It’s amazing how powerful a heart-shaped cookie cutter can be. It’s all you’ll need for these truly easy Valentine’s Day treats for kids. Bet you it wins a smile and some goodwill from your little ones. And it might even get them to eat some healthy snacks, too.

(Photo by Jessica Fediw)

1) Apple ring cut-outs, from Happy Together Creates.

Kids are so used to seeing apples in wedges or chunks that this simple trick of slicing it in a different direction could give them a new way of looking at fruit. Teachable moment: Before you start to cut, ask them if they’ve ever seen the secret star inside an apple.

(Photo by Ilene Chen)

2) Marshmallow hearts in hot chocolate, from Come On Ilene.

This one is perfect for when Valentine’s Day matches up with snow days. You’ll need a pretty small cookie cutter for these, even smaller than the one for the apples above, but maybe not if you find the right size marshmallows — see tip. Red food coloring for the hot chocolate optional.

Left, photo by Ariel Belzer. Right, photo by Sarah Glyer of Daisy at Home.

3) Shape-your-own veggie/fruit hearts from Daily Mom, left, and Weelicious/Daisy at Home, right.

These are so flexible that you might not even need a cookie cutter — only if you want some fancy garnishes.

(Photo by Macki West) (Photo by Macki West)

 4) Strawberry-heart hand pies, from Babble.

This one has a few more steps but not more ingredients than the others. I love that it gives you permission to use pre-made refrigerated dough. And jam. And then you’re done. Or you could get all fancy and add a lollipop stick to turn these into pops.