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Tricks for Healthy Halloween Treats (Candy Recipes!)

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Tricks for Healthy Halloween Treats

Many people get really scared around Halloween…not because of the ghosts and goblins, but about the temptation of being around lots of Halloween candy: it’s in the office at work, it’s at home to be left out for trick-or-treaters or collected by kids, and at holiday parties.

They feel like they can’t trust themselves around it, to not to eat any or to not go crazy binge eating a ton of candy.

They feel like they have to rely on their self-control and willpower to stay strong, even though they know its failed them many times in the past.

Keep scrolling to read 4 simple strategies to avoid the Halloween Candy Binge – by getting to the bottom of what’s causing that behavior to begin with

…and scroll even further down to get 5 healthified healthy Halloween candy recipes, made with better-for-you ingredients.

Samantha shares 4 steps to beat the Halloween candy binge AND her recipes for 5 popular candies that have gotten healthified makeovers with Colleen and Eugene from Charlotte Today.

> EAT ENOUGH:

Make sure you eat enough food during the day so you’re not starving when you get home from work and there’s candy readily available.

By enough, I mean enough food calories-wise so you feel nice and satisfied/full when you get home from work, and enough of all types of nutrients (fat, protein, carbs) so your body doesn’t feel deprived. This is a great strategy for your kids too so they feel fuller going into their trick or treating and may end up eating less candy.

> REMOVE GOOD FOOD/BAD FOOD LABELING:

Let go of the idea that candy is a bad food. When we label a food as bad, we give it power over us and it becomes a moral issue: we feel that WE are bad if we eat it. Research has shown when we feel like we’re bad or messed up by eating something, we’re more likely to have decreased self-esteem and self-control during and after eating it, leading to over-indulging.

So instead of “Candy is BAD”…think “food is just food.”

> RELEASE RESTRICTION:

Another problem with labels is usually if we label foods as bad, we restrict ourselves from eating those foods. We tell ourselves we “can’t” or “shouldn’t” eat them, and generally if we do, we feel guilty and oftentimes can’t only eat a little without overdoing it.

Research has shown that biologically, any time we restrict or deprive ourselves of something, our body’s survival mechanisms kick in, and we instinctually fixate on and crave it. Sure our conscious brain knows we’re just trying not to eat candy, but our subconscious brain just sees that something isn’t available.

The first chance it gets, your body wants you to binge. That’s what it’s asking for, that’s what it’s wired for. Some experts refer to this as the “Last Supper Mentality”. Your body is acting based off of: “I’ve gotta get it in now while I can, because tomorrow it won’t be available anymore when it’s off limits again!”

So instead of “I shouldn’t” or “I can’t eat the candy”…think “I can eat the candy if I want, but do I really want it? How will I feel after? Is it worth it? Or is there something I can eat instead that’s just as delicious but more in line with how I want to feel?”

> HEALTHIFIED SWAPS:

Which leads me to my last tip: Make healthier versions of candy you love with better-for-you ingredients to still enjoy yourself and not feel like you’re missing out by eating delicious treats more in line with your health goals.

…OH and if you are going to eat traditional candy – eat it mindfully, and really enjoy it. Eat it slowly, notice its smell, notice all of its flavors, its textures. Check in with yourself as you eat to notice when you feel satisfied and feelings of fullness creep in. Fast and mindless eating leads to overeating and bellyaches.

Tricks for Healthy Halloween Treats

These are my personal favorite! They can be made gluten free, dairy free, soy free, peanut-free and nut-free.

Healthified Peanut Butter Cups
Gluten free, dairy free, soy free, nut free, peanut free
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Ingredients
  1. 1 1/2 cups chocolate chips
  2. 1 teaspoon coconut oil
  3. 1/2 cup peanut butter (or sunbutter, almond butter, etc.)
  4. 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  5. 1 tablespoon coconut flour
  6. 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  7. 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  8. Mini muffin paper liners
Instructions
  1. If you have a mini muffin pan, line it with paper liners. If not, put your liners on a tray that can fit in your fridge.
  2. Melt half of the chocolate chips (about ¾ cup) and 1/2 teaspoon coconut oil over a double boiler or in the microwave (stirring every 20-30 seconds.
  3. Use a teaspoon to scoop the melted chocolate into the bottom of each mini muffin liner, then put the pan or tray in the fridge.
  4. For the filling, stir together the Sunbutter, maple syrup, coconut flour, sea salt, and vanilla extract in a medium bowl, until the mixture blended well.
  5. Use a teaspoon to measure out the filling, then roll it between your hands to form a ball. Gently press each ball between your fingers so that the top and bottom are slightly flattened, that way the cups won't look too round.
  6. Press the filling balls into each muffin cup, then melt the remaining chocolate and 1/2 teaspoon coconut oil to spoon over the top of each.
  7. You want the tops to be flat, just like a Reese's peanut butter cup, so you might need a little bit more than a teaspoon to fill out the tops. While the chocolate is still melted, sprinkle the tops with coarse sea salt.
  8. Put the tin or tray back in the fridge to set. Store in an airtight container in the fridge.
Healthy Eaton http://healthyeaton.com/
Tricks for Healthy Halloween Treats

Sometimes you feel like a nut – sometimes you don’t! Feel free to omit the almond in this recipe.

