DIY Glow Party Teen Birthday (on a tight budget) – Real Food

My little geekling, Kid #2 turns 15 in July. She wanted to have a glow party/rave for her birthday bash. This summer party will be fun and frugal, as I try to stick to a tight budget.

Glow Party Teen Birthday Real Food

In this series: DIY Glow Party ~ Invitations ~ Decorations ~ Food ~ Summer Party Time ~ Blacklight Party Time ~ Favors


Almost all of the food can be made ahead. I want to be essentially ready a full day ahead of time. Too many things can go wrong at the last minute. I like to make real food, but I am not above resorting to the dollar store for a bag of chips if I run out of time. This is another reason to plan ahead. As with our decorations, we are saving money by making this ourselves, but paying in time.

We will have a fruit platter, grapes, cheese, crackers, hot dogs, and burgers.

Ice balloons

We will freeze water in balloons (water balloons are too thin and will break, use regular ones). These will help keep drinks cold and the big chunks will take longer to melt than ice cubes. Balloon ice from Babblings and More

Glow salad

I will make this glow salad from Hubpages, we’ll see if the teens will take any.

Pasta salad

I will make this delicious pasta salad from Bowl of Delicious.Definitely go with a vinegar-based pasta salad over mayo.

Neon deviled eggs

You can have neon deviled eggs, the trick is to hard boil them and then dye the peeled, nakey eggs. Like these from Katina Dyer on Pinterest. Real food deviled eggs from 100 Days of Real Food.

Kale chips

Kale chips are super easy, from EatingWell

Sweet potato chips

Sweet potato chips are super tasty, from She Wears Many Hats

Cheesy crackers

I may wimp out on the Sprouted Cheddar Crackers, I always forget to start them (or continue my sprout babies). But I can sub regular flour.

Trail mix bar

We will have a trail mix bar like this one from Dollar Store Mom

Snack cones

Make a cone with a square of neon scrapbook paper for a container for snacks like popcorn, such as these from Hostess with the Mostess. Cover a cereal box with paper and poke holes in it to hold them upright. Add washi tape for a pop of color.

Gummy stars

We will make “healthy” gummy stars from Mommypotamus in my skull silicone mold. You can get molds at the dollar store, or get a skull one like this from Amazon.

Glow jello

We will use tonic water to make glow jello from Learn Play Imagine (I know the glow water jello looks awesome, but it’s not edible). Use the real food jello recipe from Holistic Squid, substitute some tonic water, and add a little honey.

Glowing cotton candy

You can make diy glow cotton candy. Roll a piece of white paper in a cone and stick a glow stick in it, or just use a glow stick. You can get bagged cotton candy from the dollar store or party store, but I don’t know if this will stretch enough for the cotton candy to glow, just the stick. I don’t think you can make “real food” cotton candy, although I have seen maple syrup cotton candy, and I doubt making it from scratch improves the nutritional value. But cotton candy is fun, and if you have a maker at home you know it takes like 1 teaspoon of sugar to make a big poof. You don’t have to have a machine to make it yourself.


Brownies from Health Home & Happiness are gluten free and real food

Neon marshmallows

We will make these fabulous neon marshmallows from Sugar Loco. Please note, you have to use gel food coloring to color candy melts. Use this recipe from An Organic Wife for “real” marshmallows.

Neon Macaroons

We will bake these darling neon macaroons from Domestic Charm (not real food, but from scratch, tasty food). You could try the real food recipe from Use Real Butter

Neon whoopie pies

My daughter is spastic about these neon whoopie pies from Orange Cardamom. I haven’t decided if I’m going to try to dip them to make them glow like my cupcakes. These are from scratch, but do have ingredients like flour and sugar; you can substitute your preferred ingredients, or make your favorite “healthy” chocolate cake and frosting and diy it.

*Update: These were really good, but I had to let the frosting sit in the fridge for a while before I could spread it thick enough.

Smores bites

S’mores bites are bound to be a hit, and these aren’t even horrible for you, from Self. You should be able to get whole grain rice krispies. Use the real food fluff recipe from An Organic Wife. Make your own graham crackers with this recipe from Real Fit Real Food Mom

*Update: These were the best things we made!

Neon cupcakes

We will make neon tie-dye cupcakes. (Instructions on Pie with Sparkles.) Kitchen Stewardship has two real food cake recipes you can try, and edit to your dietary preferences, since you just need to add dye and layer the batters for the tie dye effect. Or try this cake from Granny’s Vital Vittles and substitute some of the water for tonic water. White cake is better than yellow for bright colors.

Glowing frosting

I will frost them with white buttercream frosting and use this dip technique from Food Snots to make them glow in the dark. Tonic water will make them glow but tastes terrible, so you have to find a good balance and I think this will work. This recipe from Modern Alternative Mama is a real food buttercream that you could try substituting the water for tonic water, but you may need to sweeten it more, and the frosting itself does not look white and may not glow as much, but since you’re coating it with a jello dip that will glow it should still look good.


This nummy “real food” punch from Real Food for Life is easy-peasy

*Update: Bonus! I mixed this punch with seltzer and told the littles it was soda, they felt included.

In this series: DIY Glow Party ~ Invitations ~ Decorations ~ Food ~ Summer Party Time ~ Blacklight Party Time ~ Favors

Previous ~ Next: Summer Party Time

Do you stick with real food and healthy choices for parties, or do you go hog wild?

More With Less Mom

Participated in Clever Chicks Blog Hop, Fat Tuesday Forager Festival, Healthy Happy Green and Natural Party Hop, Thank Goodness It’s Monday, Mostly Homemade Mondays, Natural Living Monday, Real Food Wednesday, and Unprocessed Fridays

Tween Girl Rock Star / Spa Night Birthday Sleepover Party
Also see my Tween Girl Rock Star / Spa Night Birthday Sleepover Party

Photo credits:
Balloon ice from Babblings and More
Brownies from Health Home & Happiness
Cheddar crackers from Mommypotamus
Glow cotton candy from Wedding Chicks
Glowing cupcakes from Food Snots
Glow jello from Learn Play Imagine
Glow salad from Hubpages
Glowstick lanterns from The Gold Jellybean/a>
Goodie bags from
Gummy stars from Mommypotamus
Neon deviled eggs from Katina Dyer on Pinterest
Kale Chips from EatingWell
Mustaches from Tree Town Paper on Etsy
Neon cupcakes from Pie with Sparkles
Neon macaroons from Domestic Charm
Neon marshmallows from Sugar Loco
Neon whoopie pies from Orange Cardamom
Pasta Salad from Bowl of Delicious
Popcorn cones from Hostess with the Mostess
Punch from Real Food for Life
Trail mix bar from Dollar Store Mom
S’mores bites from Self
Sweet potato chips from She Wears Many Hats

We hope you enjoyed our DIY Glow Party Teen Birthday (on a tight budget) – Real Food post

[contentblock id=8]


DIY Glow Party Teen Birthday (on a tight budget) – Real Food — 4 Comments

  1. These are such cool ideas! My daughter is turning 10 this year and I know she would love this kind of party. I am definitely stealing some of these!

  2. Hi Melissa,
    I am gaga over your amazingly healthy, frugal and creative ideas for a DIY Glow Party for your teen-aged daughter. There are so many fun and colorful items to delight the party-goers. Your daughter is such a lucky girl to have such an amazing mom! I am so delighted that you shared these inspiring Glow Party and Rave Food ideas with us at the Healthy, Happy, Green and Natural Party Blog Hop! Have a blast!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *