You've been pilfering from the trick-or-treat stash all month long. This week your kids are going to come home with bucketfuls of candy. This candy binge has to end!
Or does it? Fortunately, there are dozens of things you can do with leftover candy to make sure not a single sweet treat goes to waste.
Leftover candy for baking
Hand Pies. It doesn't get simpler than this. Buy pre-made refrigerated pie crust and use a cookie cutter to cut it into circles. Chop up the candy, sprinkle it on the crust, fold it over, crimp the edges and bake.
Stained Glass Cookies. Here's an idea for your leftover lollipops and hard candies. First, crush candies up in a food processor. Roll out sugar cookie dough, cut your shape, then use a smaller cookie cutter to cut out the center. Place the outlined shape on a baking sheet lined with parchment. Fill the center with your crushed hard candy and bake the required time.
Candy Bar Ice Cream. Four ingredients is all you need for this delicious ice cream. Melt 4 oz chopped candy bars with a ½ cup sweetened condensed milk in a double boiler. Then stir in a cup each of whole milk and half and half. Refrigerate for 2 hours, process in an ice cream maker and sprinkle some chopped candy bars on it before serving.
Candy Bark. So easy, so delicious! Melt plain chocolate bars in a double boiler and then pour onto a parchment-lined baking sheet. Spread into an even layer, then sprinkle on an assortment of leftover candy. Let it set for a few hours and enjoy.
Change up the consistency. Use a food processor, nut grinder, or microplane to create candy grounds for all your holiday baking. Use it as ice cream topping, bake it into cookies, sprinkle on top of cupcakes or cheesecakes, and stir it into your hot chocolate.
Leftover candy for decorating (and gifting)
Count down to Christmas. It will be much easier to control your child's candy intake if you incorporate it into an advent calendar. There are a million ways to do it. We like this one where you take a bulletin board and use a hodgepodge of boxes for each day.
Save it for the gingerbread men. A gingerbread house doesn't have to be all gum drops and candy canes. Your Halloween candy can make a castle fit for a gingerbread king like a chocolate bar thatched roof!
Decorate your door. Buy a Styrofoam wreath from a craft store. Wrap a decorative ribbon around the top of your wreath and tie it off to create a wreath hook for your door. Then glue on candy starting with the biggest pieces. For a glue-free wreath use lollipops and stick them right into the Styrofoam.
Donate it to the troops. Get into the spirit of giving with your leftover Halloween candy. Non-profits are gearing up to send holiday care packages to troops and Halloween candy is the perfect addition.
Final tip: Oops! No leftover candy, only candy wrappers? Kids can make candy wrapper turkey wall art. Gather together all the fall-colored wrappers (hello, Reese's, M&Ms, Butterfingers, Snickers, Tootsie Rolls and Kit Kats).