Cheese and cracker
Naturally flavored and
sweetened gum or sugar-free gum
Small bags of pretzels
Small packages of nuts
Peanuts in the shell
If you are not opposed to
sugar, but would prefer your treats to be natural or vegan, we suggest you
visit your local natural food store. There are many natural candy companies
that offer a big variety of candies. The one drawback, expect to pay more for
these items. Natural products come at a higher price tag.
You could make a homemade
treat. Unless you are in a neighborhood with close friends, we don’t suggest
this approach. Most parents are trained to go through the Halloween candy and
throw out unopened, unwrapped or homemade treats. If you decide to make your
treats, wrap your homemade item up well, and add your name and phone number to
the bag with the treat. If the parent recognizes your name, it will make them
feel the treat is safe.
Halloween Treats Do Not Have To Be Edible
An alternative to avoiding
the junk food challenges is to hand out a non-food treat. Today, many families
are opting for this choice. With a little bit of thought and some clever
shopping, you can find some really nice items for a few cents per item. Here
are few ideas:
Cool stickers or
you can even rent a helium tanks and fill them on the spot
colored chalk or fun-shaped erasers
Rubber spiders, worms,
or other equally creepy figure
Spider, skull, or
pumpkin plastic rings
Check your local dollar store for fun items.
There is also plenty of time to shop online, and have items shipped to you.
DollarDays.com and OrientalTradingCompany.com are just two sites that offer a
good selection. A quick search on Google will give you plenty more online
Start the day off right, with a festive breakfast
of bagels, pumpkin cream cheese (recipe follows) and fresh apples. This meal
also works as a great treat for a morning Halloween party at your child’s
Pumpkin Cream Cheese
Beat in a bowl:
8 ounces softened cream
2 tablespoons brown
1/2 cup of canned pumpkin
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie
Serve with toasted bagels
and fresh apple slices.
Before your children
venture out in their costumes, make sure they eat a meal before going
trick-or-treating. Try the Incredible White
Bean Pizza recipe below. It is fast and simple. With full tummies, they
won't be so tempted to dig into their bag of goodies before they get back home.
Ask your kids not to eat candy while they are out.
Incredible Bean Pizza
1 can white beans, drained and
1 clove garlic
2 tablespoons water
˝ teaspoon oregano
1 pizza crust (like Boboli)
Shredded Mozzarella cheese
Fresh diced tomatoes
Puree first five
ingredients in a blender and spread mixture over the pizza crust. Sprinkle with
shredded mozzarella cheese, fresh, diced tomatoes and chopped basil. Bake in a
425 degree F oven until cheese is bubbly, about 10-12 minutes.
When your children arrive
back at home, don’t let them take control over their bag or bucket of candy.
Working with them, check the treats and keep only treats which are unopened. Be
sure to inspect fruits and homemade goods for anything suspicious. While you
are going through their candy, let them pick two or three treats that they can
eat on this special night. Store the rest of the candy out of reach and out of
Over the next few days or
weeks, rationing the treats is the best approach. Allow your children to make
their own selections, but tell them they can pick one large piece or two small
pieces. If your children have trouble with this, do it for them (in advance).
Just place small amounts of candy in bags, and let them select one of the bags.
If there is just too much candy, consider donating some of it to a shelter. It
will bring smiles to others.
authors: Cheryl Tallman and Joan Ahlers are sisters, the mothers of five
children and founders of Fresh Baby ( www.FreshBaby.com
). They are the creators of the award-winning So Easy Baby Food Kit and Good
Clean Fun Placemats, available at many fine specialty stores and national
chains including Target and Whole Foods Markets.