says:

    Great share. I have bought spirulina tablets for myself but if there is a way to get that green stuff into the children then that would be something.

    • Holly Hester says:

      I think the green stuff is a plus in this recipe because of the color — you can’t taste the spirulina — it just tastes sweet and yummy to me!

Comments? Fire away.