I don't know how it's been where you are, but here in the DC area, we totally missed out on Spring (and anticipating Spring is what gets me through Winter) - it was cold, cold, cold and wet, cold and wet, wet, wet, wet, wet, and then just about a week ago, it turned HOT.
Sticky humid hot. The sort of hot that made people back in the early days of our nation's capitol flee the area until late September.
In other words.... Summer.
So here we are, on the first day of June, with a good three months of this to go, and I'll just sit here and hope for a mild, pleasant Autumn to make up for my no-show Spring.
But meanwhile, this sort of weather brings with it a need for cooling snacks that are light and refreshing, and that hopefully won't derail our lifestyle goals with excess sugar or unneeded chemicals.
Popsicles and ice cream are the traditional answers to cooling down with something tasty, and they bring with them such pleasant memories that everyone who's ever bought one from the neighborhood ice cream truck still gets a sudden urge for a frozen snack whenever they hear that jingly jangly music.
These days, there are entire long aisles in the grocery store full of individual frozen snacks - but most popsicles are not only full of sugar and little else, they full of food coloring as well, and neither of these are the best option for either children or adults.
Making your own with real ingredients is one option - and it's a good one! But if life is busy or you just don't have the freezer space to balance a rack of popsicle molds, Paleo Passion Pops offers an outstanding ready-made alternative.
As the name suggests, Paleo Passion Pops are Paleo compliant, and they're also Vegan and Gluten-Free. The ingredients list for each of their seven varieties is short, pronounceable, and real food.
I was sent a box of each variety currently available to try out for review, and it arrived quickly in a mailable frozen food container in very good shape. Due to all of the cold we've experienced, some of them stayed in the freezer for longer than I'd planned, and they are still in perfect shape, with no loss of consistency or flavor.
I was very happy with each flavor Paleo Passion Foods makes, and I think most children as well as adults would go for most of these - the flavor comes from fruit juices mainly, with chia seeds, flax seeds and some purees providing a richer texture than you'd get from simply freezing juice. Guar gum provides the necessary final bit of creamy thickener. That's it!
Other than the Kim's Kokonut Popsicle and the Chocolate Passion Popsicle, each of these treats is only 70 calories (Kim's Kokonut is 120 calories, due to the coconut cream included, and the Chocolate Passion Popsicle is only 60 calories), which makes any of these a perfect, healthy hot weather treat that won't fill you up.
Let me tell you a little bit about each of these:
Kim's Kokonut - Filtered Water, Coconut Cream, Coconut Water Concentrate, Pineapple Juice Concentrate, Pear Juice Concentrate, Coconut Flakes, Chia Seeds, Guar Gum
DELICIOUS. Creamy texture with flakes of coconut in it, this is the closest to a coconut Creamsicle you can get without any dairy. I love this one!
Chocolate Passion - Filtered Water, Grape Juice Concentrate Deionized, Sweet Potato Puree, Cocoa Powder, Guar Gum
Nicely chocolaty and smooth, and surprisingly creamy - the body comes from sweet potato - no dairy and at only 60 calories, this is a nicely decadent-feeling frozen treat that isn't actually decadent at all.
Pineapple Ginger - Filtered Water, Pineapple Juice Concentrate, White Grape Juice Concentrate, Pear Puree, Ginger Juice, Chia Seeds, Guar Gum.
Just like it sounds, this has a bright tropical taste - the pineapple and ginger are well balanced, and I would happily reach for this one just about any time.
Orange Mango - Water, Mango Juice, Pear Juice Concentrate, Orange Juice Concentrate, Ginger Juice, Chia Seeds, Guar Gum
I expected to have a stronger citrus mango burst of flavor with this one than I got - it certainly tastes fine, but the flavors are more subtle than I'd have preferred. The mango was barely there, and couldn't detect any ginger at all. It's a fine frozen snack, but I think this was my least favorite.
Strawberry Passion - Filtered Water, Apple Juice Concentrate, Strawberry Puree, Passion Fruit, Flax Seeds, Guar Gum
As expected, this tastes like fresh strawberries - sweet, tart and refreshing. What's not to love?
Apple Crisp - Filtered Water, Apple Juice Concentrate, Sweet Potato Puree, Apple Puree, Flax Seeds, Guar Gum, Cinnamon
I loved this one - it is one of my favorites of the bunch. It tastes like a perfectly seasoned frozen apple sauce - the puree contained small chunks of apple, which I really liked. I didn't directly detect the sweet potato, but I think it likely added some depth and richness. An unusual popsicle flavor, but I highly recommend it!
Blueberry Pomegranate with Green Tea & Spinach - Filtered Water, Pear Juice Concentrate, Pomegranate Juice Concentrate, Blueberry Juice Concentrate, Guar Gum, Spinach Powder, Green Tea Powder
What's better than a fruit and veggie smoothie? A fruit and veggie popsicle! Very 'light' tasting - reminded me more of grape than blueberry (and there is no grape in here). I couldn't taste the spinach directly, but the blend was well behaved, fruity and not overly sweet. I like that this one is cooling and hydrating without being too strongly flavored.
select local area markets, and can also be purchased online at the Paleo Passion Foods website, in units of 14 of one flavor for $19.99 or 28 of one flavor for $34.99.
If you can't decide on a single flavor, you can also select their Variety Pack - 2 each of their seven flavors for $19.99 or 4 each of all seven flavors for $34.99, plus shipping and handling.
If you're tired of having to choose between delicious hot weather snacks and good healthy foods, Paleo Passion Pops are a great answer, so you can get back to some fun in the sun!
In addition to Paleo Passion Pops, Paleo Passion Foods also makes three varieties of Grainless Granola as well - excellent snacks on the go, and for those cold cold "Where oh Where did my Spring go' days when it's too chilly for a popsicle of any sort!