Healthy Alternatives to Candy and Sweets
Health Concerns and Childhood Obesity
Not everyone likes, or can eat candy so it's always a good idea to have some healthy alternatives when it comes to Halloween Trick or Treating. For most parents Halloween can be a sugar loaded nightmare when the kids come back with sacks full of chocolate, lollies and candies, and that's only what's left after they have munched their way through most of it on the way back home. So help out parents and fight childhood obesity by giving those little Trick or Treaters some healthy snacks instead.
You could even go one step further and give out fun little toys and goodies if you didn't want to hand out food. Kids love things they can get into, pull apart and rebuild (just make sure their old enough to play with small parts).
You might even find that by switching to healthy alternatives you can save some money this year. But what to do with those savings? I'd recommend either buying an awesome Halloween costume or putting it in your rainy day fund.
So, putting aside the Halloween candies this year you might be wondering what you can hand out to the little munchkins? Well, there are loads of alternatives that you might want to consider. Here are some of my favorite healthy snacks:
- Single servings of fruit: clementines, raisins, plums
- Cereal bars
- Juice boxes (lunchbox size)
- Seeds: fry up some pumpkin seeds for that homemade deliciousness
- Trail mix
- Nuts (make sure the kiddies don't have allergies)
- Sugar free chewing or bubble gum
- Single serve popcorn
Halloween Candy Holders
Halloween Pails (The Goody Holders)
When it comes to Trick or Treating you'll need something to carry around all your fantastic goodies. Goody holders need to be light with a good sturdy handle on them otherwise you might drop them and everything will just spill out and before you know it you'll be missing half your treats.
If you're holding a party you might want to put a few goody holders scattered about the garden and in the house topped up with your favorite snacks. You could even make a game of it if you have some great hiding places; at least it'll keep the kids busy for 5 minutes.
If you, or your children, are a Harry Potter fan then you'll have to make some pumpkin pasties this Halloween. The pumpkin pasty is based on the Cornish pasty which is made from steak, potatoes, turnip, onions, salt and pepper. Pumpkins pasties are filled with sweetened pumpkin flesh, nutmeg and cinnamon.
There's also no point in wasting any part of the pumpkin so use the fleshy parts in the pasty, toast up the seeds for a tasty snack, and with the hollowed out shell/skin use it to make a Jack O'Lantern or pop it on the compost heap.
- Prep time: 10 min
- Cook time: 30 min
- Ready in: 40 min
- Yields: 6 snack sized pasties
- 1 cup pumpkin
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 prepared pie crust
- 1 egg, beaten with 1 tablespoon water for egg wash
- sugar, sprinkled
- Pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees F
- In a bowl mix in the pumpkin, cinnamon, nutmeg and sugar until combined.
- Roll out the dough and cut into circles using a 4-5 inch cookie cutter. In the center place a scoop of pumpkin mixture.
- Fold the dough over and use a fork to crimp the edges. Make a couple of slits in the top for vents. Brush each pasty with egg wash and sprinkle a little sugar over the top.
- Bake in the oven for 30 minutes or until golden brown.
Do you prefer healthy Halloween snacks or candy?
Toys and Goodies as Alternatives to Candy
Kids love toys and goodies just as much as they love sweet, sweet candy. Why not be a bit different this year and make a positive impact on their lives by giving them something to play with. Toys help to stimulate those young minds and by playing they are being active and burning off some of that candy that other people have given them.
Here are some of my favorite childhood toys, games and past-times;
With all that money you have saved by having a healthy Halloween you can now splash out on an awesome costume for you and the kids. If you're stuck for ideas then check out these great themed costumes for adults and kids.
Spooky House Decorations
Halloween is a great excuse to decorate the house and have a party, but which theme are you going to go for this year? I personally love the spooky theme with ghosties and ghoulies. Here are some tips you might want to consider to bring your house up to it's full potential:
- Make your entrance way amazing as this will be the first thing your guests see and the majority of your Trick or Treaters.
- Get some creepy music or spooky sounds effects in the background to add to the ambiance of the atmosphere.
- Hanging decorations will catch your guests off guard and will create creepy shadows you can hide bats, vampires and skeletons in.
- Get some fake cobwebs and drape them everywhere to great that old house look.
Scary Garden Decorations
Decorating your garden for Halloween is just as fun as decorating your house. The best thing about decorating your garden is that you can set up treasure hunts, hide and seek and loads of other games. Here are some tips I have picked up for decorating your garden for Halloween:
- Use LED lights to illuminate pathways to keep your guests safe
- Hide goody holders in corners for a fun treasure hunt
- Put fake cats near bushes and hang bats from trees
- Get a fog machine to great that spooky look.