Jacqui Saldaña is the author behind Baby Boy Bakery, an inspirational lifestyle blog dedicated to living life to the fullest despite any tragedy we are faced with. Saldaña is transparent with her readers as she dives deep into her emotions of grief and life after losing her three-year-old son. She helps many gain perspective on what truly is important and reminds parents to live in the moment with their children.
Through her brand, Baby Boy Bakery Kids, Saldaña encourages parent-child involvement in the kitchen (and memory keeping). She believes the greatest journey is motherhood, and it deserves to be captured and lived to the fullest.
Quick, it’s Easter Sunday and all you’ve got is leftover chocolate candies from your kid’s class party and a slew of hard-boiled eggs. The pressure of delivering fun, holiday-themed treats seems to gets more difficult every year. I mean, who really has the time to bake and put together a lamb cake or stuffed chocolate eggs? Not me. I’m all about ease, and in a pinch, I encourage you to use that leftover, half-eaten chocolate bunny to create an eye-catching dessert. Trust me when I say making festive dessert doesn’t have to break you. In fact, it should do the exact opposite. Creating in the kitchen should build you up and bring your family together. Cooking should foster family traditions and make lasting memories.
Look, as a mom of two I understand the struggle of bringing your little ones into the kitchen. This demands a level of patience that is unattainable at times. Deep breath, I got you. I’ve learned that the key to cooking with kids is to keep them busy, and I’ve got three simple dessert ideas that will keep their hands moving. Since it's Easter, sweet treats are mandatory. I’m showing you how to configure quick and festive desserts that will delight friends and family in the knick of time. And the best part is no bake time is required with these three brilliant ideas, plus you’ll have them finished in 30 minutes.
Also, these recipes require minimal kitchen skills. So you don't need to feel intimidated in your own space. You don’t have to be a master chef to put together drool-worthy desserts. You truthfully only need chocolate and peanut butter. All I ask is that you make creating these desserts fun and bring in your kids to help if you can. If you make a mess, you're doing it right.
Coconut Bunny Tails
This quick recipe is the easiest and packs a chewy, sweet punch. Put your children in charge of tossing the measured ingredients into the bowl. Declare them the Official Cookie Dough Ball Makers, and always let them sneak a taste. Once all the cookie dough is rolled into balls, set up a simple assembly line to get them coated quickly. I used festive bunny décor, though you can skip that all together. They’ll get devoured either way.
Makes: 24 cookie balls
Time: 15 minutes
2 cups crushed graham crackers
2 tbsp. cocoa powder
1 14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
1 cup coconut flakes
1 cup ground coconut flakes
In a large bowl mix together the crushed graham crackers, cocoa powder, sweetened condensed milk, and coconut flakes. Mix until a sticky dough like consistency forms.
Use a tablespoon to measure out the dough. Use the palms of your hands to roll each scoop of dough into a ball. Line up your dough balls on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
In a blender, grind up the other cup of coconut flakes until they are just short of becoming powder. (You’ll want them nice and fine so they coat the cookies in an even layer.) In a small bowl pour the ground coconut flakes. Coat each dough ball in the coconut until fully coated. Add a bunny ear detail and enjoy.
Orange Chocolate Dipped "Carrots"
To be fair, I’m most likely not the only one who does this around Easter time. Chocolate-dipped strawberries are a timeless classic and to be enjoyed at every occasion. During spring, add some orange and make them look like carrots for the Easter bunny. Another timeless classic? Orange mixed with chocolate. The fruity notes swirled with the sweet milky chocolate are simply divine. Let your little ones dip their own strawberries, and give them they reins on drizzling extra chocolate on top.
Makes: One quart of chocolate-coated strawberries
Time: 25 minutes
2 cups orange-colored white chocolate candy melts
1 tablespoon orange zest
1 quart of strawberries
Rinse the strawberries, and lay them to dry on a dish towel. Make sure your strawberries are fully dry prior to dipping.
In a microwavable bowl, melt the orange-colored white chocolate candies in 30-second increments until melted smooth. Use a rubber spatula to stir in-between melting process. Once melted stir in your orange zest.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, and line up your strawberries. Dip the strawberries into the melted chocolate, and then place them back onto the parchment paper to harden.
Use the leftover melted chocolate to drizzle extra chocolate on top each strawberry. Once the chocolate has hardened, enjoy.
Peanut Butter Marshmallow Bark
Candy bark is that food you totally know you shouldn’t make but do it anyways. Because why not? I'm convinced this sweet treat was created by my spirit animal. Candy bark is the simplest to make. You just layer all things sweet and call it a day. Put together iconic flavors, and you’ve got yourself a home run dessert. The fact that it's so easy to make is why I’ll always create some version of candy bark around any holiday. To get your kids involved, have them sprinkle their favorite candies on top. Try giving them their own section to decorate however they want.
Makes: About 8 to 10 pieces of candy bark
Time: 30 minutes
1 bag of milk chocolate chips
1 7 oz. jar of marshmallow fluff
1 cup smooth peanut butter
1 cup white chocolate chips
1 cup chopped-up candies
Prep a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a microwavable bowl, melt the chocolate chips at 30-second increments until smooth. Use a rubber spatula and spread a thin, even layer of chocolate on the parchment paper. You’ll want to spread the chocolate in a square-like shape. About 4 inches by 8 inches.
Once the chocolate hardens, spread on a thin layer of peanut butter. Place in the freezer for about 8 minutes until the peanut butter is hard.
Spread on the marshmallow fluff, and sprinkle all your festive candies.
In a microwavable bowl, melt the white chocolate at 30-second increments until smooth. With a fork, drizzle the chocolate on top of your candy bark. Once the white chocolate has hardened, break the bark into pieces and enjoy.
What Easter treats do you love to make with the kids? Up next, Molly Sims shares her best Easter hosting tips.