5 Frozen Treats for a Sweet Fourth — Summer Soiree

Celebrate America's birthday with these sweet frozen desserts, guilt-free.
By: Emily Lee
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FNK HEALTHY BANANA SPLIT PARFAITS, Food Network Kitchen, Semisweet Chocolate Chips, Bananas, Walnuts, Pineapple, Strawberry Ice Cream, Cherries

Photo by: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Matt Armendariz, 2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

This Independence Day, in the spirit of our nation’s founders, Americans everywhere will be making choices — choices between burgers and hot dogs, iced tea and lemonade, or potato salad and pasta salad. Whether or not you strongly prefer one dish to the other, one item is ubiquitous come dessert time, when Americans everywhere will be savoring ice-cold treats. These five tips will help you prepare healthier ice cream, frozen yogurt, sherbet and more, whether served in a cup, on a stick, atop cake or pie, or in an old-fashioned cone. You definitely won't want to miss any of these classic recipes and flavors when celebrating the nation's birthday.

Build High, Not Wide

There's nothing more American than a banana split, and these  Healthy Banana Split Parfaits (pictured at top) deliver on all counts, with fresh bananas, strawberry ice cream, chopped walnuts, chocolate sauce and, of course, the signature cherry topper. This vertical version of the fountain classic is healthy for a reason: Gravity helps the ice cream melt into the fruit and nuts below, so you need only a small scoop per serving.



Food Stylist: Stephana Bottom Prop Stylist: Marcus Hay

Photo by: Con Poulos

Con Poulos

Miniaturize It

Another great option for guiltless splurging is to serve a classic banana split that's been pared down in size. Exhibit A: Food Network Kitchen's  Baby Banana Splits. This comforting treat uses baby bananas, which keep the portion size in check. Once the bananas are roasted, top them with a scoop of ice cream (coconut works nicely) and chopped nuts.

Patrick And Gina Neely's Strawberry Frozen Yogurt As seen on Food Network

Photo by: Stephen Johnson ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Stephen Johnson, 2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Highlight Seasonal Fruit

Macerated strawberries meet rum, Greek yogurt, vanilla and citrus flavors in the Neelys' bright and flavorful Strawberry Frozen Yogurt for just 2 grams of fat per serving. If you're hosting a large crowd this Independence Day, be sure to plan ahead: Place your ice cream maker insert into the freezer a full 24 hours before preparing the frozen treat.

FNK HEALTHY CHOCOLATECHIA PUDDING POPS, Food Network Kitchen, Milk, Semisweet Chocolate, Unsweetened Cocoa Powder, Agave Nectar, Chia Seeds, Vanilla Extract

Photo by: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Matt Armendariz, 2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Try Healthier Mix-Ins

Food Network Kitchen puts a healthy twist on kid-friendly ice pops the form of these  Healthy Chocolate Chia Pudding Pops. This recipe yields extra-fudgy results (despite the fact that each one contains only 180 calories), thanks to the combo of chia seeds and cocoa powder. Don't have the patience to wait for the frozen version? No problem. The pudding tastes just as good at room temperature as it does frozen.



Food Stylist: Stephana Bottom Prop stylist: Marina Malchin

©Con Poulos

Con Poulos

Swap Buttermilk for Cream

Sure, there's some cream involved in making this  Raspberry-Buttermilk Sherbet, but buttermilk is the true star here, imbuing every scoop with buttery flavor for fewer calories. Start by pureeing raspberries with buttermilk, then freeze the mixture in your ice cream maker for a deliciously sweet and tangy sherbet.

Check out these recipes from family and friends for a festive Fourth of July celebration.

Bacon and Souffle: Red, White and Blue Bark

Elephants and the Coconut Trees: Heirloom Tomato Pie

In Jennie's Kitchen: Summer Raspberry Sorbet
Homemade Delish: 4th of July Cheesecake

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