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Posts Tagged ‘Halloween’

Happy Halloween!

Get creepy in the kitchen.

Hump Day Snack: Day of the Dead Cookies

It’s the day before Halloween and children everywhere are gearing up for a full-day sugar spree and plenty of costumed chaos. But let’s not forget the other celebratory holiday that follows directly on the heels of Halloween – El Dia de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead. Beginning at midnight on October 31st and lasting through November 2nd, this Mexican holiday commemorates the lives of the deceased with a gathering of friends and family in graveyards. Its origins are not associated with the eerie backstory of Halloween, but the festive sugar skulls, atole and Pan de Muertos that are served on the holiday do fit right in during the spooky season. These sugar skull-inspired brownie cookies are a simple way to celebrate the two holidays in one fell swoop, and decorating them at a Halloween party is a sweet alternative to pumpkin carving if you’re trying to avoid the combination of knives and large groups of intoxicated people. Colored with extra dark cocoa powder, these vegan treats are spiced with cayenne and cinnamon as an homage to Mexican flavors. Bake a big batch, mix as many shades of icing as you can muster and let your friends decorate until dawn.

Read on for Devour’s previous coverage of El Dia de los Muertos and have an epic double holiday this week:

Healthiest Halloween Treats

Not to spook you, but Halloween can be a diet and health disaster if you don’t keep your wits about you. The hallmark of the holiday is artificial dye- and sweetner-filled candy, and a lot of it. If you’d like to escape the season without a sugar high — and some extra pounds under your belt — stick to one or two fun-sized candies from the office bowl. Then, if you’re hosting a Halloween party or just want to have healthier treats around, consider these festive items:

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5 Awesome Halloween Cocktails

It’s a spooktacular time of year — around a shadowy corner, in a moonlit orchard or down a leaf-littered path in the dark, a spirit might overtake you! Or you could just sit at home and have a spirit overtake you via a boozy beverage. Might we suggest one of these five creepy libations? They’re eerie and mysterious and sure to send icy chills to your bones, particularly if you spill them down your pants. Don’t do that. But drink up and happy, happy Halloween.

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How to Avoid the Temptation of Halloween Candy

On Log On & Eat with Eden Grinshpan, Eden travels the country to meet the most outrageous and original food bloggers and social media stars who invite her to devour their favorite dishes. We connected with them to pick their brains and score some exclusive advice and tips.

Mmmm. Sugar.

According to experts, sweet is the first taste that humans prefer from birth. But it’s also extremely addictive. In fact, one study found that sugar is more addictive than cocaine.

Unfortunately, eating too much candy and sugar can result in weight gain, metabolic disorders (a precursor to diabetes) and even some forms of cancer. In other words, it’s not good — and most of us are getting way more sugar than the recommended daily limit.

Breaking a sugar habit isn’t easy. But it’s possible. And these tips will help:

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How Bad Are Pumpkin Lattes for You Really?

This will be my last post in the name of pumpkin mania. Really. But before I continue writing about other good-for-you (and not-so-good-for-you) foods, I had to answer the burning question: How bad are pumpkin lattes for you really? I mean, they’re becoming as big of a symbol of fall as apple pie. So how do they rank nutritionally?

The Good
The base of the pumpkin latte — espresso and milk, better known as a latte — is arguably not bad for you. Coffee in moderation has some health benefits. And milk has benefits, too, especially if you’re going for low-fat or nonfat (it delivers protein, calcium and some other vitamins).

The Bad
Unfortunately, the thing that makes a pumpkin latte pumpkin-y is syrup. One variety of syrup that I looked at is made from condensed milk (pre-sweetened milk), two kinds of sugar (sugar and high-fructose corn syrup) and caramel coloring (which is linked to an increased cancer risk). A couple pumps of the stuff will add 106 calories and 24 grams of sugar (which is equivalent to 2 tablespoons of sugar!) to your latte.

The Verdict
It’s clear that the pumpkin latte is no health drink. But what really determines whether it takes a toll on your health and waistline is how big and how often your order it.

