Guilt-Free Valentine's Treats
Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to be a diet-buster—indulge with these recipes even the kids will love!
• 4 ounces semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
• 1 pound strawberries (about 20), washed and patted dry
1. Line a baking sheet with wax paper. In a glass bowl, microwave the chocolate, stopping and stirring every 30 seconds, until melted and smooth.
2. Holding a strawberry by the stem, dip it in the melted chocolate, letting the excess drip off, then transfer to the prepared baking sheet. As you set the strawberry down, slide it ½ inch to the side to prevent the formation of a chocolate “foot.” Repeat with the remaining berries.
3. Refrigerate the strawberries on the baking sheet until the chocolate is firm, at least 30 minutes.
Bonus benefit: Strawberries are chock-full of cancer-fighting antioxidants.
Fruit Kebab Fondue
• 3 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
• 2 tablespoons heavy cream
• ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
• Pinch of salt
• 1 banana, peeled and cut into 8 pieces
• 8 1-inch chunks fresh pineapple
• 4 strawberries
1. Place chocolate, cream, vanilla and salt in a medium microwave-safe bowl; microwave on medium, stirring every 20 seconds, until melted, 1 to 2 minutes.
2. Pour the chocolate mixture into a serving bowl.
3. Place the fruit on skewers for mess-free dipping.
4. Optional: Pour heart-shaped sprinkles on top of the chocolate for a V-day twist.
Bonus benefit: Bananas provide a powerful punch of potassium, which is necessary for the heart and kidneys to work properly.
Crunchy Fruit Bites
• 8 buttery round crackers (such as Ritz)
• 3 tablespoons peanut butter
• 1 tablespoon melted chocolate
• 1 banana, sliced
1. Spread each cracker with peanut butter; drizzle with chocolate.
2. Top the peanut butter and honey layer with a banana slice.
Bonus benefit: Peanut butter contains good fat—the heart-healthy, monounsaturated kind.