Share on Facebook

7 Healthier Candy Swaps for a Sweet Halloween

Be sensitive to kiddos' dietary needs with this Halloween candy you can shop straight from our site. (These chocolates might have fallen into our online cart, too.)

Our editors and experts handpick every product we feature. We may earn a commission from your purchases.

Healthy Halloween candy swaps

Halloween is back at full force in 2022. According to the National Retail Federation, Americans are planning to celebrate this Halloween at almost pre-pandemic levels, with consumers spending an average of $100 each on Halloween candy—the second highest amount in the survey’s history. With all that treat, though, there’s a little trick now that many of us are more health-focused than we were before the pandemic: how can you make Halloween candy a little less of a sugar bomb?

Craving Sugar? A Dietitian Says You May Need More of This Surprising Nutrient

A lot of Halloween candy classics are loaded with refined sugar and additives…not exactly what we want to teach our youngsters about wellness, are we right? (Looking at you, Reese’s cups.) If you want to hand out a little healthier Halloween candy that’s friendly to kids’ blood sugar, developing teeth, food allergies, etc., here are some healthy Halloween candy swaps that you can sub out for traditional favorites. (Not all of these are nut- or allergen-free, so make sure to read the label.)

Get The Healthy @Reader’s Digest newsletter

Unreal Dark Chocolate Almond Butter Cups Ecomm Via Amazon.comvia merchant

Instead of Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, try Unreal Mini Dark Chocolate Almond Butter Cups

Shop Now

Unreal takes the high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS) out of some of your favorite childhood treats. Case in point: their dark chocolate almond butter cup. They’re vegan, contain five grams of sugar per treat…and we think they taste even better than what you’re used to. (And if you need something to snack on while you binge your favorite scary movies, Unreal’s Milk Chocolate Gems are a great M&Ms substitute!)

Is Almond Butter Healthy? 4 Things Nutritionists Want You to Know

Skinnypop Original Popcorn Ecomm Via Amazon.comvia merchant

Instead of microwave popcorn, try SkinnyPop Popcorn

Shop Now

SkinnyPop popcorn is an oft-recommended alternative to traditional microwave popcorn by health experts, and now it comes in portion-controlled (and Halloween-friendly) multipacks.

The filler-free popcorn packs are made without gluten, dairy or preservatives. SkinnyPop is also Teal Pumpkin Project-approved, meaning it’s free of all major allergens.

These 9 Foods Are the Most Common Causes of Food Allergies

Blakes Seed Based Crispy Treats Ecomm Via Amazon.comvia merchant

Instead of Rice Crispy Treats, try Blake’s Seed Based Crispy Treats

Shop Now

Rice crispy treats are delicious, but not the healthiest. However, Blake’s Seed Based Crispy Treats are a vegan alternative free of nuts and gluten that could scratch your Rice Krispie itch.

Packed with flax, pumpkin and sunflower seeds for a textured crunch in every bite, these only have seven grams of sugar. They’re also available in a wide range of flavors—including Pumpkin Spice if you’re feeling festive!

How Pumpkin Seed Oil Benefits Your Skin, Hair, and Body

Enjoy Life Mini Chocolate Candy Variety Pack Ecomm Via Amazon.comvia merchant

Instead of Hershey Kisses, try Enjoy Life Foods Halloween Chocolate Minis

Shop Now

Enjoy Life Halloween chocolate minis are bite-size mini chocolates free from the top eight allergens, and a perfect healthy Halloween candy. They come in dark chocolate, rice milk chocolate and rice milk crunch chocolate, as well as a variety pack.

If you’re looking for something closer to a Hershey Milk Chocolate bar, you can also try SuperMajor’s Oat Milk Chocolate Bar, which is dairy- and allergen-free, and includes no added sugar.

This Is What Happens to Your Body When You Eat Chocolate

Almond Chocolate Brain Butter Ecomm Via Brainiacfoods.comvia merchant

Instead of Peanut Butter Kisses, try Brainiac Foods Brain Butter

Shop Now

You already know that nuts are chock full of healthy fats…but one issue to watch out for is portion control. Like all things, healthy fats are only healthy in moderation. Nuts are also high in calories.

Brainiac Foods solves these problems with their portion-controlled squeezable packs made with almond or peanut butter. Aside from healthy fats, these packs are full of protein and omega-3s. They come in two delicious flavors (chocolate and honey) that you won’t believe are good for you.

Eating This Nut Will Help Your Gut and Reduce Inflammation, New Study Says

Spry Xylitol Gum Ecomm Via Amazon.comvia merchant

Instead of Bubble Yum, try Spry Stronger Longer Bubble Gum

Shop Now

Spry Stronger Longer Bubble Gum is a great alternative to traditional gum. It’s sweetened with xylitol, a natural sweetener, which can help keep mouths not only fresh. Xylitol also inhibits the growth of bacteria, keeping it from sticking to teeth and tissues. (Xylitol can also cause tummy trouble in large quantities, so don’t overdo this one. Also, keep products sweetened with Xylitol entirely out of reach from your pets, as it can be toxic.)

9 Surprising Benefits of Chewing Gum

Smartsweets Variety Pack Ecomm Via Amazon.comvia merchant

Instead of Sour Patch Kids, try SmartSweets Variety Park

Shop Now

Cover all your bases with the SmartSweets variety pack, and get healthy alternatives to Peach Rings, Swedish Fish, Sour Patch Kids and even Sour Patch Watermelon.

Each bag is vegan, gluten-free, only has three grams of sugar (that’s right: the whole bag is a serving!) and are naturally sweetened with monk fruit and allulose. If you want a true dupe for a fraction of the sugar, look no further!


Sharon Feiereisen
Sharon Feiereisen is a freelance lifestyle writer based in New York City and Tel Aviv. Her work has been published in Time Out, Newsday, The Knot, Teen Vogue, Hamptons magazine, and Business Insider, and among many other print and online outlets.
Miranda Manier
Miranda is the Associate Editor for and The Healthy section of Reader's Digest magazine. Previously, Miranda was a producer at WNIT, the PBS affiliate in South Bend, Indiana; and the producer in residence for Minneapolis TV news KARE 11, where she won an Upper Midwest Regional Emmy Award for producing gavel-to-gavel coverage of the Derek Chauvin trial. Miranda also interned at Chicago’s PBS station, WTTW, and worked as the managing editor at the Columbia Chronicle at Columbia College. Outside of work, Miranda enjoys acting, board games, and trying her hand at a good vegan dessert recipe. She also loves talking about TV—so tell her what you’re watching!