Mexican Paletas

James Carrier

From strawberry to cucumber-chili, the flavor options are endless for these frozen Mexican desserts.

Yield: Makes 6 paletas
Recipe from Sunset

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Ingredients

  • 1 cup milk
  • 3/4 cup smoothly mashed ripe banana
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 cup sugar

Preparation

  1. 1. Pour paletas mixture (choices follow) equally into 6 juice bar molds (see notes). Attach covers. Insert sticks, leaving 1 1/2 to 2 inches of each exposed. Freeze paletas upright until firm, at least 3 hours or up to 2 weeks.
  2. 2. Hold each mold up to the rim under warm running water just until paletas are released from sides of molds, 5 to 15 seconds. Remove covers and pull out paletas.
  3. Banana paletas. In a 2-cup glass measure, combine 1 cup milk, 3/4 cup smoothly mashed ripe banana, 1 teaspoon vanilla, and 1/4 cup sugar; stir until sugar is dissolved (mixture is no longer grainy to taste).
  4. Per paleta: 85 cal., 16% (14 cal.) from fat; 1.6 g protein; 1.5 g fat (0.9 g sat.); 17 g carbo (0.5 g fiber); 20 mg sodium; 5.7 mg chol.
  5. Blackberry paletas. In a blender, whirl 2 1/2 cups rinsed, drained blackberries until smooth. Push through a strainer into a 2-cup glass measure; discard residue. Add 1 cup milk and 6 tablespoons sugar to berry purée; stir until sugar is dissolved.
  6. Per paleta: 104 cal., 13% (14 cal.) from fat; 1.8 g protein; 1.6 g fat (0.8 g sat.); 22 g carbo (0 g fiber); 20 mg sodium; 5.7 mg chol.
  7. Cucumber-chili paletas. In a blender, combine 3 cups 1-inch chunks peeled, seeded cucumber (1 1/2 lb.); 2/3 cup sugar; 1/3 cup lemon juice; and 1 rinsed, stemmed jalapeño chili (1 to 1 1/2 oz.; remove seeds and veins for less heat). Whirl until smooth. Push mixture through a fine strainer set over a 2-cup glass measure; discard residue.
  8. Per paleta: 100 cal., 0.9% (0.9 cal.) from fat; 0.5 g protein; 0.1 g fat (0 g sat.); 26 g carbo (0.4 g fiber); 7.5 mg sodium; 0 mg chol.
  9. Mango paletas. In a blender, combine 2 1/2 cups 1-inch chunks mangoes (from 1 1/2 lb. fruit), 1/4 cup sugar, and 3 tablespoons lime juice; whirl until smooth.
  10. Per paleta: 85 cal., 2.1% (1.8 cal.) from fat; 0.4 g protein; 0.2 g fat (0.1 g sat.); 22 g carbo (0.8 g fiber); 2.9 mg sodium; 0 mg chol.
  11. Piña colada paletas. In a blender, combine 1 cup milk, 1/2 cup 1-inch chunks fresh or canned pineapple, 1/3 cup sugar, 1 teaspoon vanilla, and 1/2 teaspoon coconut extract; whirl until smooth.
  12. Per paleta: 76 cal., 17% (13 cal.) from fat; 1.4 g protein; 1.4 g fat (0.8 g sat.); 15 g carbo (0.2 g fiber); 20 mg sodium; 5.7 mg chol.
  13. Sour orange paletas. In a 2-cup glass measure, combine 1 1/3 cups orange juice, 1/3 cup lime juice, and 1/4 cup sugar; stir until sugar is dissolved.
  14. Per paleta: 60 cal., 1.5% (0.9 cal.) from fat; 0.4 g protein; 0.1 g fat (0 g sat.); 15 g carbo (0.1 g fiber); 2.8 mg sodium; 0 mg chol.
  15. Strawberry paletas. In a blender, whirl 3 3/4 cups rinsed, hulled strawberries until smooth. Push through a fine strainer into a 2-cup glass measure; discard residue. Add 1/3 cup sugar and 1 tablespoon lemon juice to berry purée; stir until sugar is dissolved.
  16. Per paleta: 72 cal., 5% (3.6 cal.) from fat; 0.6 g protein; 0.4 g fat (0 g sat.); 18 g carbo (2.5 g fiber); 1.6 mg sodium; 0 mg chol.
Note:

The paletas that contain milk are slightly creamy; the others are icy. Use frozen fruit bar molds with a 1/4- to 1/3-cup capacity; they're sold in many cookware and hardware stores and through some cookware catalogs.

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