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Family Central: Kid-Friendly Halloween Treats

I’ve sort of given up when it comes to Halloween. Meaning, after years of trying to cart healthy snacks to kids’ parties, I’m buckling under, and giving the kids what they want – fun, sweet treats. I have discovered few kids really want to eat a celery stick at a Halloween, not even one with blood-red pimento “fingernails”, billed as a “witch’s finger.”

The key is balance. For every chocolate-dipped cookie, I offer at least a couple of semi-healthy alternatives. Here are three very easy ideas – a couple sort of healthy, one not-so-much – to add a little bit of semi-homemade flavor to your child’s Halloween bash.

Candy Corn Trail Mix
1 cup candy corn
2 cups pretzels
1 cup wheat Chex or other crunchy cereal
1 cup almonds
1/2 cup roasted sunflower or pumpkin seeds
1/2 cup dried cranberries

Combine all ingredients. Store in airtight container until serving time.

Worm Parfait
Nonfat Greek yogurt, vanilla or honey-flavored
Graham crackers, crushed
Raisins or dried cranberries
Gummy worms

This is a healthier version of an old standby that usually utilizes pudding and crushed Oreos. In this version, make your individual parfaits by layering yogurt in a small, disposable cup. Sprinkle with crushed graham crackers and granola to resemble “dirt,” top with a few raisins or cranberries (for “bugs”) and then insert three or four gummy worms in each serving.

Mummy Cookies
1 lb white candy coating, coarsely chopped
1 pkg (1 lb) Nutter Butter Peanut Butter Cookies
Miniature semisweet chocolate chips

In a microwave, melt candy coating; stir until smooth. Dip cookies in melted coating shaking off excess and gently using finger to wipe extra off back. Place on wax paper. Take finger and make little strakes to represent mummy wrappings.

While coating is still warm, place 2 chips on each cookie for eyes. Let stand until set. Store in an airtight container.

Makes about 3 dozen.