My Grandmother kept a big chest freezer on her back porch. The porch was a functional space with a screen door, extra shelves, some gardening stuff and the big freezer. I can still recall the smell of the ice crystals when it opened as I peaked inside to search for popsicles. Grandmother always had popsicles for the children (she also usually had spearmint gum in her pocket book). Mayfield brown cows in their yellow box, fruit flavored popsicles, ice cream sandwiches or fudge pops were waiting in the cool depths and we were permitted to have one whenever we asked.
I still love popsicles and cold, sweet treats. I try to provide sweets for my family that we can feel good about eating. Although we eat lots of sweets, this means I bake and make our desserts rather than buying them most of the time. Fudge pops have always been one of my favorites, and I am happy to share that I have cracked the code for a delicious fudgy popsicle made with wholesome, real ingredients.
This is more of a guide than a recipe. First, you will need to buy some bananas and let them get very ripe and spotted. Peel the bananas, slice them into a zip top bag and freeze overnight or longer. I usually keep a bag of frozen bananas in the freezer and add to it whenever I have an overripe piece of fruit. Slicing them makes it easier for your blender when you're ready to use them. Frozen bananas are key because they yield a luscious, ice creamy texture when they are blended.
Banana Fudge Pops
Frozen sliced bananas - about 3, depending on their size
2 Tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 - 2 cups almond milk (you can use any kind of milk, but we love Almond Breeze Almond Coconut Milk)
Small pinch salt
Blender or food processor
Get out your popsicle molds and have them ready. In my case, this was the most difficult part of making the fudge pops. Three were quickly located, and then a thorough search of my kitchen and pantry revealed the other three on a top shelf inside a mixing bowl. That's where I keep them.
Place the frozen bananas and milk in the blender. Start with one cup milk and then add more if you need it. Add one tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder and blend. Taste it and see if you want more cocoa, add more milk if it's too thick and won't blend well. If you're using unsweetened almond milk, you might like to add a tablespoon or two of honey. Add a pinch of salt and 4 or 5 ice cubes and blend again. Taste it. My 5 year old son was the taste tester, and we used 2 tablespoons cocoa, 1 tablespoon honey, about 1 1/2 cups milk and around 6 ice cubes. Pour the thick and chocolaty goodness into popsicle molds and freeze.
We made these two ways. Once as described above, and once more with the addition of frozen strawberries. You can take this as a jumping off point and add anything you like. A few suggestions that come to mind are peanut butter banana fudge pops, or you could add yogurt, or dried dates for sweetness, or toasted coconut, or coffee .... it's going to be yummy no matter what.