Inspired Idea: Hold Your Own Yogurt Social

Swap sugar-laden ice cream for a healthier summertime treat

Since childhood, the vast majority of us have often associated summertime with ice cream––and for good reason. The cool, colorful treat is the perfect way to combat scorching temps, while being inherently fun and social––making it an ideal treat for pleasing big groups, like your meeting attendees.

The only problem? It’s jam-packed with fat, sugar and calories. (One brand’s beloved chocolate-cherry flavor has 1,040 calories per pint.) So for those guests watching their waistlines or generally trying to improve their health, a traditional ice-cream social could fall flat fast. 

So what’s an event planner to do? Swap fat-laden ice cream for a healthier summertime treat. From parfaits to dipping sauces, here are six sweet yogurt ideas to use in your next summertime meeting.   

1. Picture-Perfect Parfaits 

With sweet granola and bits of chocolate, store-bought parfaits are notorious for packing quite a bit of sugar (sometimes even more than ice cream!). But by serving your own, you control the ingredients. Consider using Greek yogurt for extra protein, which will keep guests fuller longer. 

2. Hold the Ranch

Of course, not all yogurt needs to be sweet or paired with fruits and chocolate. Try pairing it with a vegetable cup for a light (and ridiculously easy-to-assemble) afternoon snack. 

3. A Fresh Squeeze 

Blend bananas, strawberries and other fruits of your choice into a yogurt slushie, the perfect thirst- (and heat-) quencher for an outdoor event, as the Marriott Marquis City Center Doha Hotel did with this presentation.  

4. Mango Mania

Although bananas, strawberries and blueberries are go-to ingredients for parfaits and yogurt blends, more exotic fruit choices, such as mango, dragon fruit and passion fruit, can be a fun (and Instagrammable) surprise for guests. 

5. Chocolate Obsession 

Would it truly be summer without a cool, chocolate-y treat? Yogurt- and fruit-filled chocolate smoothies, like those from the Warsaw Marriott Hotel, will make guests feel as though they’re downing an ice-cold milkshake (with a fraction of the fat, of course). 

6. Sweet Strawberry

Like salt and pepper, peanut butter and jelly, and Arnold Schwarzenegger and Danny DeVito, strawberry and chocolate are one of life’s greatest pairings. Serve up this decadent morning dish inspired by the China Hotel in Guangzhou to keep guests satisfied for the duration of the day.