Have a Happy, Healthy Halloween!

You’ve seen it for the last month or so; mini chocolate bars, candy corn and gummy worms have taken over the aisles in grocery stores. But celebrating Halloween doesn’t have to be a sugar rush (with the inevitable cranky sugar crash). In fact some schools don’t allow candy at school parties so try these creative and healthy trick or treats that you and your kids can make together.

Kids love to nibble on finger foods, and fruit and cheese can be decorated in lots of ways.

  • Banana Ghosts are easy and so cute, all you are a few bunches of bananas (ripe but not too soft) and some mini and regular size chocolate chips, or cheerios. Cut the banana in half and create a ghost face with 2 mini chips for eyes and a regular chip (or cheerio) for the mouth
  • Tangerine Pumpkins use kid-size seedless sweet tangerines or mandarins like Cuties. Just peel and pop in a small piece of celery for the stem.
  • Apple Smiles are a fruity version of the old favorite wax teeth. Take 2 slices of delicious apple and line up mini marshmallows between them for “teeth”. Use a thin layer of peanut butter on the apple slice to hold the marshmallows in place.
  • String Cheese Ghost Sticks are super easy and kids can help decorate them. Keep the string cheese in its individual wrapper then just draw a ghost face near the top with a marker.
  • String Cheeses Witches Brooms will fly off the plate. Cut string cheese into 2-inch pieces. Split the bottom of the piece into strands, insert a pretzel stick into the middle of the other side and wrap the top of the cheese with a piece of chive.

Healthy Halloween Treats

Halloween treats can be food-free and kids love opening goodie bags. Fill them inexpensively with Halloween decorated pencils, erasers, crayons and sticky note pads found at discount dollar stores. Or add some stickers, temporary tattoos, mini light up glow sticks or little paper masks.

If you kids like trick or treating on Halloween and come home with a bag of candy, a candy for toy program is a good way to keep kids happy and minimize sugar intake. For younger kids, share the “Halloween Fairy” story, about a magical fairy that visits kids on Halloween night and collects their candy for much-needed fairy power, but leaves them a toy in exchange. Kids leave their bags of candy outside their bedroom doors, and find a small toy, book or some stickers the next morning (or check out a similar idea with the Switch Witch Kit that gives you a complete setup with a storybook). For older kids, let them know a week or so before Halloween that the candy they collect can be used as “candy money” that pays for a toy, game or app you’ll buy for them (you can always share the candy collection with co-workers)!

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