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The Healthiest Halloween Candy On The Planet

October 22, 2012   44 Comments

Because I like to torture myself, every year I try and find a healthy option to give out for Halloween. Why?

Healthy Halloween Candy 2012

I kinda think it is my job to give alternatives to the mini-Snickers bars that are what I really want to give out. This is my third year of the challenge and I would like to review past years.

For 2010, I suggested:

sunsweetb

Yes, I suggested giving out individually packaged prunes for Halloween. The comments were pretty hilarious. The best one was from Judy:

Yeah, if I knew that getting our house toilet papered would be the worst of it I might buy these to hand out (hey we could always re-roll it and use it!) but the kids in our neighborhood like to throw eggs on cars which ruins paint.

or maybe this one from April:

OK... I have to tell you (even though we don't do Halloween) that my son laughed his butt off about this post. Ya see.... prunes were a recent solution for some (ahem) issues he had, and of course, it worked for a smooth move. lol So this really cracked him up. (no pun intended) hahahahaha

I did get featured in a big paper in Michigan for my advice but I’m not sure why (silly blogger!).

I went back to the drawing board for 2011 and found these:

halloweenpretzelb

Honestly, I thought these were super cute! Look at those shapes. My readers last year definitely thought this was a better idea than the prunes. But, they didn’t love it. Here’s a comment from David:

Go ahead and hand those out. And quickly learn that next year the kids will avoid your place like the plague! Great idea for myself, but it's Halloween for goodness sake! Kids can live once in a while.

Hey, I was trying to help them live!! Actually, I hear him on that one (but I still thought they were super cute).

This year, I think I have it! Except I know that the people who have and fear nut allergies are going to yell at me. My son loved the package above of “Frankenweenie” wrapped pistachios that not only had a few pistachios in them BUT A STICKER!

I paid $5.50 for 25 packages of pistachios to hand out. Yes, I know that is much more expensive than the bag of mini-Snickers but I love these for lunch boxes and my purse.

It's a little portion and they are so fun to crack open. What do you think? Will I be the pariah of the neighborhood AGAIN?

There is this really cute advertisement that goes with the pistachios here:


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44 Comments:

The heck with the trick or treaters, I'm keeping these for myself. Great portion control afternoon snack. Where can I find them?

on October 22, 2012

I don't buy candy for trick or treaters either. I buy mini bags of chocolate covered pretzels and mini bags of Angie's natural popcorn. Our neighbors would think we were weirdos if we handed out prunes and nuts. LOL

on October 22, 2012

I sat last year at our local "Trick or Trunk" and saw quite a few kids eating those little pretzels. I think they are a great idea! We had one lady pass out those glow-in-the dark bracelets, kids loved them!

on October 22, 2012

I like the idea of giving out pistachios. Have you thought about mandarin oranges? You could have your kids help draw jack-o-lantern faces on them.

on October 22, 2012

My Husband looks forward to Halloween because it's the only time of year we have candy in the house. He buys it! He buys BIG huge bags of it and then asks me what I would eat. I tell him, not thank you!!

on October 22, 2012

I JUST bought those pretzels the other day!! I guess I'm a year behind, but I thought they were a great alternative to all the processed junk I used to give out. And it helps me to not be tempted to eat all the leftovers we used to have! I can pack them in my son's lunchbox instead.

I like the pistachios idea, but you're right...with all the nut allergies out there today, I probably would not buy them to hand out for that reason. But what a healthy alternative!

What about Yummy Earth organic lollypops?? My kids love those!

on October 22, 2012

Last year, we gave glow in the dark vampire teeth, glow in the dark bouncy balls, Halloween temporary tattoos, and sixlets. Who knew they even made those anymore?! I ordered everything but the candy Tom Oriental Trading Company. They've got great alternatives to candy for next year, maybe!!!

on October 22, 2012

A healthy treat that MANY kids want while trick-or-treating is a juice box. They are thirsty when walking around and grateful for a drink. However this year for the first time I didn't get the 100% juice boxes. I used to get them from MegaLoMart, but is year they didn't have the generic brand for sale. The other juice boxes were out of my price range. But if you are determined to go healthy, if 100% juice is left over at least my kid can have that...but not the cheap crap I bought this year. (teeny water bottles are another option)

on October 22, 2012

Both my kids have quite a few food allergies but Halloween is really hard since one is allergic to chocolate and the other is allergic to sugar! We hand out toys instead. This year it's bouncy balls that look like eyeballs, monster pop up thingys and some kind of slime stuff.

on October 22, 2012

my favorite 5 year old would be EXTREMELY excited to get pistachios. He usually only eats a few things from his bucket on Halloween night and then forgets about it.

on October 22, 2012

We love pistachios in our house, but I could imagine parents also being worried about choking or kids not being able to open the pistachios themselves.

