Wholesome Halloween Handouts

Want to join in on the fun of Halloween without amping up the neighborhood’s sugar consumption? Here are a few alternatives to candy that will make your house a healthy—and fun—stop on the trick-or-treat route.  

Best of all, having alternative choices on hand allows kids with food allergies to participate in the fun.  You might even consider putting a teal pumpkin on your porch to show that your house is inclusive for all trick-or-treaters.

  • Avoid food entirely: Small toys like bouncy balls, plastic spiders, and stickers make great Halloween handouts. Check out the party favor aisle and browse the local variety shops to find fun surprises that will outlast the Halloween night sugar rush.
  • Prepackaged snacks: Try convenient and healthier options like pretzels, popcorn, animal crackers, and granola bars. They’re not optimal diet options, but they’re better than pure sugar!
  • School supplies: It’s a school night, so hand out some spooky pencils, notepads, and erasers that the kids can take to school with them the next morning.
  • Fruit: If all else fails, fill up those trick-or-treaters’ baskets with apples and clementines.

The average trick-or-treater consumes 3 cups of sugar on Halloween night. That’s roughly five times the 124 grams consumed each day by the average American, and it’s 25 times the recommended limit of 25 grams of sugar per day. A one night sugar feast is unlikely to cause harm, but it’s a good chance to think about the level of sugar in our kids’ daily diet and the ways it can impact their long-term health.

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John Robertson