Healthified Almond Joy
Gluten free, dairy free, soy free
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Ingredients
  1. 1 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  2. 3 tablespoons coconut oil
  3. 2 tablespoons honey or pure maple syrup
  4. 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  5. Pinch of sea salt
  6. 12 raw almonds
  7. ½ cup milk or semi-sweet chocolate*
Instructions
  1. Add the coconut, oil, honey, vanilla, and sea salt to your food processor, and process until it forms a thick paste, about 1 minute. Stop and scrape down sides halfway through. To make sure it's ready, scoop up a little mixture in your hands and give it a squeeze. If it stays together, it's good!
  2. Use a tablespoon measure to scoop and drop the coconut mixture onto a parchment-lined baking sheet or large plate. Form each ball into a small rectangle by pressing it into formation.
  3. Press an almond on top of each coconut rectangle, then freeze for 30 minutes, or until solid.
  4. Melt the chopped chocolate in the microwave in 15 second increments, stirring between each increment until the chocolate is smooth.
  5. Dip each coconut bar into the melted chocolate on both sides (or just 1 if you'd like), tapping off any excess chocolate, and place back on the parchment paper, and in the fridge to solidify.
Notes
  1. *Or you can make your own chocolate by using 1/2 cup cacao powder, 1/2 cup melted coconut oil, 1/4 cup+ honey or pure maple syrup (whisk all together in a bowl)
  2. Store in the fridge or freezer.
Healthy Eaton http://healthyeaton.com/
 Tricks for Healthy Halloween Treats

These. Are. SO. Good. These sour little bears are sure to bring a sourpuss to your face! Get your own gummy bear mold here!!

Healthified Sour Gummy Bears
Gluten free, dairy free, soy free
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Ingredients
  1. 1 cup frozen fruit, defrosted (I've used strawberries, raspberries, and peaches so far)
  2. ⅓ cup water
  3. 3 tablespoons honey
  4. 1 1/2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin or agar agar
  5. 1/2 - 1 teaspoon citric acid
  6. *See variation in notes below
Instructions
  1. Add the defrosted fruit to your food processor, and process until smooth. Run the mixture through a strainer using a spatula to help it through.
  2. Combine all ingredients {except gelatin or agar} in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Stir with a whisk. When it simmers, gradually sprinkle and whisk the gelatin into the mixture, stirring constantly.
  3. Continue heating until it comes to a simmer and all ingredients are well combined and gelatin is completely melted.
  4. Remove it from the heat and pass it through a strainer again to remove any gelatin or fruit bits. If there are bubbles on top remove with a spoon.
  5. Place gummy bear mold on a cookie sheet (which makes it easier to move without spilling once filled). Pour mixture into the silicone mold and place in the fridge for a minimum of 3 hours.
  6. Carefully pop gummy bears out of mold and store in an airtight container in the fridge. They will keep in the refrigerator for a 2 weeks.
Notes
  1. Want them to be sweeter and more sour? Mix together ½ cup sugar with 2-3 teaspoons citric acid. Toss in the gummies until well coated. They do get slimy though, but taste amazing!
  2. Adapted from BiggerBolderBaking
Healthy Eaton http://healthyeaton.com/
 Tricks for Healthy Halloween Treats

This recipe is a great blank slate to play around with adding fun enhancement flavors or textures like chopped nuts, shredded coconut. Get your own chocolate bar mold here!!

Healthified Chocolate Bar (3 Ingredient)
Gluten free, dairy free, soy free, peanut free, nut free
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Ingredients
  1. 1/4 cup organic, raw cacao powder
  2. 1/4 cup organic, unrefined coconut oil
  3. 2 - 3 tablespoons raw honey or maple syrup
Instructions
  1. Make sure the coconut oil and honey are in a liquidy state
  2. Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Mix really well with a whisk so there are no clumps.
  3. Pour mixture into a silicone chocolate mold or a parchment lined small bowl.
  4. Place in the freezer for close to an hour, until firm all the way through.
Notes
  1. Store leftovers in freezer
Healthy Eaton http://healthyeaton.com/

tricks for healthier treats

Refreshingly delicious! The perfect hint of peppermint to balance the sweet chocolatey flavor, you’ll love it. I used doTERRA peppermint essential oil for the mintyness, but you can use peppermint extract too.

Healthified Peppermint Patties
Gluten free, dairy free, soy free
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Ingredients
  1. 1/3 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  2. 1/3 cup cashews (pre-soaked 6 hours ahead of time, drained)
  3. 1 tablespoon melted coconut oil
  4. 3 tablespoons pure maple syrup or honey
  5. 1 teaspoon peppermint extract or 3 drops essential oil
  6. Pinch of sea salt
  7. 2 tablespoons melted coconut oil
  8. 1/3 cup cacao powder
  9. 4 tablespoons pure maple syrup or honey
  10. Pinch of sea salt
Instructions
  1. Blend the first 6 ingredients in a food processor very well, until smooth. Stop and scrape down the edges as you go.
  2. Use a tablespoon measure to scoop out each patty, and drop it onto a parchment-lined cookie sheet or large plate. Use your fingers to mold, shape, and pat into patties.
  3. Set them in the freezer for 30 minutes.
  4. Right before they're done setting, whisk together the last 4 ingredients in a bowl. Dip each frozen pattie in the chocolate sauce and watch them harden almost immediately.
Notes
  1. Store in the fridge or freezer.
Healthy Eaton http://healthyeaton.com/

HEALTHIFIED GROCERY STORE CANDIES

Sometimes you want a healthier version of your favorite candy, but without any of the work. I get that!

That’s why I’ve rounded up some better-for-you treat options you can order online or pick up at the store (like versions of M&Ms, peanut butter cups, sour gummy candies, swedish fish, lollipops, etc.):

Tricks for Healthy Halloween Treats store candy

SWITCH WITCH

Want your kids to participate in all of the fun Halloween festivities, but without eating a ton of candy? Check out the Switch Witch.

She’s a GOOD witch that visits your house while your kids sleep. She takes their Halloween candy and switches it for an awesome toy.

 

 

 

 

*This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, I’ll receive a small commission

 

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