Halloween can be disappointing for children with allergies or kids impacted by conditions that don’t allow them to eat candy. Luckily, there are plenty of treats (and trinkets) you can provide this year for a more inclusive trick-or-treating experience for all.
By offering allergy-friendly treats from reputable brands and non-food trinkets, you’ll help make Halloween inclusive even for the kiddos who can’t enjoy candy by mouth. It’s easier than you think once you have a list of products to choose from.
A Little Bit About Teal Pumpkins
Offering Allergy-Friendly Treats Goes Beyond Allergies
3 Allergy-Free Food Brands to Consider
Free 2b Foods
7 Non-Food Trinkets to Offer this Halloween
60 Piece Fidget Toys by Popsify
Halloween Sticker Sheets
Halloween Gift Baggies
Mini Coloring Books
If you’ve ever noticed teal pumpkins or teal signs displayed on the night of Halloween, it’s no coincidence. There’s a rationale behind those pretty pumpkins, and it’s all bout raising awareness and promoting a safe and inclusive evening for all.
Thanks to Becky Basalone and her desire to help kids with food allergies feel included on Halloween; an ingenious idea was born. Her vision was to place teal pumpkins on front porches to notify kids and parents that non-food items were available for kids with allergies.
Once the Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE) got word of this initiative, they joined forces, and the Teal Pumpkin Project was born. Although the color teal represents food allergy awareness, the initiative will help bring peace to thousands of parents who have children with other conditions too.
While millions of children are impacted by severe allergies, the Teal Pumpkin Project helps bring fun and inclusivity to other kids as well! From special diets to children who cannot eat by mouth, there are several reasons why eating sweets can be extra scary on Halloween.
Here are just a few reasons children miss out on an authentic Halloween experience:
- Allergies: Approximately 5.6 million children under 18 suffer from food allergies in the US, and about 40% of kids are allergic to more than one food. One bite of the wrong type of candy could land a child in the hospital.
- Ketogenic therapies: The ketogenic (or keto) diet treats several diseases, including intractable epilepsy and cancer, according to Charlie Foundation. Children on the keto diet must have every ingredient for snacks and meals weighed out to ensure what they eat is within the required ratio. This ratio is what keeps them in ketosis. For a child receiving ketogenic therapies for epilepsy, eating sugary sweets can easily kick them out of ketosis and cause a seizure relapse.
- Cannot eat by mouth: Some children have medical issues that make it hard to get nutrition by mouth. Sometimes a gastrostomy tube (or a g-tube) is used to help bring nutrition directly to their belly. While some kids can sometimes eat with their mouths, some children cannot.
For all these reasons, offering non-food trinkets helps decrease some stress levels for parents. More importantly, you’ll help make those little witches and ghouls smile big, knowing they were included.
For some of the parents here at LifeSavvy, keeping our kids safe on Holidays like Halloween is paramount, and spreading awareness is one way we like to ensure all children are safe and can enjoy the trick-or-treating experience like everyone else.
If you’re hoping to provide allergy-safe treats for kids in the neighborhood, you’re in luck. Today, you’ll find that the market for allergen-free foods is growing, which means there are opportunities for kids to safely enjoy snacks that are similar to what their friends are eating.
What makes these food brands so special is their promise to serve delicious treats that are free from some of the most common top allergens like peanuts, tree nuts, eggs, dairy, soy, sesame, and more.
Keep in mind that the three brands we’ve added to our list offer foods free from varying allergens. That means one brand might offer foods free from wheat, while another brand we’ve recommended might not offer foods that are free from wheat.
Here are a few of our favorites:
Enjoy Life is North America’s largest allergy-friendly bakery, serving delicious snacks free from gluten and common food allergens. From chocolate crunch candy bars made with rice milk to sunflower seed butter bites, you’ll find a tasty treat to love.
These rich chocolate bars bring the quality of real milk chocolate without the stress of dairy, gluten, or nuts getting in the way. One reviewer stated, “I can tell you honestly, these taste just as delicious as that other brand I used to eat when I was a kid.”
Enjoy Life Rice Milk Chocolate Bars
Free from 14 Allergens!
Partake Foods is a brand born out of a mother’s desire to help bring tasty allergy-friendly snacks to all kids after experiencing several allergies with her daughter. Her promise to give delicious peace of mind delivers once you try Partakes chocolate chip cookies.
Aside from tasty bite-sized treats, you’ll find an excellent selection of baking and breakfast mixes. From brownie or pancake mixes to pizza crust mixes, you’ll find loads of reliable products you can make from home.
