With food manufacturers pouring billions each year into convincing our kids to eat junk, how’s a health-minded mom to compete?

Presentation is a big part of it, something Madison Avenue marketers figured out long ago when they started decorating food packages with cartoons and inserting toys into cereal boxes. One study found 50 percent of kids reported snack from a package adorned with a cartoon character tasted better than the identical food from a plain package.

These “Cute as a Cupcake” Berries are my latest ploy to make nourishing food look every bit as appealing as sugary store-bought treats. With strawberry season officially in full swing, now is a good time to give this one a whirl.

Start with any fresh berries you can get your hands on in any combination. Fill cupcakes papers to the brim along with toothpicks for spearing the fruits. Littler kids can use their fingers if you’re worried they’ll go rogue with a toothpick.

Berries as Cute as a Cupcake

For a more filling snack, whip together equal parts low-fat lemon yogurt and low-fat plain Greek yogurt. Scoop yogurt into cupcakes papers (I use two for added sturdiness), top with fresh berries and serve with a spoon.

Beyond everyday snacks, these treats are great for playdates, after-sports nibbles, and birthday parties. Arrange a dozen on a cake stand and you won’t need Sponge Bob to get the kids to dive in. It’ll be pretty enough to market itself, and whole lot healthier than a cream-filled cupcake.

 

Berries as Cute as a Cupcake

Feel free to put a couple tablespoons of yogurt in the cupcake liners before adding the berries and use two liners instead of one. Equal parts lemon and plain Greek yogurt makes a tasty mix. You may need to scale back the volume of berries a bit. Serve this variation with a small spoon.
Servings 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cup assorted fresh berries in any combination (strawberries should be stemmed and quartered)
  • 4 colorful cupcake liners

Instructions

  1. In a medium bowl, mix together the berries. Transfer to cupcake liners, dividing them evenly. Chill until ready to serve. Serve with toothpicks.