Disclosure :: This post was sponsored by Ochsner Baton Rouge and written by Savanna Latimer, RD, LDN.
3 Cute Valentine’s Day Ideas
Valentine’s Day is approaching, and that means every store will have aisles full of chocolate hearts and other sweet treats. It can feel overwhelming for those who are trying their best to eat healthy in the new year. However, a healthy and happy Valentine’s Day isn’t impossible. Here are three tips:
- Plan an activity
Valentine’s Day falls on Sunday, which means you get to spend extra time with your partner or family. Plan a socially distanced picnic at the park, a day at the museum, a trip to the zoo or a new activity together. Just make sure to follow CDC guidelines if you go to public places. Last year, my husband and I went indoor rock climbing instead of having a Valentine’s Day dinner. While I may not be fit to free solo my way up El Capitan at Yosemite National Park anytime soon, it was my favorite Valentine’s date. Memories last longer than chocolate, so think outside the box and make it a day to remember.
- Heart-healthy candy
It wouldn’t be Valentine’s Day without a box of chocolate. But how often do you try a bite of every truffle just to be disappointed by what’s inside? The average box of chocolate has over 1,000 calories and more than 120 grams of sugar. Instead, try Lily’s chocolate. Made with zero grams of added sugar and plenty of varieties to choose from, they are almost too good to be true! Are gummy candies and sour treats your style? Believe it or not, better options do exist thanks to the brand SmartSweets. They are free from added sugars and artificial sweeteners. They also are packed with plant-based fiber.
- Make your own healthy candy
What better way to show your love than homemade goodies? These salted dark chocolate peanut butter cups, featured in “The Eat Fit Cookbook”, are gluten-free, low carb and vegan. If you’re not a fan of peanut butter, these are equally decadent with almond butter, cashew butter or sunflower seed butter.
Salted Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups (Makes 12 peanut butter cups)
For the chocolate coating:
3/4 cup coconut oil, melted
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/4 cup and 2 tablespoons Swerve Confectioners
For the peanut butter filling:
1/2 cup no-sugar-added creamy peanut butter
1/4 cup cacao butter, melted
1/4 cup Swerve Confectioners
1 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
In a muffin pan, place liners into 12 cups, set aside.
Prepare the chocolate: Whisk together melted coconut oil, cocoa powder and Swerve in a medium bowl. Spoon 1 tablespoon of the chocolate mixture into each muffin liner. Freeze for 5 minutes or until mixture is no longer shiny on top.
Make the peanut butter filling: Whisk together peanut butter, melted cacao butter, Swerve sweetener and sea salt until combined. If it seizes up, microwave for 10 seconds.
Remove the muffin pan from the freezer and add 1 tablespoon of peanut butter mixture to the frozen chocolate coating. Return pan to freezer for 5-10 minutes.
After the mixture has set, remove pan from freezer and add 1/2 tablespoon of the remaining chocolate mixture to each cup, covering the peanut butter layer. Freeze for 5-10 minutes until completely frozen. Store in fridge or freezer in an airtight container.
About the Author
Savanna Latimer is a registered dietitian for Eat Fit BR, a non-profit with Ochsner Health that collaborates with local restaurants, markets and more to spotlight nutritious and delicious meal options. A graduate of Louisiana State University, Savanna’s passions include community nutrition and sharing easy tips and healthy swaps to live a stronger and healthier life. Savanna has been part of the wellness community for over seven years. She enjoys connecting with others through movement by teaching group fitness classes. When she is not working with Eat Fit or teaching classes, Savanna enjoys spending time with her family, traveling and long walks with her husband and golden retriever.