As summer is heating up on the left coast, and burning up over much of the US, what could be more soothing than an ice cold popsicle?
It’s tempting to dash out to the local grocery store. But, if you read nutrition labels on common popsicle boxes, you’ll find the ingredients are loaded with unhealthy additives like: high fructose corn syrup, tons of sugar, and thickeners to delay melting, like guar gum. A box of 24 costs about four dollars. It’s an affordable price for many. But, affordable prices for foods that compromise our children’s health, is too high a price to pay.
With a little more effort, and a huge, healthy pay-off, parents and kids can make fresh, seasonal, popsicles from scratch. The following are three recipes for this kid-friendly ice treat.
Watermelon popsicles: Take three cups of chopped watermelon. Blend until it’s the desired consistency. Pour the result into popsicle molds. Freeze for about 3-4 hours.
Avocado/Coconut popsicles: Take one cup water, 1/2 cup sugar (or two tablespoons of agave nectar if you want to avoid refined sugar), 2 large Hass avocados (halved, pitted, and peeled), 1/3 cup coconut milk. 2 tablespoons lime juice. Pinch of salt. Blend until smooth. Pour mixture into popsicle molds. Freeze for about four hours. (Thanks to the Muy Bueno website.)
Green popsicles: 1 cup packed kale leaves (or collard, spinach or other leafy greens), 11/2 cups chopped pineapple, 1 small banana, 1 cup coconut water. Blend all ingredients together until smooth. Pour mixture into popsicle molds. Freeze for at least 6 hours and up to 4 months. (Thanks to weelicious.com.)
Tip: If you don’t have popsicle molds, you can use dixie cups instead. Freeze the mixture for about thirty minutes, and then position the popsicle stick in the middle of the mixture. Continue to freeze.
Photo: Kids eating Popsicles / Priscilla Gragg/Getty Images