Our family gives out out non-candy, non-food Halloween treats to trick-or-treaters.
Might sound boring, right? Candy and Halloween just go together!
I encourage others to do this too. But why would you want to do this, and what can you give out on Halloween that isn’t candy anyway?
I have some really good reasons and over 50 fun non-food Halloween treat ideas to share with you, plus a free printable allergy friendly Halloween sign!
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Why A Non-Candy Halloween?
Not because I don’t like candy (I LOVE candy), but for several reasons:
1. We could all eat less sugar in our diets.
Apparently America loves candy quite a LOT, because it’s expected that we’ll spend over $2.6 billion on it this year at Halloween! That much money and sugar is just overkill.
Sugar is in so much of what we eat and drink that it’s easy to become addicted without realizing it. While I haven’t banned added sugars from our household, I am trying to be more careful to check ingredients and make better decisions about how much sugar our family eats as we strive to be healthier.
My child eats plenty of sugar on a regular basis and he doesn’t need more sweets. Let alone the tons he’ll get from Halloween events. Having so much candy around just makes me want to eat more of it too!
2. I’m cheap and want more value for my money.
Bags of candy are getting ridiculously expensive! And when kids are literally getting pounds of candy, half or more of it ends up going in the trash.
If I’m going to participate in trick-or-treating, then I’d rather buy small toys and art supplies to hand out that will get played with and used. Even if those things might not last that long.
I’ve listed ideas for non-food items for Halloween below that will work for a variety of budgets. Most of them are relatively inexpensive though. You can always save what isn’t used for next year, or another “kid” event.
SAVINGS TIP: Buy non-food Halloween treats on sale after Halloween to use for next year. They have great sales at Target and Walmart afterwards, and since they aren’t candy, they won’t ever go bad!
Related Post: How to Save Money Eating Out
3. My son has severe food allergies.
He’s one of the estimated 5.6 million children under 18 in the U.S. who have food allergies. Instead of Halloween being a fun, exciting time, it’s a very stressful time for us- and for other food allergy families.
Any time he reaches his hand in a candy bowl while trick-or-treating, I cringe, scared of what he’ll pull out. Later we’ll go through the candy and see if he can eat any of it, but I always keep some “safe” treats for him.
All kids should be able to participate and enjoy these fun celebrations, so that’s why I’m participating in the Teal Pumpkin Project® from FARE: the Food Allergy Research & Education organization.
Basically, the Teal Pumpkin Project is encouraging everyone to make Halloween a safer, more inclusive event for all children. Doesn’t that sound great? Millions of children and especially their parents certainly think so! Here’s a super short video explaining it:
How To Participate
If you’d like to participate, it’s easy!
Does that mean you can’t give out candy? Nope, that’s not what it means at all!
If you still want to give out candy or other food treats, go right ahead! Just be safe by separating the food treats from the non-food treats, and let kids know they have alternative, non-candy Halloween treat options.
Place a teal pumpkin outside your home, or a sign to let trick-or-treaters know that you offer non-food treats, and that’s basically it!
Here are some cute, inexpensive options to use in your yard or entry way:
Non-Food Halloween Treat Ideas
Need some ideas on fun non-food Halloween treats? Check out this big list of over 50 ideas below!
You could also use these for school or classroom Halloween parties, or church/community fall fest type events where you might need little prizes.
If you’re short on time, you can also find some of these packs at Walmart, Target, a dollar store, a party store (some of them sell Oriental Trading packs of toys too), Big Lots, or other similar stores.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Be sure to steer clear of Play-Doh or similar items as they contain wheat, and items like balloons and bandages (commonly referred to as band-aids) that are made from latex for those with latex allergies. Also temporary tattoos can contain soy and cause reactions, so avoid those as well.
- Assortment of Mini Notepads, Pencils, Stamps & Erasers
- High Variety Party Favor Assortment
- Mini Fidget Toy Assortment
- Halloween Toy Favors Assortment
- Fidget Toys Assortment
Pencils & Erasers
- Halloween Pencils
- Block Brick Pencils (Think LEGOs)
- Neon Pencils
- Emoticon Pencils
- Halloween Erasers
- Mini Pumpkin Erasers
- Emoji Erasers
- Mini Animal Erasers
Mini Coloring or Activity Books
- Mini Assorted Notebooks
- Mini Coloring Books
- Mini Game/Puzzle Books
- Mini Halloween Coloring Books
- Mini Unicorn Notepads
- Mini Crayon Packs
- 3D Puzzle Foam Craft Kits
- Mini Watercolor Kids Paint Sets
- Rainbow Scratch Halloween Ornaments (You could package up, or just give out the paper ornament on its own.)
- Halloween Stamps
- Sticker Sheets
- Make Your Own Sticker Faces
- Cute Halloween Stickers
- Assorted Halloween Stickers
- Assorted Shape Stickers
- Round Animal Stickers
- Glow in the Dark Toys
- Mini Chinese Paper Yoyos
- Superhero Felt Masks
- Dinosaur Felt Masks
- Animal Felt Masks
- Silly Straws
- Bubble Wands
- Airplane Gliders
- Glow Sticks
- Smile Rainbow Mini Springs (Think Slinky)
- Mini Halloween Squishy Toys
- Kazoos or Noisemakers
- Mini Pop Tubes
- Larger Pop Sensory Tubes
- Mini Pop Bubble Fidget Toys