Tag Archives: candy

The Best Food Gift Recipes You Still Have Time to Make

Food gifts are one of the most popular of the gift-giving season, and almost always one of the most well received. Whether it’s a last-minute gift or just a desire to share something wholesome and homemade with friends and loved ones, this menu is all you need to share awesome food gifts.

Skip the expected boxes of drug store chocolate and tins of stale popcorn; these 14 treats and snacks will truly be unexpected, welcome surprises.

Pomegranate Pistachio Bark


This foodie gift is beautifully shared with wrapped in brown butcher paper.

chocolate covered pretzel protein balls


These bite-sized gems are like a homemade Lara Bar. Fill a Mason jar with the balls and wrap in a ribbon.

homemade sour mix


Prepare the mix and pour the juice in to clasp-top bottles or re-use wine bottles. Give this gift with a bottle of vodka or tequila. (more…)

FREE Printables for Food Pun Gift Tags

Don’t give just any ordinary food or snack gift when you can make them punny! We had a lot of fun coming up with just the right sentiment to complement some of our favorite healthier snacks and hope you have an easier time sharing the goods. We purposely left them generic enough to not require any particular time of year or holiday. And we also purposely made them completely free so that you can spring for the really good treats!

Just click, print the PDF, and trim them out. Then, share with the special friends, neighbors, co-workers, teachers, and other dear ones in your life.

JUSTIN Case You Didn’t Know

justins pb gift tags

This gift is butter than every other choc + pb cup out there (#fact)! And with this sweet tag, it makes Justin’s a pretty easy (and organic!) gift to share. Wrap one pack or a few and seal the deal with our simple message.

Download the Justin’s Gift Tag PDF. 6 tags/sheet

Thanks for Being EXTRA Nice

extra gum gift

This simple gift is a real mint that doesn’t require too much extra effort on your part. We filled a small jar with sticks of Extra sugar-free gum and delivered with the tag affixed to the lid.

Download the Extra Gift Tag PDF. 5 tags/sheet (more…)

5 Ways to Enjoy Halloween Candy Besides Shoving It In Your Face

*Knock-Knock* “Trick or treat!” And so it goes all evening long on Halloween as witches, ninjas and adorable super heroes make the annual trek through the neighborhood collecting sweets and treats. On this night, kids get candy by the bag, bucket and pillowcase full. It’s a glorious time for little goblins but a nightmare for parents who wonder, “What are we going to do with all this?” A small indulgence is okay but growing bodies don’t need all the fat, sugar and preservatives, and neither do moms and dads who end up raiding the stash, and you know you do!

Halloween Candy

One year, my brother and I hid our Halloween bags in the closet and then snuck goodies whenever we could until we had eaten all the choice pieces like Snickers and Milk Duds. Then we left the the inferior candy like gumballs, taffy and those weird orange slices sit in the corner until Mom found our stash a few months later. Busted! At Diets In Review we have a better idea. Instead of eating all that candy and having to monitor your child’s closet for possible Snickers-hoarding, we’d like to offer you five fun alternatives.


Pledging to Say No to Candy this Halloween is Less Scary Than You Think

Candy is undoubtedly a staple of the month of October. You can’t go into a grocery store without being bombarded by the sight of shiny orange and black packaging drawing you in for a “fun size” bite of chocolate. But what if this year, instead of falling for the tricks of holiday advertising, you gave your body a treat of a candy-free October?

halloween candy

That’s the idea behind HealthyLiving How To’s second annual No Candy Pledge. Taking place through the entire month of October, the No Candy Pledge encourages you to stay away from sweets in order to start the holiday season off right. The holiday season can wreak havoc on a healthy eating plan, so removing sweets from your diet in the month before it really starts can be a good way to avoid extra holiday weight.

The pledge asks you to say no to all pre-packaged Halloween candy, sweets, treats and desserts. With so many other sweet options for fall, we don’t think that’s a particularly unmanageable challenge. Instead of snacking on mini chocolate bars or other sweets, try enjoying the fruits of the season, like apples or pumpkins. (more…)

Dark Chocolate Quinoa Candy Bars Replace Your Crunch Bar Habit

My daughter is three and loves chocolate, or “chock-wit” as the case may be. It’s her one vice, and speaking woman to woman, can you blame her? Considering how well she eats, I let us both indulge in this little craving on occasion, especially after a business trip.

