Chocolate-Banana-Nut Popsicles

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Roast the bananas for these novel frozen treats in the morning, and you’ll have Popsicles ready for a mid-day snack!

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Ingredients:

  • 4 bananas, unpeeled
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 2 cups almond milk
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  1. Wrap the bananas individually in foil and bake at 400 degrees F for 25 minutes. Let cool slightly, then peel and mash. Combine in a bowl with the brown sugar.
  2. Transfer the banana mixture to a blender, along with the remaining ingredients. Process until smooth.
  3. Divide among Popsicle molds and freeze at least 4 hours, or until solid.

Frosty Bites

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It’s been 90 degrees all week and Travis had fun experimenting with which frozen snacks were his favorite, an idea out of his latest Highlights magazine..

First up, we tried a few different kinds of fruit. Frozen watermelon was hard to bite into, but almost like a watermelon popsicle! That got a big thumbs up.

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Frozen banana got big smiles, too…

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…but not so much frozen grapes.

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Frozen non-dairy yogurt and frozen pudding were too hard straight from the freezer, harder than ice cream, and needed time to thaw before he could dig in. Neither was declared a winner.

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Frozen applesauce got laughs because as it thawed enough to come out of the tube at the top, it kept squirting us!

His favorites? Frozen chocolate bars…

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…and frozen Dandies mini marshmallows – these he could eat like sweet little frozen chips out of the bag!

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What does your child like to eat as a frozen snack on a hot summer afternoon? Please share in the comments!

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Homemade Rocket Pops and Picnic Celebration

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Travis and I originally intended to make these homemade rocket pops for the 4th of July, but we were short a couple of ingredients. But there’s no better time than a summer afternoon to declare a random family celebration. Prepare these fun popsicles, set up a picnic, and celebrate… whether it’s a true holiday, or just a hot afternoon! That’s precisely what we did today. Read on for the recipe… and a fantastic chance to win $1,000!

First up: Making the rocket pops:

In a blender, combine 1 cup strawberries, 1 tablespoon sugar, and 1 tablespoon water; blend until smooth. Pour into the bottoms of popsicle molds or small paper cups. We tried it both ways since I had a hunch our molds would work better and our 9 oz cups seemed too large. Small (5 oz) dixie cups would have been ideal!

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Let the strawberry layer freeze for 30 minutes. Travis was quite intrigued about this layered method of preparation.

Meanwhile, make the blueberry layer; puree 1 cup blueberries, 1 tablespoon lime juice, and 1 tablespoon sugar. Set aside.

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Spoon 2 tablespoons vanilla non-dairy yogurt over each layer of strawberry mixture. Add 2 tablespoons blueberry mixture to the top of each pop. Insert the handles (or, if using cups, cover with foil and insert a popsicle stick). Return to the freezer for at least 6 hours.

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Now it was time for the picnic! We headed to a local national park, laid down a blanket and enjoyed our pops. Okay, so they got a bit melty on a 90 degree day, but that only added to the amusement.

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We decided ours were Bastille Day pops, since our picnic coincided with France’s day to celebrate red white and blue instead of America’s.

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Whatever the reason to celebrate, your child will love being involved in the picnic from start to finish, first by preparing a special recipe and then by helping to clean up at the end!

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I love projects like this that inspire kids to learn without even realizing it; they use their own creative process and enjoy tangible results. How does your child love learning while having fun? I’m so excited to announce the Limitless Learners Contest through Education.com, where your child can win $500 toward college, $1,000 for a school library, and a lifetime free membership to Education.com by explaining just that!

Children must be entering kindergarten through grade 5 and will think creatively about what education means to them. Using art or writing (depending on age), entrants describe a time they had so much fun they didn’t realize they were learning. A winner will be chosen from each grade level.

I hope my readers will tap into this amazing opportunity. Entries must be received by October 31, 2019. Further details are available at https://www.education.com/contests/

Patriotic Popsicles

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Need a red-white-and-blue snack for this Fourth of July – or any day this summer? These adorable popsicles fit the bill!

First up was using a small cookie cutter on slices of melon. Ideally, we would have used a small star for truly star-spangled popsicles, but a heart was just as cute.

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Travis was so proud of the shapes he made! Cut out enough so you have 2 watermelon slices per popsicle mold, and add to your molds.

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Fill the molds nearly all the way with lemonade, then top off with a few fresh blueberries.

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Freeze completely before serving. Ha, he seems to be asking, “Hey Mom, how do I get to the fruit?”

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