Cute School Bus Cake Your Kids will LOVE!

This simple spread turns the first day of school into a celebration. The big day is here. When your kids get home, they’ll be bursting to tell you all about their day and to compare notes with their friends.  Make it even more special by hosting a welcome-home party for…
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Dietitian's Tip of the Month

Ten (Mostly) Nutritious Chocolate Indulgences to Satisfy the Strongest of Cravings

As I am officially 40 + weeks pregnant, my mind seems to be heavily pre-occupied with both baby AND chocolate. So, rather than constantly indulging, I am choosing to write about a few of my favorite crave-worthy options. 

While I may not treat myself to massive portions of chocolate, I do treat myself often. Each night (and lately afternoons as well…), my body seems to require at least a cup of hot cocoa or warmed chocolate (soy) milk before I can happily climb into bed. 

Thankfully there are ways to add a bit of decadence into your day without totally blowing your calorie allowance out of the water (pregnant or not). Read on for a sneak peek into a few of my guilty pleasures… 

#1. Dark Chocolate

mini dark chocolate bar

Serving: 1 Small Bar, Calories: 90, Fat: 5.5g, Carbs: 10g

As true dark chocolate comes with added health benefits, by favoring dark over white or milk chocolate, you may find it easier to justify caving into those cravings.

Dark chocolate offers powerful antioxidants and “flavonoids” – compounds found to help lower blood pressure by dilating our blood vessels while also fighting off inflammation. In contrast, while dark chocolate contains roughly 50 milligrams of catechins (a type of flavonoid) per ounce, milk chocolate contains a mere 15 milligrams. Plus, because dark chocolate possesses such a pure flavor profile, the richer flavor may be able to quench your craving for less – meaning fewer calories for you!

Stonyfield Non-Fat Chocolate Underground Yogurt

#2. Stonyfield’s Organic Non-fat Chocolate Underground Yogurt

Serving: 1 Container, Calories: 170, Fat: 0g, Carbs: 37g

This yogurt could easily be confused for pudding. Seriously. A pudding that comes packed with calcium, potassium, and protein – how can you go wrong? Learn More

CacoaVia#3. Cocoa Via

Serving: 1 Packet, Calories: 30, Fat: 0g, Carbs: 5g

Now if you don’t happen to have Stonyfield’s ridiculously amazing yogurt on hand, a packet of dark chocolate Cocoa Via mixed into your plain or vanilla yogurt will certainly do the trick for only 30 calories. You can also use it in your oatmeal, shake, or milk. Cocoa Via offers pure cocoa extract, providing chocolate in its purest form and providing you with the greatest health benefits through 250 milligrams of cocoa flavanols per packet.Learn More

#4. Unsweetened Dark Chocolate Cocoa Powder

 

Serving: 1 Tbsp, Calories: 12, Fat: 1g, Carbs: 3g

Similar to Cocoa Via, yet surely less expensive, is the traditional unsweetened cocoa powder. Most American cupboards likely contain at least one tub of baking cocoa and if you opt for the dark chocolate version, ever the better!

While I could not tolerate chocolate while pregnant with our boys, this time around, I have added a heft scoop to my morning oatmeal with peanut butter nearly EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. and let me just say, SO GOOD. You can also combine it with a dash of sugar to prepare a nice cup of hot cocoa. Learn More

#5. Chocolate Milk


 

Light Chocolate Silk Serving: 1 Cup, Calories: 119, Fat: 2g, Carbs: 22g

Dark Chocolate Almond Milk Serving: 1 Cup, Calories: 120, Fat: 3g, Carbs: 23g

Fat-Free Chocolate Milk Serving: 1 Cup, Calories: 150, Fat: 0g, Carbs: 26g

If you were to scope out my fridge, you would surely find a carton of some type of chocolate plant based milk looking right back at you. Ranging from 90-140 calories, one-cup of chocolate milk can easily tame your hunger pain. Only my husband knows how often I reach for my chocolate milk, in fact in our early days of marriage, he would greet me with a steaming cup as I was getting ready for work in the morning 🙂

