Inspired by the Teal Pumpkin Project, I decided to pull together a huge list of Non Candy Halloween Treats (not allergy-friendly candy, but an alternative altogether) for trick-or-treat that are generally allergy-friendly. Many of these are unconventional–in other words, they are not just your typical pencil toppers and cheap Halloween toys that get thrown away as soon as the kids get home. We are all about fun and functional.
This list is organized into categories so you can more easily find the best non candy Halloween treats for you. Each is something that should be available in bulk or easily purchased or prepared in bulk, all at lower costs per unit (in other words, I won’t share things that cost $2 each) so they should fit various budgets and time schedules. Because some of the suggestions have possible allergy complications, I will put quick “warning” descriptions or alternatives next to each in case you know someone may have one of those sensitivities.
Note: I am not a doctor; these are simply ideas for you to consider based on my at-home research. If you notice something listed that contains an allergen and is not labeled, please notify me so I can update it. Have any other ideas? Let me know in the comments.
Obviously, you know the area you live better than I do, so use your judgment as to what non candy Halloween treats will go over best. Please take care when handing out things with small pieces to young children–make sure the parents are fully aware and include disclaimers if needed or simply have another option to offer to younger children.
Let’s begin by listing off some common and less common allergies you may want to consider:
More common allergies/sensitivities:
- Peanuts/tree nuts/other nuts/soy
- Lactose (dairy)`
- Artificial food dye^
Less common allergies/sensitivities:
- Adhesives (such as on bandages, stickers, glue, etc.)¨
- High fructose corn syrup†
There are more than listed above (for instance, I am allergic to hand sanitizer which isn’t too common), but these are some of the more common and potentially very dangerous ones to keep an eye out for. If you really want to hand out any non candy Halloween treats that may contain allergens listed above, you can have two separate containers with the various options for kids, just make sure they are far enough apart that the allergy-free goodies do not get contaminated.
If you have concern over any, do a little research. Unfortunately, it is difficult to know every product that contains these allergens, but parents will appreciate the options and the effort! Many of the products that contain or may contain allergens (as labeled below) can be found in allergy-free formats as well. Many are also safe for most unless the allergen is ingested, depending on the specific child’s allergy severity. Overall, just use your judgment. I hope this list is a great place for you to start!
Again, for the goodies listed below that contain small parts, be sure to seal them properly and alert parents of younger children.
Non Candy Halloween Treats
Food (single serve packages)
1. Pretzels*° (consider finding gluten-free varieties)
3. Fruit snacks†^ (look for the varieties that do not contain artificial dyes and flavors or high fructose corn syrup)
4. Crackers/granola bars*°^` (consider looking for varieties that do not contain dairy, gluten, nuts, or artificial food coloring)
5. Applesauce packs† (look for plain applesauce, not flavored, and find varieties without high fructose corn syrup)
6. Fruit cups + a plastic spoonº (mandarin oranges are great, but consider choosing a variety for those with citrus sensitivities)
8. Cereal boxes* (consider looking for packs with gluten-free, dye-free varieties)
9. Hot cocoa mix` (I understand this is sweet, but it is a fun alternative to candy)
10. Apple slices or baby carrots (you know, the individual bags; consider serving these in a cooler if it is still warm out by you)
