May 21, 2013

Plant-based “Strawberry Quik”

For a short period of time when I was about eight years old, our family doctor told my mother that I was allergic to chocolate. I still don’t believe it. How did he know? There weren’t any accurate allergy tests in the 1960s that I am aware of. And I know I didn’t receive any tests. I think it was something else that was causing me some problems and he just decided it was chocolate. Evil man. During that dreadful period of time I became acquainted with things like white-chocolate Easter bunnies and strawberry-flavored Nestle’s Quik. Do they still make this stuff? I’m sure it was loaded with artificial flavors, food coloring and sugar. Yuk. And I seriously doubt there were any strawberries in there. But I liked it. Sort of. Hey, I was eight. It was pink.

Anyway, I was out working in the garden yesterday—finally got my red peppers in the ground. Hooray! It was hot and I wanted something cold to drink. Something yummy and a little sweet. I didn’t want to fuss with a smoothie. I wanted something… quick. Sorry, I know that was corny. I had some fresh strawberries in the fridge (thank goodness it’s finally strawberry season!) so I decided to make a whole-food version of “Strawberry Quik!”

It was perfect! So I wanted to share the love…

Oh my… I found this image online… the exact product I used to drink. Complete with “delicious imitation strawberry flavor.” Yikes!

Healthy trails!
Plant-based Strawberry Quik!

Yield: 2.5 cups

A healthier version of an old favorite!


  • 1 cup sliced, fresh strawberries
  • 1½ cups unsweetened, non-dairy milk (make sure it’s cold!)
  • ¼ tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 4-6 dates or 4-6 TBS date sugar (see notes)
  • 4-5 ice cubes


  1. Place all ingredients in a high powered blender and blend until smooth.


I prefer using dates in this drink instead of a granulated sugar, since they are a whole food. The only potential problem with using dates is they take a while to break apart in the blender and the longer you blend... the warmer your drink becomes. And this is definitely something you want to enjoy cold. I've used date sugar; it's very minimally processed. Another option would be coconut sugar but use less of it as it is much sweeter than dates or date sugar! If you do use dates, try adding only a small amount of liquid to process them first, then add the rest of the cold ingredients.

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9 responses to “Plant-based “Strawberry Quik””

  1. sounds yummy!

    On the Strawberry Quik, it was probably less unhealthy back then…..sugar, strawberry flavor, guar gum……NOT 20 ingredients that you can't even pronounce!!

  2. Helyn says:

    Haha! You may be right, Lynda… I checked recently and the main ingredients in there were sugar, artificial flavor and artificial color 🙁

  3. Jan-Marie says:

    Whenever I use dates as a sweetener in things where I want them totally blended, I put them in with the liquid first and get them really ground up then add the rest of the ingredients. Works like a charm!

  4. Anna says:

    Made this tonight for a treat. It really does resemble a strawberry quik drink! I used frozen strawberries and unsweetened vanilla almond milk in lieu of adding vanilla. The whole family loved it!

  5. Helyn says:

    That's wonderful, Anna! Thanks for the feedback! 🙂

  6. Bev says:

    I use date syrup whenever I need sugar in a recipe.

    Date syrup;
    1 cup pitted dates
    1 1/2 cups water
    Soak dates in water for 3 hours and blend until smooth.

  7. Hope Green says:

    do you refrigerate it? how long does it last??
    thank you!!

    • helynskitchen says:

      Hi Hope, I’ve never refrigerated it because we drink it up right away, but I’m sure it would last a few days. Make sure to shake it up though, it will separate.

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