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Cool ideas for healthy summer ice pops

Last updated 3 years ago

Summer is here, and in full swing, with temperatures really heating up. With the onset of vacations and a more relaxed schedule, most parents find that this also comes hand in hand with more requests for sweets, ice cream and flavored ices. Though it is hard to control what is being served at parties and picnics, you can control what you have on hand at home. Many parents also find that taking on the task of making frozen treats is not only a great way to get some fresh fruits and veggies into the diet, but can also be a fun summer family bonding activity. To aid in the process, there are a wide variety of popsicle molds on the market in various sizes, shapes and colors – either in kitchen stores or online.

Park View's Point of View

At Park View Pediatric Dentistry, we believe that nutrition is a big part of cavity prevention. We promote healthy eating habits with all of our patients, and when we go out to teach at local schools, day camps, and mom-oriented programs. We often find that one consistent request from parents is to find some good healthy substitutes for sweets, that equally appeal to children. And what can be more fun that enjoying a delicious, nutritious ice pop that kids actually created themselves. 

Cool Notes:

In many of the recipes below we suggest adding your favorite sugar substitute as an option. We like Stevia as a choice, but an even better alternative is to train young palettes to enjoy the natural sweetness of fruits and certain vegetables without added sweeteners.

—If you don’t have a popsicle mold and are using cups (non-glass), freeze until partially frozen and slushy – about 30 minutes, then insert sticks. Freeze until firm, at least 6 hours.

—Avoid adding sprinkles, sweetened granola or other candy bits to your pops. This will defeat the purpose of this healthier treat alternative.

Here are some of our favorite healthy ice pop recipes:

Very Berry Watermelon Pops—Puree 3 cups of watermelon chunks, 2 cups fresh or frozen berries (raspberries, strawberries, blue berries or a combo of all) in a blender. Mix in 2 tbsps. of fresh lime juice and 2 tbsps. of a sugar substitute (optional—see above notes).

Push the mixture through a fine strainer into a bowl with a flexible spatula. Discard solids. Then, pour the mixture into molds and insert sticks.

Minty Melon—Puree 4-5 cups of cantaloupe or honeydew melon cubes in a blender with a handful of chopped fresh mint. Mix in 1 tbsp. of fresh lime juice and 2 tbsps. of a sugar substitute (optional—see above notes). Then, pour the mixture into molds and insert sticks. Freeze for 5-6 hours.

Peachy Creamy Banana—Puree 5-6 large, juicy peaches chopped and 2 bananas in a blender. Mix in ¼ - ½ cup of plain low-fat yogurt (depending on desired creaminess) and 2 tbsps. of a sugar substitute (optional—see above notes). Then, pour the mixture into molds and insert sticks. Freeze for 5-6 hours.

Cool Colada —Puree 1 large, ripe, juicy pineapple, cut up into chunks into a blender. Add ¼ - ½ cup (depending on taste) of light coconut milk and 2 tbsps. of a sugar substitute (optional—see above notes). Then, pour the mixture into molds and insert sticks. Freeze for 5-6 hours.

Veggies Under Cover —For the real health enthusiasts, who want to disguise vegetables as a tasty treat for kids, try freezing your favorite veggie and carrot mixture or carrot and beet juice. Mix in ¼ - ½ cup of plain low-fat yogurt (depending on desired creaminess) and 2 tbsps. of a sugar substitute (optional—see above notes). Then, pour the mixture into molds and insert sticks. Freeze for 5-6 hours.

Let’s make the summer of 2014 one of the coolest and healthiest ever!

You can contact us at:

Park View Pediatric Dentistry
212-879-6518
www.ParkViewPedDent.com

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