I love the idea of vampire teeth, and other little trinket toys, I think they are perfect and my kids wouldn't even realize they didn't get candy. I think they would be pretty happy with the pretzels too.

on October 22, 2012

Also, this chart gives some great examples of alternate brands to purchase instead of the major candy brands: http://foodbabe.com/2012/10/10/does-your-favorite-candy-hav…

on October 22, 2012

I think these are all good ideas. I have a 6 & 3 yr old who want to go to as many houses as there legs will take them, but it's too much candy. I appreciate the healthy alternatives mixed in. I usually regift some of their candy back to the neighborhood kids (without them knowing). I love prunes but I would be embarrassed to hand them out, I think it's just they're stigma of assisting older people in the bathroom!

on October 22, 2012

I would like the pistachios for myself and my kids would love the sticker. They don't eat much of the candy except for Smarties and M&Ms.

One of my boys loves the Halloween pretzels and looks forward to collecting them every year.

on October 22, 2012

Samantha, thanks for the great website

on October 22, 2012

I remember when I was a kid, a lady offered us either a nickel or a little pencil eraser. So trust me, you're not the worst that's out there! Lol! I handed out the pretzels last year and I think they're a great idea! They're still totally kid-friendly even though its not candy... I don't know how I feel about the pistachios but the packaging seems kid-friendly, still not a bad idea! Luckily for me, there are a very few amount of kids in my neighborhood, so I buy one SMALL bag of candy and manage to get rid of all of it ;)

on October 22, 2012

Actually pistachios are technically a seed, not a nut, so they may be ok for those with nut allergies. Parents need to comb through those bags anyhow, so maybe you'll give a healthy treat to some parent!

on October 22, 2012

I love all of the ideas but want to point out that the toys, while better for teeth and health, will ultimately end up in the landfil sitting for centuries - a whole different problem! How about good dark chocolate treats from Whole Foods?

on October 22, 2012

i'm gonna look for these pistachios. my kids (8 + 9) would love to get this as a treat!

on October 22, 2012

Some dark chocolate covered pretzels would be nice. They'd get the chocolate fix and all the great anti-oxidants with the pretzel. The trick would be finding some without all the additives and preservatives. I'm not sure if you can make your own and give them out. I think parents would throw anything away and handmade.

on October 22, 2012

where did you purchase them?

on October 22, 2012

I bought these at my local Stop & Shop in Western Massachusetts. They were part of the big candy display near the door. The pistachio site has this store locator:

http://getcrackin.com/stores/ that says in my area they are in Target and Walmart. I'm not sure if that means bags of pistachios or cool Halloween themed pistachios.

Sorry I can't be more helpful.

on October 22, 2012

Love pistachios. However,I would not give out to kids...nut allergies...I will just keep them for me.

on October 22, 2012

I think these little bags of nuts are adorable and a great idea for Halloween. Parents can weed them out if their kids have nut allergies. (I thought the pretzels were cute too ... but not sure about the prunes!)

I'm also going to recommend these mini nut bags to my clients for snacks on non-Halloween days :)

on October 22, 2012

Every Halloween I try to find popcorn balls as handouts. The first year I distributed them, my daughter said kids would through them back at me, but she was very wrong. I had more young children intrigued with them, and lots of young and older teens said they had not had them in years and seemed delighted. I plan to scout them out again this year.

on October 22, 2012

Personally, I love pistachios. Confession: I'd probably steal them out of my kid's trick-or-treat bag for myself. Maybe this is why I'm not ready for children yet, lol.

For me, the best treats always involve a little chocolate or peanut butter. Perhaps you could do some kind of healthy treat with those two?

on October 22, 2012

I gave out Halloween pencils and erasers one year and the kids loved them!

on October 22, 2012

Hi Snack-Girl, what store did you get the Frankenweenie pistachios from?

on October 22, 2012

I saw these in the store and loved them. My kids (teenagers) said they'd be embarrassed for us to hand these out. I could say I don't care that my kids are embarrassed but they don't go trick or treating anymore, so I'd like them to be happy handing something out. I do think the pistachios are better than prunes :) Still more tasteful than those who drop business cards in, IMHO.

on October 22, 2012

My daughter, 5, would prefer the pistachios to candy at any time. She loves them!

on October 22, 2012

I love these, nuts are a great idea as the kids will want something to contrast all the sweets when they start to feel sick! I actually would have also loved one of those prunes but I can see the kids may not as much.

