Summer is coming, the kids are getting hot! Here is a tasty, creative kitchen activity to keep your family cool.
A few reusable ice-pop molds are a fantastic and inexpensive purchase if your family loves cool treats, but a few paper cups and some wooden “craft” sticks from the local craft store will work in a pinch.
The great things about ice-pops is they can be made of any liquid that freezes; the only limit to the creative combinations you can make is your imagination. It is much cheaper to make your own ice-pop and you have full control of what goes into them, which is especially good if your child is sensitive to sugar or artificial colors and dyes. Here are a few of my favorite kid-approved ice-pop ideas.
Juice Pops – Any kind of juice can be made into ice-pops. If you have a juicer, this is an excellent way to use up left over juice and sneak some extra veggies. Carrot juice mixed with some other fruit such as apple and orange will make a delicious bright orange ice-pop. If you want a red/purple ice-pop, use a little beet juice – all the colour with nothing artificial! If you don’t have a juicer, store bought vegetable/fruit juice blends can make a good substitute, just read the ingredients first.
You can spruce up your juice pops by adding chunks of cut-up fruit or even a splash of vanilla.
Pudding Pops – Pudding makes great ice-pops. You can either use homemade or store bought. Make a batch of your favorite pudding and pour it into the ice-pop molds before it sets. You can add extras: swirl in some peanut butter to make a peanut butter chocolate pudding-pop, or mix frozen raspberries or even a little orange juice and zest to make cream-pudding-pops.
Jelly Pops – Jelly pops are always a big hit, especially because they start to wiggle as they begin to melt – if they last that long! Use a gelatin dessert (Jell-O® brand or otherwise), put it into the ice-pop molds, add some chopped fruit if desired, and freeze. But don’t add fresh pineapple! Fresh pineapple has a tenderizing enzyme that will break down the gelatin, causing it to not set.
Smoothie Pops – There always seems to be leftover smoothie at my house, so I just pour it into a ice-pop mold and create a healthy, nutritious cool snack for later in the day. This is a great way to sneak in extra nutrients if you make your smoothies with yogurt, fruit, flax oil, wheat germ, oat bran and other good stuff.
Fruit Pops – Most fruit blended up with with a little liquid – water, fruit juice or milk – make a great ice-pop and is a good way to use up left-over and over-ripe fruit. Banana, Strawberries, apple sauce, melon, berries are all fine choices. Pureed vegetables such as sweet potato or pumpkin can also be included for an extra boost of nutrients. One of my favorite ice-pop is a “Pumpkin Pie Pop” made from pureed pumpkin, yogurt, vanilla, almond milk and some pumpkin pie spice.
What are some of your family’s favorite, creative ice-pop flavors? Please share below!