Photo by Flickr user albemar78 / Creative Commons
Photo by Flickr user albemar78 / Creative Commons

With Easter just around the corner, we begin to see aisles of chocolates, sweet treats, and let’s not forget those adorable marshmallow peeps! Most of the time we get used to celebrating, as many would say, the “traditional way,” with candy-filled eggs, hollow chocolate bunnies and of course, what’s a celebration without cake?

As a vegetarian preschool teacher in East L.A., I actively encourage parents to think outside the “candy” box when it comes to celebrating with children. “Traditional” holiday treats are so appealing, accessible and affordable in our community; however, these sugary treats are not healthy for the lil’ peeps (or us big peeps!).

Here are some healthy Easter basket alternatives:

  1. Egg Stuffers- Fill eggs with nutritious treats such as Cheerios, trail mix, sugar-free gum, popcorn, or dried cranberries and raisins. You can also add colorful Easter erasers, stickers and tattoos.
  2. Fruit Fun”“ Clementines (tangerines, maybe from yours or a neighbors tree!), red or green mini apples, or any other fruit will add color to your basket.
  3. Artsy Eggs”“ Instead of egg-shaped chocolates, why not egg-shaped chalk? You can have a bunny-drawing contest outdoors.
  4. Bunny Cupcakes- Bake or purchase whole grain *carrot mini muffins.
  5. Veggie Kit- pack a small tote with a seed kit and mini pots to encourage kids to grow a vegetable and herb garden.

Find these and more ideas for basket stuffers and Easter treats at
* Click here for a delicious vegan carrot muffin recipe
Xochitl Palomera was born and raised all over Los Angeles and is a first-generation college graduate with a bachelor’s degree in child development from Cal State University, Los Angeles. She currently teaches pre-school in East L.A. and danza azteca at Corazon Del Pueblo in Boyle Heights.

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