July is National Ice Cream Month. Kids of all ages love ice cream! After all, what’s not to love? It’s creamy, sweet and delicious. Ice cream is a favorite summertime treat.

We know it may contain extra calories from fat and sugar so we want to watch portions for good health and to be able to fit into our summer wardrobe!

One strategy is to eat upside-down sundaes by making fruit the base of your sundae. Fruit is a great dessert option for summer sweet treats. It is refreshing, nutritious and lower in calories than many other choices. Instead of filling a large dish of ice cream TOPPED by a handful of strawberries, enjoy a bowl of berries capped with a small scoop (about 1/2 cup) of ice cream.

One cup of strawberries provides about 50 calories and a generous amount of fiber, folate, potassium, vitamin C and antioxidants. A half-cup of a light ice cream adds about 100 calories, as well as calcium. Or, substitute one sliced medium-sized peach (2 1/2-inch diameter) for the strawberries for about 40 calories. (Source of calorie information: USDA National Nutrient Database per UNL Extension in Lancaster County). With a total of around 150 calories for the fruit plus ice cream, your taste buds AND your waistline can be happy!

Here are two fabulous ice cream recipes with a healthy twist for you to enjoy this summer – including a dairy-free, gluten-free option that is absolutely amazing! Who says you can’t have your dessert and eat it, too?

Grilled Peach Sundaes

Serves 2.

All you need:

2 peaches, halved and pitted

1 tsp canola oil

2 scoops nonfat vanilla frozen yogurt or fruit sorbet

1 tbsp toasted unsweetened coconut

All you do:

1. Preheat grill to high. Brush peach halves with oil. Grill until tender.

2. Place 2 peach halves in each bowl and top with a scoop of frozen yogurt (or sorbet) and coconut.

Nutrition facts per serving: 154 calories, 4g fat, 2g saturated fat, 0mg cholesterol, 41mg sodium, 28g carbohydrate, 2g fiber, 4g protein.

Source: www.eatingwell.com


Chocolate Coconut Ice Cream

Serves 5 (about 1/2 cup each)

All you need:

2 tbsp raw cacao powder

1 (13.65 fl oz) can coconut milk (not lite)

1/3 cup agave nectar

1/2 tsp vanilla

1/4 tsp sea salt

Rock salt and ice for ice cream maker, if necessary

Additional toppings: nuts, unsweetened coconut, fruit

All you do:

1. Whisk cacao powder in a small amount of coconut milk. Add remaining coconut milk, agave nectar and vanilla and combine.

2. Pour mixture into an ice cream maker and prepare according to manufacturer’s instructions.

3. Serve with assorted toppings and enjoy.