Size really does matter when it comes to sweetened beverages. Whether you choose skim or whole milk also makes a difference. A totally reasonable 8-ounce pumpkin latte with skim milk has 130 calories and 24 grams of sugar — some of which is from the natural sugars in milk. While a 12-ounce beverage usually clocks in at less than 200 calories (100 for milk, 100 for sugar), go up in size and you’ll start to see those numbers rise. A 16-ounce drink with whole milk has about 440 calories and 66 grams of sugar (that’s 5 tablespoons of sugar!). One more tip adds 60 calories, which might not seem like much, but it all adds up.

The second factor is frequency. Treat a pumpkin latte like dessert — a treat to have and enjoy once in a while — rather than make it your everyday coffee order (even if it’s just every day in the fall). Or you can take my route: Order your plain latte and celebrate pumpkin season with one of these healthy pumpkin recipes.

Kerri-Ann is a registered dietitian and nutrition coach who writes on food and health trends. Find more of her work at or follow her on Twitter @kerriannrd or Facebook.

Thirsty Thursday: Zombie Cocktail

It’s more than just alliteration; it’s a statement, a proclamation that Thursdays are when the weekend should really start. Kicking it off right is the key, and what better way than with a cocktail that not only takes the edge off, but tastes good too. A hard thing to disagree with, we know. Drink up, get down and go to sleep happy.

Halloween is one week away, which means it’s time to pick out a pumpkin, finalize the details of your costume and, of course, host a well-themed, spooky soiree.

Add some wickedness to your Halloween festivities with this post-apocalyptic Zombie Cocktail, a powerful brew of apricot brandy, three kinds of rum and orange juice. Be warned, the festive jack-o-lantern hue may seem innocent enough, but this punch is bound to wake up the undead.

Boo-ttoms up, folks.

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Go Ahead, Dress Like Food, or Five Easy DIY Food-Themed Halloween Costumes

Are we just getting curmudgeonly in our old age or are Halloween costumes not the creative, fun, homemade awesomeness that they used to be? Gone are the easy costumes from our childhood that were cobbled together from what we already had in our home; instead, costumes have become trendy, expensive, mundane getups that make up for what they lack in creativity with an overabundance of bared skin. Put it away, autumn exhibitionists.

So in the name of DIY Halloween costumes everywhere, we’ve compiled a list of five of our favorite Halloween costumes that are both cheap and easy to put together, and that will announce to the world (and the Halloween party that you’re at) that you’re a foodie.

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Hump Day Snack: Mummy Meatloaf

Halloween’s lurking just around the corner, so if you’ve already overdosed on your monthly quota of candy corn and need something savory to take the edge off, try a yummy mummy meatloaf on for size. It’s just as simple as baking up your go-to meatloaf recipe and wrapping the whole lot in a tangle of cooked wide pasta like pappardelle. Add some mozzarella and kalamata olive eyeballs for a finishing touch, and you’ve got a mummified main to counter those king-sized candy bars you just ate. Maybe even go a little ghoulish and serve it with a side of mashed potato ghosts, appropriately whipped into spectral mounds.

Click here to get to the meat of the recipe and scare up more savory Halloween selections from Cooking Channel’s spooky archives:

Sweets Week on Cooking Channel

With fall in full swing and Halloween just around the corner, it’s that time of year when our sweet tooths start calling to (or yelling at) us. After a long, hot summer, we happily remember what it feels like to turn our ovens on and experience the joy of baking, we visit orchards and patches to stock up on apples and pumpkins that will inevitably be made into crispy crumbles and pies, and we inwardly jump for joy when we see the fun-sized trick-or-treat candy bags appear at our grocery store. Whether it’s decadent cakes and pies or little wrapped candies you crave, Cooking Channel’s Sweets Week has everything you need to satiate your dolce desires.

The fun begins tonight at 9:00pm  ET with four back-to-back episodes of Unique Eats and Unique Sweets, featuring the country’s most original and tasty cupcakes, like Butternut Squash Cupcakes Stuffed with Maple Cream Cheese, and all-around dreamiest desserts, like Four and Twenty Blackbirds Salted Caramel Apple Pie (pictured above).

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