Must Trick or Treat Always be a Sweet?

Written by Sylvia Geiger MS, RD, CD, Price Chopper Community Nutritionist

I remember pouring out sacks of trick or treat candy on the living room floor, organizing them into piles of “like” and “don’t like” followed by boisterous trading with my brother. I was a pudgy kid with a mouth full of fillings and a 5-pound Halloween haul was the last thing I needed.  But I loved Halloween (and still do), what fun to get dressed in my costume and eat all the candy! My mother tried rationing it some years while other years she let me eat until I was sick—but you see—there’s just no parent-approved way to deal with Halloween.  I had the same trouble with my own kids. From a kid’s perspective Halloween is all about fun and sweet indulgence, my kids scoffed when they were treated with pencils or toothbrushes. They felt gypped—and they weren’t alone. But I think things are changing. With the heightened awareness of food allergies and childhood obesity, non-candy Halloween treats are becoming more acceptable both to give and to get. So this year try giving out some of these budget-friendly non-sugary Halloween treats.

Food Treats

100% fruit rolls or leathers

Mini bags of goldfish, pretzels or even chips

Mini bags of sunflower or pumpkin seeds- not for the littlest, may be a choking hazard

Mini bags of nuts- careful of allergens!

100% juice boxes or flavored waters (Use the NuVal scores to choose the best)

Non-Food Treats

Temporary tattoos

Party Favors

Mini erasers

Glow sticks or glow necklaces

Mini paper pads of paper

Goodie bags with little items such as hair clips, or Band-Aids with characters

Another way to celebrate Halloween is by throwing a themed party.  Try these Halloween kid friendly recipes where the focus isn’t on the candy but rather on the fun of the holiday.

Quick Ideas for Kid Halloween Party

Note: Most of these recipes, but not all, are low in sugar.

Creamy Orange Dip  with cut up apples

Bug Guts

Fun with Veggies

Pumpkin Cakes

Honey Mustard Dipping Sauce for veggies

Ghost popping cupcakes

Ghostly Lunch


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