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Explore nutrition tips, kids’ meal plans, kids’ activities, recipes and more from pediatric nutritionist, Melissa Halas, MA, RDN, CDE.

Fun and Healthy Easter Basket Ideas

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Fun and Healthy Easter Basket Ideas

Use these Easter basket ideas for kids, teens, and even adults, to get the whole family involved in a healthy and fun celebration.

The Easter bunny has requested for some of his friends to stay home this year to stay safe. But, just because the kids may not be able to do a neighborhood Easter egg hunt doesn’t mean that the holiday fun is on lockdown. This year, let Easter basket ideas be about more than just chocolate bunnies and candy treats.

Easter is one of my favorite springtime holidays! Make the most of this holiday and use it as a wonderful opportunity to introduce more healthy habits into your celebrations. Luckily, nutritious treats and family fun games are never on lockdown! Check out these Easter basket ideas and activities that you and your family can do at home. Not everything has to be sparkly and newly purchased to be fun – this is time to recycle and get creative.

Healthy Easter Basket Ideas

Let’s jumpstart a healthy lifestyle change starting with healthier Easter baskets! These ideas can be used with toddlers, kids, teens, and adults! Shift the focus away from excess sweet treats this year, and fill your Easter baskets with items that are better for you all. It’s okay for children to have the occasional treat, but holidays shouldn’t be a free-for-all. Plus, the last thing that parents need after the craziness of the past year is a kid with a chocolate bunny sized sugar rush. So, swap out some of the marshmallow peeps and try these healthy Easter basket ideas instead!

Bunny Cupcakes

Bake or purchase whole-grain carrot mini muffins and decorate with bunny cupcake toppers for extra fun! Can’t get the toppers shipped in time? Make your own – find some bunny clipart online, print it out and tape to toothpicks, then get decorating.

Mix-Up the Easter Egg Fill-Up

Fill Easter eggs with:

  • sugar-free gum
  • chalk to keep them drawing on the stoop or driveway (it’s okay you’re not going anywhere)
  • colorful Easter erasers
  • popcorn
  • stickers
  • temporary tattoos
  • bouncy balls
  • mini bubbles
  • or trail mix with dried cranberries and golden raisins

Search through your junk drawers for that unopened pack up gum, stashed gifts, stickers, or anything that can add a little holiday flair. Bonus – you’re cleaning out those drawers! For a good laugh, wrap up a roll of toilet paper in Easter-colored paper and decorate with stickers. By now, your kids will know how valuable this is!

Freeze-Dried and Dried Fruit

Freeze-dried fruit tastes just like candy – kids love bananas, mango, and apples. Be sure they brush their teeth afterward! Dried mango without added sugar and other dried fruits work too. If your child is young enough, put in some “plum candy” (dried prunes) and a recipe you can make together that uses prunes to sweeten brownies or cake (I promise it’s tasty!).

Too Cute Fruit

Cuties or Halos will add a bold splash of spring color and are sweet treats kids will love to eat. Mini red and green apples work well too. Canned pineapple, canned mandarin oranges, or whatever fruit you’ve been rationing, added to the basket will have higher value now!

Easter Coloring Books

Include Easter coloring books and crayons, as well as educational books that teach kids eating healthy can be fun. Check out the Super Crew Cookbook and Activity book, with 50 breakfast recipes and over 100 nutrition activities to keep your kids busy. Or, print out some of our free coloring pages and activity pages and put them in the basket. Sharpen up some old color pencils and bundle them with a colorful ribbon to add them to your fun Easter basket!

little girl collecting eggs in her easter basket

Fun Easter Basket Themes

Looking for an Easter basket theme? Try one of these Easter basket ideas to get your kids thinking about healthy food!

Art-Themed Basket

Fill the basket with some of the following:

  • food shaped stencils (or pull out some tin cookie cutters to trace)
  • food-themed stickers
  • a couple of gourds to paint
  • water-based paint
  • paintbrushes
  • ink pads
  • pads of paper
  • colored pencils
  • pastel sticks
  • markers
  • food coloring
  • child-safe scissors

Perhaps assemble an egg painting kit to allow your little artist to show off their Easter-themed creativity.

Gardening-Themed Basket

If you have a backyard and a child with a green thumb, fill the basket with one of each:

  • kid-sized watering can
  • kid-sized rake
  • shovel and trowel
  • child-sized apron
  • child gardening gloves
  • kid’s sized gardening hat
  • seeds
  • small pots
  • seed starter sets
  • plant labels with stickers for your kids to identify what they are growing.

Then let your child know this an activity that you can do together!  See 5 tips to start gardening with your little ones.

Cooking-Themed Basket

Got a mini chef in the family? Make a basket for them. Kitchen attire could include a kid’s apron (or one of yours) or a little chef hat or bandana. Let your child feel in charge with their own chef tools (new or old). Include some of the following:

  • child-sized mixing utensils
  • a cutting board (that one in back of your pantry that’s hardly used)
  • a kid-friendly knife
  • measuring cups and spoons
  • different shaped cookie cutters
  • kid-proof spiral slicer
  • pre-measured dry ingredients for a recipe you will make together (like pizza dough or bread)
  • a kid-friendly cookbook, or a few print-outs of recipes based on their food preferences

You can also add in some black, red, and yellow corn kernels to make homemade popcorn together in the microwave or stovetop. Let your little chef experiment with tasty new ways to enjoy this whole grain. Check out these 10 tasty popcorn ideas to start!

Sports-Themed Basket

Is your child the next Cristiano Ronaldo or Serena Williams? Even if your kid’s favorite sports are currently on hold, it doesn’t mean that the fun stops there! Make a sports-themed basket for your kid’s number one fan. Magazines. Collector cards. Include some activity coupons that give him access to playtime with you. If you have a backyard, consider making coupons for 20 minutes of catch, soccer drills, or football plays. Your kid will be thrilled to share their passion with you! Or, if your home space permits, you can also consider putting up a mini basketball, hockey, or soccer net. Remember those nerf balls and plastic hoops we had hanging on our bedroom doors? Make your own with cardboard, and use a plastic loofah or mesh sponge as the ball. It also makes for a fun-filled Easter activity for the whole family.

Animal-Themed Basket

For the animal lover of the household, consider stocking an Easter basket filled with:

  • animal plushies
  • coloring books
  • stickers
  • puzzles, and more

Your kid will be thrilled to line up their new animal friends two-by-two for an imaginary quarantine escape on Noah’s Arc. Or, perhaps for some new tea-time companions. That counts as social distancing, right? For the ambitious parents, dig through that old fabric drawer and find enough scraps to make a teddy bear together. Or wash those old and forgotten stuffed animals, tie a bow around them, and let your child know they’re back from safari.

Even though Easter is still a little different than typical years, it doesn’t take away from its meaning. Easter is about celebrating your faith, spending time with family, and creating lifelong memories. This year, start a new healthful tradition that doesn’t revolve around chocolate and candy. Establish new traditions filled with a balance of sweets, healthy treats, and fun-filled games.

Read about more of our healthy Easter ideas for families.

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About the Author

Picture of Melissa Halas, MA, RD, CDE

Melissa Halas, MA, RD, CDE

Melissa is a registered dietitian and certified diabetes educator with a master's in nutrition education. She is the founder of SuperKids Nutrition Inc. Read more about her Super Crew children’s books and her experience as a registered dietitian on the About Melissa and Shop page. Discover how nutrition can help you live your best health potential through her plant-based books and newsletter on Melissa’s Healthy Living.

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