December 24, 2021 6:51:23 pm
By Karishma Shah
It’s Christmas time, universally the most magical time of the year. From sparkling lights to awe-inspiring Xmas trees, everything about Christmas is fascinating for children. They like to soak up the Christmas spirit by indulging into plenty of flavoursome and ever-so-tempting treats that are just around the corner. But these treats are less-nutritious and contain mostly sugar, starch, fat and salt, which is not a good mix!
So, the best way to maintain the holiday cheer is by giving them what they wish for: delicious treats, but by swapping these with healthy alternatives which will increase the nutrition without sacrificing flavour. These recipes are immensely easy to make with quick prep and minimal ingredients, and high in nutrients.
If you’re a parent who is looking for guilt-free treats then here’s the list that is full of the yummiest healthy Christmas treats for children.
Almond Flaxseed Cookies
1 cup oat flour
1/2 cup almond flour
3 tbsp ground flax
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
½ tsp cinnamon
Pinch of salt
8 dates, pitted
1/4 cup coconut oil
3 tbsp pure maple syrup
1/3 cup almond milk
1/4 cup chocolate chips
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
Chop the dates and soak them in 2 tablespoons of warm water. Mash lightly until it becomes a paste. Set aside.
In a mixing bowl, combine all of the dry ingredients together. Set aside.
In another mixing bowl, add the wet ingredients including the “date paste”.
Pour the wet into the dry and combine well. Fold the chocolate chips in last.
Form small ball shapes onto a parchment paper lined cookie sheet then place into the oven.
Bake for 12-14 minutes.
Chocolate Truffle Bites
For the balls:
¼ cup oat flour
¼ cup chopped walnuts
¼ cup freshly ground flax
2 tbsp sesame seeds
½ cup almond butter (the drippier the better)
3 tbsp coconut sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
For the coating:
1 dark chocolate bar
1-2 tbsp coconut oil
Blitz your oats into flour and walnuts into a chopped texture using a coffee grinder.
Add all of your ingredients (except the coating ingredients) into a bowl and mix into a sticky dough.
Scoop a tbsp of dough into balls. Place them on a plate and pop in the freezer as you melt the chocolate.
Place a heat-safe glass bowl on top of a pot of boiling water, then add your chocolate bar and coconut oil into the glass bowl.
Stir until melted fully, then remove from the heat and let cool for 10 minutes.
Coat each frozen ball in the chocolate, then place back on the plate. Drizzle with extra chocolate, add back in the freezer to cool.
Store in the fridge for a few days or the freezer for a month.
No-Bake Peanut Butter Jelly Bars
1 packed cup Medjool dates, pitted*
2 3/4 cups (265-280g) rolled oats
1/2 cup drippy peanut butter
3 tablespoons pure Maple syrup/ honey
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
4-6 ounces (114g-170g) raspberry or strawberry jam of choice
Place the oats in the bowl of the food processor and pulse them until you have a fine oat flour.
Add the pitted dates, peanut butter, maple syrup, vanilla, and salt to the oat flour. Pulse until the mixture forms into a sticky dough.
If it feels too dry, add a spoon of plant-based milk (or more maple syrup), a teaspoon at a time until the dough just sticks together when pressed.
Line the loaf pan with parchment paper, letting the excess hang over the long sides to form a sling.
Spread the dough into the pan and smooth the top out evenly, pressing all the way into corners with your fingers. Use a flat-bottomed glass to get the mixture even on top. Place the pan in the freezer for 30 minutes or longer to set.
Before removing from the freezer, warm the jam up in a saucepan over medium-low heat to make it a bit runny.
Pour the warm jam on top of the dough in the pan, spreading out with a silicone spatula. Add more jam as desired.
Return to the freezer to set. Then slice into thick bars or into small squares, and serve. Store leftovers in the freezer.
Note: If the Medjool dates are not very soft, cover them with hot water for 5 minutes, then drain and pat dry. If using Deglet dates, soak for 15-20 minutes.
Christmas Ice Pops
1/2 cup fresh strawberry
1/2 cup blueberry
1 cup vanilla yoghurt
Puree strawberries, blueberries and kiwi separately.
Pour into moulds with a layer of yogurt separating the puree.
Freeze, and enjoy.
