I love Hallowe'en festivities! Dressing up and having Hallowe'en fun has always been a big tradition in our family.
As a kid, the biggest drawback was the "treats" that sent me into a tailspin after eating them. If you've read about my personal history, you know that sugar and food colouring are my personal 'kryptonite' – I actually have an allergic response to them that can be detected within minutes. Thank goodness that treats have evolved!
Gone are the days of dry, carob rice cakes! (They're hardly a treat.) There are so many fun and healthy options on the market, no kids would believe that they're missing out. In many cases, they might even prefer the new tasty treats because they are made with real ingredients instead of sugar, coal tar dyes, hydrogenated vegetable oil and a host of other unpronounceable ingredients.
SmartSweets are an innovative candy that kicks sugar to the curb because they're naturally sweetened with stevia. They are free of sugar alcohols and artificial sweeteners. Every ingredient they use is GMO-free. You can feel good about enjoying these chewy gummy bears that are bursting with juicy, fruity flavour. Look for them in your local health food store, Bulk Barn or online here.
With only 3 ingredients (organic cocoa, raw honey and natural peppermint oil), these chocolate treats are hard to argue against. That’s it! Though they taste like they are layered with so much more decadence. Do you remember traditional peppermint patties from when you were a kid? My friends' eyes always light up when I pull these peppermint patties out of my purse because they know they're in for terrific, tingling, cooling peppermint fun without a trace of inflammation... or guilt. Look for them in your local health food store or purchase them online here.
What is Hallowe'en without chocolate? This holiday favourite can be a healthy and ethical choice – read the package carefully. Be sure to vote with your wallet for ethically-traded, organic chocolate! Conventional chocolate is often produced with child labour and toxic pesticides. Yes, organic, fairly-traded chocolate may cost a bit more, though consider that no one really needs to eat a huge amount of it. Cocoa is very calorie-rich and should be used sparingly (unless you are doing a daily aerobic workout). Avoid products sweetened with sugar (even organic cane sugar) and, instead, look for chocolate sweetened with dates, honey or coconut palm sugar, such as Zazubean 55% Cacao Organic Chocolate Bar. This Coconut Milk Chocolate Bar is so creamy, most people think it's made with regular milk. (Look for it in your local health food store or Bulk Barn.)
These guilt-free crisps are made from simple raw, organic ingredients that deliver a fantastic flavour that kids and adults love! Packed with antioxidants, fibre, magnesium, and healthy fats, eat them right out of the bag for a nourishing snack at home, school, the office, the gym, or on the road. You can also top them with nut butter, or crumble them over coconut ice cream for a yummy dessert. Look for them in your local health food store, Bulk Barn or purchase them online here.
Laughing Giraffe Organics is a boutique family business, owned and operated by the Gilmour family, who live in the San Francisco Bay Area. Their tasty treats are organic, gluten-free, non-GMO and Kosher. These coconut macaroons are plant-based and dehydrated at low temperatures to ensure that the enzymes are preserved. A wordplay on macaroons, these Snakaroons can be enjoyed as a wholesome organic snack, a tea or coffee complement, or a dessert cookie. Look for them in your local health food store, Whole Foods, Bulk Barn or purchase them online here.
Make your own Trail Mix with Lily’s Chocolate Chips. There are so many combinations of nuts, seeds and dried fruit to choose from. One of my favourite combos is raw, organic cashews, pecans, chopped dates, a dash of sea salt and Lily’s Sugar-Free Chocolate Chips. Look for these ingredients in most grocery stores and health food stores. Buy Lily’s Chocolate Chips online here.
If they didn’t spell it out on the label, you would probably never know that these fruity Mountain Berry snacks include spinach and sweet potatoes, too. The natural sweetness of strawberries, blueberries, raspberries and apples, keeps the power-packed spinach incognito. While I don’t endorse lying to your kids about the ingredients of food (honesty is always the best policy) it is a way to introduce green veggies that will leave your kids pleasantly surprised. Look for these at your local health food store, grocery store or buy them online here.
These tasty nut and seed bars have become known for their high-quality ingredients and reasonable prices. I carry them in my purse as a quick snack or an emergency provision. With these on hand, you won't want to cave to unhealthy food choices when stuck in transit or going out with friends. H&A Natural Bars are free of preservatives, dairy, artificial flavours, GMOs, trans fats, refined sugars and gluten. Made in Canada, they are available coast-to-coast in many grocery stores or order them online here.