Last year I was asked to bring in a fun Valentine’s Day snack to my kids’ school Valentines’ Day parties. I wanted to do something fun but actually provide the kids what I’d consider a nutritious snack. Here’s what we came up with.
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Better than the 70’s: Healthy Peanut Butter Fruit Dip
I clearly remember New Year’s Eve growing up. We’d get together with my BFF’s family (no, seriously. We’re in our 30’s now and we still talk multiple times weekly). The adults would do horribly boring things (like chat about things other than Barbies and tutus) and the kids would run around all night. A few weeks before, we’d order a bunch of those super junky toys from Oriental Trading. We would play with those toys all night, or until they broke 20 minutes later. The most memorable toy was an ice cream cone with a trigger. When you pulled it, the ice cream part shot off the cone part. Yep. My childhood rocked.
We always had a ton of awesome food too. I’m sure there were cookies and meat trays, but the thing I remember the most was my mom’s fruit dip. I know that seems strange for an 8-year-old to have a hankering for fruit dipped in a sugary substance over a chocolaty brownie, but it was just so good! It was straight from the 70’s complete with a tub of cool whip, cream cheese and a crap-load of sugar. Nothing says “Happy New Year” like a sugar coma.
I was thinking about said dip and my ice cream cone shooter the other day and became sad that I can no longer live in ignorance about the unhealthy reality of my beloved fruit dip. That’s when I went on a mission to create a new fruit dip. A fruit dip that would put the 70’s fruit dip to shame and wouldn’t give you diabetes.
I wanted it to be easy, so I decided to keep the ingredients to a minimum. Instead of the cool whip portion, I used a full-fat Greek yogurt. It helped the dip have the same creamy consistency without all the artificial ingredients. I found this fabulous Greek yogurt at Sprouts. Make sure you pick one without a lot of added junk.
Instead of cream cheese, I used peanut butter. I mainly did this because peanut butter is just awesome, and has the ability to make things feel sweet without adding sugar. Since we nixed our artificial sweetener by removing the cool whip, we needed a little flavor. The peanut-butter made it PERFECT!
To bump up the flavor, I just added in a little vanilla and cinnamon. The dip isn’t overly sweet, but since fruit has natural sweeteners, the combination of fruit and dip gave this the perfect sweetness. If you want a little more sweetness though for a special occasion like a New Year’s Eve party complete with awesomely-cheap toys, feel free to add a little honey.
So now not only do you have a fruit dip free of sugars and artificial ingredients, but one packed with protein and healthy fats. It’s good enough to have for breakfast!
Hopefully this dip will help my children make as many awesome memories as I had as a kid. But I need to find the ice cream shooter to ensure that.
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