I grew up celebrating Halloween like millions of other kids in America. I enjoyed it. Probably for no good reason other than it was fun to dress up and I like candy. Is that a good reason to perpetuate the Holiday? I don’t know but frankly I’m not ready to morally question Halloween yet. I like it and for now that is enough. Rather than a moral dilemma, I have had a bigger concern with how to allow my daughter to participate in Halloween without being bombarded with artificial dyes and flavors that turn her into a raving lunatic as well as peanut containing products which could send her to the Hospital in anaphylactic shock.
I was VERY happy to have stumbled upon Yummy Earth candies. We purchased their 5lb bag of Organic Assorted Lollipops at a 50% discount since we are Feingold members. We received the suckers within days and let me just tell you these things are DELICIOUS! They taste way better than any store-bought suckers not to mention they are all natural. The flavors in the assorted bag are delectable – pomegranate, watermelon, tango mango & lemon. They are literally the best suckers I have ever had.
So for those of you also concerned with how to get your artificial dye sensitive child some safe candy you can purchase lots of different varieties online. We just plan on letting her Trick-or-Treat like normal and at the end we will exchange all of her candy for the “safe” candy. If I had more time and felt like it I would just pre-visit my neighbors and ask them to reserve the safe candy for her.
Here is a list of all natural and dye free candy:
Jewels of Denial
Dolphin Natural Chocolates
Simon’s Candy Company
CrispyCat Candy Bars
You may also have good luck finding dye free and natural candies at places like Trader Joe’s & Whole Foods.
Oh My Stinkin Delicious
Ok, I have to share this because I am dying in oatmeal cookie heaven over here. After many disappointing oatmeal cookie recipes and hours of reading later I have finally found the perfect oatmeal cookie recipe for my family. I looked at a ton of recipes online and combined a few of them for a great combination. The cookies are crisp on the outside and chewy on the inside. They keep their shape and best of all they are SOOOOOO Good!The secret is the raisins. You have to soak them. I don’t even like raisins. In fact, I typically really DISLIKE raisins. But I decided to brave it and I can’t believe how good they are! You have to try it with the raisins (even if you normally hate them, you’ll see). I added chocolate chips to ours but they are totally not necessary. We had to omit the nuts because of nut allergies in our house but they would rock with some chopped pecans or walnuts. These cookies make your house smell soooo good.
1 cup butter, room temp
1 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup white sugar
2 eggs, well beaten
1 TBSP (yes tablespoon) vanilla
1 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp cinammon
1/2 tsp ginger
1/2 tsp nutmeg
3 cups oatmeal (quick cooking or old fashioned, not instant)
1 cup raisins
1/2 cup chocolate chips (optional)
1/2 cup chopped nuts (optional)
To prep: The key is to soak the raisins. This makes all the difference in the world. Beat eggs and vanilla together and then add the raisins, stir. Soak for an hour or two. I just walked by a few times and stirred it while I waited.
Preheat to 350 F
Cream butter and sugars with mixer. In a seperate bowl combine flour, salt, baking soda, cinammon, ginger & nutmeg. Stir the dry ingredients until well blended. Add dry ingredients to creamed mixture and mix well. Now add in the egg & raisin mixture (I used my hands). Then add oatmeal and chocolate chips/nuts and combine well. Form into balls on cookie sheet. Bake 10 minutes. Let cool on cookie sheet for 2-5 minutes or until firm enough to transfer to wire rack.
Made about 2 1/2 dozen cookies for me and I made them pretty big. You could get 4 dozen if you make them small.
UPDATE: Cooking time will vary depending on your oven. Since we’ve moved to a new house I have needed to up the cooking time to around 12-13 minutes. Just keep an eye on the cookies. Also, there are lots of great suggestions in the comments for great variations so be sure to take a look.