October 25, 2014

Summer Foods on A Stick

Skewer of Veggies and MeatWhen I envision  summer treats, the first thing that often comes to mind is a popsicle!  Although this refreshingly cool treat often satisfies my sweet tooth, popsicles aren’t exactly a summer-travel-ready or waistline-friendly food.  Luckily, this isn’t the case for all summer treats served on a stick. In fact, many can be good for you and  some are so simple to make that you don’t even need to follow a recipe!  What could be better than a quick and easy treat that helps you spend less time in the kitchen, and more time out enjoying the summer?

Frozen Fruit Kabobs

These kid-friendly snacks are scrumptious whether you enjoy them fresh or frozen.  A great way to get children more involved is by having them tag along to the grocery store so that they can pick out which fruits they would like on their kabobs.  Whole fruits like grapes, strawberries, and raspberries can be used, or other fruits like melons (watermelon, cantaloupe, honeydew)  and pineapple can be made into fun shapes using cookie cutters or a melon baller.  These fun treats will also provide a variety of essential nutrients to keep you and your family healthy and energized to enjoy those long summer days!

Watermelon Nibblers

Enjoying a juicy slice of watermelon on a hot summer day is nostalgic for many of us.  Yet why stop there? For a fun twist on a classic favorite, add crisp cucumber and tangy feta. Combining cubed watermelon, sliced cucumbers, and a small cube of feta makes for a winning flavor combination!  Stacking these ingredients and placing a toothpick through the center turns this traditional watermelon salad into a fancy finger food fit for any summer occasion!

Caprese Salad

Caprese salad combines the sweetness of a ripe tomato, with soft delicate mozzarella, fragrant basil, and a richly-flavored balsamic vinegar reduction.  Using the basil as the base of these treats, take a small cube of mozzarella paired with a slice of tomato or a whole cherry tomato and place a toothpick through it all to hold it together.  These mouth-watering snacks can be drizzled with olive oil, a balsamic vinegar reduction, or both!  Basil contains a unique combination of flavinoids and volatile oils.  These substances contribute to basil’s anti-bacterial properties and its ability to protect DNA!  Two teaspoons of basil provides 60% of your daily Vitamin K, which is beneficial for many, but those on blood thinning medications like Warfarin should avoid foods high in Vitamin K.  This herb can be easily grown outdoors or indoors as long as the proper levels of light, hydration, and nourishment are achieved.

These summer treats on a stick make for a perfect dish to pass at summer barbecues, birthday parties, or any get-together you have planned for the summer.  And as an added bonus, these snacks can be prepared in small batches, or whipped up in large quantities to feed all of your hungry friends!  They can be dressed down with plain old toothpicks or made into fancy finger foods using decorative or colored party picks!  Snacks like these make it easy to stick to a healthy diet :)

What is your favorite summer treat on a stick?

The Intern Behind the Plate,
~Elizabeth

 

About Intern Elizabeth

Elizabeth is a Registered Dietetic Technician, who graduated from Central Michigan University with a B.S. in Dietetics and Biomedical Sciences. She has always enjoyed eating, baking, flipping through cook books, watching cooking shows.... and well, just about anything that involves FOOD!! After seeing the improvements in her own life from eating a healthy diet and participating in regular exercise, she knew she wanted to pursue a career that would allow her to help others make the same healthy changes! She looks forward to sharing with you the nutrition information she has learned throughout her schooling, while also incorporating her own tips & tricks that will allow you to use this information in your everyday life.

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  1. [...] course, watermelon is often a summertime staple, but what about the other members of the melon family like honeydew and cantaloupe, just to name a [...]