Desserts · Vegetarian

Healthy Homemade Candy (raw or baked fruit rolls)

Easy Homemade Candy
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Growing up I had this aunt, who was a “health-nut”, she was always talking to me about health, chemicals, pesticides, and the importance of eating healthy foods. All I ever did was roll my eyes and think she was annoying, I had never been exposed to that way of thinking at home and I just assumed that if something was sold for human consumption, then it must be safe. Today I have become her! I am making homemade candy for my daughter for  Halloween! I have become the mother I used to make fun of.

The birth of my daughter, Lilah, changed my life completely; having a little person’s health depend almost entirely on my choices gave me a different perspective on life, food, chemicals, sustainability, and pollution. She is now 3 ½ years old and has never had sugar yet, for parties and festivities I always bring her own cupcakes, cookies and candy and she is perfectly content and excited about her treats. Will that change as she gets older? I keep asking myself the same question…She is gluten intolerant so she may never be able to have the cake with bright-colored frosting that is served at most parties. I guess we will worry about crossing that bridge later, for now I’ll just enjoy watching her face light up every time she sees this candy.

These are actually just mini fruit leathers rolled up and wrapped in candy wrappers, they are very easy to make, affordable, fool-proof and kids just love them.

You start by blending a bunch of fruit, depending on what type of blender you have, you may need to add a little bit of water or juice to get rid of all the chunks. But keep in mind that the more moisture you add to this the longer it will take to dry out. I prefer to make this in a dehydrator but an oven works as well

You can really just make this with just about any fruit but I will give you a few ideas of what to put in them, you can also use baby food instead.

Strawberry
1 1/2 lbs of strawberries
6 dates (optional)
1-2 tbsp of lemon juice to prevent them from darkening (optional)

Tropical
1 mango
2 bananas
1 cup of pineapple chunks
1 kiwi
1-2 tbsp of lemon juice (optional)

Blueberry banana (pictured)
2 cups of fresh or frozen blueberries
2 fresh or dried bananas
1 apple
4 dates (optional)

Instructions for using a dehydrator:

  • Blend all the fruit until smooth.
  •  Strain (optional)
  • Spread the puree onto silicon or Paraflexx sheets or parchment paper.
  • Using a spatula or the back of a spoon spread the fruit forming an even thin layer about 1/8 to ¼ inch thick, pound the tray on the counter to help the fruit spread evenly.
  • Put the tray in the dehydrator and heat at 140 F for 20 minutes.
  • Reduce heat to 110 and dehydrate for about 10 to 12 hours or until the mixture is set (time varies depending on the thickness of the layer of fruit puree).
  •  Let the leather cool off, carefully peel off from the tray and cut into strips.
  •  Roll the strips and wrap in candy wrapper, parchment paper, foil or any colorful paper or plastic.

Instructions for using an oven:

  • Blend all the fruit until smooth.
  • Strain (optional).
  • Spread the puree onto silicon sheets or parchment paper and set over a cookie sheet.
  • Using a spatula or the back of a spoon spread the fruit forming an even thin layer about 1/8 to ¼ inch, pound the tray on the counter to help the fruit spread evenly.
  • Put the tray in the oven at and heat at 150 F for about 4-6 hours or until the mixture is set (time varies depending on the thickness of the layer of fruit puree).
  •  Let the leather cool off, carefully peel off from the tray and cut into strips.
  • Roll the strips and wrap in candy wrapper, parchment paper, foil or any colorful paper or plastic.

Optional step: to reduce the baking time, you can heat the fruit puree on the stove top in a saucepan for about 15 to minutes before spreading the puree onto the baking sheets.

4 thoughts on “Healthy Homemade Candy (raw or baked fruit rolls)

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