I love Halloween! When we moved into our first home we had no kids yet, but I dressed as Columbia from Rocky Horror Picture Show and anxiously awaited the arrival of hundreds of princesses and ghosts. The reality was about 8 kids showed up and I was left with a bowl of Snickers, oh darn. I took one for the team and made sure those didn’t go to waste.
But, I was also left with a bowl full of non-candy treats that I still have leftover to use this year. I copied this idea from my sister who bought spider rings, stickers, bouncy balls, and pencils for kids. I let kids take one piece of candy and one non-candy treat. They are always so excited that they get TWO treats, and I love watching their internal struggle with which non-candy treat they choose. Plus, they are safe to use year after year when I have leftovers.
My children have no known food allergies, but I know many other kids live with allergies. I place a teal pumpkin outside of my house each Halloween to let area families know their children can stock up at our house with a non-candy treat. Read more about the Teal Pumpkin Project here where a contributor also talks about some healthy Halloween treat options.
I asked other Des Moines Mom contributors what their go-to non-candy Halloween treat is and one mom said she got a big bag of little containers of play-doh at Costco and handed those out. Another mom makes sure to stop at a neighbor’s house because she knows they hand out little boxes of crayons and coloring books. A contributor who is a teacher said one year her students made bath bombs and dyed them green and called them witches brew. She also suggested slime, silly straws, and mini watercolor sets.
Where can I find non-candy treats?
Look around for bulk items at Costco like play-doh, slime, or silly straws. I like to go to Nobbies or Michaels and scour their bins of little prizes. I got enough the first time five years ago that I haven’t had to make any new purchases since.
Teal Pumpkin-friendly Treats
If you still want to do food treats, but want to avoid allergies, one mom said she hands out hot chocolate and apple cider packets and said they are SO popular. Another option is Capri Sun packets, mini water bottles, and I saw Gerber is selling bulk sets of Halloween-themed puffs for the babies.
Non-Candy Halloween Treats
Finally, here is a list of go-to treats from Food Allergy Research and Education:
- Glow sticks, bracelets, or necklaces
- Pencils, pens, crayons or markers
- Halloween erasers or pencil toppers
- Mini slinkies
- Whistles, kazoos, or noisemakers
- Bouncy balls
- Finger puppets or novelty toys
- Spider rings
- Vampire fangs
- Mini notepads
- Playing cards