Halloween is not the night to restrict your diet, but that doesn’t mean your evening of revelry should be quashed by a candy coma. If you’re hosting a party this year, skip store-bought sweets and opt for homemade goodies instead. Don’t hesitate to whip up everyone’s favorites — cookies, caramels, even a cocktail or two. But a few mindful alterations (and moderation) can save you from a sugar hangover the next morning. Here are five festive recipes that are sure to hit the spot without going overboard.
Sandra Lee’s homemade chocolate-peanut butter clusters are incredibly quick and convenient — and at a glance, they’ll raise the hair on the back of your neck. The recipe calls for creamy peanut butter; for an extra fiber boost, use all-natural PB.
Spiced Pumpkin-Raisin Cookies
Normally, a Halloween dessert spread consists of a heaping bowl of store-bought candy, but these homemade pumpkin-raisin cookies are geared toward a more mature crowd. Simply add pumpkin puree and allspice to classic oatmeal-raisin cookie batter for a comforting fall spin.
Sweet and Spicy Pepitas Popcorn Balls
If your guests are partial to kettle corn, give them a lighter version to nibble on. Food Network Magazine created an updated spin on the crunchy fall treat simply by mixing freshly popped popcorn with a little bit of caramel and toasted pumpkin seeds.
Orange Sherbet Cups with Blackberries
Try finding a Halloween treat that’s more refreshing — or more festive — than this one. Play up the orange-and-black motif by hollowing out some orange halves. Then, fill each half with a generous spoonful of your favorite orange sherbet. Complete the sinister look by topping each “cup” with fresh blackberries.
Mexican Pumpkin Punch
It isn’t a party without a cocktail, and as alcoholic beverages go, this one isn’t too bad. Plus, it comes with the bonus of seasonal pumpkin flavor. Simply combine pumpkin puree with brown sugar, cinnamon sticks and water, then garnish with pineapple chunks, pecans and a splash of rum, if desired. You’ll save calories and fat by taking cream and sugary juices out of the equation.
Sure, you don’t want to eat these chewy caramels every day if you’re trying to be a more health-conscious eater. But Halloween comes only once a year, and what would it be without a classic confection to sink your teeth into? One piece contains 92 calories but just 2 grams of fat, so use moderation and you won’t wake up with a stomachache the next morning.
For more spooky treats, check out these recipes from our friends:
A Mind “Full” Mom: Mini Pumpkin Pie Cookies
Creative Culinary: Halloween Mummy Cupcakes with Espresso Chocolate Cake and Vanilla Buttercream
In Jennie’s Kitchen: Twix Bar Brownies
Devour: 5 Horror and Sci-Fi TV Show-Themed Halloween Bites
The Mom 100: Mummy Cupcakes
Foodtastic Mom: Bourbon Bacon Pumpkin Seeds
Elephants and the Coconut Trees: Mini White Pumpkin Milk Fudge with Dry fruit Filling
Taste with the Eyes: Three Truly Gruesome But Tasty Halloween Recipes
Mom Loves Baking: Pumpkin Cupcakes
Swing Eats: Spooky Halloween Buckeyes
Pinch My Salt: Double Chocolate Pumpkin Cupcakes
FN Dish: When Food Gets in Costume: Edible Takes on Creepy Halloween Things