Before taking off on one of my trips last year, I promised, as most parents do, to return with a present. Days later, barely awake at the airport before dawn, I remembered my promise and grabbed the first thing I could find – a three-pack of Ghirardelli chocolates. My daughter was overjoyed at this unusual gift, and somewhere along the line decided all business trips should end in chocolate.

quinoa dark chocolate

So on a recent visit to New York City, I was hounded at each of our morning and evening calls. “Have you got my chocolate yet?” she would anxiously ask. I said no most days, until finally, I’d found the perfect chocolate. At a small grocer in Brooklyn I happened upon Alter Eco’s Dark Quinoa bars. If you have a thing for Nestle’s Crunch bars like I do, you’ll never want to look back after snacking on these.

dark chocolate quinoa bar

An organic, sustainable, undeniably addictive little chocolate treat, I’ve raved to everyone since finding them. My daughter and I have since depleted our stash. I’m left wanting more, but haven’t found it locally yet. So we turned our chocolate craving in to a play date in the kitchen and crafted our own.

Ingredient wise, it’s as simple as dark chocolate and quinoa. Preparation wise, it’s just a tad more work. (more…)

HealthBuzz November 2: Halloween Candy Buy Back, GMO Facts, and Halloween Candy Recipes

We are hours away from the weekend, which means it is time for your weekly dose of healthy news! This week we have rounded up stories from Entertainment Weekly, Best Life Diet, and Yahoo! Shine. And while Halloween may be over, we’ve got treats that can be made with your leftover candy.

Eating Healthy on $12 Per Day Food Stamp Budget is Impossible and How the Next President May Make it Worse

With the elections coming up, government programs like Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), also known as food stamps, could be changed drastically. DIR’s staff writer Lacy J. Hansen tried to feed her family healthy meals on a food stamp budget and barely made it. Read about Lacy’s food stamp project and tell us what you think!

Vanessa Lembo Lost 120 Pounds After Deciding She Was Worth The Change

This week’s true weight loss story features Vanessa from Upstate New York. After Vanessa’s mother’s passed, she knew she had to start living a healthy life. She ditched the bags of Dove chocolate for cardio and weight training. Tell us what you think about Vanessa’s weight loss journey!

Kids Sell Halloween Candy for Cash at Dental Buy Back Programs Across the Country

There is a new trend sweeping the nation – kids selling their Halloween candy back to dentist offices. Tooth decay and cavities are a result of children eating loads of Halloween candy. We found one kid who received $22 for selling his Halloween candy to a local dentist office! This is a neat way to get rid of the sugar high will still giving them a reason to celebrate. (more…)

Kids Sell Halloween Candy for Cash at Dental Buy Back Programs Across the Country

Last Halloween, Judah Hansen didn’t have much to show for all of his trick or treating except for $22 in cash. It’s an annual tradition for the Kansas nine-year-old. He and his parents visit a dentist’s office the morning after Halloween to sell his candy. The dentist offers a dollar per pound of candy to keep the sugary treats out of his patients’ mouths. “I’d rather get money and have some candy instead of having a bunch of candy and not being able to eat it all,” Judah told us.

According to a new survey from the American Dental Association (ADA) and Popcap Games, the average child receives 90 pieces of candy during Trick or Treating. I know that my own daughter, Judah, and their peers don’t need all of that.

The ADA survey points out that Judah’s mom and I are not alone. Seventy percent of parents surveyed agreed they’d like their kids to receive less candy. The most shocking stat – 89 percent of kids said they would still like Halloween if they didn’t focus as much on the candy and did more so on the other fun activities and traditions.

“Even when Judah was a toddler, we ended up with a ridiculous amount of candy after Halloween,” Judah’s mom Lacy told us. We didn’t want it around the house for that long as it posed several weeks of temptation for us and he was constantly asking, ‘Can I have some candy?’ When buyback became an option, we jumped on it.”

So if parents don’t want the kids to have it, and the kids don’t care either way – why do we keep buying it? Marketing, of course. Since the candy manufacturers aren’t about to let us off the hook, neither are our dentists, it’s kind of a perfect match.

Candy buy back programs have grown in popularity over the last few years. Starting November 1, you’re bound to find at least one dentist in your community trading cash, toys, or prizes for candy.

