We don’t mean to frighten you, but we’re closing in on one of the most unhealthy holidays of the year. And though you may head into Halloween armed with the best intentions, if you aren’t prepared, one whiff of all those sweet treats could be all it takes to send you spiraling into a dark hole of diet destruction.
Never fear! We’ve got you covered with simple snacking swaps sure to scare off even the worst candy craving. Stock up on these slim-down staples now, and enjoy a happy and healthy Halloween!
Treat: Milk Chocolate Bar
Trim-Down Trick: Chocolate Milk
We’re sweet on this swap for a few reasons: With this decadent drink, you’ll not only calm chocolate cravings, your body will get a boost from nutrients like calcium and vitamin D found in milk. Try making your own by blending one cup of nonfat milk with one tablespoon of dark chocolate syrup. Craving something cozier? Mix one tablespoon of unsweetened cocoa powder with your favorite zero-calorie natural sweetener (think Stevia or Monk Fruit) and one cup of nonfat milk for a healthier hot chocolate that won’t wreck your waistline. One cup of nonfat milk counts as one PowerFuel on Nutrisystem. One tablespoon of unsweetened cocoa powder is a Free Food on Nutrisystem; one tablespoon of dark chocolate syrup counts as about two Extras. Healthy hint: check your Nutrisystem Grocery Guide for more guidance!
Treat: Peanut Butter Cups
Trim-Down Trick: 3-Ingredient Peanut Butter Cups
This recipe for Peanut Butter Cups tastes just like the real thing, but without all the guilt. All you need is chocolate, peanut butter and some coconut oil and voila! PB cups you’ll love. Just as tasty? Chocolate PB melts. Just bring a small pot to medium heat on the stovetop, then add an ounce of dark chocolate, two tablespoons of peanut butter and two to three tablespoons of unsweetened almond milk. Stir until the chocolate and peanut butter are melted and the mixture is blended. Let cool then pour quarter-sized droplets onto a greased pan and place the pan in the freezer. Once the melts are solid enough to pick up, dive right in! This recipe makes two servings; on Nutrisystem, one serving counts as one PowerFuel and two Extras. Another diet-friendly way to enjoy everyone’s favorite flavor combo? This Chocolate Peanut Butter Smoothie!
Treat: Gummy Bears (or any gummy candy!)
Trim-Down Trick: Dried Fruit
Noshing on dried fruit is a great way to satisfy cravings for something chewy and sweet without all the calories, fat and sugar of traditional gummy candies. Try dried apricots, apples, pineapples, figs or raisins. Just be sure to read the ingredients and skip the fruits with added sugars. You can also make your own dried berries. Just spread your favorites on a baking sheet and bake for six to eight hours at 200 degrees. Just be sure to check on your fruit every hour or so to prevent burning. On Nutrisystem, a quarter cup of most dried fruits counts as one SmartCarb.
Trim-Down Trick: Frozen Red Grapes
We know, we know. It’s easy to be skeptical of any suggestion that involves replacing candy with fruit. But frozen grapes are the perfect combo―sweet and crunchy. Mix in some frozen blueberries and green grapes as well, and you’ll literally be tasting the rainbow! On Nutrisystem, one cup of these fruits counts as one SmartCarb.
Treat: Peppermint Patty
Trim-Down Trick: Chocolate Mint Tea
If chocolate mint is your flavor of choice, brew a large cup of mint tea, then stir in two tablespoons of sweetened cocoa powder and two tablespoons of non-fat milk. You’ll get all the taste of your favorite treat―without any of the guilt! On Nutrisystem, this cozy combo counts as three Extras. Craving something cooler? Try this delicious Mint Chocolate Chip Protein Smoothie.