I have exactly 0.0% Irish ancestry. Which makes me exactly as much of an Irish culture expert as I need to be to make a Shamrock Shake—because a Shamrock Shake is exactly 0.0% Irish, too!
I’m not even going to pretend that the gloriously minty, green concoction that is known as a Shamrock Shake has anything to do with Irish culture. But what I will say? The Shamrock Shake is BONKERS delicious. And if you’re looking for a less-than-culturally-accurate way to celebrate St. Paddy’s Day (or let’s be honest, any day, because this ish is yummy), I’ve got your back.
Now, if you’ve never had a Shamrock Shake (or heard of one, even), that’s understandable, because they are elusive creatures from the land of the golden arches.
Shamrock Shakes are green, minty, smooth and incredibly hard-to-find—only sold for a limited time each year and only at select McDonald’s locations. I’ve heard entire states are “dry” when it comes to offering up the green goodness. There are even entire websites out there dedicated to the search and recovery of Shamrock Shakes. I told you they were special.
No longer will you have to succumb to the whim of some McDonald’s corporate regulator. For today, I give you the power. The power to delete the “Find the Shake” website from your bookmarks. The power to stop calling every McDonald’s manager in a 100 mile radius.
Today, I give you the power to make your own Shamrock Shake. Scratch that. Today, I give you the power to make two different versions of the Shamrock Shake. I give you a healthy version packed with spinach and avocado and all kinds of green goodness. And I give you the copycat “treat yo self” version—a classic milkshake topped with a mountain of whipped cream. Donna Meagle would be proud.
If you’re looking for a homemade, copycat, fool-a-McDonalds-employee version, you’ll want to do mix up the Treat Yo Self version. If you’re looking for a creamy, minty, healthy smoothie, you’ll love the Healthy version. Either way, you’re going to love it, I promise. Let’s dig in.
Okay, so let’s be honest here, a spinach smoothie is *never* going to be a quality replica of a milkshake. But this healthy smoothie definitely satisfies the craving for something frosty, minty, and green! This is the Shamrock Shake the way I’d do it if I were to start my own fast food restaurant (HA.).
Now this recipe? This is a real deal copycat recipe for what you get in the drive-thru at Mickey D’s. You can make this recipe pretty darn “clean” by using ice cream made with natural ingredients (look for brands that only list milk, cream, sugar, eggs, and vanilla) and skipping the green food coloring and maraschino cherry.
Personally, I feel like life is too short to get up in arms about one fully-loaded Shamrock Shake a year, so I go all-in with the coloring and the sprinkles and the cherry and enjoy the heck out of it.
Looking for more ways to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day? Dublin Coddle and Irish Soda Bread is my favorite dinner on March 17th! Another (delicious) option is Corned Beef and Cabbage. Add in some green beer, and you’ve got a perfect Irish-American meal.