11. Juice boxes†^º (consider looking for brands that do not contain high fructose corn syrup and artificial dyes)
12. Bottled water (want to make it more fun? Make themed water labels!)
13. Kids’ free fast food coupons (you know, the ones like McDonald’s has yearly around this time)
14. Craft kits¨‡ (most, if not all, contain forms of adhesive: find my FREE printable craft kit ideas HERE or you can purchase ready-made craft kits here; watch for adhesive products that may contain latex or gluten)
16. Mini coloring books/coloring pages (if you decide to use free printed pages, such as those offered on my site, be sure to print only a handful each or request permission from the creator to print an excessive amount)
17. Crayons* (potential gluten exposure in factories)
18. Pencils‡ (make them special with this DIY pencil decorating craft!) Note: pencil erasers may contain latex
19. Beading kits (think pony beads and string with directions to make various animals…on a keychain…you know, from the 90s)
20. Shrinky dink keychains and necklaces (make the designs, cut them out, then put them in a baggie with instructions and a key ring or necklace chain)
21. Mini perler bead sets (be sure to include the ironing sheets and simple instructions)
21. Cool paper airplanes or foam airplanes
22. Washi tape¨‡
23. Pet rock/troll sets¨‡ (fake rocks are best, these days, though check ingredient labels: include eyeballs, some string for hair, sticker lips, etc.)
24. Paint palettes with recipe for homemade paint (yogurt with food coloring, for example)
25. Sew-on/iron-on patches¨
26. Cookie cutters
28. Mini books/activity books* (some books may contain gluten in the binding agent–look for books that are not glued together)
29. Playing cards/card games
30. Small notebooks
31. Fun erasers‡ (I personally try to stay away from the itsy bitsy ones, as they are useless)
32. Mini games
33. I Spy pages (cut out pages from I Spy books or find/make flashcard versions!)
34. Pencil bags
35. Small puzzle sets/brain teasers
36. Sticky notes¨
37. Bookmarks (coloring page, handmade, or store bought–if handmade, adhesives may contain gluten/latex, so keep that in mind)
41. Crazy straws
43. Vegetable seeds to plant (think peas, beans, cucumbers) with a small cup, instructions, and a disclaimer DO NOT EAT (take a look at these Valentine’s Seed Packets)
44. Mini flashlight
47. Mini building brick sets (i.e a few small LEGO bricks or a few DUPLO bricks…add sticker eyes¨ so they can make monsters or animals)
48. Mini figures (similar to above)
50. Mini kaleidoscopes
51. Spinning tops/gyroscopes
52. Math manipulatives (dice, actual math manipulatives, a few math cubes)
Toys/Other Fun Goodies
55. Toy cars
56. Mini toy animals, bugs, dinosaurs, soldiers, cowboys
57. Rubber duckies‡ (vinyl ducks should be okay and not contain latex)
58. Chinese finger traps
59. Stress balls‡
60. Hacky sacks/vinyl balls
61. Bendable toys (people/animals–make sure they are vinyl)
62. Mini calm down jars (made in plastic containers and sealed tightly shut)
64. Foam visors
67. COOL toothbrushes (if you’re going to go this route, make sure it’s cool; my kids enjoy new fun toothbrushes)
68. Mittens/winter hats‡ (may contain latex in the stretchy material–these are great because the temps are getting chillier and some children may not have them)
69. Socks‡ (look for latex-free)
71. Lip balm‡
72. Tote bags (small craft ones are fun for decorating!)
73. Pop up/expanding towels
74. Fun bandages¨‡ (look for latex-free)
75. Plastic kid cups
76. Coins or dollar bill (depending on how many children come through–hand out a quarter or two or $1 to each child, perhaps with a note about saving money; let parents of littles know, for choking hazard reasons)
77. Christmas ornament (something fairly generic and perhaps customizable, like the kind you paint)
78. Photos (use an instant prints camera and take pictures of each group and hand out the instantly printed photos for them to keep!)
79. Wristbands/bracelets‡ (check for latex)
81. Play mustaches¨
83. Disposable diapers‡ (grab a pack or so each of size 1-3 and donate any extras to a local pregnancy care center!)
Some people bring their fur babies along in costume, so you might want to have some goodies ready for them too!
84. Dog treats* (donate extras to a local shelter)
85. Tennis balls‡
If you have leftovers of anything, consider looking for a local shelter or soup kitchen that will accept them, donate to a teacher, or find a non-profit organization that will send goody packages to troops overseas! Many non-profits on this military deployment resources list accept care package donations for candy, so be sure to ask if they could use these. Not everything will qualify, but most should be acceptable to send.
What is your favorite non candy Halloween treat idea? Share with me in the comments!
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