Whether cold or warmed, this treat is always within reach! It may also surprise you to know that many Olympic Athletes are reaching for chocolate milk as their post-workout snack, but with the healthy combination of protein and carbohydrates, I can certainly understand why! Learn More: Light Chocolate Silk   Learn More: Dark Chocolate Almond Milk

chocolate animal cracker#6. Chocolate Animal Crackers

Serving: 16 Crackers, Calories: 130, Fat: 3g, Carbs: 23g

Though they’re far from being nutrient-rich, these tasty treats are fairly low in calories at only 130 calories for 16 crackers. Besides, for a greater nutrient bang for your buck, you can always mix them in with nuts, dried fruit, and whole grain cereal to make your own unique trail mix. Learn More

#7. No-Sugar-Added Hot Chocolate

Serving: 1 Packet, Calories: 60, Fat: 1g, Carbs: 10g

While some options contain a touch of calcium, most hot cocoa mixes are not exactly brimming with nutrition. However, at a mere 25-100 calories per serving, this chocolate addition is still a favorite and a single packet can go a long way! The package may say to use 1 packet per cup of water or milk, but I often stretch the flavor for at least 2 or 3 cups instead. If you’re not in the mood for hot cocoa, try sprinkling the powder onto a serving of plain Greek yogurt (or as my mom used to serve, over vanilla ice cream!) for an even richer treat!  

#8. Cocoa Almonds

Serving: 13 pieces, Calories: 210, Fat: 15g,Carbs: 19g

Protein, fiber, AND the sweet taste of chocolate. Need I say more? Again, excellent plain. Even better added to your plain Greek yogurt or even oatmeal. 

chocolate mini wheats#9. Chocolate Frosted Mini Wheats

 

Serving: 52 pieces, Calories: 200, Fat: 2g, Carbs: 45g

Though it’s certainly not low carb (45 grams) nor calorie (200 calories), chocolate frosted mini wheats are at least 100% whole grain, provide a healthy amount of fiber (6 grams) and a fair amount of protein (5 grams) per one cup (or 52 biscuits). This nutrient-rich option will quickly fill you up and satisfy those taste buds! Learn More

justin's chocolate hazelnut spread

#10. Justin’s Chocolate Hazelnut Spread

 

Serving: 2 TBSP, Calories: 190, Fat: 19g, Carbs: 10g

If Nutella is already at home in your breakfast routine, I urge you to swap it out for Justin’s version instead. Each 2 tablespoon serving will save you 14 grams of sugar (nearly 4 teaspoons!) over the competition. Prefer almonds or peanuts instead? No problem, Justin’s offers a chocolately spread in either form! Learn More

 

What is your “go-to” to satisfy your chocolate cravings? 

Thanks for reading!

Jessica Corwin, MPH, RDN

Resident MommyRD

Have Q’s? Let me know on Twitter or IG

Sandwich Puzzle

Lunch- Cookie Cutter

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Mini-Bagel Sandwiches- Easy To Make and Eat!

bagel-lead1

More than just a breakfast snack, mini bagels may just be the best thing in school lunches since sliced bread! With their compact size and variety of flavors, mini bagels make wonderful sandwich bread to add variety into your child’s…

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Fishy Lunch

8-fishy-lunch_8277-200x300

   Your kid will be the big fish in the big pond with this lunch. • Pack 3 ounces of tuna mixed with chopped celery and include 5 whole grain crackers for dipping, such as Triscuits brand. • Try your…

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Easy Ways to Make a Gluten Free Lunch For Your Kids

Glutenfree-lunch-2-hb-CRW_2978

Discover how easy—and tasty—a vegetarian and gluten-free lunch can be. Packing a vegetarian, gluten-free lunch is as easy as 1-2-3. Just follow this formula for a healthy gluten-free lunch to provide your children with a satisfying, energizing meal packed with…

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Fun With Apples In Your Lunch Box

Take a fresh approach to packing fruit-filled lunches by having fun with apples Striped Apples Trying to get your child to eat more fruit? Try these fun ideas when you kids go back to school. Use two different apples, one red and one green and slice them horizontally from top to bottom then reassemble for a fun striped creation. Drizzle the apple slices with lemon to keep them from browning and tie the crazy apple with twine to keep it all together. Stuffed Apples Or, try a stuffed apple. Core an apple with an apple corer and stuff the hole with peanut butter or Nutella. You child will get a boost of sweetness with every bite. Have more back-to-school ideas? Share your recipes with us here.     Written and photographed by Jickie Torres
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