Make trick-or-treating and other Halloween festivities and a breeze with these tips and tricks for a safe and fun gluten free Halloween.
Halloween with your gluten-free little one doesn’t have to be scary, but it can feel that way if you have a kiddo with celiac disease or a gluten sensitivity.
You might be wondering which candy is gluten-free, how to handle school or family parties, and how to make your favorite festive treats gluten-free.
It can all feel so overwhelming, but these 5 tips will help you and your family have a spooky, yet fun, gluten free Halloween.
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Gluten-Free Trick or Treat Tips
Most treats handed out on Halloween are not labeled for individual sale and don’t contain allergy info, so have a list of gluten-free Halloween candy handy so you can quickly tell what is safe and what is not.
Have a conversation with your child and make a plan on what will happen if they are given a treat they can’t eat. Will you have some special, safe treats or toys at home for them to trade out?
Setting the scene beforehand can help your kiddo feel empowered instead of getting a bunch of candy and then having half of it taken away.
When your trick-or-treater gets candy they aren’t able to eat, have a trade plan in place!
Find a few of their friends, grandparents, or neighbors who are willing to let your child trade their unsafe items for gluten-free candy or non-food items.
Some dentist offices offer to trade Halloween candy for money or prizes, so that could be an option as well!
You can also have a basket of gluten-free candy options and/or toys for them to trade at home.
Teal Pumpkin Project
The Teal Pumpkin Project is an initiative from FARE (Food Allergy Research & Education) aimed at making Halloween more inclusive for children with food allergies or sensitivities, including those who are gluten-free.
Participants in the project place a teal-painted pumpkin or a teal pumpkin sign outside their homes on Halloween night.
This teal symbol indicates that they have non-food treats available for trick-or-treaters, such as small toys, stickers, glow sticks, or other fun items, in addition to or instead of traditional candy.
By doing so, they create a safer and more enjoyable Halloween experience for young kids who may have dietary restrictions or allergies, ensuring that everyone can join in the Halloween fun.
You can visit the Teal Pumpkin Project Map to add your house and find others in your area!
Gluten Free Halloween Candy List
It is important to remember that some candies are normally gluten-free, but their holiday counterparts are not.
For instance, while many varieties of Reese’s peanut butter cups are gluten-free, the holiday-shaped versions are generally considered unsafe.
Some candies might surprise you! For example, many types of gummy worms and candy corn contain wheat ingredients and aren’t safe.
This is because they are often packaged in a facility with lots of shared equipment instead of their regular factory.
Here is an updated Gluten Free Candy List you can check out before the festivities.
PRO TIP: A few allergen free treats include Dum-Dums, Mike and Ikes, Smarties, and Surf Sweets. Check out this list of top-8 free candy from Allergy Awesomeness for more ideas.
Gluten Free Halloween Parties
Many schools have class parties to celebrate the Halloween season, and they often involve at least one treat whether that be decorating sugar cookies or making a drinkable witch’s brew.
This can be tough for kiddos with celiac disease, food allergies, or other dietary restrictions!
While awareness is increasing, many still aren’t aware of how some kids will be left out during activities with food, so communication is key.
If you have the bandwidth, consider volunteering to do the treat for your child’s class party (these gluten free dirt cups are SO fun and can be made dairy free, too!) so you can choose one that everyone can participate in, or you can do a non-food activity.
Sometimes this isn’t possible, but you can always contact the teacher and/or parent in charge of the party and offer some suggestions. Maybe you can donate some safe treats or non-food activity supplies, or even just send a gluten free option for your kid.
There are so many fun activities and safe food options, there is no reason for a school party to exclude a child with dietary restrictions.
Friend and Family Parties
Planning on attending a spooky Halloween party with your favorite people? I cover a lot of tips for doing this in my course Gluten Free 101!
It IS possible to enjoy social outings when you’re gluten-free, you just need a few tools and ideas to help you.
Here are a few things to consider when attending a non-gluten-free party:
- Bring a few dishes to share. Include a main dish and a dessert so you have a few things you can eat. Try to set them apart from the other gluten-filled dishes at the party, and consider including a label that states it’s only for gluten-free guests.
- Talk to the host/hostess. Depending on your gluten-free needs and relationship with the host, you can let them know what is needed and offer to supply ingredients or help with the cooking or baking.
- Be the host. Provide all the food or ask guests to bring a packaged gluten-free treat or snack to share. Alternatively, you can host a non-food party that just has some fun activities for everyone!
Gluten-Free Recipes for Halloween
Halloween wouldn’t be the same without some spooky and fun treats! Here are some easy gluten-free Halloween treats for your spooky dessert table:
Gluten Free Halloween Cookies using my Swig sugar cookie copycat recipe
Make Hot Dog Mummies with my gluten-free crescent rolls recipe!
Healthy Gluten Free Halloween Treats
Looking for some healthy Halloween treats that aren’t full of sugar? These recipes are so much fun for kids to assemble themselves, and are a great way to get into the Halloween spirit with fresh fruit instead of sugary treats!
Ingredients: bananas, mini chocolate chips, chocolate chips. Optional: white chocolate
- Peel bananas
- Press two mini chocolate chips toward the top for eyes
- Place a regular-sized chocolate chip below for the mouth.
Variation: To make banana mummies, drizzle the bananas in white chocolate after adding chocolate chips for the face, then freeze for a cool treat!
Ingredients: All you need for these sweet treats are tangerines and celery!
- Peel some tangerines or mandarin oranges.
- Slice celery into narrow pieces 1-2 inches tall.
- Insert one piece of celery and one or two celery leaves into the top of the middle of each tangerine and serve.
Apple Slice Monster Mouths
Ingredients: Apples, seeds or nuts. Sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds work great. Optional: candy googly eyes
- Core and slice an apple into wedges (any kind will work, just make sure it’s one your kids like).
- Spread a layer of peanut butter on top of two apple slices
- Press seeds into the peanut butter on one of the slices, toward the end that has the peel.
- Place the other peanut butter-covered apple slice on top with peels facing the front to make a mouth.
Optional: You can insert a sliced strawberry for the tongue and add candy eyes for an extra fun display.