Fun (and Healthy!) Alternatives to Trick-or-Treating This Year
Maybe the pandemic is putting a damper on your Halloween party plans. Or maybe you just want to avoid eating an entire pillowcase full of candy. Either way, you may be looking for creative alternatives to trick-or-treating this year. We’ve got you covered with this list of safer, healthier ways to celebrate spooky season — so your Halloween will be happier than a witch in a broom factory!
1. Make Ghostly Yogurt Pops
Made with frozen bananas and yogurt, these adorable ghost-shaped pops are the perfect sweet treat in place of candy this Halloween. Simply peel a banana, slice it in half across the middle, and insert a popsicle stick in each half. Freeze for 3 to 4 hours, then dip the frozen banana in Greek yogurt and use two mini chocolate chips (or carob chips) to create “eyes” for your ghost. Place the yogurt pops on a parchment-lined cookie sheet, freeze for another 3 to 4 hours, and enjoy!
2. Carve Some Pepper Pumpkins
This definitely hasn’t been a typical year, so why carve a traditional pumpkin? Instead, spice up your Halloween snack tray with carved bell peppers. Fill them with hummus or a healthy dip. Bone appetit!
3. Watch a Scary Movie
Curl up on the couch with some caramel corn. (Choose a healthier version — we love this Salted Caramel Popcorn made from simple ingredients and lightly sweetened with sugar.) Then watch one of these horror films and get ready to sleep with the lights on.
- IT. The 2017 film, based on Stephen King’s horror novel by the same name, is basically why coulrophobia (the fear of clowns) exists.
- What Lies Beneath. Michelle Pfeiffer and Harrison Ford ward off invisible foes and deal with a neighbor who might have murdered his wife. Who knew home renovations could stir up so much trouble?
- A Nightmare On Elm Street. In this 1984 classic, dive into Wes Craven’s dream world and see how Freddie seizes his victims.
- The Strangers. This psychological horror film is based on real-life events, which makes it even more terrifying.
- Sleepy Hollow. If you need a (slightly) lighter pick, check out Tim Burton’s creepy take on this classic gothic tale. Composer Danny Elfman’s spooky score alone is bound to give you chills.
4. Paint Pumpkins
Painted pumpkins last longer than carved pumpkins, and your neighbors will enjoy seeing all the colorful designs (from six feet away!). Pick a pumpkin that’s free of blemishes, then wipe off any dirt and apply a coat of clear acrylic. Once it dries, paint your design with outdoor acrylic paint and decorate with fangs, jewels, wings, or anything else you want. (Post your painted pumpkin photos on Instagram and tag us so we can see your boo-tiful designs!)
5. Plan a Parade
Costume parades aren’t just for kids! Put out lawn chairs, grab some witch’s brew, and invite your neighbors to show off their costumes in a social-distancing-friendly parade. If you’re feeling extra-motivated, you can even give out awards for the best costumes. (Or clinch the title for yourself with these fun fitness-inspired Halloween costumes!)
6. Make Mummy’s Juice
Mix up a homemade sangria that feels festive, even if you’re stuck at home. Squeeze lemon and orange wedges into a serving of red wine and chill overnight. When you’re ready to enjoy it, just add club soda for a refreshing Halloween beverage. We think the Sanderson Sisters would totally approve.
Or replace the wine with juice for a lower-calorie, non-alcoholic version that your little pumpkins can enjoy too! Just be sure to use 100% juice with no sugar added, and stay within the American Academy of Pediatrics guidelines for fruit juice consumption for kids.
7. Have a Bonfire with Friends
Halloween is nothing without its lore, and bonfires actually have a pretty spooky backstory. The word “bonfire” is believed to come from “bone fire,” an ancient ritual in which animal bones were burned to ward off evil spirits. Gather some friends and chill around a bonfire this year. (Make sure it’s legal, safe, and under control, of course.) Get the grown-up version of ghost stories by listening to a spine-twisting podcast like Haunted Places, The Nosleep Podcast, or Borrasca.
8. Create Spellbinding Scents
Make your home smell like fall with these Halloween-inspired homemade air fresheners. You and your ghouls can make these in three simple steps:
- Mix one cup of water (distilled, if possible) and two tablespoons of vodka (60 proof or higher) or rubbing alcohol in a small spray bottle. Use a funnel to help prevent spills.
- Add 2 or 3 drops of scented oil to the mix. It’s fall, y’all, so opt for warm or spicy scents like cloves, bergamot, orange, cinnamon bark, cedarwood, eucalyptus, and black pepper. Or mix and match!
- Shake well, and your cauldron is ready!