If you were to try to figure out what Valentine's Day was all about just by checking the grocery store shelves, you would think it was a celebration of nothing more than overpriced candy. Instead of chowing down on artery-clogging foods this Valentine's Day, be good to your heart and try a healthful treat or two instead. Looking for inspiration? Try these delicious dipped strawberries!
- 1 lb fresh strawberries (12-15)
- 1 cup light cream cheese
- 2 tablespoons each: pistachios, almonds, dried pineapple, dried cranberries, chopped chocolate chips
- Wash strawberries under cold, running water. Pat dry and set aside.
- Place cream cheese in a small, microwave-safe glass bowl. Cover and microwave until cheese is soft and warm, about 30 seconds. Stir well.
- Place chopped pistachios in a small bowl or ramekin. Repeat with other dipping ingredients.
- Dip strawberries in cream cheese, then into one of the chopped options. Place dipped strawberries on a small plate, then refrigerate to firm up the cream cheese.
- Serve chilled.
This recipe makes 6 servings. Each serving (2-3 strawberries) contains 140 calories, 10 grams of fat, 4 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 22 milligrams of cholesterol, and 189 milligrams of sodium. It also has 5 grams of sugar, 2 grams of fiber, 9 grams of carbohydrates, and 5 grams of protein.
Reserve any leftover sprinkle items for more desserts - they make great garnishes and toppings. The leftover cream cheese can be a fantastic fruit sandwich spread. Simply thinly slice a few pieces of fruit and layer the slices between two pieces of bread that have been spread with the cream cheese mixture.
Make the Switch:
Like fruit-flavored candy? Then you’ll love these! Replace candy with these sparklers in order to get more nutrients and less added sugar. A single serving of Starburst Fruit Chews contains 22 grams of sugar, while a serving of Lifesaver Gummis has 25 grams of sugar. A lone serving of Swedish Fish contains a whopping 30 grams of sugar. Compare that to the 5 grams of sugar in a serving of Strawberry Sparklers for a clearer idea of just what you can save by choosing fresh, whole fruits. And what could be better for your heart than that?
This post is an excerpt from our wonderful, fruit-based dessert book called Fruit Tooth. It's full of fun, easy, and tasty recipes for desserts that are sure to please your guests. Download the whole thing for free today!
Stephanie Ronco has been editing for Food and Health Communications since 2011. She graduated from Colorado College magna cum laude with distinction in Comparative Literature. She was elected a member of Phi Beta Kappa in 2008.