It’s time to face the facts: Halloween is here. And whether you love it or hate it, chances are you’re going to buy an obligatory bag (or ten) of lollies for trick-or-treaters – and then try your best to not to eat them all yourself.

While the thought of the impending sugar rush is scary for some, as a dietitian I’ve got some news that might surprise you. You see, Halloween is just one day – and one day of unhealthy eating isn’t going to outweigh a consistently healthy diet throughout the rest of the year. So, in my opinion, it is A-Okay to enjoy some Halloween treats, but what’s important is that you do so mindfully and in moderation (read: don’t demolish the whole Halloween haul in a single night).

Calories in your typical Halloween loot

You typical Halloween loot might contain, for example, several bag’s worth of mixed lollies, multiple chocolate bars and other confectionary – which will send the calorie content well into the hundreds, if not thousands.

On the other hand, if you simply enjoy three or four lollies and a single mini chocolate bar, your calorie intake might only be about 100 calories.

Healthier Halloween ideas

If you think that eating in moderation is easier said than done, here’s your solution: pair your treat foods with healthier alternatives. Capiche?

Rather than restricting treats altogether, serve them alongside healthy Halloween-themed snacks to encourage moderation. Some of my top suggestions for healthier trick-or treaters are:

  • Carrot cake flavoured homemade bliss balls
  • Healthier muffins made with wholemeal flour, decorated with green icing
  • Ghost-shaped biscuits made with rolled oats
  • ‘Popcorn hands’ made by filling clear plastic cloves with plain air-popped popcorn
  • Monster mini cheese rounds with stick-on eyes

And if you’re throwing a Halloween party, try these healthier party foods instead:

  • Capsicum jack-o-lanterns filled with healthy dip
  • Vegetable platters in the shape of Frankenstein
  • Devilled eggs served with thin slices of capsicum to resemble devil horns
  • Fruit salad served in a watermelon carved like a monster face
  • Frozen banana ‘ghost’ pops with mini choc chips for eyes

And there you have it! My healthier Halloween-inspired ideas to serve alongside the traditional sugary fare.

Melissa Meier is a Sydney-based Accredited Practising Dietitian. You can follow her @honest_nutrition.

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