Halloween Treats for Hosts and Guests

Some Halloween edibles are very fun to make with kids, but not suitable for giving out as trick-or-treat items. They need to be presented on plates, kept right-side-up, and prevented from falling apart. Such items are appropriate for family meals, for when company comes over, and for taking along to a gathering that you are invited to in someone else’s home, or even for a work-related event.

A number of scary desserts can be made with fruits. Crazy Eyes and Orange & Green Meanies are two of the possibilities. Even if some of the components (like chocolate chips) are not exactly low-calorie, with a little imagination they can be replaced by healthier alternatives. Writer Christine Struble says,

Interested grownups can find instructions for making miniature pumpkins from Mandarin oranges and celery sticks, or carving faces into miniature wax-coated cheeses. Other possibilities are apple nachos and banana ghosts.

As well as being low on carbohydrates, some creations are gluten-free, paleo, and even adaptable to be totally vegan. This page steers you to recipes for such treats as Chocolate Peanut Butter Spider Cookies, Paleo Witch Finger Cookies, Stuffed Jack-o-Lanterns, Sugar-Free Yummy Gummy Candy, and Halloween Deviled Eggs. Here, one example is described:

Low Carb Halloween Chips – Using fun Halloween cookie cutters, and your favourite low carb tortilla shells, you can quickly and easily create a heaping bowl full of crispy seasoned chips that are extremely tasty and perfect for dipping. This recipe shows you how to make them with a sweet cinnamon seasoning, but you can always change it up and use all kinds of low carb seasonings for a variety of different flavours.

Although not suitable for trick-or-treat handouts, these Halloween-themed food creations from another page can be put together at home from ingredients like raisins, fresh fruit, pretzel sticks, etc. Very artistic and creative! The suggestions include things that can be made from the interior of a pumpkin, rather than throwing it away.

Why is this important? After every Halloween, American landfills receive 1.3 billion pounds of pumpkin. The waste is not only of potential food, but of the water, labor, energy, land, and capital devoted to growing those fruits (classified as such because anything that begins as a flower is technically a fruit). Digging deeper, we find the horrifying reason why dumping organic waste in landfills is a bad idea: because it exacerbates climate change:

According to the U.S Environmental Protection Agency, in the United States, food is the single largest category of material placed in municipal landfills, where it emits methane, a powerful greenhouse gas. Municipal solid waste landfills are the third-largest source of human-related methane emissions in the United States, accounting for approximately 14.1 percent of these emissions in 2017.

Now, that’s scary!

Your responses and feedback are welcome!

Source: “Healthy Halloween recipes are sweeter than all that Halloween candy,” FoodSided.com, 10/09/21
Source: “Sugar Free (and Low Carb) Halloween Treats,” TheLowCarbGrocery.com, undated
Source: “52 Healthy Halloween Treats for Kids,” LivingWellMom.com, undated
Source: “Why should we care about food waste?,” USDA.gov, undated
Image by Selena N. B. H./CC BY 2.0

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OVERWEIGHT: What Kids Say explores the obesity problem from the often-overlooked perspective of children struggling with being overweight.

About Dr. Robert A. Pretlow

Dr. Robert A. Pretlow is a pediatrician and childhood obesity specialist. He has been researching and spreading awareness on the childhood obesity epidemic in the US for more than a decade.
You can contact Dr. Pretlow at:


Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation at the American Society of Animal Science 2020 Conference
What’s Causing Obesity in Companion Animals and What Can We Do About It

Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation at the World Obesity Federation 2019 Conference:
Food/Eating Addiction and the Displacement Mechanism

Dr. Pretlow’s Multi-Center Clinical Trial Kick-off Speech 2018:
Obesity: Tackling the Root Cause

Dr. Pretlow’s 2017 Workshop on
Treatment of Obesity Using the Addiction Model

Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation for
TEC and UNC 2016

Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation at the 2015 Obesity Summit in London, UK.

Dr. Pretlow’s invited keynote at the 2014 European Childhood Obesity Group Congress in Salzburg, Austria.

Dr. Pretlow’s presentation at the 2013 European Congress on Obesity in Liverpool, UK.

Dr. Pretlow’s presentation at the 2011 International Conference on Childhood Obesity in Lisbon, Portugal.

Dr. Pretlow’s presentation at the 2010 Uniting Against Childhood Obesity Conference in Houston, TX.

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