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Here’s Where You Can Donate Your Leftover Halloween Candy

Trick or treat jack-o'-lanterns overflowing with candy bars.
Leena Robinson/Shutterstock

Did your kid bring home enough Halloween candy for five little monsters? Or, did you just not have enough ghouls and beasties to treat with all the sweets you bought? If you’ve got leftover candy woes, you can still give it away!

Whether you bought too many bags of candy at Costco or your kids managed to trick-or-treat their way to a year supply of Sour Patch Kids and Snickers, we’re here to help you offload the excess candy loot.

Donate Your Candy to Local Organizations

Most communities have local places where you can donate excess Halloween candy. Contact your local food pantries and ask if they can use it.

You can also contact nursing homes, group homes, or homeless shelters, too. Pretty much if you can think of a place with a lot of people that would benefit from having some candy to hand out or use as treats, they’re probably interested.

Even if you heard from a friend or neighbor that a particular location is accepting candy, do call first. They might have welcomed the first twenty giant bags of candy but they may not have room for another twenty.

Participate in a Candy Buyback

Some dentist’s offices also do candy buyback programs. They don’t usually give you cash, but they’ll trade toothbrushes, toothpaste, and other dental hygiene items. The buyback programs often have coupons for things like local bookstores, restaurants, and such. There’s a directory of participating dentists available here you can search by zipcode.

One more local option worth looking into is Ronald McDonald House Charities. Contact your local chapter and find out how you can donate your leftover candy to them. Not all children can trick or treat for Halloween, so your donation could bring a smile to one who wasn’t able to participate.

Donate Your Extra Candy to the Troops

Adults enjoy Halloween treats, too, so consider donating your extra candy to the troops. Here are some options to help you get your candy to some soldiers who are away from home:

  • Operation Shoebox: In addition to Halloween, you can donate those extra candy canes and chocolate eggs to soldiers on Christmas and Easter, too.
  • Treats for Troops: A division of Soldier’s Angels, when you donate leftover candy to this charity, your child can get buyback prizes, and you get a tax deduction form.
  • Operation Gratitude: Get those leftover treats to troops and first responders while they’re working away from home.
  • Move America Forward: Move America Forward is another military-centered non-profit. Every year they collect (literal) tons of candy and send it to soldiers stationed overseas.

Donating is a great way to send that leftover Halloween candy somewhere besides your waistline!

Yvonne Glasgow Yvonne Glasgow
Yvonne Glasgow is a professional writer with two decades of experience. She has written and edited for nutritionists, start-ups, dating companies, SEO firms, newspapers, board game companies, and more. Yvonne is a published poet and short story writer, and she is a life coach. Read Full Bio »
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