When I was pregnant with my first child, there were a lot of things I thought I would never allow my children to do. Like get any amount of screen time or eat prepackaged convenience “junk foods”. HAHAHAHA!! I did pretty well with the screen time thing until my daughter turned 2, but still let her watch “educational” shows, and in my defense, she learned a lot of sign language that way.
I actually did fairly well with the convenience food thing too, until fairly recently. Come to think of it, things started going downhill when I had my second child, and got too busy to care. Recently I have been realizing that things are getting out of control. Like when I looked in my pantry and it looked like Costco had vomited it’s snack aisle in there (there were seriously 5 full sized bags of Boom Chicka Pop in there at one time!) and any time my daughter has full on tantrums over pretzels.
This is when I decided to cut back on the processed foods. I admit, they have their time and place, like when we’re on the go or in a big rush. But I know that they provide more calories and fewer nutrients than most of the foods that I can make at home, and also cost more and create more waste. So I went on a mission to find healthy “snack foods” to feed my kids that they would actually eat. Nuts are a good choice, but the chances of my daughter eating “plain” nuts was slim, and I didn’t want to coat them in sugar, so I made these Mexican Hot Chocolate Dusted Hazelnuts. They have much less sugar than your standard chocolate coated nuts, but still have a strong chocolate flavor from the cocoa. My daughter loves them!
Feel free to tailor this recipe to meet your tastes: I used hazelnuts because I love the chocolate and hazelnut combo. You could use almonds instead. I added cinnamon and a bit of cayenne to give them an extra kick, but feel free to skip that and just have “Cocoa Dusted Nuts”.
Please tell me I’m not the only parent that once had grand ideas of what kind of mom I’d be but eventually
fell apart got revised. What were your big parenting ideas?
- 1 cup raw hazelnuts
- 2 Tablespoons cocoa powder
- 1 Tablespoon powdered sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon optional
- Pinch of cayenne powder optional
Whisk together cocoa powder, powdered sugar, cinnamon and cayenne in a small heatproof bowl or container, preferably with a secure lid. Set aside.
Roast hazelnuts in a medium skillet over medium heat, shaking or stirring frequently. When hazelnuts begin to brown and become fragrant, transfer to the container with the cocoa mixture. Stir or shake well until nuts are coated (the cocoa mixture will adhere in a thin layer to the hot nuts, but there will be some of the cocoa mixture left over). Cool before eating.
Mexican Hot Chocolate Dusted Hazelnuts
While nuts are a healthy snack, they are high in fat and calories. Make sure you keep your portion size small.