Among mountains of brightly-colored chocolates, marshmallow rabbits and jellybeans, an overwhelmed Christian family may not know how to use the holiday as the teaching tool it is: a reminder of God’s love and mercy, prophecy fulfilled, and a promise to come.
I was already a young adult when my family used the recipe for Easter dinner for the first time. My youngest sister, almost 15 years behind me, learned about the recipe from her Sunday school class.
Skeptical, I wasn’t really sure how a recipe could truly display a hard-core Christian lesson. But, all these years later, it’s certainly a mainstay recipe in my family and at my in-laws, too, for all of the growing grandchildren and nieces and nephews.
This recipe is God-inspired! You will discover it lends itself well as a quick lesson for even the youngest of children. (Hey, as Christians, we are to accept God’s Kingdom like little children, so it’s a great lesson for us all!). Depending on your child’s age and level of understanding, you can add appropriate scriptures and discussion during each stage of the recipe, especially John 12-18 while assembling the rolls; and John 20:1-18 and/or Matthew 28:1-10 as the rolls are taken from the oven.
While my family uses the rolls as a side dish, they may well be served as dessert, too. Or, make them the night before Easter or for breakfast on Easter morning.
To assembled your own batch, you will need:
- Crescent roll dough can (or more than one can if you need more than eight rolls)
- Large marshmallows (one marshmallow per roll)
- Melted butter
- Cinnamon sugar
Preheat your oven according to the crescent roll can’s instructions.
Begin the lesson by unrolling the crescent rolls, which we explain to the children is representative of the cloth Jesus’ body was wrapped in. (For teens, you may draw parallels to the birth story of Jesus like as a baby, lying in a manger, wrapped in swaddling clothes, too.)
Without sin, Jesus is the lamb God sacrificed. We let the children know that this pure white marshmallow represents Jesus.
Rolling the marshmallow in the melted butter is like preparing Jesus’ body with embalming oils.
Now, dip the marshmallow in the cinnamon sugar which is a symbol of the spices used to prepare Jesus’ body for the tomb.
Place the marshmallow in the center of the crescent dough at the widest edge, rolling it along until it meets the narrowest end. Pinch any of the edges of the dough together, making sure it’s completely covering the dressed marshmallow, like the dressing for Jesus’ body before burial.
Now, roll the dough blob in a little more melted butter, and roll in the cinnamon sugar. The result is a food sculpture that is reminiscent of the stone that was rolled away from Jesus’ tomb.
Pop the rolls in your oven, a symbol of the time the body spent in the tomb. Bake per the time specified on the crescent roll can’s directions.
Let the rolls cool for a few minutes out of the oven. It’ll be amazing to see your children’s faces as they take a roll in their hands, break it apart, and see that the marshmallow has disappeared…
Jesus has risen!
And, God willing, so has their — and yours’ — comprehension of Easter history.
If you or someone in your family has special dietary concerns or preferences, check out alternative ways of preparing these rolls from Mission Mama!
The Prudent Wife blog has an informative and visually enlightening post with the recipe here which gives some credit to a post at Homegrownmom.com. In the beginning of the recipe, The Prudent Wife even suggests hitting the crescent roll container on the counter or the edge of a table to ‘show’ how Jesus was beaten.
Check out Ministry-to-Children.com for other specific verses that can further ‘flesh out’ the Easter Roll lesson, including verses about Easter Angels,, Doubting Thomas and Jesus’ second return to Earth.