8 Healthy Dessert Ideas Your Kids Will Love — Eat This Not That


It’s the age-old dilemma when it comes to desserts. Kids want yummy sweet treats after dinner, and parents want nutritious choices to fill their kids’ bellies.

The good news is that it doesn’t have to mean that kids have to watch themselves gorge on empty calories and high-sugar finals to their meal when they indulge in desserts. With a little know-how, you can provide your child with a better dessert that won’t cause an eye roll or even an ounce of discomfort.

First and foremost, the key to finding healthy desserts is to make sure it tastes good. After all, what good is a dish if it’s not enjoyable? Once the dessert’s flavor is deemed acceptable, an important next step is to ensure that the option does indeed contain nutrients such as fiber, protein, or micronutrients (like calcium). Finally, dessert shouldn’t be burdened with added sugar, artificial ingredients, or questionable stabilizers.

To find some of the best healthy dessert ideas, we turned to a few registered dietitians who shared their top tips for healthy desserts that are easy to make and delicious to enjoy. Read on to learn what the experts recommend, especially if your child has a heavy sweet tooth.

Frozen Banana Chocolate Nuts
Shutterstock

A banana alone might not be the most exciting treat for your little one. But dipping them in chocolate and freezing them takes these nutritious fruits to a whole new level. Simply slice your bananas, dip in dark chocolate and place on parchment paper before freezing. In a few hours, your kids will have a sweet, icy treat fortified with nutrients like potassium and magnesium.

READ:  FDA proposes updates to 'healthy' claim on food packages

If you don’t want to go through the hassle of slicing and freezing your fruit, you can lean on Diana’s Bananas Banana Bites for a dessert that’s ready to enjoy.

Oatmeal cup with yogurt and fruit
Shutterstock

To make yogurt “cupcakes”, Kacie Barnes, MCN, RDN, Dallas-based nutritionist and creator of Mama Knows Nutrition, uses reusable silicone muffin cups, fills them with a low-sugar yogurt, then tops them with sprinkles. “This is a nice high-protein snack, but because of the colorful sprinkles and the fun of pretending it’s a cupcake, it instantly becomes a treat in their eyes,” says Barnes.

If your family is avoiding artificial coloring in your food, make sure you use sprinkles colored with natural ingredients, like Supernatural Kitchen Unicorn Track Sprinkles.

warm cinnamon apples
Shutterstock

“Cinnamon adds sweetness without the added sugar, and heating diced apples until they’re nice and soft makes them taste like an apple pie filling,” explains Barnes. She advises “leaving the skin on to get the full nutritional value, or peeling it if you know your little one will like it better that way.” This dessert can be topped with a dollop of whipped cream for some extra decadence.

READ:  How Does What We Eat Affect Our Healthspan and Longevity? It’s a Complex Dynamic System
Dates with peanut butter and pistachios
Shutterstock

“Medjool dates are rich, chewy, and naturally sweet with no added sugar, making them an ideal base for a healthy sweet dessert.” Lauren Harris-Pincus, MS, RDNFounder of NutritionStarringYOU.com and Author of The Everything Easy Pre-Diabetes Cookbookexplained.

To make this dessert, she says, “Cut a pitted date in half and fill it with a touch of peanut, almond, or sunflower butter and a few chocolate chips. The taste is similar to a candy bar with the bonus of fiber, protein and healthy fats.”

Nice creamy banana
Shutterstock

“Banana Nice Cream is super easy to make and a way to enjoy a cold, creamy, pure fruit dessert,” shares Pincus. To make this dessert, she explains how to slice up some bananas, freeze them, and puree them until smooth. For a fun addition to this dish, she suggests offering “toppings like chopped nuts, dried fruit, chocolate chips, or sprinkles for a homemade sundae.”

RELATED: The best store-bought desserts for blood sugar

READ:  L-Glutamine Benefits, Plus Side Effects, Dosage, And Foods
Black Bean Cookies
Shutterstock

“Black beans are a great way to pump up the fiber and nutrients in chocolate baked goods without anyone being able to tell their flavor or color,” says Pincus. “All you need is a can of black beans, a box of brownie mix, water and chocolate chips for deliciously fudgy brownies that are packed with plant-based protein, fiber and antioxidants.”

blueberries and whipped cream
Shutterstock

“These tiny blue dynamos are like little puffs of sherbet that get even tastier with whipped cream or non-dairy whipped cream,” says Pincus. “For a perfectly portioned grab-and-go option, try Wyman’s Just Fruit & Greek Yogurt Bites, featuring simple ingredients and live and active cultures. They come in single-serving cups, so you only need one scoop.”

orange popsicle
Shutterstock

One of the easiest kid-friendly DIY desserts are frozen fruit pops. Pour 100% juice into a pop pan and freeze solid for a classic treat that’s cheap to make and long lasting. Using 100% orange juice not only gives this no-sugar-added treat a naturally sweet taste, it also provides kids with important nutrients like vitamin C and potassium.

Lauren Manaker MS, RDN, LD, CLEC

Lauren Manaker is an award-winning Registered Dietitian, Book Author and Recipe Developer who has been in practice for almost 20 years. Read more about Lauren



Source link