No tricks to these healthy Halloween treats

Providing a snack for a child's classroom is no simple task, especially when it comes to Halloween.

The trick-or-treating itself will result in plenty of candy, so many parents hesitate to send in yet more sweets. Plus, the prevalence of food allergies means you must be especially careful about what you select, whether sweet or savory.

The best bet is something healthy, that avoids the major allergens (such as nuts) and that the kids will still get a kick out of. It sounds like a tall order, but it's actually not that hard.

Healthy foods can be fun when presented the right way. For example, mini jack-o-lanterns can be made by taking a small orange and using the tip of a knife to cut eyes, a nose and a mouth into the peel. Cut just deep enough to expose the white pith.

Or if you like, you can cut off the top of the orange, scoop out the pulp and fill it with chopped pears, apples or dried fruit. If you use pears or apples, toss the pieces with lemon juice (or juice from the pulp of the orange) so they don't turn brown.

Kids love carrot or sugar snap "fingers" that can be dipped in a sauce made by mixing ketchup with an Italian seasoning blend and enough cranberry juice to give it a "bloody" consistency. Provide each child with a small paper cup of sauce.

Make ghoulishly delicious eyeballs by slitting pitted dates along the length and stuffing them with low-fat cream cheese. Use a golden raisin or dried cranberry to make the pupil.

These healthy jack-o-lantern sandwiches are made with whole-grain bread plus low-in-fat sliced deli meat and kid-friendly American cheese to make glowing orange eyes.

Toasting the bread makes it easier to work with when you're cutting out the eyes and mouth.

A simple spread made by combining ketchup and light mayonnaise provides a touch of sweetness kids will love, plus it helps hold the sandwiches together. If you like, you can add pickles or lettuce leaves for an optional vegetable layer.

The sandwiches are formed using a pumpkin-shaped cookie cutter. Other shapes also could be used.

If you have a sweet tooth, see the accompanying recipes for homemade Halloween goodies.

Share This Story