THURSDAY, July 25, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- If you're looking for a frozen treat that won't give your healthy eating plan the cold shoulder, pass on store-bought pops and make your own.
Some prepackaged pops might be calorie-friendly, but many have dyes and preservatives. Making your own is easy, and you can use gut-friendly ingredients like kefir (a cultured dairy drink), fresh fruit and dark chocolate.
Think of kefir as a cousin of yogurt with a similarly tangy taste. It's high in protein and loaded with probiotic cultures, up to 11 different strains compared to the one or two found in most yogurts. It's great in frozen pop recipes because the freezing doesn't kill the beneficial cultures. Also, its texture is a bit thinner than yogurt, which makes it ideal for freezing with berries and other healthy add-ins, like naturally sugar-free cacao nibs.
Nibs are cracked whole cocoa beans. They're high in antioxidants plus they give you a good dose of fiber and a pleasant crunch. You can usually find them in health food stores or order them online. A bag of nibs will keep for months in your fridge, but you'll likely use them up in short order.
Frozen Kefir Pops
- 1 cup plain 2% kefir
- 1 tablespoon honey or sweetener of your choice
- 1 cup berries or pitted cherries
- 4 teaspoons cacao nibs
Place kefir and honey or sweetener in a small bowl and stir to combine. Divide the fruit and the cacao nibs among four freezer-safe pop molds. Fill them with the kefir mixture and add the pop inserts. Transfer to the freezer for three hours or until firm, then serve.
Yield: 4 servings
The National Dairy Council has more on kefir, including how to make your own at home.