My girls came home from Hebrew school with a super cute craft: an edible Hanukkiah (menorah)!
Great idea, but I wasn’t thrilled with the execution.
In the first place, we are still in an ongoing pandemic. Edible projects you assemble with your hands might not be the best idea for kindergartners.
Secondly, instead of allergen-friendly (or vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free, etc) ingredients, It was made of toast, frosting, m&m’ s and pretzels. Every single component had at least one thing we try to avoid. (Milk, eggs, gluten, processed white sugar, artificial food dyes, etc.)
Luckily I had all the right ‘healthier’ alternatives on hand, so the girls taught us how to make it at home! (I linked everything we used, below, if you or your kids want to make one at home!)
We used gluten free, vegan toast, hazelnut chocolate spread (great protein and WAY lower in sugar. Also, only REAL FOOD ingredients), Unreal gems (naturally colored, real chocolate candies), and gluten free pretzels. The girls had a blast, ate their entire menorah, and I was fine with it. It doesn’t take much to make a shift. Just be aware and making better choices when you can. I always say, don’t throw out your entire pantry. After you finish a product, be it food or hand soap or cleanser or beauty product, just opt for a better, non-toxic version next time.
(Honestly, there are still a few things I would say have to go straight to the trash. But in general, health is about the long-term, where slow and steady wins the race.)
Edible Menorah (Vegan & Gluten Free)
- Spread (vegan cream cheese like Kite Hill or a natural Nutella-like spread, like Nicciolata work great)
- Gluten free pretzel rods
- Unreal Gems, or another M&M-like candy
- Cover the toast evenly with a spread
- Form a menorah (8 shorter, 1 longer pretzel sticks. Often 4 short on either side of the central Shamash stick)
- Add candy ‘flames’