We recently had a big event in our family — our daughter’s first dance performance! Isabel was a member of the Lollipop Guild in her dance school’s modern rendition of The Wizard of Oz. She and her class worked hard on their performance for months. As the event approached, I was amazed by her calm demeanor and total lack of fear about getting up on that stage!
We ended up needing a last-minute costume alteration the day of the performance, and my husband came to the rescue with a needle and thread. There’s no end to the number of talents he has.
For the event’s concession stand, the parent volunteers were asked to donate treats that fit with the Wizard of Oz theme. What a fun idea! Below are the treats I put together, along with some printable labels so you can make them yourself.
Animal Cracker Goody Bags: Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh My!
Giving “lions and tigers and bears” in the form of animal crackers is an adorable idea I’ve seen portrayed a number of ways online. For our concession stand, divvying up the crackers in goody bags made for simple snack prep, and I thought it would especially be a nice offering for small children attending the performance.
Finding gluten free animal crackers was more challenging than I expected and required that we hop around to several different stores in our area. When we finally found some, we had exactly one brand to choose from. But here’s the great news: they were delicious! I was thrilled with the taste and texture of Glutino Original Animal Crackers, which are similar to traditional ones. As you can see, they’re really cute too.
Also, Catch My Party has a version of the labels with a rainbow background that they will email to you if you prefer that one.
Yellow Brick Road Rice Crispy Treat Bars (Vegetarian and Gluten Free)
Possibly the most beloved Wizard of Oz themed dessert is a rice crispy treat cut to look like part of the yellow brick road. At first I wasn’t quite sure how to make a vegetarian and gluten free version, but I was certain I wanted to find out.
I found just what I was looking for at A Little Insanity: a gluten free and vegan rice crispy treat recipe. Here are the ingredients I used:
- For the rice cereal, I used Barbara’s Organic Brown Rice Crisps cereal. Its list of ingredients is refreshingly short: organic whole grain brown rice, organic pear juice, and sea salt. You know exactly what you’re putting in your body, and it’s wholesome!
- For the marshmallows, I used Dandies All Natural Vanilla Marshmallows. In addition to being fantastic because they’re vegetarian (traditional marshmallows contain products such as animal skin, hooves, and bones), these are delicious in s’mores!
- For the butter alternative, I tried the new Dairy Free Country Crock Plant Butter. I used this for the first time for this recipe and found it smooth and easy to work with.
I’ll simply link here to A Little Insanity’s rice crispy treats recipe since I followed it almost exactly, and I’ll also offer a couple notes on the two batches I made.
- I thought the first batch had a little too much cereal and was a bit dry, so for the second batch I reduced it to 5 ¼ cups cereal. That amount worked well.
- If you’re making more than one batch, either clean the pot between batches or use different pots. I failed to do that, so small bits of the marshmallow mixture left over from my first batch burned when I made my second batch. I had to scramble to ensure the burned bits didn’t get inside the treats.
To package the treats individually, I used 5″ x 7″ bags (like these), tied them with golden ribbon, and used simple glue sticks to apply the yellow brick road labels on the front.
To make the labels, I got free clipart online. Then I was sure to add “V” and “GF” on the label so any vegan or gluten free patrons would know they could indulge in the treats!
Bringing the Goodies to the Concession Stand and the Dance Performance
Our family as thrilled to be part of the performance — Isabel and her class did an amazing job being the Lollipop Guild — and to contribute to the concession stand. Originally the stand was intended to raise funds for the studio, but at the event, the Executive Director announced that instead all money would be donated to victims of recent severe tornados. Over $500 was raised that day as a result of her selfless decision.
The dance students and the studio as a whole have a lot to be proud of as a result of the success of the “Just Like Home” performance.