With so many easy-to-make kids' Christmas snacks, there's no reason children should feel left out of holiday food preparation. Many recipes are simple enough for kids to prepare on their own. Others require adult supervision, but all are tasty and fun to make. Some might even get children to eat their vegetables.
Put a holiday twist on traditional rice crispy treats just by adjusting the shape or adding food coloring. To make a Christmas tree, add green dye to the marshmallow mixture, stack the treats in a pyramid shape and garnish the tree with M&M ornaments. For peppermint snowballs, add crushed candy canes to the cereal and marshmallow mixture, roll it into balls and dip each one in melted white chocolate. Toss dry cereal squares with melted white chocolate and crushed peppermint candy to make a sweet Christmas "puppy chow."
Pretzels and Popcorn
For Christmas-colored confetti caramel corn, make a simple caramel sauce with butter, brown sugar and corn syrup to pour over popcorn. Add red and green food coloring -- separately -- to make Christmas-colored batches, and then mix them together. Toss popcorn with melted white chocolate and dried cranberries for a sweet, tart holiday treat. Dip the top half of mini-twist pretzels in white chocolate, then red sugar and adhere a mini marshmallow to one side for tasty little Santa hats. Or dip pretzel rods in white chocolate and then roll them in Christmas-colored sprinkles.
Cakes and Candies
To make candy snowmen, skewer three small marshmallows with a toothpick, dip them in melted white chocolate and let it set. Once they have hardened, use a toothpick to draw on a face with melted chocolate. For snowman cake pops, mix crumbled cake with frosting, roll it into balls, dip them in white chocolate, skewer them and let it set. Once the chocolate hardens, draw on the details with edible ink pens. Make easy edible Christmas trees by covering sugar cones with green icing. Use strings of red licorice for garlands and gumdrops and sprinkles for ornaments.
With all the sugary goodies going around at Christmas time, it's good to offer youngsters some healthy holiday snacks, too. Make a "Partridge in a Pear Tree" salad with pears, celery sticks, apples, carrots and jelly beans. Cut and arrange the fresh fruits and veggies in a tree shape and decorate it with jelly bean ornaments. To create a simple Christmas veggie tray, arrange broccoli florets in a triangle and add cherry tomato ornaments. Finish with a pile of short pretzel sticks for a tree trunk, and some cauliflower snow.
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