My kids were lucky enough to trick-or-treat at the Magic Kingdom last week, during Mickey’s Not-so-Scary Hallwe’en party, and we came home with more candy than I think they’ve seen in their lives. But of course, being home just before Hallowe’en at home meant that they were super excited to trick-or-treat here, too. Yikes! This means that the bounty of candy we currently have in our home could sufficiently hop-up an entire city of children.
So, now what?
Well, first we sort through them, and organize them into types. Chocolate, chips, and candy. Anything with peanuts gets put aside (read: put aside into my tummy), and anything we’re unable to identify is thrown out. The kids then eat their fill on Hallowe’en night, and for the next week or so, they’re allowed a couple treats a day.
At that point, I filter through the loot again, and chuck out all the stuff the kids aren’t likely to eat (or will eat out of sugar-desperation only) and I start looking for fun ways to use up the delicious remains.
Here are my suggestions:
1. Bake some cookies! I know, this sounds outrageous since we’re trying to minimize the sugar overload here, but check out my famous shortbread cookie recipe. Instead of using Mini Eggs, chop up some of those mini chocolate bars! This recipe freezes really well, and is such a great gift during the holiday season. And hey, how about some Skittles cookies? Use the recipe found here for my (no-fail!) candy cane chocolate chip cookies and sub in some candy instead of chocolate chips or candy canes.
2. Freeze some chocolate bars. They freeze really well (for the most part), and during those pre-Christmas weeks when you’re wishing you had something to gnaw on, they’ll come in handy! (Most candy isn’t great when frozen, and even when stored, it’s stale and hard within a few months.)
3. Make cute chocolates to give as gifts for the coming holidays. Sensing a theme here? I like to make the most of, well, everything. Why not regift those goodies in a new way? Chop up some chocolate bars and melt them down in a pot on the stove. Pour into cute-shaped silicone ice cube trays and let cool. Magic! Adorable chocolates your coworkers will love.
4. Be crafty. My kids love gluing those hard sour candies to pretty much anything. You can save them up to decorate that Christmas gingerbread house later on, or just let the kids glue them to paper. I read a suggestion last year that said you could decorate a picture frame with candy, or fill a pinata with it, too.
5. Be a witch. Did you miss out on dressing up for Hallowe’en? Don’t worry, it’s not too late. Apparently many parents act as the “Switch Witch”, and during the night they switch the kids’ candy for an awesome toy instead, saving the kids from overindulging and saving mom and dad from pricey dental bills. I do get the intention here, but it’s not something I plan to do. The last thing we need around here is yet another imaginary being to pretend we’re not.
And finally, when the powdered sugar settles and kids wake from those candy comas, you can be straight-up and just explain to them that while one night of joyous candy collection is totally fun (and in my never-humble opinion, reasonable), they can’t eat like that year-round. After a week or so, my kids tend to forget about the loot and it all magically disappears, with no bribery in its place, just excitement for the next sugar-laden event: Christmas.