The goal of Halloween trick-or-treating changes as you get older. For smaller children, it’s really about the cute costumes; kids may not even really be interested in the treats. But for older children and teenagers, it often turns into a contest involving the number of houses you can visit and how much candy you can collect in one night. When I was a teenager, I planned which direction to go in the neighborhood to maximize efficiency, ensuring that I would make it to every house in the neighborhood and fill my entire pillowcase (yes, a king-size pillowcase) with candy.
So when November 1 dawns and all of the hair color and face paint have been washed away, what to do with all that candy? Here are three ideas for using leftover Halloween candy.
If you’ve got way more candy than your family could possibly consume, consider donating some of it to a charity. Send your candy overseas to children around the world at Christmastime with Operation Christmas Child, or send your treats to military troops via Operation Gratitude. Contact your local Ronald McDonald House and see if your candy can be used to put a smile on the face of families whose children are in the hospital.
Turn it into trail mix.
If you want a way to enjoy your Halloween candy with a dose of nutrition added, toss together small candies, whole-grain cereal, nuts and dried fruit. You’ll still get your sweet fix but with a boost of fiber and protein.
Related Recipe: Nuts ‘n Seeds Chocolate Trail Mix
Cook with it.
Add leftover candy to recipes, like brownies, cookies, cake or milkshakes. Substitute chopped candy in any recipe you would normally use chocolate chips. You can even freeze the candy so it will last longer. Try the Halloween Candy Brownies below from the eMeals Dessert Plan.
HALLOWEEN CANDY BROWNIES
- 2 cups sugar
- ¾ cup butter, melted
- 4 eggs, lightly beaten
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 1½ cups flour
- ⅓ cup unsweetened cocoa
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 2½ cups favorite chopped candy bars (all one kind, or a blend of 2 or 3 favorites)
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Combine sugar, melted butter, eggs and vanilla in a large bowl. Combine flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt; stir well. Add to sugar mixture, stirring until blended.
- Fold in chopped candy bars. Spoon batter into a greased 13-x 9-inch baking dish.
- Bake 30 minutes; cool completely, and cut into bars.
-Text by Jessica Cox, RD