Ever notice how holidays involve increasingly more candy? What’s an Easter basket without it? With one in three kids overweight or obese, says KidsHealth, it’s time to rethink our sweets craze. I’ve been dieting and lost 96 pounds by substituting sweets with healthy alternatives. Here are good-for-you Easter treat and snack recipes.
* Fruit basket. Who says the Easter basket must ooze candy? Why not fill it with juicy red strawberries, plump blueberries, succulent green grapes, golden yellow bananas, jolly oranges and apples? You can toss in a few dark chocolate Easter candies, but you don’t have to with this festive rainbow of fruit. And instead of candy, why not use toys?
* Hunny Bunny Cookies. Skip the chocolate bunny and make healthier bunny cookies. Mix half cup light margarine, half cup of honey or blue agave syrup, two cups whole grain flour, one teaspoon baking soda and half teaspoon cinnamon. Roll out and cut like sugar cookies. For bunny shape, cut circle head and two small ovals for ears. Blend peanut butter, nonfat yogurt and honey for frosting. Or blend Splenda, yogurt and light butter for white icing. Decorate with raisin eyes, pretzel stick whiskers raspberry or cherry nose and apple pieces for buck teeth.
* Happy Bunny basket. What would the Easter bunny like in his basket? Veggies! Make a bunny-friendly Easter basket filling a salad bowl with lettuce and your favorite vegetable toppings: carrots, radishes, zucchini, tomatoes, broccoli, sprouts and, of course hard-boiled Easter eggs!
* Easter Egg-stravaganza. After dying hard-boiled eggs, return them to the fridge to keep fresh. Decorate with plastic eggs and make these yummy treats.
–Angel eggs (like deviled only better!) Cut egg in half. Carefully remove yolk. Mash with celery seed, pepper, mustard and light canola oil mayonnaise. Refill yolk cavity. Sprinkle on dill and paprika.
–bunny-wiches: Spread cream cheese on slice of rye bread. Tint some cream cheese pink with berry, grape or beet juice. Cut cooked egg in half lengthwise. Remove yolk. Cut semi-circles from base of whites. Fill yolk cavity with pink cream cheese and place on bread for ears. Place cut off bits on bottom for paws (make little slits for toes). Slice yolk. Place olive slice in center of slice for eyes. Use grape tomato for nose, matchstick carrots whiskers and almonds or pumpkin seeds for teeth.
Our kids ate pretty healthy and none has weight problems. In fact, they loved these fun Easter candy alternatives as much as sugary treats.