Sunday, March 23, 2014

Easter Treats Without Artificial Food Color

Easter with only natural colors -- is it possible? Certainly!

When it's time for Easter treats, I think of lots of pastel colors, chocolate, and egg-shaped candies. A carrot or coconut cake. Flowers, bunnies, and chicks. Fortunately, pastel colors are the easiest to achieve with natural food colors. Natural colors are not as concentrated as the chemical versions, so brighter colors can rarely be achieved for the home baker. If you'd like to get started with your own homemade naturally-colored treats, check out these resources.

Chocolate and white chocolate are good dye-free options. Just know that a few stores and restaurants put red dye in chocolate cakes and chocolate pie crusts. I don't understand this, but it's happened. As for chocolate, I've started seeing Unreal Candy at local drugstores. It's "unjunked" without artificial ingredients, corn syrup, GMOs, or hydrogenated oils. If you've tried an Unreal product, I'd love to hear what you thought of it.

Without further ado, here are some candies and homemade treats that just say "Easter" to me. I have not tried the majority of the recipes, so I can only say that they sound good.

Candy that is small enough to fit in plastic eggs
GoNaturally Organic Cherry Hard Candies (other flavors available)
or lots of options at Natural Candy Store

 Healthier Easter Foods
Peter Rabbit's Mixed Up Garden Snacks from Gourmet Mom On the Go
Easter Fruit Basket from Laura Bento
Vegetable Carrot from Savvy Mom
Goldfish Carrots from Simon Chan
Cantaloupe Bunny from Vegetable Fruit Carving

Sweet Treats
Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Eggs from Raining Hot Coupons
Homemade Lemon Cupcakes with Vanilla Frosting from Sally's Baking Addiction
Coconut Macaroons from Sally's Baking Addiction
Carrot Cake Rice Krispie Treats from Mallow and Co.
Easter Bunny Cupcake Wrappers from Bird's Party Blog

 Finally, I was looking at pre-made Easter baskets on Amazon and liked what I saw with Well Baskets. They're a little pricey but if you would rather save time than money, they seem to have something for everyone. Otherwise, you can get some good ideas from them.

To have a completely natural Easter, eggs can also be dyed with natural colors. See recipes and examples at Better Homes and Gardens and What's Cooking America.

What food or treat says "Easter" to you?

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Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Valentine's Day Without Artificial Red

The Naturally Colored Christmas post was viewed so many times, I assumed a Valentine's Day post might be helpful as well. What will be the biggest obstacle for you or your child this Valentine's Day if you avoid artificial food color? For me, it's the cherry cordial crème pies and the chocolate covered cherries.
Using chocolate or naturally colored candy like Yummy Earth Lollipops are the simplest ways to have Valentine's Day without artificial food color. For something a little more creative, check out these links.

Candy-Free Valentine Cards
Unique No-Candy Valentines from Toronto 4 Kids
Pencil Gift Tag from Our Family World
Apple of My Eye Stickers (to give with apples) from Zazzle
Popcorn Label from Bird's Party Blog
Glow Stick Valentines from Cinnaberry Suite (one of my favorites!)
Friendship Bracelet Valentines from Dandee
Printable Valentines from Remaking June Cleaver
You "Blow" Me Away from Little LDS Ideas
Goldfish Valentines from Tammy Mitchell Designs
Hot Chocolate (You Warm My Heart) from Unexpected Elegance
Homemade Fortune Cookies from Your Modern Family
Paratrooper and Bouncy Ball gifts from Paging Supermom
Heart-Shaped Fruits & Veggies
 Disclaimer: This post may contain affiliate links that help fund the author of this site. Thanks for your support!
Pseudo (sü-dō) is something fake or not genuine. Food, according to the dictionary, is "something that nourishes or sustains." Pseudo food does neither of these and may actually harm the one ingesting it. It has the appearance of food but lacks the actual characteristics.