Summer is finally here, but with the temperture slowly rising, parents across scorching hot Europe will be tearing their hair out because their child’s appitite has all but vanished. Children are often too uncomfortable in the heat to eat as well as they usually would and meal times can become stressful when you are trying to coax them in from the garden to eat.
Of course they would happily eat mountains of ice cream and other chilled treats, but how do you get them to eat healthily in the warm temperature and avoid the tears and tantrums?
Here are some healthy dessert ideas to keep your children and yourself cool and healthy this summer.
One option is a banana “ice cream”, this is the quickest and most simple option for a tasty, lactose-free treat.
Take one large banana (one banana will usually make enough for two small children) and chop into slices.
Then place the pieces into a freezer safe container and leave to freeze for at least an hour.
Once frozen blend the banana, if the banana was frozen for long enough it will blend into a firm ice cream texture and you can scoop and serve to your child immediately. If the banana blends into a banana smoothie like texture, just spoon it back into the container and re-freeze.
You can add whatever you like to the banana once blended, stir in some blended raspberries for a raspberry ripple effect or mix in a small amount of your alternative (made from organic plant milk like rice, almond or soy) chocolate milkshake for a banana and chocolate ice cream or simply add vanilla extract for a more aromatic taste.
Homemade vegan ice-creamHomemade vegan chocolate fudgsicle
Why not try these very popular chocolate fudgsicles, in which you’d never guess that the main ingedient was avocado.
Avocados are jam packed full of nutrients, vitamins and minerals including fibre, potassium and folic acid. They have a slightly higher calorie count then most of other fruits and vegetables, but this is because of the healthy fat. An avocado can also act as a nutrient “booster”, meaning they help the body absorb more fat-soluble nutrients and vitamins A,D,K and E, when eaten with other foods rich in these vitamins. With their soft and creamy texture, an avacado is a great first food for babies when you start to wean.
This recipe can become very messy, but worth it once you see your child is happily munching away on a very nutrious treat.
You will need:
2 ripe avocados,
3/4 cup of cocoa powder,
1/3 cup alternative milk (organic plant milk like rice, almond or soy),
1/4 teaspoon of salt,
2 teaspoons of vanilla extract,
1/4 cup of honey,
piping bag and large nozzle,
ice lolly moulds.
Simply blend all ingredients in a blender. This mixture will be very thick and you will need a piping bag to squeeze the mixture into your ice lolly moulds, so you must try to get the mixture into all the nooks and crannies of your moulds (tapping your mould on the kitchen side regularly will help).
Place your moulds into the freezer and leave over night. When ready to serve, they may be difficult to remove from the mould, if they are, hold them under some warm water and they should remove easily.
There are many ways to add healthy things into your child’s treat of choice, you could freeze your pre-prepared yoghurt or plant-based yoghurt alternative in ice lolly moulds to give your child an extra potion of calcium or you could slice different fruit (try to use fruit that doesn’t brown when in contact with oxygen: strawberries, kiwi, melon, pineapple etc.) and arrange them into your moulds and fill with water for a delicious frozen fruit treat.
Your kids won’t recognise there is no added white sugar in these refreshing and nutritious delicacies, and will indulge in them as much as you will. If it is too hot, why not go for a light sweet lunch? Children may approve.