Partake has even designed allergy-friendly mini chocolate chip cookie baggies to give out this Halloween. It’s the perfect way to celebrate all kids while giving parents a worry-free evening.
Partake Mini Chocolate Chip Cookie Snack Packs
The trick-or-treat edition!
Free 2b Foods is another allergy-friendly brand that offers sweet and savory treats free from the nine major allergens. The products are also free from artificial preservatives, flavors, colors, and sweeteners. Whether you need a savory snack to satisfy your crunch craves or you’re looking for chocolate chips to add to your cookie mix, Free 2b foods have something for everyone.
Free 2b offers a unique allergy-friendly version of traditional peanut butter cups that kids will love called sunflower butter cups. They are dairy-free, made with rice milk, and contain no nuts. Plus, they are delicious.
Sunflower Butter Cups
Free from 12 common allergens.
Always check with parents before offering an allergy-friendly treat, as you don’t know what each child may be allergic to. Always consult with parents and give them information on the brand to ensure they know what the treats are “free from.” Chances are, they are already familiar with some of these brands, but they must be informed.
Allergy-free foods are a fantastic concept, but because it’s impossible to predict who your trick-or-treaters will be this year, offering non-food items is your safest bet. Not only will this help kids with allergies feel included, but kids who can’t enjoy anything by mouth will also feel the love.
Most of us who participate in the Teal Pumpkin Project offer candy and allergy-friendly trinkets in separate bowls to avoid accidental cross-contamination. You can even go as far as labeling your trinkets with stickers!
Kids who cannot eat candy or certain foods, in general, will especially enjoy receiving these trinkets this Halloween:
There’s no better way to occupy little hands and calm anxious minds than with the help of fidget toys. According to CNN Health, “all humans crave tactile engagement,” and fidget toys, like pop-its, are a great way to “train their fine motor skills.”
Fidget toys have become so popular that kids enjoy trading them with friends, just like Halloween candy. Because there are so many options, you can even get away with letting grab a handful of fidget toys.
Popsify 60 Piece Fidget Toys
Set up a bowl, just like you would with candy!
Another fun sensory toy that kids tend to love is slime! Kids can’t get enough of this squishy stuff, whether it’s used for therapeutic value or just a fun way to stimulate those senses.
Galaxy slime is non-toxic, hypoallergenic, and non-scented, making it great for kids with sensitivities to certain materials. Plus, it’s unicorn-colored! Who doesn’t love the magical color like that?
Kicko Unicorn-Colored Galaxy Slime
Non-toxic, non-scented, and hypoallergenic.
Stretchy strings make an excellent addition to your non-food items for kids who can’t eat by mouth! The spooktacular elastic fidgets come as witches, bats, skulls, pumpkins, and spiders, making them an ideal fit for Halloween!
The soft, pliable trinkets are made with non-toxic material, so they are safe whether a child stretches or squeezes them for hours.
Halloween-Themed Stretchy Strings
Wear as a bracelet, or stretch for fun!
Activity sticker sheets can be super entertaining on Halloween. They can be used to decorate a pumpkin or placed on construction paper for a daytime arts and crafts activity! Kids have the opportunity to create unique Halloween characters using the stickers provided.
Halloween Character Sticker Sheets
Make your own Halloween character!
Consider making a bunch of Halloween goodie bags this year using this 156-piece assortment of rings, vampire teeth, witch fingers, and more. Since the Teal Pumpkin Project is still a growing concept, there’s a good chance the rest of the neighborhood isn’t offering non-food items.
156-Piece Assortment of Halloween Trinkets
Perfect for making little goodie bags!
Who doesn’t love bubbles? They’re fun for kids and adults, and this Halloween, you can give them out to your trick-or-treaters, knowing you’ve made a few children feel really special!
Halloween Bubble Wands
Great for all trick-or-treaters!
Mini coloring books are perfect for all the little artists out there. This 42-pack of Halloween-inspired books comes in a compact 4-inch by 5.5-inch size so that they won’t take up much space in trick-or-treat bags. Feel free to give these out with small packs of crayons, too!
42 Pack of Halloween Coloring Books
Great for the little artists!
With Halloween right around the corner, anxiety will peak for parents with children with dietary restrictions and allergies. This year, spread the word to your neighbors by booing them with a printed copy of this article so they can offer treats too! Otherwise, please consider sharing via email or social media and help these kids experience the Halloween they deserve!