The summer heat probably has you craving ice coffee, ice tea and lots of cold treats. But it’s easy to fall into the trap of going out for ice cream more than just every once in a while as a treat. Instead, choose from these healthy ideas to beat the heat:
- Ice cream sandwiches – What’s a better way to enjoy summer than sitting outside biting into an ice cream sandwich? You can easily make your own, healthy ice cream sandwiches, by making whole grain vegan cookies and slathering banana nice cream in between! Get creative with the type of cookie you are going to make and the ice cream to squish between them: maybe ginger cookies with maple vanilla ice cream, or coconut cookies with caramel chocolate ice cream. Whatever your fave sweet treat flavours, you can be sure they’ll taste delicious combined together as ice cream and cookies.
- Popsicles – Remember when you were a kid, and you would open up the freezer during the summer to have a popsicle, and your choices were typically orange, purple and pink, or sometimes red, white and blue? Things have changed a lot since then, and now there are popsicles of all flavours, types, shapes and sizes. One of the best things you can do for yourself to ensure healthy summer snacking, is buy a popsicle mold! You can fill them with everything from leftover green smoothie, to chocolate protein mixtures to your own coconut cream creation. Or, you can simply throw a bunch of frozen fruit in the mold and then pour in coconut water or other infused water to fill in around the fruit and get your serving of fruit in Popsicle form! Whatever your preference, there’s lots of Popsicle treats you can make, and they’re sure to cool you down and fill you up.
- Smoothie bowls – This is the healthy option for beating the heat! Add your favourite smoothie ingredients to a blender or food processor and add half as much liquid as you normally do. Blend until smooth and thick and then scoop into a bowl. Finish with fun toppings such as fresh berries, dried fruit, nuts and seeds, or superfood powders like moringa, matcha or maca. Don’t forget a source of healthy fat as well, such as chia seeds or hemp hearts, which also lend a boost of protein. There’s lots of flavours and toppings to play around with, so get creative in the kitchen and make the most of local, fresh and healthy berries and greens!
- Nicecream – Similar to a smoothie bowl, nicecream, is the healthy, vegan version of ice cream, made from frozen bananas. You simply add frozen bananas to a blender and whiz until smooth and creamy. You will likely have to add some liquid such as some milk or coconut cream to get the mixture started, but don’t add to much or it won’t be thick and ice cream like. You can add in other frozen fruit as well, such as cherries, mangos and blueberries and then play around with adding in different ingredients once it has finished blending. Chocolate chips, nuts, cut up fruit or even homemade cookie bits for cookies and cream ice cream are all great options that will make your icy treat taste delicious! Check out 10 diet friendly "Nicecream" recipes!
- Homemade Iced Tea – Nothing beats cold, refreshing ice tea on a hot summer’s day – and not the sugar-loaded kind you buy in the store in the can. Make it yourself at home by adding 5-6 tea bags to hot water. I usually make mine in a large pot, heating water on the stove and then adding in the tea bags once it has boiled. After you’ve added the tea, set it aside to cool and then add to a pitcher and chill in the fridge. You can add in other flavor enhancing ingredients such as lemon, lime, ginger or mint, depending on what type of tea you made, and then pour into a glass with some ice to serve. Try to avoid adding ice to soon, and chilling it in the fridge if possible, as the ice will dilute it and it won’t be as tasty!
Detox water –When you’re sitting in the park or at the beach on a nice blanket, sometimes plain water just doesn’t cut it. Enter detox water! To make, add your choice of flavourings, such as lemon, lime, mint, watermelon, cucumber, raspberry, basil or ginger to a large jug or pitcher and add in some ice. Fill the pitcher with water, stir and then set in the fridge for 2-3 hours to infuse. When you are on your way out the door to lounge in the park, simply fill your water bottle up with this delicious, homemade water. If you want to have even more fun, buy a water jug with a spout and place it in the fridge, filled with your flavored water. Whenever you want a drink, you can just go to the fridge and serve some to your self, and then just refill from the top to keep a continuous supply!