For me, Halloween is one of the best holidays! The decorations, the costumes, the parties, even the marathon showings of all the Friday the 13th and Halloween movies. I’m really a sucker for all of it. Notice however, that I didn’t throw candy into that list of loves. That’s because frankly the thought of all the candy that is going to end up in my house after my kids go trick-or-treating scares me more than any of the creepy Halloween decorations or movies. I say this partly because I don’t trust myself to not have an out of body experience where I ultimately end up knee deep in mini Snickers and Butter Finger wrappers, but also because I know how unhealthy those unassuming mini size candy bars are for you; especially when one ultimately turns into five…..or (gasp) even more!
And bless my little monster’s hearts, one of the few times they are willing to work together is when they’re trying to barter with me as to how many pieces they should get to eat at a time. Kids love candy; if it were up to them I think they would eat all of it that night (although they’d probably end up with a stomach ache afterwards). We can’t expect kids to regulate themselves so it’s our job as parents to help provide better choices. That’s why in my household we enjoy the trick-or-treating, come home and pick out ten pieces of the kid’s favorite treats and donate the rest. I know that many dentist’s offices take the candy and give a prize in exchange. I also have a friend who ships boxes of candy to our troops over seas. I am willing to bet that there are other people who do that as well and a quick internet search could help locate them.
What if there are no kids in the mix though and trick-or-treating hasn’t been on your radar in ten+ years? Let’s say that there’s a party and you want to have themed snacks, but the idea of bowls of candy and chips doesn’t sit well with you. Never fear, below are some fun ideas that keep with the spirit of Halloween but won’t leave you feeling frightened to eat them.
6 large bananas- halved
1 c shredded coconut
12 Popsicle sticks
5”x5” green block of craft foam
Roll banana halves in shredded coconut, stick two raisins in for eyes, the Popsicle stick in the flat side and then arrange in the on the craft foam
1 or more sleeves of different whole grain crackers
2-4 large bananas *depending on how many crackers you use or 1 bag marshmallows, halved short ways
½ c all natural peanut or almond butter if allergies are a concern
Toppings for the iris. Can be mini chocolate chips, all natural fruit loop type cereal
Smear nut butter or other spread (low-fat cream cheese, low-sugar jelly) on cracker, top with sliced banana or marshmallows and cereal or chocolate chips
12 Clementine Cuties
2 stalk celery
Peel Clementine’s, cut celery into mini stalks and gently push into top of Clementine’s.
Last but not least, get creative!! These are just a few ideas to keep your Halloween healthy. How many other ways can you think of?