The Case for Upgrading Your Halloween Candy (Sorry, Snickers)

by Christie Brydon October 24, 2016

The Case for Upgrading Your Halloween Candy (Sorry, Snickers)

Photo by Luke Jones via Flickr


Trick or treat, give me something good to eat! How about corn syrup solids? Palm oil? Halloween is supposed to be scary, but it can’t be a good thing when the scariest part about it is the ingredients in the candy.


Chocolate is good for you, but unfortunately, not all grocery store candy can be classified as chocolate. Take Hershey’s Kisses Pumpkin Spice, for example—a seemingly delicious, autumnal spin on a chocolate classic. When you take a look at the ingredients, you’ll find a whole other story: sugar, vegetable oil, milk, corn syrup solids, and a mish-mash of preservatives and artificial colors. Not a speck of cacao. (And don’t even get me started on the corn-syrup-and-gelatin cones we so lovingly call “candy corn.”)


Of course, some of the mass-produced holiday favorites are, in fact, chocolate-based, like Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. But they’re not exactly a stellar example if you know how to interpret the ingredients list. There’s more sugar than cocoa butter, and they contain TBHQ, which has been linked to adverse health effects. Snickers paint a similar picture, leading with sugar as the primary ingredient—followed by several more forms of sugar—and ending with artificial flavor. And we give this stuff to kids?


For contrast, look at Menakao Chocolate, a bean-to-bar cooperative in Madagascar. Its signature bar contains, simply: Madagascan cocoa beans, cane sugar, pure cocoa butter, and sunflower lecithin. It’s a welcome departure from the cutting-corners recipes of big companies.


When every front porch, office break room, and receptionist desk has an orange pumpkin full of brightly wrapped candy, what’s a sweet tooth to do on Halloween? Indulge in something truly decadent (and truly chocolate).


Instead of… Hershey’s Dark Chocolate

Try… Menakao 72% Dark Chocolate


Instead of… Milky Way

Try… Fran’s Gray Salt Caramels


Instead of… Mounds Bar

Try… Dolcetta Artisan Sweets Dark Chocolate Coconut Bar


Instead of… Heath Bar

Try… TCHO Toffee and Sea Salt Bar


Instead of… Mr. Goodbar

Try… Chocolate Moderne NYC Street Nuts Bar


Instead of…Andes Chocolate Mints

Try… Dolfin Feuilles de Menthe


Instead of… Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups

Try… Theo Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups


For a treat with no trick, start a Chococurb subscription and receive a custom box of extraordinary chocolates—no knocking on strangers’ doors required.

Christie Brydon
Christie Brydon


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