Kids’ birthday party with no added sugar


Can you have a birthday party with no added sugar for kids? Without the soda and candy?

My daughter turned two recently, and we threw a birthday party. You can see the cake above, but what’s inside it?

Cake Opening




The cake consisted of a watermelon (a large melon shaped as a cake) and a layer of whipped cream, and berries on top and around the base. That’s all.

Of course, there’s sugar in a watermelon, but in a limited child-friendly amount with natural fibers. Moreover, unlike most cakes, it’s completely free of additives and gluten.

The cake was much appreciated by adults and children alike. For example, one of the kids talked about it all week.


Before the Cake

Before the cake we served a buffet with food for all.


The buffet included skewers with sausages and meatballs. There were also grilled corn on the cob, spicier sausages (for adults), carrot sticks and various colors of bell pepper slices, artichoke hearts, olives and a variety of dipping sauces. To go with this, the kids had water, satisfied as far as I could see.

Due to a shortage of seating in children’s sizes, we made it into a picnic on the floor:


Goodie Bags

After food and cake it was time for the, in Sweden, traditional game of fishing for goodie bags. After all the eating, we had “only” toys in the goodie bags. Fake tattoos (very popular), a bouncy ball and a small wind-up swimming bath-tub fish (surprisingly popular too).


So, how was this kids’ party, lacking candy, sodas and cookies, received? No objections. Our friends of course know which family they’re visiting, so no adult would likely have been surprised. On the contrary, some would probably have been disappointed had they not been served something like this.

More interesting was that not a single child (as far as I know) complained. They all seemed perfectly happy. In addition, there wasn’t any fighting, and they were all playing happily.

In summary, a clear success. Now, let’s see if things go as well with three-year-olds next year!

Do you have any experience with kids’ parties with no added sugar?


No, kids don’t need added sugar to be full of energy and play. Dad and daughter:

Photo: Monika Dart

Photo: Monica Dart

Photo: Monika Dart

Photo: Monica Dart


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Gadget tips

Pictures, except for the last two, were taken with my Canon EOS 5D Mark III and my favorite lens EF 24-70mm f/2.8 L II USM. These are ridiculously expensive pro-gadgets for those of you who, like me, only want to settle for the best.

If you use the support links here I earn a small commission (a few percent of any purchase) and you help support The price for you will be the same, and I only recommend products I use myself.

The last two pictures were taken by Monica Dart with a Canon EOS 5D Mark II and the lenses EF 50mm f/1.2 L USM (second last picture) and the EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM (last picture).


  1. FrankG
    I'd say that a little imagination wins out over ignorance. Looks like a great party! I hope it is the start of a trend among the other parents involved.

    Congratulations to you Dr Andreas and your family :-)

  2. DoragonMama
    I wish my granddaughter Bday was sugar free, it was a sugary event from beginning to end.

    Your daughter is magnificent!

  3. Christine
    Number 1: Your daughter is adorable and number 2: thank you for changing our culture! Cheers!
  4. greg
    What about a nut cake? For my birthday I would like a cake made of nut meal... either hazelnut, almond, or walnut or all three. Earlier this year, I had a slice of almond cake some Italian family made. I have the recipe, which does call for sugar, but the amount pales in comparison to Betty Crocker, for example. I figure the sugar can be reduced or substituted. Grains were not part of the recipe.
  5. LyndaS
    So creative and fun. Looks delicious too! The birthday girl is such a little sweetie.
  6. Pat
    Not a bad idea for cake. Looks pretty good! Excellent job on the party.
  7. Jax Labyrinth
    What an awesome idea!! Thanks for making it look so doable! Definitely a LCHF confidence boost on a very non LCHF topic!!
  8. Lisa
    Very cool! I would have enjoyed that.
  9. Janknitz
    Happy birthday to your sweet little one!

    I'm jealous because that looks like a REAL watermelon. All we can get around here are seedless hybrids. No seeds, no flavor. They are insipid, don't taste anything like the watermelon I ate as a kid with plenty of seeds.

    As a matter of fact the watermelons of my youth weren't terribly sweet. We used to sprinkle the watermelon with salt because it enhanced the sweetness. Now they are like eating wet candy--blah!

  10. Jan
    What a wonderful party and lovely photo's of the food and your darling little girl.

    My grandchildren are relative 'low carbers' we don't go over the top in carb restriction but sweets, cakes, candies, sugary drinks etc are definitely kept to a minimum.

    Snacks for them are carrot sticks, pepper sticks, cucumber and some fruit like blue berries, raspberries etc. They are doing well on it.

