This time of year it’s natural for both kids and adults to want a Halloween treat, but with so much candy being passed around it’s nice to offer healthier options at Halloween parties and other seasonal celebrations. Here are some ideas for Halloween party dishes that focus on healthy ingredients:
Sweet Potato Chips
Many vegetables can be transformed into crunchy chips by thinly slicing them and baking them in the oven with a little bit of vegetable oil and salt and pepper. Sweet potatoes are an especially good choice this time of year because they’re plentiful and their bright orange colour makes them perfect for Halloween.
Pumpkin Bowl Soup
Mini-pumpkins are an iconic Halloween decoration and they also serve as the perfect vessel for a hot homemade soup. Make a creamy pumpkin (or butternut squash) soup and ladle it into hollowed-out mini-pumpkins — the bowl itself is so fun that kids won’t even realize that they’re eating their vegetables!
Spider Deviled Eggs
Deviled eggs are great at any party and can easily be transformed into a Halloween appetizer with the help of a black olive. Slice a large black olive in half (and remove the pit if there is one), and place one half on top of the centre of the assembled deviled egg. Slice the remaining half into eight slivers and arrange them around the half on the egg to mimic spider legs.
Pureed pumpkin gives hummus a beautiful orange hue and makes for a very healthy dip. Jazz your pumpkin hummus up with a bit of pumpkin spice (or, if you’re feeling adventurous, some Chinese five-spice powder) for a bit of kick. Serve with pita wedges or tortilla chips.
Make your own non-alcoholic apple cider and serve it hot for a party warmer. Cider is easy to make in a slow cooker, which will keep it nice and warm throughout the party.
Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
Save the seeds from any jack-o-lanterns you carve for your party and roast them up for a quick party snack. Pumpkin seeds take to a variety of spice flavours — whip up a few of your favourite spice mixes to offer guests a variety of choices.
This is a fun one for kids who love string cheese. Cut string cheese sticks into thirds and fray the ends so they look like the bottoms of brooms. Stick pretzel sticks into the unfrayed ends and tie a length of chive around the top of the cheese to make instant broomsticks.
Put some fruit on you buffet table with some Mandarin oranges masquerading as pumpkins. Simply draw jack-o-lantern faces on the each orange peel with a marker — the faces will come off when guests peel each orange. Alternatively, peel the oranges and stick a small piece of celery in the top to make little pumpkins.
Complement your Mandarin orange jack-o-lanterns with banana ghosts. Cut peeled bananas in half and make a face on each by pressing two chocolate chips for eyes and another for a mouth into the flesh of the banana. When stood upright on a plate (cut side down) the bananas will look like very spooky ghosts.