We Ranked 15 Halloween Candies by Nutritional Value

Updated 04/19/19
Healthy Halloween candy
SweetPics

Healthy Halloween candy: an oxymoron or a legitimate possibility? Even though most us of can't get away with trick-or-treating anymore (curse that middle school growth spurt!), we never really get too old to resist the bowlfuls of Halloween candy that materialize in every office kitchen and grocery aisle come October. (My weakness is sour lollipops… I can't put them down!)

Now, we wouldn’t wish a candy-free October on anyone, but there are certain sweet treats that have scarier nutrition facts than others. We carefully studied the ingredient lists, calories, fat, and sugar content of 15 popular Halloween candies and ranked them in order of frightfulness. (We also threw in how long the average person would have to trick-or-treat—at a brisk pace, may we add—in order to burn them off.)

So when raiding your little cousin's Halloween loot this year, now you'll know which treats are better for you. Before you unwrap a single piece, read this!

From Worst to Best

#15. Reese's Peanut Butter Cups Miniatures

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Reese's Peanut Butter Cups Miniatures $11 $9
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Serving size: 3 pieces

Calories: 108

Fat: 6.4 grams

Sugar: 9.9 grams

Minutes of trick-or-treating needed to burn off: 30

Say it ain't so! These depressingly delicious peanut butter cups contain enough sugar and fat to send your diet goals into early hibernation. And that's just for three pieces. Think about how many you actually eat on Halloween. Spooky!

#14. Fun-Size Starbursts

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Starburst Original Fun Size Bag $10
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Serving size: 4 pieces

Calories: 80 

Fat: 1.25 grams

Sugar: 11.5 grams

Minutes of trick-or-treating needed: 20

The highest sugar content on our entire list belongs to these brightly colored chews. A frightful recipe of corn syrup, sugar, and (greasy-as-heck) hydrogenated palm kernel oil are responsible for the cartoonish fruit flavor and gummy texture.

#13. Twizzlers

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Twizzlers Strawberry Twists $2
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Serving size: 2 pieces

Calories: 80

Fat: 0.2 grams

Sugar: 9.5 grams

Minutes of trick-or-treating needed: 20

These licorice-like twists are marketed as a "low-fat" food, which is true. But don't be fooled into thinking they're healthy. A formula of white flour, sugar, and cornstarch makes these a nutritional nightmare. There are almost 10 grams of sugar in just two straws, and really, who only eats two Twizzlers?

#12. Fun-Size Snickers

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Snickers Fun-Size Chocolate Candy Bars Variety Mix Bag (Pack of 3) $33
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Serving size: 1 bar

Calories: 80

Fat: 4 grams

Sugar: 8.5 grams

Minutes of trick-or-treating needed: 20

If you think Snickers aren't that bad because they're made with peanuts and "real" chocolate, think again. This cheap, artificially flavored chocolate product barely counts as food, and it's only made worse by the corn syrup, sugar, and fatty processed oils.

#11. Fun-Size Skittles

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Skittles Original Fun-Size Candy Bag $3
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Serving size: 9 pieces

Calories: 85

Fat: 0.9 grams

Sugar: 16 grams

Minutes of trick-or-treating needed: 22

Remember: The serving size here is only nine measly skittles. You're more likely to consume the whole pack, which contains about as much sugar as a scoop of Ben & Jerry's ice cream. Corn syrup and food dyes round out the startling ingredient list.

#10. Brach's Candy Corn

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Brach's Candy Corn $17
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Serving size: 9 pieces

Calories: 70

Fat: 0 grams

Sugar: 14 grams

Minutes of trick-or-treating needed: 18

This packaging boasts "made with real honey," but the bag fails to advertise its ickier types of sugar (white sugar, corn syrup, confectioner's glaze, and dextrose). Not to mention the artificial flavors, dyes, and gelatin (which, in case you need a reminder, is made from horse hooves).

