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Talking about Easter baskets is a good place to start when discussing having a healthier Easter. This tends to be where a lot of people offer their children unhealthier options. It is also one of the more popular traditions for this holiday. If you want your kids to enjoy their baskets but without sugar-laden sweets, there are some super fun and easy options!
Why You Should Limit These Sugary Treats
First, let’s go over the nutritional content of some of the more popular candy options for Easter baskets. You may not include all of these, but it is good to have a summary of how much sugar, fat, and calories go into the top options. Just look at what is in your favorite candy!
Reese’s Peanut Butter Eggs
These small chocolate and peanut butter-shaped eggs are 170 calories and 10 grams of fat for just one piece. They are pretty small, and a lot of kids have more than one in their basket. Plus, it is loaded with 24 different ingredients (many of which you probably can’t pronounce) and 16 grams of sugar.
The nutritional info might vary based on the type of bunny you get, especially when comparing solid versus hollow inside. However, the classic Dove chocolate bunny is a whopping 690 calories and 42 grams of fat for the entire one! It also contains 69 grams of sugar.
Perhaps your kids aren’t really into chocolate, but they love Peeps. These cute marshmallow guys are pretty much just pure sugar. They don’t have any fat or saturated fat with a serving size of 5 Peeps, but there are 34 grams of sugar.
Cadbury Crème Eggs
The standard serving size of Cadbury Crème Eggs is 2 eggs. This makes sense since they often come in little boxes with 2 eggs inside. These might be your favorite thing to put in the Easter basket, but 2 eggs are 300 calories and 12 grams of fat. Surprisingly, a lower amount of fat, but not when you consider 2 eggs have a total of 40 grams of sugar.
Brach’s Jelly Bird Eggs
Finally, you might serve your kids a little bag of Brach’s (or other brand) jelly beans shaped like eggs. This brand has 450 calories in 3 servings (often what one bag or what fits in a plastic Easter egg). There is no fat or saturated fat, but an insanely high 90 grams of sugar! These are nothing but sugar.
Healthier Options for Easter Baskets
Now that you have seen the high-sugar treats usually in your kids’ Easter baskets, here are some healthier options.
Add More Non-Treat Items – First of all, don’t underestimate the power of non-treat gifts! You probably fill up the basket with mostly candy and maybe a small toy or two. Why not switch it around? Have just one small type of candy, then have little books, stickers, or small inexpensive items in the basket. The basket is still fun but without hundreds of grams of sugar. And you don’t have to police your children’s consumption quite as much too.
Try Chocolate-Covered Fruit – If you want to give your kids chocolate, but in a healthier way, you can try making chocolate-covered fruit. They are getting all the nutrition from the fruit you use and avoiding pure, solid chocolate at the same time. That little bit of chocolate covering banana slices or half of a strawberry really isn’t much compared to the same amount of solid chocolate. Plus, you can use white chocolate and color it orange or green for a festive collection.
Get Organic Fruit Snacks – Instead of giving them little bags of jelly beans, why not get fruit snacks as well? Many of these also have a lot of sugar, so try to find the natural or organic varieties that contain less sugar or no preservatives.
Choose Dark Chocolate – Another way to give your kids chocolate in their Easter basket but in a healthier way is choosing small pieces of dark chocolate. The pieces are smaller, plus dark chocolate is loaded with antioxidants. It is so much better for both kids and adults, but it is still yummy!
Healthier Plastic Egg Contents – If you like to fill plastic eggs with candy and put it in the Easter baskets, another option is to fill it with healthier snacks. You can fit your organic fruit snacks inside, nuts, seeds, or even small pieces of fruit that won’t spoil. You can also put little stickers or small toys in the eggs.
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