For kids, summer is the season for having fun, enjoying time off school and indulging in favorite warm-weather treats. While on trips to the beach and the boardwalk, they’ll inhale brightly-colored slushies, coat their steaming funnel cakes in powdered sugar and crunch into potato chips until their tiny fingers are covered in grease and crumbs.
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Allowing kids to indulge every once in a while is just another part of the summer fun, it’s easy to go overboard when not paying attention to what’s inside these popular summer foods.
Here’s the reality: with 10 grams of fat in an ounce of potato chips, more than 350 calories in every 12-ounce slushie, and 550 calories and 25 grams of fat in that funnel cake, kids are just filling their bodies with processed junk.
Instead of allowing children to eat these same fatty and sugary foods throughout the summer, parents can opt for homemade, easy-to-prepare sweet treats that are just as delicious — and a lot healthier — than typical summer snacks.
“Best 100 Juices for Kids” from food blogger Jessica Fisher offers up taste-tested, kid-friendly recipes for everything from juices and smoothies to homemade sodas, slushies and ice pops. Instead of spending their hard-earned allowance on sugary, pre-packaged ice cream, kids can pull a banana fudge or strawberries and cream ice pop from the freezer.
Doesn’t a frozen pomegranate lemonade smoothie sound great? “Best 100 Juices for Kids” is the perfect companion for any parent who wants to save money and ensure that their children are consuming healthy and delicious treats this summer.
Yogurt-peach ice pops
These layered ice pops take a few more steps to prepare than the other ice pops but they are quite the novelty. Who doesn’t like layers of flavors and colors?
Feel free to make layered pops with other fruit purees, adjusting the sweetener to taste.
Makes about two cups ice pop mixture
2 peaches, peeled, halved and pitted (or one 15-ounce can peaches in juice, drained)
1/4 cup honey syrup (recipe follows)
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 cup plain yogurt
1 tablespoon honey
1. Place the peaches, honey syrup and lemon juice in a blender or a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Blend until the mixture is very smooth.
2. In a small bowl, combine the yogurt and honey. Stir until well combined.
3. Pour half of the peach mixture into ice pop molds. Make a second layer, using the yogurt mixture. Top with a layer of the remaining peach mixture. Freeze until firm.
4. Remove the frozen ice pops from the molds and serve. You may need to hold the molds under warm water for a moment to thaw the pops slightly and loosen them from the molds.
Makes two cups
1 cup honey
1 cup water
1. Combine the honey and water in a medium saucepan.
2. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring to dissolve the honey completely.
3. Remove from the heat and let cool completely.
4. Store in a covered container in the refrigerator.
Jessica Fisher is the author of two popular blogs, LifeasMom.com and GoodCheapEats.com. She is also very active on Simple Homeschool, Food Your Way, and SanDiegoFamily.com.