While vegetarians and vegans find themselves with increasingly tailored and green-washy options for ethical pigging out, Halloween poses a particular problem for us Americans in the bunch: animal welfare or free candy?
Both are seriously possible.
Through careful research and many, many years of trading Halloween candy with my little sister, I bring you my Top Ten (Totally Bad for You) Vegan Halloween candies. Enjoy the sugar hangover.
1. Laffy Taffys – These are vegan, though only the small ones. In a remarkable case of David vs. Goliath, those candy-bar sized Laffy Taffys contain egg. So eat them when Trick-or-Treating, but don’t buy them at the gas station.
2. Skittles – What?! I once had 13 cavities from eating too many Skittles. My dentist still checks in about the habit. Though it’s been a few years since they kicked out the gelatin, if anyone is passing out Skittles from 2009, you may still have a problem.
3. Dots – They just taste like Halloween to me. I mean, has anyone ever had Dots outside of the context of Halloween? Serious question. E-mail me directly if you have.
4. Sour Patch Kids – These are vegan. They’ll also leave your tongue feeling like it has just been electrocuted. I prefer to eat handfuls of them at once to exacerbate the sensation.
5. Swedish Fish – These are maybe the perfect candy because you don’t even realize how many you’ve eaten until your stomach hurts. Warning: Fun Size packs are hardly a serving, so take several.
6. Smarties – Also vegan, but I usually pretend like they’re not so I can trade them for something better.
7. Atomic Fireballs – Extremely difficult to binge eat, but extremely fun to prank people with. Tell your vegan friend it’s “cherry” and watch their surprise.
8. Airheads – A hot commodity, as they are usually only passed out by families with Costco memberships.
9. Now & Laters – It’s easy to get out of awkward Halloween party conversations when you can’t open your jaw.
10. Mary Jane – I’ve never really understood the draw, but these peanutty treats are the closest you’re gonna get to the taste of manufactured chocolate, so you better learn to like them.
The gist? Avoid gelatin (bones), carmine color (beetles), and confectioner’s glaze (beetles). And always try to trick your friends into giving you the better candy.
This post was published on October 31, 2014