Halloween is a time for trick-or-treating, getting candy and sweet treats, and dressing up in silly costumes. If you don’t want your children to go overboard on sugar then make a concerted effort to have a zero-sugar Halloween night. You can still have sweet things to eat without having high-sugar candy or a lot of confections. Here are some practical tips for having a Halloween without sugar.
Pumpkins are a great for cooking on Halloween night. Cubing, baking, mashing, or simply roasting seeds are ways to have a nutritious snack or even an entire meal on Halloween. Whether you go all out and make pumpkin soup or simply have cubed pumpkin roasted in the oven there are versatile ways to use small pumpkins that you can cook fresh.
You can make pumpkin as flavorful as you want without sugar. Adding salt, pepper and onions can make a savory and simple meal. If you do want something sweeter try cinnamon and coconut. If you are making mashed pumpkin you can add coconut milk to sweeten it up without sugar.
Honey is a more natural form of sugar that is still sweet. Making honey treats or simply adding honey to plain foods is a way to sweeten up snacks without the use of processed sugar.
Peanut butter and honey combined make for a sweet confection that doesn’t have much sugar content if at all. Mix together a cup of peanut butter to a quarter cup honey and a stick of butter. Heat up this mixture on the stove until warm. Remove from heat and then add this mixture to unsalted plain popcorn and shape into balls. Keep your hands wet with water so as to prevent your hands from getting too sticky when you form the popcorn balls. Allow them to cool before eating.
Making savory foods for Halloween is a way to have great tasting food without any added sugar to your evening. Pumpkins are a traditional celebration for Halloween but you don’t need to focus on pumpkin for your food.
Adding squash and zucchini to your pumpkin dishes not matter what they consist of adds nutrition, fiber, and texture to your dishes. Roasting pumpkin pieces or seeds can have cubed squash and zucchini drizzled in olive oil and roasted alongside the pumpkin for added kick. Adding onions will add flavor as the pieces are cooked in onion juice as they softer.
Herbs and spices such as cilantro, fennel, rosemary, thyme, basil and oregano can all add some flavor to pumpkin dishes depending upon your tastes. Add them in little amounts or to taste. Your favorite dry or ground spices will also work to give your kids something familiar if they are used to your way of cooking.
Older kids will probably take to spices better than younger kids if they aren’t used to a lot of flavors. Modify your recipes according to their tastes and you can still make savory and great dishes that can lend to having a sugar-free Halloween.
One last suggestion is to have your kids be so involved in other activities on Halloween that don’t include trick-or-treating and they will be less intent on having a sugar rush and more about having fun. Halloween can still be fun without all the sugar.