Saturday, June 9, 2012

Dark Chocolate Strawberry and Banana Pops


It's summer time and I notice my kids wanting to eat more cold, yummy desserts. I wanted to make something a little different and keep it simple and healthy so I experimented making dark chocolate covered strawberry and banana pops. It was a hit and I can't believe how something could be so easy and turn out so fun and pretty.  These desserts are also low in calories.

All you need for ingredients is strawberries (I used 5), bananas (I used 2.5), dark chocolate chips(2 bags and 70%+ cocoa, to get antioxidant benefits!), and chopped almonds. Oh, and I almost forgot my secret ingredient, cinnamon, which is surprisingly full of health benefits. Cinnamon is rich in antioxidants, possesses antibacterial properties and has powerful effects on blood sugar and insulin levels, helping to control diabetes.



Directions:
  • Wash and cut stems off of strawberries.
  • Cut ends off bananas and cut bananas in half.
  • Insert popsicle sticks securely into strawberries and bananas
  • Put chocolate chips in a small pot and melt on stove top over low heat.  Stir consistently.
  • Dip fruit pops into chocolate and cover about half of each strawberry and banana pop.
  • Immediately roll into chopped almonds which should be spread out on a plate.
  • Place the pops on a wax paper covered baking sheet and refrigerate for 30 mins.
  • Put the remaining chocolate in a large Ziploc bag and squeeze chocolate into the corner of the bag.
  • Poke 5 holes in bag near eachother with a toothpick.
  • Get a platter out and make chocolate swirls on platter for decor and lovely presentation.
  • Place pops on platter.
  • Enjoy your healthy treat!

Cinnamon isn't the only ingredient that has health benefits in these pops.  Here are some other amazing health benefits from the other ingredients.

Bananas:
  • Regulate blood pressure.
  • Easy to digest.
  • Aid in calcium absorption for strong bones.
  • They are rich in vitamin B6, vitamin C, magnesium and potassium.
  • Great for exercise, prevent cramping.
  • Good for kidney health.

Strawberries:
  • High levels of antioxidants.
  • Cancer prevention.
  • Good for heart.
  • Anti Inflammatory.
  • Reduce effects of Alzheimer's disease.

Dark Chocolate:
  • Low glycemic index keeping blood sugar levels balanced.
  • High in antioxidants.
  • Good for your heart.

Almonds:
  • Relief from constipation, respiratory disorders, cough, hearth disorders, anemia, impotency, and diabetes.
  • Helps in hair care, skin care, and dental care.
  • Contain the most minerals and vitamins compared to other nuts including Vitamin E, Calcium, Phosporous, Iron and Magnesium. 

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