A natural approach to a classic snack made kid-friendly! It’s that time of year, when the kiddos are prepping for back-to-school and the parent’s rejoice! Kidding. I know many of you actually homeschool or truly miss having your kids at home, I totally get it. So today’s recipe is perfect for getting your little helper involved in the kitchen with some yummy snack prep. Made to travel with them wherever they may go. Totally customizable too!
Growing up I ate conventional fruit roll-ups and remember how much fun I had. The reality of the matter was I enjoyed it because it was full of processed sugars and artificially dyed bright colors. It served no nutritional benefit to my overall health. Isn’t it our job to feed your bodies whole foods? While I don’t have children, I can picture myself making these for them and packing extras in their lunch boxes. They might get weird looks from other kiddos, but who cares?!
Keeping this as natural as possible, I recommend using high-quality organic fruits and/or veggies. You can also add a sweetener of choice, adjusting to your preferred level of sweetness. If you’re using seasonal fruits, they should be sweet enough as is. Today I’ll be showing you how to make these roll-ups with Vitacost brand stevia, my personal favorite sweetener for this snack. Adding a few drops to taste. You can also opt for maple syrup, coconut nectar or even dates if you would like to keep these as natural as possible. It’s totally customizable and can be made to fit any diet. I’ll also explain the methods for baking vs. dehydrating. I know not everyone has a dehydrator, it’s totally optional though. Both work beautifully for this type of recipe.
Grab your favorite fruits or follow along with my combos included below. I’ll be sharing two different combos, both of which sneak in veggies for added nutritional benefit. A Tropical Pineapple Carrot and a Green Mango Delight. Both full of flavor and sweet enough to satisfy your kiddos cravings, only you will know just how healthy they truly are!
When cooking, I recommend using a baking sheet lined with non-bleached parchment paper or a silicon baking liner. I’ve heard of others using food-safe plastic wrap that’s also safe for the oven, however I don’t keep that in the house. So feel free to use whichever you have access to. Simply measure and blend your ingredients until smooth, spread into a thin layer, the thinner the faster it will dehydrate/bake. You’ll know it’s ready when the center and sides no longer feel sticky. It should peel easily from the paper or baking liner. You might have to adjust the time depending on the thickness of your fruit mixture and the size of your baking sheet (mine is 16.5 x 11). For this recipe it took roughly 8 hours. You can bake for a few hours and then turn off the oven overnight and continue baking as needed the next day. For dehydrating, if you want to keep these truly raw, using a temperature of 120 or lower will take up to 24 hours.
- Measure and blend until smooth. Each combo yields enough for one baking sheet.
- Spread into a single, thin layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment or a silicon sheet.
- Slowly bake in a 170 F oven for 7-9 hours, or until solid (not sticky to the touch in the center).
- Cut into 8 even strips. Roll and tie, as needed.
- Store extras in an air-tight container for up to 7 days.