Real Treats for Halloween: What’s the Trick?

Insider's Viewpoint: Expert Supermarket Advice: Real Treats for Halloween: What’s the Trick? Sylvia Emberger, Ahold USA. Fruits And Veggies More
Treat the ghosts and goblins at your Halloween party to no added sugars, spine-tingling flavors and natural colors that won’t make their hair stand on end. At this event, fruits and veggies masquerade in names that may sound spooky but they aren’t in the least bit frightening to the taste buds. Who knows, kids might even discover that fruits and veggies are more fun to eat than … candy! Try one or all of these ideas.

“Candy” Corn. Make a vegetable dish that represents the colored layers of this popular fall candy. Combine yellow corn kernels, diced carrots and diced white onions. Steam and serve hot or chill down and add Italian dressing for a cold relish or burger topping.

Guaca-Moldy. Serve guacamole with blue corn chips for an eerie color combination that tastes great. Carve out a small pumpkin to use as a dip container.

Black and Orange. The colors of black bean dip and sweet potato chips are a combination that is true to the Halloween theme.

Jicama “Bone” Dippers. A large jicama root will work best for making these crunchy dippers. Peel jicama and slice into ¼-inch thick rounds. Use a small bone-shaped cookie cutter to cut into the jicama rounds. Serve “bones” plain or drizzle with lime juice.

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds. Pumpkins are great for carving Jack-o’-lanterns or using for festive decoration but they also contain tasty and nutritious seeds! Pumpkin seeds provide important nutrients such as protein, fiber, magnesium and zinc and most of the fat is unsaturated. Try the recipe below for making roasted pumpkin seeds.

Pumpkin Smoothies. Use plain canned pumpkin purée or cooked hubbard squash to make delicious smoothies. Banana adds sweetness and creamy texture. Pour smaller servings for a party. See the recipe below.

Jack-O’-Lantern Fruit Cups. Cut off the tops of several oranges, as you would for a jack-o’-lantern. Scoop out the orange pulp being careful not to rip the peel. Cut up the orange pulp and combine with other fruits for filling the shells. Carefully carve faces into the orange peel shells. Scoop fruit mixture into the shells and chill before serving.


Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
Serving size: ½ cup
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes

Preheat oven to 325°F.
Using a large spoon, remove seeds and pulp from pumpkin. Rinse seeds under cold water, picking out the pulp and strings (do this before the pulp has dried).
Spray a large baking sheet with cooking spray, lay out seeds in a single layer and spray tops of the seed with cooking spray. Sprinkle with salt. For a spicy taste sensation, add cinnamon, cumin and just a dash of cayenne.
Bake for about 25 minutes, checking and stirring after 10 minutes. Let cool and store in an air-tight container.

Per serving: 140 calories, 6g fat, 1g saturated fat, 0mg cholesterol, 300mg sodium, 17g carbohydrate, 6g fiber, 0g sugars, 6g protein
Pumpkin Smoothies
Makes 2 servings

    • ½ medium banana, very ripe, frozen
    • ½ cup pumpkin purée
    • ¾ cup low fat vanilla yogurt
    • ½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
    • ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1 cup crushed ice

Freeze banana ahead of time. Place all ingredients in a blender and purée until smooth.

Per serving: 130 calories, 1.5g fat, 0.5g saturated fat, 5mg cholesterol, 50mg sodium, 27g carbohydrate, 3g fiber, 18g sugars, 4g protein

Sylvia Emberger, RD, LDN
Corporate Nutritionist
Ahold USA

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