You’re never too old to play with your food! This winter, while the kids are home from school and family and friends gather together, you can experiment with ways to make healthy foods festive and fun. This blog shows how we created a snowy scene using foods from all five of the MyPlate food groups.
Step 1: Gather all of your ingredients and supplies. You’ll need whole-grain bread, peanut butter, a banana, raisins, a carrot, pretzel sticks, low-fat cheese slices (a white cheese will work best), your favorite green vegetable (we used a bell pepper), and edible snow (we chose air-popped popcorn, but a light colored cereal would work as well). Be creative and use what you already have on hand.
You’ll also need the following supplies: butter knife, snowman cookie cutter, cutting board, and a small snowflake cookie cutter.
Step 2: Make a peanut butter and banana sandwich. Use the snowman cookie cutter to create your main character. (Tip: Don’t waste the crusts! Enjoy the non-snowman parts of the sandwich now as a snack or save for later.)
Step 3: Make the snowflakes. (Tip: If you don’t have a small snowflake cookie cutter, you can use a plain circle and create snowballs instead! Cheese leftovers from the cutouts can be enjoyed as a snack now or refrigerated for later.)
Step 4: Now it’s time to create your scene! Relocate your snowman to a plate (a plate in a solid color works best) and give him a face, hat, buttons, and arms. If it’s cold outside, he may need a scarf too.
Step 5: Cover the ground in “snow” and plant trees. (If you don’t have a bell pepper, use another green fruit or vegetable such as snow peas or kiwi.)
Step 6: Let it snow! Add cheese snowflakes or snowballs to complete the scene on your plate. Add seasonal tableware and napkins to complete the scene on your table.
Step 7: Any finishing touches? Have fun and make it your own. Orange and yellow low-fat cheese can be used to add stars or a sun to the sky. Plant extra trees or build a house. Then eat and enjoy!
by Sasha Bard, MS, RD, Nutritionist, Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion, USDA
Check the MyPlate Facebook page throughout December for additional Winter Food Fun ideas. We’ll also be posting them to ChooseMyPlate.gov.