#9. Milky Way Minis

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Milky Way Milk Chocolate Mini-Size Candy Bars Bag $4
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Serving size: 2 pieces

Calories: 72

Fat: 2.8 grams

Sugar: 9.6 grams

Minutes of trick-or-treating needed: 19

Seriously, who eats just two mini Milky Ways and calls it a night?! We shudder to think of the amounts of sugar, corn syrup, milk fat, hydrogenated palm kernel oil, and artificial flavors we actually consume on our Halloween Milky Way binges.

#8. Airhead Minis

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Airheads Mini Bars Bulk Case $25
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Serving size: 1 bar

Calories: 46

Fat: 0.5 grams

Sugar: 6.3 grams

Minutes of trick-or-treating needed: 12

An ingredient list of various sugars, partially hydrogenated oils, artificial colors, and artificial flavors renders these stretchy-sweet bars a total nutrition fail.

#7. Mini Tootsie Rolls

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Tootsie Roll 5 Pound Value Bag $17
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Serving size: 3 pieces

Calories: 70

Fat: 1.5 grams

Sugar: 9.5 grams

Minutes of trick-or-treating needed: 18

Does anyone even really like Tootsie Rolls? They're a sorry excuse for chocolate. But they somehow contain just as much sugar? Not worth it.

#6. Hershey's Kisses

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Hershey's Kisses $11
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Serving size: 3 pieces

Calories: 67

Fat: 4 grams

Sugar: 7.7 grams

Minutes of trick-or-treating needed: 16

The fat content of these American treasures is pretty high, but if you stick to the serving size, they won't do you in. And stopping at three Hershey's Kisses actually isn't that hard since they're rich and chocolaty and take a bit more effort to unwrap. 

#5. Snack-Size Reese's Pieces

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Reese's Pieces 48-Oz. Bag $37
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Serving size: 1 pouch

Calories: 70

Fat: 3 grams

Sugar: 7 grams

Minutes of trick-or-treating needed: 18

Reese's Cups might be your doom, but in Pieces form, they're not that scary. You can eat an entire snack-size bag and only ingest seven grams of sugar. 

#4. Snack-Size Kit Kat

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Kit Kat Snack Size $3
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Serving size: One two-piece bar

Calories: 70

Fat: 3.6 grams

Sugar: 7 grams

Minutes of trick-or-treating needed: 18

Unlike heavier candy bars, the super-light wafer in this chocolaty treat saves you some calories. Plus, the fat and sugar contents aren't quite as high as the Hershey's Kisses. So if you like chocolate, go ahead; break yourself a piece.

#3. Fun-Size Pretzel M&Ms

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M&M's Pretzel Sharing Size Chocolate Candies $3
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Serving size: One bag

Calories: 60

Fat: 2 grams

Sugar: 7 grams

Minutes of trick-or-treating needed: 15

If you're going the M&M's route, opt for the pretzel variation. They don't offer much in the way of vitamins and minerals, but less chocolate and more pretzel mean lower levels of sugar and fat.

#2. Welch's Halloween Fruit Snacks

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Welch's Halloween Fruit Snacks $5
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Serving size: One packet

Calories: 45

Fat: 0 grams

Sugar: 6 grams

Minutes of trick-or-treating needed: 12

A fun-size bag of these chewy goodies contains no fat and comparatively little sugar. Better yet, you get 15% of your daily vitamin A quota and 50% of your vitamin C! 

#1. Thrive Market Organic Pumpkin Seeds

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Thrive Market Organic Pumpkin Seeds $14 $8
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Serving size: 1/4 cup

Calories: 180

Fat: 14 grams

Sugar: 1 gram

Minutes of trick-or-treating needed: 50

Okay, okay, we know—this isn't really a Halloween candy. But if you actually want to stay healthy this Halloween, stick to these (surprisingly addictive) salted pumpkin seeds. One serving contains healthy fats and nine grams of protein, plus healthy doses of iron, vitamin E, manganese, and zinc.

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