6 Kid-Friendly Recipes to Keep Cool This Summer

By Kathryn Trudeau


July is here, and it’s hot! Heading to your local ice cream shop is a summer staple, but if you’re looking at making more cold treats at home this summer, then we’ve got you covered.

These 6 recipes are kid-friendly and oh-so-cool.

1. Quick and Easy Ice Cream Sandwiches

What’s a better summer treat than ice cream? Your kids can quickly make these sandwiches, and the best part is that they are totally customizable. 

Here are the basics:

*Graham crackers (any flavor: cinnamon, honey, or chocolate)

*Frozen whipped topping

*Optional: Mini chocolate chips, crushed peanuts, crushed candy pieces

What to do:

*Spread about a 1-inch thick layer of the whipped topping over one graham cracker sheet.

*Place a second graham cracker on top to make a sandwich.

*Dip the edges into a shallow dish with chocolate chips or crushed peanuts. This step is optional. Alternatively, you can mix your toppings into the whipped topping before completing steps 1 and 2.

*Wrap in plastic wrap and freeze for 2+ hours.




2. Easy Ice Cream (No Ice Cream Maker Required!)

ice cream kid friendly recipes

Here’s another easy-peasy ice cream recipe. Kids can help, and you don’t even need an ice cream maker.

Tip: You’ll need to factor in freeze time, so consider making these early in the morning for an evening treat. You could also make these at bedtime in preparation for the next day. While you’re mixing the ingredients, you could listen to an audio bedtime story. Pop the ice cream into the freezer, and then head upstairs to get pajamas and sleep sacks on your kids.

What you need:

*Jam or preserves (any flavor)

*2 cups heavy whipping cream

*1 cup condensed milk

*4 graham crackers


What to do:

*Use a hand mixer to beat the whipping cream until stiff peaks form.

*Add condensed milk to the whipped cream, and then beat until the mixture becomes thicker.

*Crumble the graham crackers into large pieces.

*Gently fold graham crackers into the whipped cream and condensed milk mixture.

*Transfer the mixture to freezer containers.

*Add a few dollops of jam into the ice cream and swirl gently -- do not overmix. You want to see swirls. You could substitute the jam for chocolate or peanut butter.

*Freeze for at least 8 hours.




3. No-Prep Popsicles

Popsicles are a summer staple, and it’s a breeze to whip up a batch. Sure, you could get creative and make some truly creative flavors, but you can also make them super simple.

At its most basic, you just need juice and silicone popsicle molds. Pour the juice into the mold, freeze it, and voila! -- you just made push pops!


If you have more time on your hands, you can try some mix-ins. Here are a few flavor ideas:

*Pineapple juice, mashed banana, and fresh basil leaves

*Mashed strawberries, plain greek yogurt, and honey

*Chocolate milk for quick fudgsicles

*Ice coffee and half-and-half -- for you!

Popsicle kid friendly recipes


4. Hawaiian Ice Cream Pie

We first tried this recipe while we were on vacation in Hawaii, and it’s a favorite in our house.


What you need:

*Oreo pie crust

*Vanilla or chocolate ice cream

*Macadamia nuts (pecan will work if you can’t find macadamia)

*Hot fudge

*Whipped cream


What to do:

*Let the ice cream sit out for a half-hour so it’s soft.
*Stir in your nuts -- as many or as few as you like.
*Transfer the ice cream to the oreo pie crust.
*Freeze until the ice cream firms up again

*Remove from the freezer, top with hot fudge and whipped cream.
Slice into 6 pieces.


Tip: If you use pecans, add caramel to the top of the piece, and you’ve created a Turtle ice cream pie.



5. Chocolate Pudding Pie


It’s cool, it’s creamy, and it’s chocolatey -- this chocolate pudding pie was a favorite of mine to make when I was little. 

What you need:

*Oreo cookie crust

*2 packages of instant chocolate pudding (or not instant… both work fine)

*Whipped topping (the frozen kind)

What to do:

*Prepare the pudding according to the instructions.

*Divide the pudding into two sections.

*Pour half of the pudding into the Oreo pie crust.

*In a separate bowl, take the remaining pudding and mix it with half of the whipped topping. Then layer this mixture on top of the plain pudding in the pie crust. You should have two layers: chocolate pudding on the bottom and pudding/whipped topping mixture on top.

*Now, use the remaining whipped topping and cover the top of the pie.

*Top with chocolate shavings.

*Keep in the fridge until you’re ready to eat.

Other flavor options: 

*For peanut butter cup version: Add a few tablespoons of melted peanut butter into the bottom pudding layer. Top the pie with shaved chocolate and crushed peanuts.

*For banana cream pie: Use vanilla pudding instead of chocolate. Top with banana slices, toasted coconut, and toasted almond slivers. 



6. Refrigerated Key Lime Bars

Key lime is a true “summer” flavor, and you’ve got plenty of options when it comes to savoring this refreshing flavor: key lime pie, key lime cookies, and more. This recipe is for a refrigerated bar version, so it’s quick, easy, and cool. Best part? You only need 5 ingredients.

What you need:

*1 package of sugar cookie dough (you could also make a batch of sugar cookies using your favorite from-scratch recipe)

*1 container of frozen whipped topping (just thaw it prior to using it in this recipe)

*2 cans of condensed milk

*¾ cup lime juice (from fresh limes or from concentrate)

*Lime zest from 1-2 limes (aim for 2.5 tablespoons of zest)

*12 oz of key lime flavored yogurt (any brand… but Greek yogurt is creamier and thicker)


What to do:

*Make your sugar cookies and let them cool.

*Crush the cookies and mix them with half of the whipped topping. (This is similar to the process of making cake pops.)

*In a separate bowl, mix the rest of the ingredient with a hand mixer.

*Pour the yogurt, lime juice, condensed milk, and whipped topping mixture over the cookie crumbs.

*Sprinkle with lime zest.

*Freeze for 8 hours.


Alternative flavor options:

To make cool lemon bars: Replace limes for lemons. Use lemon yogurt and lemon zest for a cold lemony bar.



What’s Your Favorite Summer Dessert? 

Share with us! We’d love to hear!





Kathryn is a self-proclaimed book nerd who has a passion for natural parenting and writing. As a homeschooling mother of two, Kathryn understands the dynamics of busy family life. She is the founder of the Cor Domum movement, a mission that guides families through life so that they can parent with joy. Read more at  www.katietrudeau.com 

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