It's not hard to pack on an extra 10 pounds during the fall and holiday season. Halloween candy, Thanksgiving stuffing, Christmas mashed potatoes, and bottles of wine aren't exactly the right ingredients for a shredded six-pack. And once you start—"Another Twix? Don't mind if I do?"—it's easy to shrug off your diet plans and settle into an "I'll start up after the holidays" mindset.
With this in mind, those who are careful about what they eat can feel more anxious than excited about October, November, and December. Fortunately, with the right tweaks to traditional treats, you can still enjoy seasonal food.
These fun Halloween recipes will bring back childhood memories without the haunting guilt of added sugar and saturated fat. Bring them to a party, make them for your kids, or just enjoy them on your own. Either way, these recipes will certainly put you in the Halloween spirit!
1. Pudding Parfaits
At this time of year, trying to forgo your cravings for chocolate may feel like mission impossible. Instead of stealing candy from your kids, whip up this low-calorie pudding as a chocolatey snack.
- Chocolate pudding powder, 1 scoop
- Skim milk, 2 cups
- Cookies and cream protein powder, 1 scoop
- Light whipped topping, 1 cup
- Orange juice, 1/4 cup
- Beat together skim milk and pudding powder.
- Once mixed, beat in protein powder.
- When mixed, place in separate serving dishes.
- In a separate bowl, combine whipped topping and orange juice.
- Once fully mixed, spoon on top of each pudding serving.
- Calories: 211.4
- Total Fat: 4.65g
- Total Carbs: 28g
- Protein: 12.8g
2. Cheesy Pumpkins
This creamy snack is perfect for a Halloween party. Feel free to get creative with your pumpkins!
- Fat free cream cheese, 8 oz
- Low-fat cheddar cheese, 1/4 cup shredded
- Pretzel sticks, 10
- Whole grain crackers, 10 whole
- Heat cream cheese at medium heat until cheddar cheese has melted.
- Place cheese in fridge and cool for at least one hour.
- Once cool, form cheese into small balls and place on top of crackers.
- With a toothpick, draw lines from top to bottom of the cheese balls to create grooves like a pumpkin has.
- Stick half a pretzel stick on the top of the cheese balls to create the stem.
- Place in fridge until ready to serve.
- Calories: 78.6
- Total Fat: 1.54g
- Total Carbs: 5.57g
- Protein: 8.25g
3. Pumpkin Carrot Muffins
The pumpkin flavor gives these muffins the feel of the season, but the low-cal ingredients deliver solid nutrition. They're a great addition to Halloween festivities.
- Almond flour, 1 cup
- Oat flour, 3/4 cup
- Baking powder, 2 tsp
- Ground cinnamon, 1 tsp
- Pumpkin spice, 1/4 tsp
- Whole egg, 1
- Agave syrup, 1/4 cup
- Pumpkin, cooked, 1/2 cup
- Carrots, cooked, 1/2 cup
- Raisins, 1/4 cup
- Skim milk, 1/2 cup
- Coconut oil, 1/3 cup
- Heat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Combine flours, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and pumpkin spice.
- In another bowl, mix egg, agave syrup, milk, raisins, and coconut oil.
- Purée carrots and pumpkin together and then combine with wet ingredients.
- Mix wet and dry ingredients and then pour batter into a non-stick muffin tin.
- Bake for 15-18 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean.
- If desired, top muffins with fat-free cream cheese.
- Calories: 182
- Total Fat: 5.6g
- Total Carbs: 17.34g
- Protein: 4.7g
4. Carrot Eyes
Need a low-cal, spooky treat? Try these carrot eyes. They only take a few minutes, but everyone will love them.
- Carrot sticks, 3 large wide
- Greek yogurt, 1/2 cup
- Dried cranberries, 20
- Peel carrots and cut them into inch-thick slices.
- Top each carrot with a spoonful of Greek yogurt.
- Place two dried cranberries on top of the yogurt to form eyes.
- If preferred, use olives instead of cranberries.
- Calories 32
- Total Fat 40mg
- Total Carbs 4g
- Protein 3.7g
5. Banana Coconut Ghosts
They're better for you than ice cream and they taste just as good! This ghostly treat will please kids and adults alike.
- Large bananas, 2 ripe
- Dried unsweetened coconut, 1/4 cup
- Coconut oil, 1 tbsp
- Grapes sliced in quarters, 4
- Cranberries, 8
- Popsicle sticks, 4
- Peel bananas and cut into halves.
- Stick Popsicle stick or toothpick into flat end of banana and place in freezer until firm.
- Once firm, roll bananas in coconut oil and then roll in dried coconut flakes.
- Lay coated bananas on a plate and use quartered grapes for the eyes and cranberries for the mouth.
- Serve immediately
- Calories: 159.5
- Total Fat: 10.5g
- Total Carbs: 18g
- Protein: 1.25g