Halloween, one of everyone’s favorite times of year, is just around the corner. And so are all the candies your kids can’t eat. Never fear, here are a few tips to help your kids enjoy All Hallow’s Eve.
1. The Candy
Sure Foods Living, a wonderful gluten-free blog by Alison St. Sure is a great resource for gluten-free Halloween candy. For gluten-free/casein-free candy that is free of dyes, check out Illinois Candy. If you have a Trader Joe’s market nearby, their organic suckers are a wonderful option. The Natural Candy Store has tasty alternatives that are allergen-free as well.
2. The Trick
You can pull a little trick on your kids by purchasing GF/CF dye-free candy and giving it to your neighbors to hand out to your child. The thrill of trick or treating is alive and well and no one is the wiser.
3. The Hand Out
Halloween can be really overwhelming for kids. You might suggest giving instead of receiving. When my little one gets overwhelmed at all the scurrying, lights and commotion, he comes home and sits on the front porch and hands out candy with me.
4. The Trade Game
When the evening of trick or treating comes to a close, my kids dump all their candy out on the dining room table. They pull out everything they can’t eat and trade with their friends for things they can eat, or they trade with us because we’ve already purchased acceptable alternatives. It takes a little planning, but normalizing this holiday for your kids will make this an unforgettable evening for them.
We throw a little Halloween party each year that focuses on activities, not sweets. You can use gluten-free rice tortillas from Trader Joes, along with Daiya non-dairy cheese to make Pizzas. Use olives for eyes and red peppers for scars. Pair that will hardboiled Egg Spiders (recipe below) and you’ve got a protein party your kids will love. Creepy Cupcakes for dessert will delight your kids, just use organic, dye-free gummy worms. Packed with way less sugar than candy, Pumpkin Spice Cookies are a good option, because let’s face it, if you eliminate all sugar, your kids might revolt.
6. The Giveaway
Most schools offer a candy drive that sends Halloween candy to our troops overseas. It’s a great way to purge and feel good about supporting our military. If your school doesn’t have a program, now is a good time to get one up and running by contacting Operation Gratitude. Or, contact your dentist to see if he or she is part of Halloween Candy Buyback, a program that also sends candy overseas. If your dentist isn’t participating in the program, you can contact Operation Gratitude directly.
Halloween Egg Spiders Recipe
Prep time: 15 minutes
Total time: up to 45 minutes
Yield: 1 dozen
6 hardboiled eggs
1⁄4 c. mayonnaise (or a GFCFSF alternative like Spectrum Canola Mayonnaise)
salt and pepper to taste
18 whole black olives
- Peel hardboiled eggs and slice in half length-wise. Remove the yolks to a bowl, setting whites aside.
- Add mayonnaise to yolks and smash with the back of a fork. Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Spoon yolk mixture evenly into egg halves.
- Slice all olives in half length wise. Place an olive half upon filled egg. Slice two more halves into legs for each side of spider, arranging accordingly.
Amy Waczek writes a gluten-free, casein, soy, nightshade-optional blog featuring a recipe index and resources guide at amysglutenfreepantry.com. She is mother to two robust, gluten-free kids.