1 tablespoon cooking oil
1 green pepper measured after chopping
Handful of spinach, roughly chopped
2-3 mushrooms chopped
2 cloves garlic minced
Salt to taste
4 whole eggs
Hot sauce for drizzling on top
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Grease a standard nonstick 12-slot muffin pan with cooking spray and set aside.
Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat.
Once hot, add in oil, green pepper, and onion.
Saute 5-7 minutes, or until peppers are tender.
Add in spinach and mushrooms and cook for an additional 2 minutes.
Then add in minced garlic.
Season with salt and remove from heat.
Crack eggs into a large 4 cup measuring cup and whisk together.
Stir in cooked veggies.
Pour the egg/veggie mixture evenly into the prepared muffin pan.
Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the tops are firm to the touch and eggs are cooked.
Cool slightly and serve immediately.
Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for about 4 days.
Fruity Yoghurt Bars
1 cup of Greek yoghurt – we use plain and add a teaspoon of honey to sweeten.
1 cup of toppings
Cookie sheet pan
Spread a thick layer of yoghurt on the wax paper.
Make the yoghurt a little less than half an inch thick but thicker than a quarter of an inch. Sprinkle nuts, fruits, berries.
Freeze it overnight.
Crack the bar into pieces. Store these in a freezer safe air-tight bag.
Pomegranate Chocolate Bites
2 1/2 cups pomegranate seeds
150 grams high-quality dark chocolate
1 tablespoon sea salt
Across 12 muffin cups, sprinkle a single layer of pomegranate seeds.
Melt the dark chocolate in a small bowl in the microwave. Check often to make sure it’s not burning.
Add the melted dark chocolate to a piping bag or plastic bag. Snip off the end, so a small stream of chocolate can come out.
Pipe a crisscross pattern of chocolate across the pomegranate seeds. Add another layer of pomegranate seeds, then more chocolate, and then the last layer of pomegranate seeds.
Finish with a pinch of sea salt on each of the pomegranate chocolate bites.
Refrigerate for at least one hour before serving. After removing from the fridge, serve immediately.
1 cup almond milk
1/2 cup Greek yoghurt
1/3 cup oats
1/4 cup desiccated coconut
A few drops of vanilla extract
Maple syrup or honey to taste
First prepare the banana – peel and slice it into rounds, then lay them out on a lined baking tray and freeze for a couple of hours or overnight.
Before making the smoothie, prepare the cup or glass that you are serving it in by drawing on a fun snowman design with the marker pens.
To make the smoothie, add the almond milk, Greek yoghurt, oats, desiccated coconut and vanilla extract to a blender. Remove the banana pieces from the freezer and add them to the blender too.
Whizz together until completely smooth, then taste and add a little maple syrup or honey to sweeten if needed.
Pour into the prepared cup or glass and, just before serving, top with cream and snowflake sprinkles.
Honey Joy Pops
3 3/4 cups cornflakes
1 1/2 tbsp honey
1/3 cup caster sugar
1 1/2 cups milk chocolate melts
2 tbsp mixed sprinkles
Preheat the oven to 180C/160C fan-forced. Line a mini muffin pan with paper cases.
Place cornflakes in a large heatproof bowl. Lightly crush with hands.
Place butter, honey and sugar in a small saucepan over low heat.
Cook, stirring, for 3 to 4 minutes or until melted and smooth. Increase heat to medium-high. Bring to the boil.
Remove from heat. Pour over cornflakes. Stir well to combine and coat the cornflakes.
Spoon mixture among prepared pan holes, lightly pressing with the back of a metal teaspoon to compact. Bake for 9 minutes or until golden.
Meanwhile, place 2 tablespoons of chocolate melts in a small microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on HIGH, stirring with a metal spoon halfway through, for 30 seconds to 1 minute or until melted and smooth.
Remove honey joys from the oven.
Immediately dip 1cm of each pop stick into melted chocolate and press into warm honey joys. Cool completely.
Line a large baking tray with baking paper. Place remaining chocolate melts in a small microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on HIGH stirring with a metal spoon halfway through, for 1 to 2 minutes or until melted and smooth.
Remove and discard paper cases from honey joys. Place sprinkles in a shallow dish.
One by one, dip the top of each honey joy in the melted chocolate. Cover with sprinkles. Place on a prepared tray. Stand for 10 minutes or until set. Serve.
Enjoy Christmas with your kids with these healthy and delicious treats they are sure to love!
(The writer is an Integrative Nutritionist and Holistic Life Coach.)
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