Halloween Candy Overload! What to do with all that Candy

In a previous post, I mentioned some great alternatives to Halloween candy for trick or treaters.  But, let’s face it:  Halloween = Candy.  When your kids come home and sort out their Halloween loot it can look like a candy store exploded!  Even once the non-candy loot and the ‘gross candy’ duds have been weeded out, you can still be left with an obscene amount of chocolate and sugar!  So, what can a parent do to keep their kids from going into a sugar frenzy?

The first and foremost – Don’t take candy from a baby!  Remember is that this is their candy.  It was given to them.  While you have the authority to take it from them, that doesn’t mean it’s the right thing to do.  And, logically, why let them get dressed up and go trick or treating if you are just going to take away their loot??

Here are a few suggestions to keep your children from going into a hyper sugar pitched frenzy without being a heartless brute!

Ration it Out

This is probably the most popular method.  At our house, we let our daughter gorge herself Halloween night and put the rest up.  From November 1st onward, she could have 1-2 pieces a day to satisfy her sweet tooth.  Most years, she forgets about the candy before the candy bucket ran empty!

Buy it Back

This is a great option if you want you child to enjoy the trick or treating fun but you don’t want them eating all that sugar!  ‘Buy it Back’ is just like the name suggests.  Offer your child cash or a trade for their candy.  If your kids are a little too young to appreciate money, offer them to buy them a toy they’ve been longing for in return for their candy.

Doing this leaves the child in control of what happens to their candy and begins teaching them decision-making skills.  And, if they don’t want to give up their candy you can still ration it out.

Donate it

This is my favorite idea.  There are Food Banks, Community Kitchens, and outreach programs that will take unopened candy and provide it to those in need.

Also, there are programs like Operation Gratitude and Solider’s Angels that will gladly accept unopened candy and help get it to our servicemen and women stationed abroad.  There are some places where it can be hard to get American candy so it’s doubly appreciated!

If you would rather stay local, donating candy to policemen and firemen at their stations is a wonderful way to say ‘thank you’ for keeping us safe.

I love this idea most of all.  It starts and grows a spirit of generosity and charity in our kids.  In this ‘me-me-me’ world, our kids need to experience that great feeling giving to others out of our abundance.

Take Away

Halloween is the only time of the year when it is legal to go knock on someone’s door and demand treats!  But, what do you do with all that candy loot?  You can

  • Ration it
  • Trade it
  • Donate it

These are just three popular ways to deal with candy overload.  Do you have any other ideas?  I’d love for you to share them with us!