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Top 5 Valentine's Treats for Kids Other Than Chocolate

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Each Valentine's Day, my parents always got my brother and me heart-shaped boxes filled with a variety of chocolates. Getting sweets on Valentine's Day makes every kid a happy camper. But, this Valentine's Day, spice things up with a few homemade treats your kids will absolutely love.

Chocolate is great, but making extra special treats with a Valentine's theme is even better. Here is a top five list of Valentine's Day treats you can make for your kids, or take to their school for a sweet celebration.

5. Pretzel Hugs

Salty square pretzels, a swirled Hershey's kiss (or Hugs) and a Valentine's themed M&M is an outstanding combination for a treat for kids. Place one pretzel square on a cookie sheet, place a swirled Hershey's kiss on each pretzel, then bake for two to five minutes in a 350 degree oven. Once the Hershey's kisses begin to slightly melt, place a pink, red or white M&M on each Hershey's kiss. Stick the pretzel hugs in the freezer until the chocolate stops melting and you're ready to package them up for your kids.

4. Strawberry Fudge

This has to be the simplest way to make fudge. All you need is one 16-ounce tub of strawberry frosting and one 12-ounce bag of white chocolate chips. Melt the white chocolate chips in the microwave, stir into the frosting, then spread the fudge evenly into a 9x9 baking pan. Sprinkle Valentine's themed sprinkles on top of the fudge while it is soft, then stick the pan in the refrigerator to harden for approximately 30 minutes. Cut the fudge into squares or hearts and you're done.

3. Heart-Shaped Cupcakes

You don't need to buy a heart-shaped cupcake pan to make a heart-shaped cupcake. Just fill the cupcake liners with your favorite cupcake mix, then before you bake the cupcakes, place a marble in each tin pressed against the liner to make an indention in the cupcake, forming a heart. When the cupcakes come out of the oven, they will look just like hearts. Cute, right? Finish the cupcakes with a smooth pink or red frosting.

2. Valentine's Puppy Chow

Change a few ingredients to turn this classic sweet into a tasty Valentine's snack. Place 2 1/2 cups of Chex cereal into two separate bowls. Melt five ounces of white chocolate or almond bark, then stir in half a teaspoon of shortening until it makes the chocolate or bark smooth. Combine the bark with one bowl of the Chex cereal, then melt five ounces of red candy melts and add it to the other Chex cereal bowl. Next, place 1/2 cup each of a strawberry cake mix into two gallon size ziplock bags, along with 1/4 cup of powdered sugar. Pour one bowl of Chex cereal into each bag, then shake until the Chex cereal are completely coated in the cake mix and powdered sugar. Dump both bags into a bowl and add Valentine's M&M's for a pretty, sweet treat your kids will absolutely adore.

1. Red Velvet Cake Balls

Making cake balls is one of the easiest things to do. Bake Red Velvet cake according to the box instructions, then when the cake cools, mash the cake into crumbs. Fold 1/2 cup of cream cheese frosting into the cake crumbs, then create tablespoon-size balls, place them on a baking sheet and refrigerate for one hour. Once the cake balls cool for an hour, melt 16 ounces of white chocolate, then coat the cake balls completely in white chocolate. Sprinkle red and pink sprinkles on top for the perfect Valentine's touch. Place the cake balls into the refrigerator to let the white chocolate harden, then you're ready to serve.

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