Homemade Orange Julius

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When I was young, probably 7 or 8, my Uncle John came to visit in the summertime to help my Dad paint our house. Looking back, it was a huge undertaking for just two people. We didn’t live in a mansion by any stretch, but it was still a good sized, two-story home.

Looking back on that summer, one of the things I remember very well is the Saga of Dad’s Broken Arm. It all started one morning when my sister and I were out playing in some large cardboard boxes on the front porch. We had decorated the boxes to be like time machines and were blasting through the space-time continuum like Thelma and Louise minus the whole driving off a cliff thing. 🙂 Anyway, after we arrived back in the 20th century, I remember my Uncle John telling us that we had to go to the hospital because my Dad fell off a ladder and they thought his arm was broken. In addition to that, he had a small gash on his forehead that was bleeding quite a bit.
We lived about a block away from the hospital so off we went. At the hospital, we found out that Dad did indeed have a broken arm. He broke it pretty good, too. But thankfully, minus the gash on his forehead, that’s all the injury he had, which is amazing considering the fact that he fell off a very tall ladder. After he was all plastered up, we came home. However, Mom, who hadn’t been around that morning to catch all the action, arrived home before we did and discovered a bloodied rag in the dining room and no one there. She was understandably freaked out! After the dust settled, Dad’s painting expedition had to come to an end. They got most of the house painted though, which was quite a feat. Dad had to wear a cast and splint for the next several weeks and then life went back to normal.

You are probably wondering how in the world the Saga of Dad’s Broken Arm fits into a post titled Homemade Orange Julius, aren’t you? Well, if you have patiently read through to this point, I won’t leave you hanging! Or maybe you just skipped through all the drama down to the recipe. It’s all good. No judging here. 🙂

The reason why I think of Orange Julius and that particular story is because my Mom made this lovely concoction several times for us during that summer. We would gulp sip our drinks while watching reruns of Laugh-In on Nick at Nite. Orange Julius always reminds me of summer nights. And Laugh- In. Now I can make them for my own kids on warm days for a special treat!

Orange Julius™ ingredients
Orange juice concentrate, sugar, vanilla, milk, water (not pictured — whoops!), and ice cubes

Add all the ingredients into your handy dandy blender! We have a Vitamix and it’s pretty much amazing. Back in the old days though, like 1988, we didn’t have a Vitamix. A regular blender will work just fine. 🙂

All the ingredients, waiting patiently to be turned into something amazing!

Blend it on high for about 30 seconds or so.

Ready to pour! You could drink it out of the blender, but that might be a little tacky, huh?

Pour into 4 glasses or cups and enjoy!

Time to get yer straws and drink up!

So that’s pretty much it. Pretty easy, huh? Here’s the formal recipe:

Homemade Orange Julius
Yield: About 4 cups

  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup milk
  • 6 ounces orange juice concentrate
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup sugar*
  • 10 ice cubes

Put all of the ingredients in your blender and blend for about 30 seconds. Enjoy!

*You can decrease the sugar amount to 1/4 of a cup without much difference in taste. I experimented once and omitted the sugar entirely, but it wasn’t quite the same.

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