Halloween treats don’t have to be disasters for your children. With childhood obesity on the rise and cavities always a constant concern, all the candy at Halloween can be a big problem.
This year, choose healthy treats to give your kids. You can pack them in school lunches, serve them at the class party or let kids munch on them before heading out to trick or treat.
Apples are a quintessential autumn treat, especially when paired with certain dips and toppings. Mix some toffee or caramel dips. Distribute a limited, individual amount of dip, and slice up apples, or pears or other fruits. Let kids dip them into the sweet dressings. Peanut butter also works well for this, without adding too much extra sugar. For an extra-special treat, buy or make caramel-covered apples. Let kids cover them in chopped nuts for a little more protein. Slice up some apples or pears and sprinkle with some butter, cinnamon and brown sugar. Add chopped nuts and rolled oats for some crunch. Bake until soft. Serve as a simple dessert.
Fill your kids with a fiber-filled snack–popcorn. You can focus on the sweet or the salty with popcorn. You may want to pour the popcorn into small bags to limit the amount of snacking kids do. This is also a great way to send a special treat with kids to school. You can also roll popcorn into a ball and put it on a stick for easy snacking. After you pop your popcorn, pour it out onto parchment paper. Melt white or milk chocolate chip in a measuring cup. Pour the chocolate over the popcorn and mix to cover each piece. Form balls before the chocolate hardens. If you want more of a Halloween touch, you can mix the white chocolate with orange food coloring or sprinkle orange and Halloween shaped candy sprinkles on the popcorn. If you prefer a salty snack, make some butter popcorn. Sprinkle paprika, turmeric, curry powder or chili powder on the popcorn, according to your own taste.
Instead of handing out doughnuts and cupcakes to your kids this Halloween, make some homemade, healthy pastries that are filled with more nutrition and flavor. Make muffins or scones with whole grain flour. Add dried fruits and chopped nuts. Add some chocolate, toffee or butterscotch chips for a little sweet kick.