on October 22, 2012

Last year I gave out little containers of Play-Doh that I got at Costco - it came in a huge pack of 80 little jars. I wasn't sure how much I'd need so I got 2 packs and had a whole one leftover for this year! I hope it's not all dried out. The kids LOVED it - even the big kids! I gave out 2 little jars per customer and still had a bunch leftover!

on October 22, 2012

Prunes? Nuts? Oh my!! There are so many non-food options that there's no need to get crazy. We tie so many holidays to food, it would be nice to get this one off the list. We hand out pencils, coloring books, little halloween trinkets. The pretzels are awesome.

on October 22, 2012

Annie's makes bunny grahams snacks (chocolate and naturally flavored orange colored honey grahams so it's black and orange) in little bags. Bought them at whole foods.

on October 22, 2012

How about the glove of popcorn... make air popped and add some fun seasonings! Those are always popular. Or organic fruit twists, which are like Twizzlers but can come as organic and all natural, with no added sugar. You could also do apple slices and caramel, which can come pre-packed. There are organic, healthy versions of rice crispy treats as well! Growing up a kid with allergies, some of my neighbors would make me a small fresh fruit salad, or one of the above mentioned treats, and I loved it, as I typically dumped out my candy and divided it between my brother and fathers pockets.

Also, there are always (baked) banana or apple chips, or dried fruits like pull apart mangos or freeze dried strawberries and bananas. Or flavored apple sauce! Ideas are limitless. :)

on October 22, 2012

Great ideas from everyone, esp. the glow jewlery. Nut allergies are nothing to mess with, fatal and fast. I wouldn't chance it.

on October 22, 2012

when i was little i loved getting a bag or 2 of pretzles, it was fun to get something different and they were so cute.i now buy a mix of chocolate and some stuff like pretzles, put them in 2 bowls and tell them to take something from each bowl

on October 22, 2012

I bought these pretzels last year and I heard multiple kids say "Yay, they have pretzels!". Not once did I hear that in the past..."Yay, they have Snickers/M&Ms/etc." I think that is so unordinary. The pretzels were a huge hit and I am doing them again this year. Plus if there are leftovers...I don't mind having these for a snack. I like the packaged nut idea and my 5 year old like pistachios...parents should be inspecting their children's candy anyways.

on October 22, 2012

Since we discovered my daughter has neurological reactions to the artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives in pretty much everything, I won't keep those items on hand, even to give out to other unsuspecting kids. So instead of candy as party favors and trick or treats, I do toys. I found some cheap foam shapes and packs of stickers at Dollar Tree and made little craft kits (I cut holes in some of the foam shapes to make picture frames.)

For older kids I got some fun Halloween pencils and shaped erasers from Dollar Tree and Target's Dollar Spot and made little goody bags with those. Plus a cheap plastic spider ring or fake skeleton in each kit for both kinds.

Do they cost more than the $3 bags of candy? Yes. More work for me? Also yes. But I don't have to taunt my child with something I won't let her have, and I'm not the neighborhood pariah handing out toothbrushes or prunes! (LOL!) Luckily we don't get a TON of ToTers. I'd have to re-think my options then!

on October 23, 2012

I like all your ideas. When we were kids we lived by a Catholic Church. We would stop at the Convent and one year the Nuns gave us Band-aids. Just the plain old Band-aids no cute pictures on them.

on October 23, 2012

Hi Lisa,

I was so happy to see this post. I recently purchased the same canister of Halloween pistachios at Costco and was excited to find something different from the pretzels I usually give out (yes, me too...just can't bring myself to give kids candy). Because I too was concerned about nut allergies, I picked up several boxes of squeeze style apple sauce and yogurt that was on sale at the grocery store, and have those to give out as well. Yep, know its not as fun as candy but they'll have plenty of candy to eat. These are great choices to take in their lunches and hopefully some parents will appreciate my efforts to offer their kids something healthier.

on October 23, 2012

It's a long story, but our neighbourhood is entertaining trick or treaters twice this year. Last night the first batch came around. We handed out a box of raisins and an individually-wrapped chocolate-covered date to each kid. No one complained, but it was hard to read the expresions on their (sometimes covered or heavily painted) faces. Like someone else said, I figure at least the parents will get a treat if the kids don't want to eat them.

on October 24, 2012

I love pistachios!!! They are my all time favorite, and I could sit and eat a whole (big) bag of them myself. These would be great to have around, hopefully they will make these a year round idea.

on October 24, 2012

I don't hand out candy either. I'm also giving out pistachios, plus the left-over fun halloween themed pencils, erasers, and pencil-sharpeners from last year.

on October 28, 2012


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