Ways to enjoy a chocolate-free Easter

Easter doesn’t have to be about chocolate. Try something different for the holiday gift basket. This one, for instance, has a gardening theme, with a watering can, daisy grow kit, gardening gloves, pinwheel, various gardening tools and a small floral gardening tote. (AP Photo/Stace Maude)
Tech-loving bunnies of all ages enjoy some sweet tunes, and earbuds (like these Under Armour’s Headphones Wireless, developed by JBL) are a hopping-good option. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)
Dried fruit, nuts or a combination of both can make for an indulgent yet nutritious Easter egg snack. (Thinkstock)
It’s not candy, but it’s definitely shiny, precious, small and will delight children of all ages: jewelry. (AP/Global Newswire)
If your little bunny is fond of those colorful, stackable Lego bricks, pick up a set online and fill eggs with them. A variety of specialty sets are available. (Thinkstock)
A tube of lip balm is another small, affordable alternative. (Thinkstock)
The trend of chewing gum predates baseball — by thousands of years. (AP file photo)
Yes, bubble gum is sweet treat, but it’s a low-calorie alternative that can go into a plastic Easter egg. (AP file photo)
Balloons are a colorful alternative to sweets. (Thinkstock)
Money: People like having it, and they love getting more of it, so it’s a wonderful gift that just happens to fit perfectly inside an Easter egg. It doesn’t have to be large denominations either: Coins are shiny, fun and cheap. Cha-ching. (Thinkstock)
Easter bunny, carrots, children … do the math. Baby carrots are appropriately sized for egg hunters. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
The trend of chewing gum predates baseball — by thousands of years. (AP file photo)

WASHINGTON — It could be argued that as a good holiday for candy, Easter is second only to Halloween.

Think of it: All those Cadbury eggs, Reese’s peanut butter eggs, those Whoppers that are shaped like (again) eggs …

And yes — even Peeps.

The list goes on. It is indeed an extra-wonderful time for candy consumers. One could make a candy omelet with all the ovo-cocoa offerings.

But let’s face it: Moderation is tough, and people should shovel only so many pounds of egg-shaped chocolate into their faces this time of year.

The internet, bless it, has some great takes on how to celebrate the season without overworking your pancreas.

Edible options

Let’s start with enjoying real eggs instead.

(Wait. Don’t walk away. Give it a chance.)

Granted, they are not sweet at all. But they are technically 1) oval and 2) eggs. What’s more, they have nutritional value.

But how does one host a righteous egg hunt when it can take forever to hard-boil two dozen to three dozen eggs in a pot? Easy. Just bake the eggs. Put them in muffin tins, and cook at 350 degrees for about a half-hour. You can literally cook dozens of eggs at once while you’re watch just one episode of “House Hunters.”

If you have any eggs left over, you can also go for a sweet take on a holiday breakfast: Easter bunny pancakes. If you don’t like Betty Crocker’s recipe, you can try this recipe. Or this one.

Another edible option good for brunch and dinner is the Easter bunny roll, a twist on the baked roll — literally.

Another bakeable, huntable option is the Easter egg puzzle cookie. Simply take the multiple pieces of the cookie and put each in a hollow plastic egg.

And don’t forget colorful fruit, said Andrea Goergen, bariatric dietitian at MedStar Washington Hospital Center and owner of Cultivate Healthy. Apples, mandarin oranges or red bananas are good options that can be even better when you include nut butter packets.

Plastic egg alternatives and more

Those plastic eggs (or an origami bunny basket) are quite handy for keeping the candy to a minimum. Just load them up with something more nutritious — or something that is devoid of calories altogether.

“Putting together a fun Easter basket doesn’t have to be all about edible treats,” Goergen said.

“Add fun nonfood items to Easter baskets like plastic eggs with small toys, jewelry, or coins inside; stickers; crayons, coloring books or notebooks; sunglasses and more to keep kids entertained without the cavity-inducing sweets,” she said.

See the gallery above for some healthier alternatives. (A few are edible. Others not so much.)

Get crafty

Indeed, celebrating this time of year doesn’t require indulging your sweet tooth … or even your appetite.

You can indulge your creative side instead. Decorate eggs made of wood or papier-mache. Or make fizzy Easter egg bath bombs, which you can use even after the April showers have given way to July humidity.

There are myriad ways that you can get crafty this time of year. And it’s easy to get the entire family involved. Instagram and Pinterest are full of great ideas.

(One mother, for instance, had a great idea for making unique Easter cards.)

Jack Pointer

Jack contributes to WTOP.com when he's not working as the afternoon/evening radio writer.

Federal News Network Logo
Log in to your WTOP account for notifications and alerts customized for you.

Sign up