It’s summertime again, and that means barbecues by the pool, long days at the beach, gallons of sunscreen, and delicious frozen treats. When it comes to your sweet tooth this summer, frozen desserts don’t require you to sacrifice your health. If you are trying to cool off with a frozen delight but don’t want to overdose on sugar and calories, bananas are the secret to a healthy dessert that you will continue to crave.
Here are six recipes for healthy frozen banana desserts. Not only are bananas full of vitamins that are great for your health, but they also aren’t loaded with processed sugar, preservatives, or extra calories. Bananas are nature’s dessert, and with a little help and a few recipes, bananas will become your family’s favorite frozen treat.
Simple Banana Ice Cream
This recipe, from That Clean Life, is one of the easiest ways to enjoy a classic dessert option without all the unhealthy stuff. Transform bananas into rich and creamy “ice cream,” and you will be amazed at how great it tastes! You’ll also be surprised by how easy it is to make:
- Place bananas in the freezer for at least one hour.
- Add frozen bananas to your food processor and blend until smooth.
- Add your favorite toppings (chopped nuts, diced strawberries, and honey are great), and enjoy paired with your favorite movie on movie night.
Dark Chocolate, Peanut-Covered Frozen Bananas
If you’ve ever been to a theme park or carnival, you’ll recognize these treats from Epicurious right away. There is nothing like the crunch of peanuts followed by smooth chocolate and the intense flavor of ripe bananas. By using dark chocolate instead of milk chocolate, it becomes a healthier take on a delicious old-fashioned recipe.
- Melt dark chocolate in a bowl over boiling water, stirring periodically and scraping the sides of the bowl.
- Place wax paper over a baking sheet, so the final product won’t stick to the pan.
- Push a popsicle-stick inside each banana.
- Dip the bananas in melted chocolate, and carefully place them on the baking sheet.
- Sprinkle your freshly dipped bananas with chopped peanuts.
- Freeze for at least an hour or until frozen, and then indulge while sitting poolside with all of your friends.
Peanut Butter and Dark Chocolate Banana Bites
With all the protein of peanut butter and the savory taste of dark chocolate, these Banana Bites from Not Enough Cinnamon are great to keep in the fridge for when you want to fill up on something sweet. There is really no comparison to the taste of peanut butter and chocolate together in one little package.
- Slice the banana into small circles around an inch thick.
- Add a dollop of peanut butter on top of each slice.
- Melt dark chocolate in a bowl over boiling water, stirring occasionally.
- Prepare a baking sheet with wax paper so the final product won’t get stuck.
- Poke banana pieces through the side with a tooth pick, and dip them in the melted chocolate.
- Place tray in the freezer for several hours before eating.
These are great to bring to summer soirees or company get-togethers!
Banana Fruit Smoothie
When your diet is stricter and dark chocolate just doesn’t make the cut, a smoothie is the best possible way to enjoy frozen banana goodness and stay fit. Adding a variety of fruits to your smoothie will really take things to the next level. (For recipes detailing great fruit combinations see Chiquita Bananas’s smoothies.)
- In a blender, mix all of your favorite fruits, a spoonful of honey, and a scoop of milk or yogurt.
- Blend until smooth.
Perfect for an energy boost before you hit the gym or for post-workout fuel!
Frozen Yogurt Banana Popsicles
If you enjoy the rich tangy taste of yogurt, these popsicles from Not Enough Cinnamon may be perfect. Cold bananas and yogurt melt in your mouth, and you can add a plethora of other extras to your popsicles to make them really special on steamy days when the temperatures are high.
- Blend bananas, plain yogurt, and honey together in a blender until smooth.
- Pour into a popsicle tray and add popsicle-sticks.
- Freeze for several hours until hardened.
This is a great snack to have in the freezer for when friends come to visit or when you need something to keep you going while mowing the lawn.
Gram Cracker & Honey Banana Squares
If you’re looking for something that will give you the feeling of camping without the extra-hot fire, these squares will be excellent. Adding a little honey to the concoction will sweeten things up a bit, and gram crackers add an amazing cinnamon twist. Healthy and nutritious cinnamon banana satisfaction in a bite sized package, and they are easy to make.
- Blend bananas, honey, and peanut butter together in your blender.
- Let the mixture cool in the fridge or freezer for about a half hour.
- Once chilled, place a spoonful between graham cracker squares and dig in.
This one is great to serve at parties or for a quick snack in the afternoon!
During the summer it can be hard to stay cool and even harder to eat healthy when choosing a cool-down dessert; but there are always alternatives to the typical sugary sweets. A quick, healthy, frozen snack can not only be delicious, but with the right recipes it can be made in a snap, too. Have a blast this summer, and give these six recipes for healthy frozen banana desserts a try next time you’re trying to keep cool while staying healthy.
Featured photo credit: Veganfeast via flickr.com