December 6, 2022

Baen Scriptions

The Health Maniacs

Healthy Halloween Treats & Snack Ideas

My inbox has been blowing up this week with requests for healthier swaps for Halloween treats. My approach, like my approach to nutrition and health in general, isn’t all-or-nothing, black and white, or full of “good” and “bad.”

I want the best of everything: all the fun, upgrading food where I can, and not worrying about being 100% totally perfect or rigid about it.

Meaning: yes, Noah will be trick-or-treating this year, and he can count, sort, play with and enjoy some of the treats he gets. Love it. So cute! A lot of people have been asking for my plan after that. 

And here it is:

 The next day, I’m going to let him “trade” his candy in for a toy he’s been eyeing. To me, it’s about participating and enjoying ourselves, without sacrificing the stuff that matters (blood sugar spikes & crashes in toddlers aren’t my idea of a good time, lol). And I’d much rather spend $20 on a new toy or some books that he can play with way longer.

As for what we’ll be handing out to neighborhood kiddos, there are so many ideas if you’re wanting to try something new with your usual candy budget. This year I’m going to do a test: half candy, and then half other things that are non-candy. I’ll let you all know how it goes 🙂

Some idea include: individual bags of chips, apple chips, popcorn, hippeas, fruit leathers,  and then little fun things like halloween stamps, temporary tattoos, little toys, stickers or buying better (with upgraded ingredients) candy that you can either pass out or swap out for your own littles’ candy they get while trick or treating (examples include Good Earth gummies or lollipops, Ocho chocolate coconut bars, etc). 

We get literally hundreds of trick or treaters in our neighborhood— it’s a thing— and as much as I wish we could hand out the nice upgraded candy to everyone, it’s just way too pricey. Here are the exact things I grabbed and have on hand this year: 

fun Halloween stickers, stamps, and tattoos

plus bags of GF chips

 2-ingredient fruit leathers (both found at Costco).

I’ll keep everyone posted on IG (follow along here!) how it turns out but I’m so excited and feel good about offering fun treats that I’d give my own kids. 

Healthier Halloween treats

And for festive snacks and treats to enjoy together at home? You guys know I have tons of (easy) healthy ideas up my sleeve. 😉 Here are a handful of the snacks we’ve been making and loving to celebrate Halloween!

Apple Cider Gummies

Talk about a treat upgrade! These homemade gummies are a fun activity (for any age), they taste great, feel like a fun novelty AND they have great immune boosting and gut healing properties. Grass-fed beef gelatin (I got mine from Thrive Market) which is a gut and microbiome healer, very similar to collagen. For this recipe I used small silicone candy molds/gummy molds, but if you don’t have those, you can pour the liquid into silicone ice cube trays or into a square baking sheet and cut into small cubes after the liquid has set.

1 cup fresh apple cider juice

1 1/2 tbsp grass-fed beef gelatin

1/2 tsp cinnamon (optional)

2 tsp raw honey (I use this immune boosting honey, save 20% using code simplyrealhealth)

Add apple cider to a pyrex measuring cup. Sprinkle the gelatin over the top to “bloom” (aka, hydrate), for 1-2 minutes. If you skip this step, the gelatin will get too clumpy.

Pour liquid into a small saucepan, add honey and whisk over medium-low heat, until the gelatin dissolves and is smooth.

Use droppers or a pour-spout to pour liquid into gummy molds (lined on baking sheets or plates for easy carrying into the fridge).

Place gummy molds in the fridge for at least 15-20 minutes before popping out and storing in a sealed container in the fridge. Can last for 5-7 days in the fridge this way.

Psst! Watch Chef Noah help me make them in this video!

Cherry Elderberry Gummies

Another variation of the famous (easy) homemade gummies, with more immune boosting and healing ingredients! So yummy for all ages (kids & adults alike).

1 cup tart cherry juice

2 tsp elderberry syrup

1 1/2 tbsp grass-fed beef gelatin

2 tsp honey

Add cherry juice and elderberry syrup to a pyrex measuring cup. Sprinkle the gelatin over the top to “bloom” (aka, hydrate), for 1-2 minutes. If you skip this step, the gelatin will get too clumpy.

Pour liquid into a small saucepan, add honey and whisk over medium-low heat, until the gelatin dissolves and is smooth.

Use droppers or a pour-spout to pour liquid into gummy molds (lined on baking sheets or plates for easy carrying into the fridge).

Place gummy molds in the fridge for at least 15-20 minutes before popping out and storing in a sealed container in the fridge. Can last for 5-7 days in the fridge this way.

Spooky Banana Ghost Pops

A cute little Halloween treat, that you can feel great about celebrating with all month long! I would recommend using some vanilla, honey or maple syrup (just 1-2 tsp) mixed into your yogurt, so it’s not too sour. Also it can be fun to sprinkle shredded coconut or crushed nuts after the yogurt too. Optional to use coconut milk yogurt here as well if you’re dairy free.

1 medium banana

1 cup whole milk yogurt or coconut milk yogurt

9 mini dark chocolate chips

1 tsp honey, maple syrup or vanilla

Cut banana at an angle in 3 places. Round the top of the middle banana to make it a ghost shape.

Add yogurt to a small bowl and mix in honey/maple/vanilla.

Insert popsicle sticks into the bottom of each banana. Dip into yogurt mixture, and smooth with your fingers. Place on a plate.

Add in chocolate chip eyes and a mouth. Place in freezer for at least 20 minutes, and store in freezer like popsicles.

Other fun Halloween snack ideas (that take 2 seconds):

  • Drawing a ghost face on the back of cheese sticks (while still in wrapper)
  • Drawing jack-o-lantern faces on outside of a satsuma orange
  • Dark chocolate, dipped in real peanut butter/almond butter with flaky sea salt on top= a upgraded peanut butter cup!

Or make the real thing! These salted chocolate peanut butter cups are in your Simply Real Eating Cookbooks! Photo by Carina Skrobecki.

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Looking for more healthy snack and kids food ideas?!

Check out SRH: The Shop where you can find my healthy snack guide for less than $10 AND the Baby Food Files (under $50) with meal ideas and recipes for infants to toddlers (that the whole family will enjoy) and a plan for introducing real food to your baby!

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