Healthy Holiday Christmas Cabin
Last week I was brainstorming with friends how we could make a fun and edible Christmas craft that we’d actually want to eat and would let our kids eat. Oh, and not spend money on something that’ll just end up in the trash anyway. Don’t get me wrong, I love gingerbread…I just prefer ginger men. I mean, gingerbread man cookies. [That was awkward.]
We decided that the pretzel log cabin was the way to go and the cheese wheels in my head started turning. I figure I’ve got a couple more Christmasses to perfect this before my little J-Dub will be old enough to start making Christmas Cabins as a family tradition.
Originally I was going to find those giant pretzel rods and make a big cabin but…grocery shopping with a teething 8 month old lead me to grab what I could easily find and call it good. So, small cabin for the first year it is.
You’ll notice I used frosted mini wheats for the roof – the only added sugar item on the landscape. A little compromise yes, but it does actually taste pretty good with the fruit and cream cheese. Alternatively, some kind of cracker or thin-sliced carrot would make a great roof as well.
So the inhabitants of this Christmas Cabin only decorated their roof top this year. Pomegranate arils for some red pop! They’ll look a lot more like Christmas lights on a giant pretzel rod cabin. Next year. Next year.
WHAT YOU NEED
- A sticky spreadable. Cream cheese. Nut butter. You pick.
- Pretzel sticks or rods for the log cabin.
- Broccoli or Cauliflower florets for trees/bushes.
- Frosted mini wheats OR crackers/thin sliced carrots for the roof.
- Pomegranate arils for the Christmas lights.
- Sliced almonds and raisins for a pathway.
- Berries (I used blueberries) for decorative landscaping.
- A flat plate to build on.
- A chopstick to apply the spreadable.
- Several plates/bowls to dump out your building materials so you can snack on them…and find the ones which will be just the right size.
- Other fun ingredients you could get creative with: coconut shavings for snow, dried fruits for colorful decoration, yogurt covered raisins for a stone chimney.
Putting it together.
- Cover a plate with your sticky spreadable first. Make it thicker in the areas you want your tall trees.
- Build your log cabin one pretzel at a time, using a chopstick to apply your sticky spreadable as your mortar. Creative floor plans are welcome.
- Attach your front door and any windows.
- To support your roof, stick 4 pretzels together to make a “load bearing column”. Place two of these columns just inside the walls of your cabin, where you want the peak of your roof to be. Make a crossbeam with one or two more pretzels that sits on top of these columns. You can lean your roof ingredients against this crossbeam. Liberal application of sticky spreadable keeps all of this together.
- Stick 4 pretzel sticks together to make your chimney. Break/bite them down to the height you want. A generous dollop of sticky spreadable between your chimney and roof should let you put the chimney anywhere you like.
- Decorate your roofline with the arils.
- Lay down your landscape berries the path to your front door.
- Dust your broccoli trees with cream cheese or coconut shavings and then stick ’em where you want ’em.
And then take lots of pictures and post on Instagram with #healthyChristmasCabin and then devour it!
How do you make fruits and veggies fun for your kids?
What are your favorite Christmas food traditions?