With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, the shopping mall, bakeries and grocery stores are overflowing with flowers, cards, teddy bears, and chocolates. Along with it comes many candies and baked goods made with artificial food dyes. As a parent, I have become increasingly aware of artificial dyes’ presence in foods, and I know many of you are wondering whether these vibrant colours are safe for kids as well.
Here’s a little on what research is saying about artificial dyes. Keep in mind that this is nowhere near a comprehensive list of all the research out there on this subject.
On that note, I thought I would share my go-to “naturally pink” frosting recipe — just in time for Valentine’s Day! This recipe uses the vibrant hue of raspberries to deliciously dress-up any cake, cookie, or cupcake. The cookies I used as the base for this frosting is the shortbread-like Swig Sugar Cookies by Vintage Revivals.
That sugar cookie recipe is so scrumptious and makes around three to three and half dozen — so there are plenty of cookies to wrap up and give away as Valentine’s presents! I like to keep both the cookies and my frosting refrigerated separately and frost the cookies immediately before serving.
“Naturally Pink” Raspberry Cheesecake Frosting
Total Time: About 20 minutes
Yield: ~2 cups frosting
8 ounces (1 bar) cream cheese, room temperature
3 tablespoons raspberry puree* (made from two cups frozen raspberries)
1/2 cup white chocolate chips, melted
2 cups icing (powdered) sugar, sifted
*To create the natural pink dye for the frosting: take frozen raspberries (that have been defrosted) and pulverize them in a blender or food processor to create a raspberry purée. Then pour the purée into a small saucepan and heat on stove over medium heat. Once the purée begins to boil, turn heat down to medium-low. Cook for another 10 minutes, stirring constantly, to thicken the raspberry purée. Remove from heat and pour purée through mesh sieve to remove any unwanted seeds. You can now use the strained raspberry purée in the place of liquid in any frosting recipe! When I made the frosting for this blog post, Liam was taking a nap so I just threw the frozen raspberries in the saucepan, boiled them down, and strained the berries without the puréeing step. (Liam is an extremely light sleeper and the noise of the blender would have woke him). The only downside of this was more food waste and less “dye.” But really, either way works just fine!
Disclaimer: The information shared in this blog post is intended for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace the information and individualized medical advice from your own health care provider.
Let’s continue the discussion! What do you think about artificial dyes in food? Do you try to limit your family’s intake of these food additives? Also, if you try out my “naturally pink” frosting recipe — let me know how it turns out!
Hi! I'm Erin – a follower of Christ, wife, mama of two, and registered dietitian. Welcome to my blog where I write about intentional motherhood, intuitive eating, inspired discipleship, and whatever else I feel like! I'm so glad you're here.
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