Vegan MoFo 24: The Halloween Candy Dilemma

Before I begin my actual post, I’d like to acknowledge the lovely Vegan MoFo team for an outstanding month of vegan blogging in October! Today marks the last day of the inspiring event and I’ll truly miss the recipe creativity and community feel garnered by Vegan MoFo. I can’t wait until next year to do it all over again!

As Halloween approached, so did my second year of inquietude with handing out candy chock full of high fructose corn syrup, artificial flavors, dyes, cetyl palmitate, and stearic acid…just to name a few! With childhood obesity and diabetes, not to mention a whole host of other Western diseases running rampant through the U.S. caused by the common American junk food diet, I vowed to exclude myself from the contributors to this depressing epidemic moonlighting as an innocent trick-or-treating destination.

Thus, I scavenged for healthier candy options. Perhaps not completely vegan ones since those cost a bit much to buy in bulk and don’t commonly crop up even in health food stores, but ones without artificial and heavily processed ingredients. (It is the last day of October Unprocessed, after all!) Yes, I could have baked a batch of cruelty-free cookies, but I don’t have that kind of time plus I suspect that paranoid neighborhood parents would not approve of unwrapped, homemade goods. Thus, my Halloween Treats of 2011:

1.) Yummy Earth Organic Lollipops: Featured on The GirlieGirl Army’s list of cruelty-free candy, these colorful lollies natrually gain their hues from black carrots, black currants, pumpkin, apple, and alfalfa. They’re sweetned with evaporated cane juice rather than white refined sugar and are free of gluten, casien, tree nuts, GMOs, peanuts, soy, wheat, dairy, and MSG. Plus they’re 100% vegan!

2.) Pirate’s Booty Aged White Cheddar Baked Rice and Corn Puffs: I found mini-bags of these at Whole Foods specially advertised for Halloween. No, they’re not vegan thanks to the cheese, whey, and buttermilk, but the rest of the ingredients (corn meal, rice, and canola oil) are pretty darn natural, if you ask me. Plus, they’re inherently healthier than other salty snacks thanks to their absense from the fryer, opting instead for the baking method.

3.) Endangered Specied Milk Chocolate Halloween Treats: Also not vegan (hence the “milk” in milk chocolate), these chocolates certainly are ethical! The company is eco-friendly, sustainably harvests their cacao, works to preserve rainforests, and donates 10% of net profits to support “species, habitat, and humanity.” These chocolates also boast a short ingredient list free of artificial ingredients like high fructose corn syrup and refined sugar: chocolate liquor, milk, unbleached water-filtered beet sugar, cocoa butter, lactose, soy lecithin, and vanilla.

Comment Provoking Questions: What are you handing out for Halloween???

Until next time, Ali.

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