Back in the day, it used to be so easy to give out candy on Halloween. But today, every little Tommy, Dickie and Madison seems to be either allergic to nuts, gluten-free, lactose-intolerant or has some other type of food restriction. Because this is San Francisco, shops like Rock Candy Snack Shop in Bernal Heights make it easy to find organic, all-natural, and allergen-free candies all year round. Owner Heather Young shared a few recommendations with us.
Sjaak's Vegan Chocolate Bites (50¢)
Instead of handing out Junior Mints or Reese's Peanut Butter cups, why not give kids these organic mini dark chocolate cups? In addition to mint and peanut butter flavors, you can also get them filled with caramel or orange. No matter which flavors you pick, they're all-natural, with no artificial colors or preservatives.
Yummy Earth Lollipops (25¢)
Organic and all natural, these small lollies are available in a bunch of flavors, including tango mango, tooberry blueberry and very very cherry. Since they're 100% vegan as well as nut and gluten-free, they're a great option if you want to cover all the bases.
Yummy Earth Sour Beans ($1)
These organic jelly beans are just about as sour as those conventional kids who hang out in a patch, except they are made with all natural ingredients. Plus they are gluten-free, peanut-free, tree nut-free, and have no high fructose corn syrup.
Sjaak's Vegan Chocolate Bars ($3)
At 1.7 oz, these bars are a bigger treat, but perfect for the one or two kids you may get at your door who are lactose-intolerant or vegan. They are available with or without nuts, and are organic all-natural, with no artificial colors or preservatives.
Indie Candies Lollipops ($3 each)
Just for Halloween, these full-size pops are available in some very creepy cool shapes: a Frankenstein head (key lime), scary black bat (dark chocolate), and a jack-o-lantern (orange or dark chocolate). They're made in a Big 8 allergen-free facility, which means they have no gluten/wheat, dairy/casein, peanuts, tree nuts, soy, fish, shellfish or egg.
No one's suggesting you should nix the Snickers and put the kibosh on Kit Kats completely, but by offering a few allergen-friendly options, you can make Halloween a bit more fun for a few kids and make your home the most organic, vegan, allergen-friendly house on the block (and you know they'll be a prize for that some day).