Being a food writer who focuses on (mostly) healthy family eats is a funny thing during the Halloween season. I get a lot of nervous laughter and jittery explanations from friends about giving into the bloodbath of candy—as if I don’t do the same (or as if I’m judging your choices–rest assured that I’m not). Halloween is about candy. And, other than being sensitive to kids who have to stick to allergen-free candy, I’m down for whatever. However, with these five fantastic choices for natural Halloween candy that taste as delicious as the more traditional candy brands, I don’t see why we can’t have a healthier Halloween. Well, relatively speaking.
The kids don’t even need to know–our trick, their treat.
Funley’s is a line of all-natural snacks that includes crackers, granola clusters, and, most importantly, Stix in the Mud chocolate clusters. These candy bites are made with whole grain cookie bits slathered in chocolate made without high-fructose corn syrup or artificial ingredients. Those of you who are keeping track should note that there are a few fillers and emulsifiers in these candies (carrageenan, soy lecithin), but they are naturally derived and preservative-free. All in all, a better candy choice.
The Original flavor—my favorite—reminds me a lot of Nestle Crunch bars and is totally addictive.
Good thing they come individually wrapped–there’s something about seeing a bunch of empty, ripped candy wrappers strewn about that keeps me honest. My kids like the Caramel variety best, which is pretty delicious, too. The Creamy Peanut Butter is tasty, but I’d rather eat more natural chocolate than fluffy peanut butter. Personal preference.
Justin’s, the makers of Justin’s Nut Butters, never lets us down, and it’s no different this Halloween. Last year at this time, Justin’s was making candy bars wit organic ingredients and Rainforest Alliance chocolate. While those are no longer available, they have added White Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups to their line-up of delicious peanut butter cups. Do I need to say more? Allow me to anyway.
Justin’s also offers bags of individually packaged Peanut Butter Cups covered in dark chocolate or milk chocolate. I can’t choose between the two, but maybe you can. Or maybe you should buy a mix of flavors. Or maybe this shouldn’t be about us at all. Damn you, Justin. How am I supposed to keep from eating the kids’ candy when you make treats this good?
While we’re on the chocolate candy train, it’s worth mentioning another perennial Cool Mom favorite, Unreal Candy. These candy bars were specifically modeled after traditional candies to prove that you could get the same mouthwatering taste without corn syrups, GMOs, hydrogenated oils, artificial colors, or preservatives.
Unreal offers five candies, each like one of these Halloween favorites: Peanut M&M’s, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, Snickers, and Milky Way bars. They’re also priced similarly, which can’t always be said about healthier snack options. If you want old school taste with new school ingredients, Unreal is the way to go.
You can find out where to buy these all-natural candy bars at a store near you or online through the Unreal Candy website.
I didn’t think that I was much into hard candies until I tried Torie & Howard Hard Candies. These delightful sweets are organic, non-GMO, and made without preservatives, artificial dyes, casein, soy, or gluten–which means they are allergen-friendly, too. More to the point, they’re delicious, with amazing flavors like Pomegranate & Nectarine (my favorite), Pink Grapefruit & Tupelo Honey, Pear & Cinnamon and more.
Sound too highfalutin’? Worry not, cool ones. These candies are subtle and natural for you, fruity and sweet for them.
Torie & Howard candies usually come in bulk bags or civilized tins (like those black currant pastilles, which are the only other hard candy I’ve ever loved!). For Halloween this year, though, you can find a festive bag of individually wrapped candies that are perfect for handing out to trick-or-treaters.
One last minute add: How could we forget the deliciousness that is legit? The Oregon company’s addictive Word bar, and the ShotCaller are like organic versions of Milky Way and Snickers and the taste is phenomenal. Gourmet even. There is also Digits which is like your favorite melt in your mouth not in your hands treat, only no artificial flavors or dyes, and there’s even an espresso bean flavor should your tastes be more sophisticated than simply plain or peanut.
They’re all made with certified organic ingredients from ethical suppliers, free of GMOs, artificial ingredients, or hydrogenated oils. Of course as with all natural chocolate bar options they’re going to cost you a little more than the regular candy bars you see at the supermarket check-out line. So maybe Legit Candy Bars is what you save for your own adult costume party, or to keep in a bowl on your desk at the office. You won’t just have a favorite new candy bar, you might just find you make some new friends.
Legit Candy bars are available throughout the west coast in stores throughout California, Oregon, and Washington.