Yes, you read that correctly. Strawberry shortcake Popsicle. How good does that sound, am I right? I have to be upfront though when I say that I got the idea from a post I read on The Kitchen Paper. The recipe can be seen here. My version varies just a little bit, as I was not paying over 9$ for a little bottle of “ground vanilla”. I’m sure it’s tasty and whatnot, but I am way too cheap for that nonsense. Not only am I going to make a delicious recipe for you today, but I also have a new small appliance to show off and review for you guys! It’s like a two for one deal and we all like those!
Have you ever heard of a Zoku Quick Pop Maker? I had seen them before and they intrigued me. Popsicles… in minutes? Whenever I wanted them? That could be a blessing or be quite dangerous. I was thrilled when I got the opportunity to review one! When it arrived here at the house, the Hubster was very wary. He said that it wasn’t all that practical as you could make popsicles with cheapo molds the old fashioned way. I scoffed at him and accused him of not “getting it” which isn’t all that uncommon in this household. (and that goes both ways). When you first get the Zoku, you place it in your freezer for 24 hours on a level shelf or surface. Of course, I couldn’t wait that long and tried to make a pop within 12 hours of it being in the freezer. It did work, actually. It just took longer than the 5-9 minutes that it was supposed to take. Not the machine’s fault, that was all on me.
Once my machine was properly frozen, I was ready to make pops in earnest. My first pops were made from 100% fruit juice. The Zoku I was given to test had three popsicle cavities. Each one takes about 1/4th cup of juice. The calorie count of 1/4 cup of fruit juice is pretty low, so I could snack on these without too much guilt. To make a pop, simply place the special included Zoku pop stick into the mold. Pour in your juice. Be careful not to go over the fill line. If you do, it could be a little harder to remove the pop once it’s frozen. A little caveat about pop ingredients here. High fat items tend to get stuck in the mold (don’t ask me how I know that). If it’s too thick or too chunky (like yogurt that’s not thinned out a little), that can also stick. The instructions also tell you that sugar free beverages do not work well, nor does plain water. You don’t necessarily have to add sugar to everything, as lots of liquids already have natural sugars in them (like the juice did).
Approximately 5-7 minutes later ( or even less sometimes), you’ll have a frozen pop. Sometimes, there will be a little juice excess around the handle. If I plan on eating those immediately, I just use a straw to suck off the excess. Included with the Zoku is a little plastic knob called a Super Tool and it is super important. You make sure the tool is level and screw it over the top of the pop stick. You turn until you start to feel a little resistance, apply a small amount of even pressure and the pop will separate from the side of the pop mold. You then just unscrew the Super Tool from the pop handle , pull your pop out, snap on the included drip tray and enjoy the yumminess. If you have empty Zoku sticks, you can put three more in the machine, pour in more juice and make more. You can actually make up to 9 pops before putting it back in the freezer. It’s so cool! I tend to make 3 pops at a time, eat one and put the other two in the freezer for later. Now, let me share my recipe with you and then I’ll give my final impressions of the Zoku at the end. You can also make this recipe with a regular pop maker, you’ll just have to wait longer to enjoy it.
- 1/2 cup of sliced strawberries.
- 1 cup of vanilla non fat Greek yogurt
- 1/2 cup milk or non dairy low fat alternative
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/3 cup crumbled shortcake or shortbread cookies. Nilla wafers work too.
Let’s Get “Pop”ping:
- Combine your yogurt, milk and vanilla until combined and smooth
- (you don’t have to blend the ingredients if using a traditional pop mold. I did it so it would go into the Zoku better). Blend the strawberries and yogurt mixture in a blender until combined and creamy.
- Stir in the cake crumbles.
- Pour into your Zoku (or pop molds)
- in 5-7 minutes, you’ll have a delicious, sweet and creamy treat. Unless you’re using regular pop molds, you’ll have to wait a few hours or so.
If you want to make your pops “fancier looking” (I thought of this after I finished making my pops, of course), you could blend the berries, fold that mixture into the yogurt mix without mixing fully and when you froze them like that, you’d get vanilla yogurt pops with swirls of fruit, Yum. However, mine still turned out super yummy blended together too.
Final Impressions about the Zoku:
My husband came around to the “pros” of this device when we were both sick with sore throats earlier this week. When he wanted a limeade pop, he could just go in and make one in a few minutes without too much planning or waiting. It was nice to keep our throats cool without a super amount of calories. I did have a few pop mishaps, but they were all my own fault. I used full fat yogurt once, I overfilled, etc. I don’t blame the Zoku for that. Every pop that I made according to the instructions was yummy and came out perfectly. I love the versatility of the different kinds of pops you can make with this little thing. Zoku sells a recipe book and that’s one of the things I want to get next although you can use pretty much any popsicle recipe you can find online. They even sell little kits so you can make little pops with faces and shapes (like hearts and stars) which means that you can end up with some pretty darn fancy pops.
I actually love this little device. I keep it in my freezer so it’s always ready to make pops. You just never know when you want something cold and refreshing. Yum! I might have to get some extra sticks just so I can make myself a little stash of pops. Making pops this way is not only fun, but it’s cheaper than buying frozen treats at the store for the most part, plus you know what’s going into them because you made them! I highly recommend the Zoku QuickPop Maker. Just as an FYI, Zoku also sells a single pop maker as well as a neat looking Slush maker. You can find all their cool products here. You can also follow them on Facebook and Pinterest!
Disclaimer: I was given a Zoku QuickPop Maker for free in exchange for my honest review. Photos, experiences and opinions are 100% my own and honest. I don’t have time for dishonest opinions and I know you guys don’t either.
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