How To Make Fun and Simple Apple “Doughnuts” (Gluten-Free, Nut-Free, Dairy-Free, Vegan)

Today, I’m sharing an EASY, allergy-free, Paleo snack recipe. It’s both kid and adult-approved. I can’t wait to hear what you think…

Healthy Apple Doughnuts

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A Quick and Easy Allergy Friendly Snack

Perhaps you are one of those rock-star moms or grandmas (yes, we are at that age now!) who always has at least three different bags or boxes of snacks tucked in the car.

Sometimes life is just hectic, right? With our combined 20+ food sensitivities and health challenges I’m managing, I’m happy to hold it together to simply make dinner each night. Baby steps, right?

My requirements for an after-school snack:

  • Healthy
  • Fun,
  • Fast (like right now fast!)
  • Simple…

When my over-tired, hungry kids come in the door, I want them to have access to something substantial and nutritious that doesn’t take much thought. What I love about this snack is that it’s something younger kids can also do themselves with the help of cutting the apple.

Allergy-free apple snack

One day our local health food store was featuring apples with a build-your-own apple slice bar. Total forehead-slap moment as I saw all of the delicious toppings that you could pick and choose to “decorate” your apple slice. Of course! Make your apple slices fun and tasty. No more boring apples for this household!

After-school snack time was just about to be transformed!

Allergy-free allergy apple snack

Someone was definitely watching out for me that day because I needed something to give my kids when I picked them up from school. I happily made two special apple “doughnuts” (as we now call them) with the many toppings they had such as sunflower seed butter, chopped nuts and seeds, carob chips, chia seeds, coconut sugar (a healthy “sprinkle” option with no food-dyes!), cinnamon, nutmeg, cacao nibs, raisins and more.

So when kids start whining, “Mommmmm, I’m STARVING!” we have a simple solution

allergy-free apple toppings

As a family who focuses on whole-foods and limits processed foods as much as possible, I loved (really loved) the idea of having a build-your-own apple bar for the kids. The apples have natural sugar to appease their sweet tooth, but lots of fiber and vitamins too.

The saying goes, “an apple a day keeps the doctor away” right?  Well, unfortunately it’s a little more complicated than that, but for today, I’m going with it! 🙂 Real Fruit=Real Food and Real Food=Real Medicine.

How to Make Healthy Apple Donuts

Allergy-free apple snack cut-out

STEP 1: First, I help by slicing the apple into 1/4′ rounds. Then, I use these cute bento box cutters, such as the star or flower shape, to punch-out/cut the middle seed area of each slice. It’s easy and lends a fun shape since you have to cut the middle out anyway. Plus, it gives me another reason to use the cute little cutters! Very small cookie cutters work well too.

STEP 2: Next, we use organic sunflower seed butter to spread on top of the sliced apple “doughnut.”  Any nut or seed butter works wonderfully.

allergy-free apple snack with toppings

STEP 3: Combine your small topping ingredients (cacao nibs, cinnamon, organic chia seeds, organic coconut sugar, nutmeg, cocoa powder) in a small bowl and pour into a re-purposed spice shaker bottle, or this one with large holes works great.

NOTE: When I first made these “doughnuts” with the kids, I set out the toppings in little custard dishes, BUT it made more of a mess than I hoped and I had to figure out how to get the leftover toppings back into their bags. Ugh! Suddenly it wasn’t so easy or fun. At least not for me. So I highly recommend using spice shakers.

allergy-free apple slice snack

STEP 4: Last, let the kids shake on their “sprinkle” topping and then customize their apples with little goodies like Enjoy Life mini chocolate chips (or Lilly’s stevia sweetened, vegan chocolate chips), vegan pumpkin marshmallows (since it’s Fall!), raw coconut chips, a variety of nuts, raw pumpkin seeds and more.

Really the toppings are nearly endless, so let your kids (or yourself!) go to town and enjoy!

What I appreciate about this new, after-school snack tradition is that the kids participate in the kitchen, teaching them important life skills, and they enjoy the independence and accomplishment of decorating their own apples. That’s a win-win in my parenting book!

Did you try it? Let us know in the comments below.

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