A Dietitian Ranks Your Favorite Halloween Candy — From Worst to Best(ish)

Halloween is the unofficial start of the holiday season, which means A LOT more candy will be stashed around the office until… probably Valentine’s Day. We all have our favorite Halloween candy, but the thought and reality of eating as much as you did when you were ten is unrealistic — unless you plan on going into a sugar-induced coma. We recommend one simple concept to help you on the right path when indulging this Halloween: portion control.

If you can keep your candies to a minimum, choose the ones with the least amount of sugar and brush your teeth post-consumption, you should be able to come out of the Halloween season relatively well. We will also let you know the best tips to reduce your candy consumption.

The Worst

Twix Fun Size
Just one fun size Twix contains 125 calories, 8.5 grams of sugar and 7 grams of fat. That is almost as much fat and calories as a hamburger. Instead of a Twix, choose one small vanilla cookie and pair with a piece of dark chocolate. Same taste, way fewer calories.

Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups
Just one Reese’s peanut butter cup contains 220 calories, 22 grams of sugar and 13 grams of fat — and who can just eat one? There are a few ways you can still get your chocolate and peanut butter fix. Just two mini dark chocolate peanut butter cups are just as tasty, with half the amount of sugar and calories — or, dip a spoon in natural peanut butter and top with a few chocolate chips.

Fun Size Nestle Crunch Bars
One fun-size Nestle Crunch bar contains 63 calories, 7 grams of sugar and 3 grams of total fat. You would think that a bar that has some puffed rice in it would have fewer calories, but that is not true. Nestle Crunch bars are some of the sweetest bars out there. A healthier alternative to snack on with your kids is a chocolate flavored puffed cereal like this one.

Fun Size Snickers
It is no wonder Snickers is one of the most popular candies out on the market. It contains what the candy industry calls “The Trifecta” — chocolate, nuts and caramel. And with all those ingredients comes lots of sugar and fat. Just one fun size Snickers contains 80 calories, 8.5 grams of sugar and 4 grams of fat. We wish we could say there is a healthier alternative, but we recommend just sticking to one and enjoying it.

The Best

Hershey’s Special Dark
Just two pieces contain 88 calories and only 5.2 grams of fat. Also, by decreasing the amount of milk added, it helps decrease overall sugar content. Quick tip: the higher the percentage of dark chocolate, the lower the sugar content.

Fun Size PayDay
Unlike the other peanut candies, PayDay contains the highest amount of peanuts so it contains the most amount of protein and fiber. Just one fun size PayDay has 7 grams of fiber and 2 grams of protein. One of the best choices while indulging.

Tootsie Roll Pops
One way to control portion size easily is having a lollipop. You tend to take your time eating it and you usually only have one. Just one Tootsie Roll Pop is only 60 calories and 0 grams of fat.

Dum Dum Lollipops
If you want an even lower calorie option to the Tootsie Roll Pop, just one Dum Dum lollipop is only 27 calories.

More Tips To Help You Keep From Overindulging

1. Keep your own healthy candy around, such as no to low sugar candy options that are not filled with artificial sweeteners such as:




2. Make sure not to skip meals on Halloween or the days after just to compensate for calories. This usually ends in more sugar binging.

3. Keep your meals balanced with a source of protein, fat and fiber-rich carbohydrates. Having all three main macronutrients in your meals will help steady your blood sugar and make you crave less instant energy (aka sugar).

4. Keep tabs on how much you are having. Make a note of how many candies you have each day and try to decrease by one each day.

5. Only buy a small amount of candy to share with the kids to prevent a ton of leftover candy. You can always tell them you ran out.

6. Enjoy your favorite sweet and remember that it is only one day.

We hope we fully prepared you for Halloween this year and provided you some simple tips to keep it as healthy as possible. One key to long-lasting health is being able to enjoy the things you love, balanced with the things your body needs. This includes the occasional sweet treat mixed in with all the vegetables, fruit, nuts and seeds. So enjoy yourself and remember: portion control!

Happy Halloween!


Gabriella is a registered dietitian living in the San Francisco Bay Area. She currently works in corporate wellness as a dietitian and overall wellness coach. She also runs a food blog called Macrobalanced, where she shows people that healthy and balanced eating can be interesting and tasty! She enjoys all things fitness from lifting heavy weights in the gym to hitting the barre. Nothing is off limits as long as sweat is involved. When she is not cooking or sweating, she is playing with her dog Maui, a lively German Shepherd. Follow her on Instagram and Facebook.