    All the best Jan

  11. Arthur
    I love cream cheese...How about doing a cream cheese dish for her? With cinnamon :)
    Reply: #13
  12. Marcy
    I also noticed the seeds in the watermelon only because I haven't seen one with seeds for years. They really were better. I did think at first the frosting was cream cheese based, but whipped cream is perfect and maybe I could do a hybrid of whipped cream AND cream cheese. This does look much better than the usual birthday cake, beautifully decorated with the berries as well.
  13. Zepp
    I think cream cheese is more a american thing.. Swedish traditions are that cake should be with wipped cream and berries.

    We use cream cheese more to deserts.

  14. Micki
    Looked liek a healthy party....then I spotted the corn cobs!
  15. France
    Maria Emmerich, who send me to this blog, has great recipes for those who want low carb/grain free sweets (she does use xylitol, stevia, etc), just Google her name and "mariamindbodyhealth". I LOVE this cake and wish I'd known about this when my little ones were smaller. What gorgeous plates too (couldn't help but notice!) and a sweet little girl you have there! Congratulations on her birth-day! :)
    Thank you for all the work you do!
  16. Jo tB
    I came across a super watermelon cake on internet (in Chow Stalker) and it had whipped coconut milk on the sides. It looked absolutely scrumptious.

    I can still get very sweet watermelon with seeds in Holland where I live.

  17. Chareva
    Isn't it fun to come up with creative alternatives to traditional carbage? Well done and the photos are beautiful. Happy Birthday!
  18. LarryB
    In the US, the sausages would be controversial as they're regarded as a choking hazard. Otherwise, I think most parents would find the spread either a refreshing change or as eccentric.
  19. Jay Wortman MD
    She's a cutie-pie and a lucky girl to have you for a Dad. We do a nut meal low-carb cake with berries and whipping cream for our kids. I'll give the watermelon idea a try for the kids next year.
  20. Karen Kenneson
    Awesome ideas doc! I am so stealing these for my next daughter's birthday party!
  21. michelle
    You have moved me to tears. Sorry to be an emotional woman, but I am so proud of you and I agree; fantastic ideas for the future for my eight year old.
  22. PaleoDentist
    What an awesome idea!!!!!!!!! I love it!!!!!!
  23. Daci
    What a great party..When I realized what the cake was,I nearly died! I love water melon!
    I suspect that's going to be a long time favorite for her.
  24. Kay Johnson
    I am diabetic and have been told to eat at least 40 grams of carbs per meal because carbs are the food the brain uses. I am on insulin and want so much to go on your amazing diet but I am nervous. Don't get me wrong, I agree with you. I'm just indoctrinated up to the wazoo.
    Reply: #25
  25. Zepp
    Strange.. becuse your body can make all the glucose your brain need.. it can make up to 200 grams a day!

    And the brain can altso use ketones.. up to 70% of its energy needs.

    Its only red blood cells that need glucose at 100%!

  26. Kate
    Thank you so much for this! My husband and I are already talking about doing this for our two year old's birthday next summer.
  27. Rebecca
    I'm so excited about this idea. My six year old's favorite fruit is watermelon and he is pumped to have this cake at his upcoming party!
  28. Paula
    Your daughter is adorable! last year

    I made healthy protein donuts that are sugar and grain/gluten free for my daughters birthday classroom treat. The kids LOVED them and didn't know they were good for them. For my younger, we made cupcakes out of beans and eggs with Just Like Sugar for sweetener and the kids gobbled those down, too. Not one child or the teacher realized they were sugar free and low carb/gluten free. Just goes to show you what you can do. On top of it, all the kids in both classrooms had healthy fiber, fats, and protein instead of sugar.

  29. ana
    Excellent Idea. the most healthy birthday cake.....
  30. Nan
    Brilliant! I can see other possibilities, like a fruit-filled gelatin mold in place of melon.

  31. pamela snowden
    this is what I have been planning for my boys 2nd party im very excited cant wait some people may not like but at end of the day it my kids party and I know he will love it as long as there's food
  32. Imelda
    Wow!! what an awesome party.. thank you for the tips.. can't wait to try it at my Grandsons 3rd birthday next week.
    ps: your daughter is just too Gorgeous.

    thank you for this wonderful site that is really helping me cope with my goal to becoming Diabetic free...

  33. pc
    Thanks for the great idea! I made one last night and it was a hit!
  34. Csilla
    That watermelon cake is fantastic and I will have to try it! :) Beautiful idea and a even more beautiful Family!
  35. Mary White
    Monica is beautiful! And she looks incredibly healthy. Thanks for sharing a wonderful photo.

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