Dr. Mitchell D. Scheier in Havertown, Pennsylvania is buying back candy for $1 per pound. It’s the fifth year for Dr. Scheier & Associates’ Halloween buy back program, paying out to 100 people last year. They donate the candy they collect to the troops.

“We do this one, to help limit the amount of sugar our young patients consume during a holiday surrounded by candy and two, to offer our soldiers a sweet reminder of home during this time of year,” said Dr. Scheier. (more…)

4 Healthier Halloween Treats to Give Them Something Good to Eat

“Trick or Treat, Smell My Feet, Give Me Something Good to Eat!” is the anthem sung by children everywhere on Halloween. We’re not advocating the smelling of feet because, eww yuck. But, giving them something good to eat? Let’s get on that already! Children have been asking for years, so why don’t we listen?

This year, fill the jack-o-lantern pails with a treat that’s good for them and that they’ll actually enjoy eating. Yeah, we think kids should have more fruits and vegetables too. But, if you put an orange in those tubs, it’s not likely to make it to their bellies.

We scoped out some of the healthier treats available this year in cute Halloween packaging so you can feel good about giving them something less scary this year!

Angie’s Kettlecorn

We were skeptical when we got a big bag, and then thankful that we got a big bag! This stuff is so darn good the biggest and smallest of goblins and ghouls will enjoy.

What’s In It: Four things – popcorn, corn oil, sugar, sea salt. That’s it!

The Numbers: The individual half-ounce bags have 70 calories and 4 grams of sugar.

Comparison: 1 roll of Smarties has 6 grams of sugar.

Where Is It: We found them at Target in a 24-pack for $7.99 (more…)

Cows Being Fed Gummy Worms: The Health Consequences

Is there any food match more appropriate than sprinkles atop an ice cream sundae? Maybe, but none as colorful. Below the sprinkles is the obligatory mound of whipped cream, which stands tall above two scoops of ice cream. It’s expected that this dairy dessert be decorated with sprinkles and cherries and maybe even gummy worms, but would you ever think of those ingredients as feed for cattle?

It’s been reported that, in light of the worst corn harvest in six years (per the USDA), that many cattle farmers are turning to candy and other junk food to feed their cows. Yes, one penny-pinched farmer in Indiana, trying to feed 450 dairy cows on a budget, got a good deal on ice cream sprinkles. He told the Orlando Sentinel that it was a “pretty colorful load,” and in an effort to keep down costs.

With less corn feed available, a standard for large cattle operations, the price is becoming out of reach for some farmers. In addition to ice cream sprinkles as part of the new cattle diet, other farmers are finding bargains on junk food snacks like cookies, gummy worms, marshmallows, fruit loops, orange peels, dried fruit, and even Mexican food.

Orville Miller, a dairy farmer in South Central Kansas, told KWCH that he uses scraps from a local chocolate factory and Mexican food scraps from another local factory to supplement his cows’ diet at a savings of almost 50 cents per cow per day.

It’s a way of recycling,” he said, as he feeds his cows chocolate pieces, soft taco shells and refried beans. “It’s high fat, high energy feed,” Orville says, which is necessary for his cows to produce hundreds of pounds of milk a day. (more…)

Organic vs Non-Organic: Battle of the Packaged Foods

We’ve all been at the grocery store, holding up two products trying to decide which is better for our health. With miles-long ingredients lists and confusing nutrition labels, picking the right foods for our families can be a daunting task – especially when cost is a major consideration. Throw in the factor that organic is supposedly superior and it’s enough to make your head spin.

We’ve been curious for a while now if organic packaged foods are really that much better for you than their non-organic counterparts. A little research proved that our suspicions about organic food were confirmed: they really are the healthier choice on the basis of nutrition.

Yes, the organic Oreos may cost more and taste different than the non-organic version, but we found that organic foods concentrate much more on whole, natural ingredients and leave out the artificial and highly-processed items that are ultimately harmful to our health. If cost wasn’t a factor, we’d tout organic all the way. But we’ve comprised a slideshow with a side-by-side comparison of ingredients and nutrition so you can decide which products are worth going organic for.

While organic packaged foods are often healthier than non-organic, always keep in mind that eating a balanced diet of whole, natural foods and keeping processed foods to a minimum is always the best diet approach.