If you have kids with food allergies, one of the best ways to keep them safe on Halloween is to host a Halloween party. If you are organizing a party for school or plan to invite a party guest who has food allergies, and you’re not sure where to start, you’ve come to the right place. We’ve got suggestions for all aspects of party planning, from invitations through goody bags.
Let guests know about your food restrictions in a simple statement in your party invitations. Don’t go into detail, and keep the tone lighthearted. Some examples would be “If you would like to bring something, please contact us beforehand,” or “Because some of our guests are on restricted diets, please do not bring any candy.”
Try one of our free, printable Halloween invitations.
Decorations can be as simple and inexpensive as some orange and black crepe paper, or as imaginative as you can dream up.
If you are hosting a party for a group of people with unknown allergies (such as a school or youth group), avoid latex balloons, dry ice, and fog machines, which can be allergic triggers for some people.
Classic Halloween party games are still guaranteed to get kids giggling. Try one of these:
- Bobbing for apples
- Toilet paper mummy relay race
- Eat a (safe) donut or other food off a string – no hands allowed!
Sugar skull decorating: – Sugar skulls are traditional Mexican Day of the Dead decorations. They can be decorated with colored frosting, and are usually used for decoration, not food. (note: contains eggs)
Pumpkin carving contest: Use safety cutting tools, available at most grocery stores, or ask guests to bring their own. Have guests work as teams to carve their pumpkin. To avoid hurt feelings, give each guest an award, such as "silliest pumpkin" or "scariest pumpkin."
Decorate goody bags: – Even very young children can decorate paper lunch bags with stickers and crayons for use as goody bags. Older ones may like to draw pumpkin faces on theirs with black marker.
It's possible to have a wonderful Halloween party without any food at all. If you do decide to serve food, here are some options:
Purchase safe candy: Nut-Free Mom has compiled a list of major-brand candy that is peanut and nut free. There are also many companies who specialize in allergy-free candies. Most chocolate is produced on shared equipment and may contain peanuts, nuts, soy, and/or dairy, so only purchase chocolate from a source that states that it is free of your allergens.
Pumpkin seeds: As guests scoop out their pumpkins, rinse the seeds and toast them in the oven for an end-of-party treat. Pumpkin seeds are not a major allergen and a safe for most people with nut allergies.
End the party on a high note. Light all of the carved pumpkins, put on a classic Halloween hit like “Monster Mash” and parade around the house or yard. Parents, this is your photo opportunity!
Send each guest home with a goody bag containing small, inexpensive Halloween treats. Include a brief, handwritten thank you note – even just a square of paper with “thank you” written on it will make each guest feel special.
Don’t forget each guest’s sugar skull and pumpkin!