Guest Post: Hip and Healthy Summer Treats

[ 2 ] July 26, 2010 |

When summer rolls around, you begin to think about squeezing your pale winter body (which may have found some extra girth over the holidays) into your teeny bikini.  And that’s when you start to panic.  You stock your fridge with fresh fruits and vegetables and your freezer with Skinny Cow ice-cream sandwiches (after all, you can’t give up all the perks of summertime eating).  But as the long, hot months progress, you inevitably find yourself getting tired of serving melon balls and sticky, melting ice-cream treats.  You want something that is not only healthy, but interesting, delicious, and easy to prepare (whether it’s for a house full of visitors or just for yourself).  So here are a few ideas for healthy summer treats that will wow your guests, whet your palate, and help you get back into last year’s swimsuit.

  1. Homemade Popsicles.  These aren’t just for the kids anymore (although you can certainly make some kid-friendly options).  By purchasing some fun forms, you can get frozen treats that meet your taste and health requirements.  Pour in some all-natural juice, blend up a smoothie, or mix yogurt and pureed fruit for something creamy and dreamy; then freeze it!  You can keep it low-cal and get all the flavor of a tasty Popsicle or parfait.
  2. Frozen fruit.  If Popsicle seem like too much trouble or your crunched on prep time, throw some bite-sized fruit in the freezer on a tray (berries or cut bananas or mango’s are a good bet).  Then put out some lite whipped cream or low-fat sauces (chocolate, caramel) for dipping.
  3. Sun tea.  If you haven’t had this since you were a kid, now is the time to reenact your mom’s summer tradition by setting a pitcher to brew on the porch.  It’s a sugar-free alternative to the sodas and ice-blended coffee drinks that tempt you daily (add little Splenda or other low-cal sweetener instead of granulated sugar).  It will take you back to the lazy days of childhood in a heartbeat.
  4. Orange mousse.  Forget the chocolate.  Summer is all about fruity flavors and you can’t go wrong with this lite alternative to heavier desserts like cake and ice-cream.  You’ll feel like you’re indulging with this airily textured treat, but by mixing sugar-free orange Jell-O and lite cool whip, you can mix it up in no time and satisfy your sweet-tooth for less than 100 calories per serving (throw some orange slices on top for a dessert that’s not only tasty, but gives you a healthy dose of vitamin C).  You can also try other flavors if citrus fruits aren’t your favorite.
  5. Smores.  A staple of summer BBQs, you probably think there is no way to make this gooey and delicious treat healthy.  But if you just can’t stop yourself from grabbing the marshmallows and heading to the campfire, there are ways to make it a little better for your body.  To avoid the high sugar content of most graham crackers, look for lighter options like the low-fat or whole grain versions offered by Safeway and Whole Foods (respectively).  Opt for vegan marshmallows (like the ones offered by Sweet and Sara) and purchase some dark chocolate instead of milk (for less fat and sugar).  You can still have the summer treat you love without worrying as much about the impact it’s having on your health (just remember to indulge in moderation).

Breana Orland is a writer for Student Grants. Breana also gives advice on the pursuit of higher education and career options for young adults.

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Category: Food.Fun.Stuff.

About the Author ()

Johnna French is a Harlem NY native with deep roots in Panama, Washington, DC and North Carolina. All four places have heavily influenced her life and the foods she loves today. After graduating Howard University School of Law and beginning her life as a young professional in the city she was led to start Johnna Knows Good Food in November 2007 to keep family, friends and colleagues updated on where to go and what to eat while dining in the nation’s capitol. French, who still practices law, leads a team of three writers to cover the ever expanding Washington, DC food scene. French has been featured in print and television, appearing in Washingtonian Magazine and is a regular contributor to various local TV affiliates including WUSA 9, FOX 5 DC and WJLA (ABC Affiliate) News Channel 8. During the 2016-2017 football season, Johnna aired on Comcast Sports Mid-Atlantic (CSN) show, Redskins Life, as the weekly tailgate host. Johnna is currently a regular contributor to the FOX Baltimore Weekend morning show.

Comments (2)

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  1. Jenney Sanders says:

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  2. Cari says:

    Dude! I could totally go for some smores right now :-p

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