If you thought push-pops were reserved for holding orange sherbet, think again.
Summer is party season, a time when all of the awesome food trends of the year start to appear in backyard barbecues across the country. This year, prepare to see treats and snacks packed in those fun push-pop containers, bringing a touch of nostalgia to even the most grown-up party.
Take, for instance, these awesome Chex Mix Snack Shooters
and eye-catching Triple Rainbow Push-Up Cakes
that we've written about. Who wouldn't be stoked to see those while walking into a party?
But there's more you can do with a push-pop container. Oh, so much more.
Fruit parfait pops
These fun, fruity little desserts are perfect for a hot summer's day, because they're compact, light and simply adorable. Moreover, they're totally easy to make.
All you need to do is layer fruit - think berries, chopped mango, pineapple, peaches or banana - and some kind of thick, creamy goodness, like ice cream, mascarpone cheese, ricotta, mousse or Greek yogurt into the push-pop containers. (If you're using something that will melt, we probably don't need to tell you to store them in the freezer, right? Good.)
Gelatin parfaits are also a great idea for push-pop treats, just be sure you have a sturdy stand for when they're cooling in the fridge. (We'll talk about that in a sec.)
Not your average veggie display
Let's steer away from sweets for a minute, because push-pop containers make everything look so fun that they may even lure the kids toward the veggies.
Cut carrots, celery and sweet peppers into sticks about the same length as the push-pop container. Then, place a dollop of veggie dip at the bottom and arrange the sticks inside, making patterns if you so choose.
If you want to give your guests a snack for the road, consider filling push-pop containers with trail mix or candies and setting them by the door for people to grab on their way out. You could also fill 'em with homemade party mix, like this Hot and Spicy Chex Party Mix
or Elegant Party Mix
so your guests will leave with a good reminder of what an awesome cook and host you are.
Now how do I get these things to stand up?
Right, so the push-pop treat does present a bit of a problem when it comes to storing and displaying things that might spill. But we've got solutions!
For items that should be upright but won't make a total disaster if they're at an angle (like the veggie treats or frozen pops), you can display them in a bowl full of decorative pebbles or fish tank gravel.
If you want a more sturdy display, drill holes into a plank of wood, making sure the holes are just slightly bigger than the diameter of the push-pop sticks. A brick of floral foam may also work well here. You can decorate these items with paint and other embellishments, an especially good idea if you plan to use it more than once.
Oh, and where do you buy these push-pop holders? At this nifty website
. Happy partying!