I found the cutest little ice pop molds at Target and was immediately transported back to my childhood with sweet memories of making ice pops all summer long. These ones would be the perfect size for my little nugget. Plus they are in a fun rocket shape and I just knew my little nugget would love that. Store bought ice pops are too big (for a 20 month old) and even the so-called sugar free ones I’ve found are sweetened artificially so I’m not too keen on them. So, what could be better than using a fruit juice I love to make our own pops to beat the summer heat?
I decided to try Ceres mango Nectar, which admittedly has sugar, but is free of all those other extras often found in juice. And it tastes like heaven! Lil nugget doesn’t get much juice anyway, so the occasional sugary pop won’t be the end of the world. But still, I am on the hunt for a better juice. Right now I’m loving the Honest Kids juices (organic, low sugar, no high fructose corn syrup – I don’t exactly buy into the corn people’s propaganda) but so far have only found them in single serve pouches. Little nugget loves them too. The other day she handed me her milk filled sippy cup and said, “jooose.” Wonder where she learned that word?
OK, back to the pops! The first time around I used the nectar straight up. I could barely wait for the pops to freeze. I let them sit in the freezer overnight and when I took them out and tried to pull out a pop, I heard a sort of swish and the stick came out, leaving the lovely orange pop in the mold… sigh. OK, I thought, maybe it’s not fully frozen. I left them for the rest of the day and tried again in the evening…swish! So, the problem clearly wasn’t the freezing time. I popped them in some water hoping to assist with the de-molding. And I got half a pop. A delicious half, but half, none-the-less. Since the pops are so small they just melted into the molds. My husband, the popsicle expert informed me that of course I should have cut the juice with some water since the juice wouldn’t freeze enough. At that point I wanted to cut it with something else, but that’s another story. So, back to square one. Half nectar, half water, more antsy waiting for the freezer to work its magic, and…swish! Well, at least Mr. Smartypants didn’t get the pleasure of being right.
That’s where we stand at the moment. We’re thinking the culprit may actually be that cute rocket shape. There is just too much surface space for the pops to de-mold. For the time being maybe I’ll try using Dixie cups and popsicle sticks so my little nugget will get her pops before the summer ends!