Even though sweet treats need to be consumed in moderation for optimal health, this doesn’t mean they have to be eliminated. In fact, a sweet treat for dessert each night can really be a great way to satiate a sweet tooth while staying on track with your health goals. Plus, it’s a fun way to make memories with your children. Consider trying these six sweet recipes with your children in the future.
1. Chocolate Chip Cookies
Chocolate chip cookies are easiest when you have a standing mixer. Add sugar, flour, butter and milk in a mixer to create the dough. Depending on the recipe you use, you’ll need to add salt and baking soda. Be sure to use butter that’s been sitting at room temperature if you’d like a fluffy, thick cookie. Add in the chocolate chips, and continue to stir the mixture. Meanwhile, make sure the oven is set to 350 degrees. Roll the cookie dough into balls. It’s wise to place six balls on a cookie sheet because as they bake, they’ll expand. Cookies only take a few minutes to bake. After a few minutes, be sure to prepare the next six to go in the oven. Once the cookies cool, enjoy them with on their own, with milk or with ice cream.
2. Roasted Berry Popsicles
If you’re making these popsicles in the summertime, use strawberries. After cleaning a large bowl of strawberries, cut them into smaller pieces. Place them back in the bowl. Add lemon extract and the sweetener of your choice. Mix the blend together. Then, place the blend on a baking sheet. Allow the berries to roast for an hour. When you take them out of the oven, allow them to cool. Add to a blender along with water and coconut milk. Pour the mixture into popsicle molds. Allow them to freeze overnight. By the next day, you all can enjoy creamy roasted berry popsicles. This recipe will work with any berry.
3. Banana Bread
Banana bread is such a perfect staple for any breakfast alongside a hot cup of tea. Use bananas that are spotted or brown. They’re the ripest. In a bowl, add two bananas, sugar, baking soda, flour and salt. Whisk the mixture until it’s completely blended. If you have a few chunks of banana in the mix, that’s perfectly fine. After greasing a pan, pour the mixture in. Place the pan in the oven for 60-70 minutes at 350 degrees. If you want to take it up a notch, add some cinnamon or chocolate chips into the batter.
4. Salted Caramel Brownies
If you’re picking up the brownie mix from the grocery store, that’s one of the easiest ways to prepare delicious brownies. Add eggs, vegetable oil and a bit of water to the brownie mix. Once you’ve combined the ingredients, add them to a greased cake dish. Place in the oven to bake. In the meantime, prepare the salted caramel by combining salted butter, sugar, heavy cream and a pinch of salt over the stove to boil. Constantly stir until it’s a thick, heavy texture. Once the brownies are done, allow them to fully cool. Then, drizzle the salted caramel sauce on top. No one will be able to tell the brownies weren’t homemade.
5. Basil Lemonade
Expand the family’s palette with a delicious basil lemonade drink. Enjoy it with ice after a long, hot day. To make sure it’s fresh, squeeze the juice of a few lemons into a pitcher. Pick a handful of fresh basil leaves. Add them into a mortar and pestle. Muddle them to release the essential oils. This is a great task for one of the younger kids to do. Create a simple syrup out of water and acacia honey by pouring the combination into a pot, and bringing it to a boil as you stir. Pour the honey simple syrup into a bowl with the basil to steep. Once the mixture is cooled and steeped, add the fresh-squeezed lemon juice. In a large pitcher, combine the basil/honey simple syrup blend along with lemon juice, water, and ice. Add sugar to taste.
6. Fruit Salad
The best fruit salads are summer fruit salads. The seasonal fruit blends together perfectly. After cutting up mangos, your choice of berries, and some pineapple, mix them together in a large bowl. For additional flavor, add a few sprigs of mint. As the juices blend together, feel free to squeeze a bit of honey or agave nectar for extra sweetness.
Depending on the recipe, your children might be tempted to lick the bowl and the spoon afterward. Cooking and baking allow you to spend quality time with your children as you teach them how to maneuver through the kitchen. Before long, they’ll be able to whip up a batch of cookies with their eyes closed.