Maybe you’re just not a cake person. Or you want something a little more original, or healthy, for your baby’s big day. Whatever your reason for wanting to skip the traditional first birthday cake, we’ve gathered 10 decadent, low-guilt alternatives that are just sweet enough—for both the birthday kid and all your guests. Read on for all the delicious details.
Chocolate-Dipped Banana Bites
These creamy, dreamy frozen chocolate banana bites are the perfect balance of fruit and chocolate. Easy enough to make the day of the party, they pair the decadent richness of dark chocolate with the sophistication of sea salt. And because they’re bite-sized, you can easily control how much your little monkey munches. Head to The Lemon Bowl for the recipe.
Chocolate-Dipped Fruit Cones
Surprise your guests with a fresh (fruit) take on ice cream cones with these chocolate-dipped fruit cones! Pre-made cones mean this recipe is extra easy, and guests can make it their own by choosing their fruit. Roll the chocolate edges in sprinkles or nuts for that added something special. My Fussy Eater shows you how to put it together.
Healthy Banana Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting
Enjoy this twist on banana bread by turning it into a cupcake and smothering it with cream cheese frosting! The surprise? There’s no butter, eggs, refined flour, or sugar in this recipe, and it clocks in at only 120 calories! Amy's Healthy Baking has the recipe, along with directions for a gluten-free option.
Chocolate Pudding Cups
Let your little chocoholic indulge—and perhaps engage in a little finger painting, too—with this deliciously virtuous pudding. This recipe comes with options to make it free of soy, sugar, egg, gluten, nut and dairy! But trust us: Flavor-free it is not. Learn more at Chocolate Covered Katie.
Honeyed Fruit & Yogurt Mini Parfaits
If you’re celebrating with a brunch, parfaits are a perfect alternative to cake. And they’re even cuter in miniature! This version from Yay Baby! uses Greek yogurt and fragrant orange zest in the mixture, and can be dressed up even more with a sprinkling of shredded coconut, chocolate shavings, nuts or cinnamon. Expecting guests under age 1? Swap the honey for maple syrup or jam.
Chewy Oatmeal Cookies
Chewy granola cookies are both delicious and convenient for a party since there's minimal decorating, plating and cleanup. Plus, it's easy for guests to take home leftovers. While the granola used in this batch is a homemade cherry-almond variety, you could use store-bought to eliminate a few steps. Low on butter and high on fiber, these cookies are sweet and satisfying. Go to Accidental Happy Baker for the recipe.
Whole Wheat Sweet Potato Waffles
Another fun breakfast or brunch party option, these sweet potato waffles use just a touch of maple syrup since they get all their rich sweetness from—you guessed it—the sweet potato. With very little added oil, this recipe is a nutritional powerhouse. At your party, set up a waffle bar with fun toppings like berries, bananas, dark chocolate chips, yogurt, stewed apples, nuts, and toasted coconut. Flavor the Moments has the recipe.
Rainbow Fruit Skewers with Vanilla-Honey Yogurt Dip
These fruit skewers are as delicious as they are pretty to look at! Use whatever fruit you enjoy and, ideally, is in season: oranges or cantaloupe, kiwi or green grapes, strawberries or raspberries—they’ll all pair well. The vanilla-honey yogurt dip is the only “frosting” your birthday kid needs to know about! Guests under age 1 should skip the dip due to the honey, and of course parents should serve the littles with supervision/off-skewer. Get more details at The Comfort Kitchen.
Frozen Greek Yogurt-Covered Strawberries
We love this berry alternative to frozen banana bites from The Vault Files. With the added nutritional bonus of protein powder mixed into the yogurt, you can let your birthday babe devour as many as they like. Coconut flakes make it extra festive!
Healthy Fruit Pizza
While most fruit pizza recipes rely on a sugar cookie crust, this one from Holley Grainger uses a whole-wheat oatmeal cookie crust. The crust is topped with a cream cheese-yogurt spread and tons of brightly colored fruit. Layering the fruit in concentric circles makes for a gorgeous presentation that is sure to entice your little one to grab a fistful.
Which tasty treat are you most excited to try? Tell us in the comments below!
— Katie Brown