Trick or treating, trunk or treat, an at-home Halloween — it’s no secret that this holiday looks different this year, but having lots of leftover Halloween candy remains a constant. Much of it is intended for front porch distribution, and rather than confronting a disappointed child with an empty bowl because they bought too little, shoppers tend to buy in bulk. It’s estimated that Americans will spend an average of $92 per household just in Halloween candy season, and come November 1, that can mean pounds of sugar-packed temptation still sitting around. I find it resourceful to get creative in what to do with all the leftover candy and have some suggestions that might make this Halloween season easier:
How much candy can one really eat? I know this might be stating the obvious, and it may seem counterproductive to your waistline (if you care about that sort of thing), but anything in moderation, I say!
A number of charitable organizations take leftover candy and send it to troops stationed overseas. Once collected, they’ll send them to both troops and first responders. Check out Operation Gratitude for more information. The Ronald McDonald House also takes donations, and they use the candy to offer sweet treats to families of children receiving medical care — check with a local house to find out more of the specifics.
Bake It Up
Trust me, there are so many recipes on the web for leftover Halloween candy. Make some brownies and cookies or make your own trail mix. Keep it simple and find a no-bake recipe, or take your favorite recipe and add the candy. The sky is the limit when it comes to baking — and candy.
If you just can’t be bothered with all the candy, when in doubt, freeze it. That way you can use it all year in milkshakes, ice cream, and even cookie dough.
Use It In Your Holiday Festivities
Candy has a pretty long shelf life, so consider saving it for the next holiday for an added dessert table, a gingerbread house, a holiday charcuterie board, or even a wine-pairing night. Or how about a candy cocktail, anyone?
A Learning Tool
Kids are pretty motivated by anything involving candy, so using it as a learning tool can be rewarding because, after the lesson, they can eat it. From candy science experiments to math problems, leftover Halloween candy can be useful for teaching aspects.
Switch Witch It
I’m recently new to learning about this idea, but think of the “Switch Witch” as a twist on the ol’ “Elf on the Shelf” mixed with a little Tooth Fairy magic. The idea, crafted by parents, follows the legend of the friendly “Switch Witch,” who visits with the family in the days leading up to Halloween. Then, on Halloween night, the witch takes the candy and leaves something better behind. The doll and storybook can be purchased on Amazon. It’s a great way to keep the kiddos from consuming too much candy and also incorporates a nice lesson of giving and receiving.
Here’s hoping your Halloween is safe and joyful, and no matter what you decide to do with all that candy, make sure to refer back to the first suggestion and have a happy candy-filled Halloween!