photo by Paige Cody via Unsplash

Eat Through the Holidays: Halloween

October 4, 2021

by tiffany ricci, rdn

Just as Memorial Day is the kick-off to summer, Halloween is the kick-off to the foodie holidays. Join us as we “Eat Through the Holidays.” We’re serving up a 3-month series to help you make the most of this delicious time of year while still sticking to your health goals. 

Halloween is just around the corner and hopefully your family will be able to celebrate in some capacity. It can be fun to watch your little ones brave scary front doors to solicit strangers all in the name of candy. But, such hard work can result in too much candy to manage.

If you find yourself overrun with Snickers and Starbursts, here are a couple of ideas to handle leftover candy:

Parent Tax: Maybe it’s not an official tax in your home, but it is in ours. This is my husband’s idea, but I like it! Certain foods such as bacon, donuts, and ice cream are subject to a “parent tax.” It’s our fun way of having a bite of our kid’s food when they have something worth tasting. 

The parent tax is certainly permissible on Halloween candy. Depending on the age of your kiddos, your children could calculate the tax percentage and “pay” what is owed from their loot. Make sure to only accept premium items such as anything Reese’s or dark chocolate. *Wink*

Generosity: Sharing can be a difficult concept for some littles - especially when it comes to their hard-earned candy. Donating Halloween candy to other organizations can promote generosity and putting others first. Here are a few organizations where you can donate unopened candy:

This is by no means an exhaustive list, but could get the wheels rolling on places to share unopened candy and promote a spirit of generosity. 

Candy Finances: You can also focus on financial behaviors by allowing your kids to exchange their candy for increased allowance or "buy" free passes for chores: five Snickers will buy a night free from clearing the table, two Twizzlers earn a day of emptying the dishwasher - your family can set the exchange to best reflect your rhythm. 

Some dental offices have a buy-back program where they'll pay for candy by the pound; that money can start or support a child's savings account.

Other Uses:

  • Share some of your candy corn with an athlete who is logging some serious mileage.
  • Freeze some of the candy for upcoming holidays where you can take it to a party as your contribution.
  • Store your treats to use as decoration for a gingerbread house later in the year.
  • Consider making Care Bags or Blessing Bags to keep in your car and share with those in need.

It’s fun to enjoy candy. It’s best, though, to keep it as a treat - an occasional celebration rather than an everyday thing. No worries, with the upcoming holidays there will be plenty of opportunities for more treats. 

Is there anything you and your family do to manage the candy overload from Halloween? Share with us on social media - we would love to hear your tips!

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