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Leftover Halloween candy? We have 8 fiendishly clever ways to give those treats new life

Halloween and candy, you can’t have one without the other. We love the monster holiday as much as the next zombie: The costumes, the trick-or-treating, the spooky decorations and, of course, the candy always get us excited. However, sometimes we go a bit overboard on the candy, either buying too much or having too much given to us. And we can only eat so many Almond Joys, even if they’re fun-sized, before regret kicks in. So when you’ve had your fill of Snickers bars, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups and Skittles, give one of these fiendishly clever ideas a try.

Make a cookie bar dessert treat

The first idea is to repurpose the candy into a dessert bar. Easy, convenient and delicious, these loaded cookie dessert bars will breathe new life into leftover Halloween candy. In this recipe, it’s helpful to think about the candy like a mix-in; therefore, whatever you’re in the mood for will work. The bars start with a basic cookie dough, then add in chopped candy and cookies, which is then spread into a baking dish. It’s the perfect dessert for using up some of the leftovers. Just be careful not to eat the whole thing or you’ll end up with the same problem of having all that candy. Take one, give the rest away.

ALSO READ: How to make an epic Halloween boo basket

These dessert bars are not the only leftover Halloween candy recipe. A quick Google search revealed a plethora of leftover Halloween candy ideas, from brownies and blondies with Halloween candy mixed in, to using candy as a topping for Rice Krispies Treats and cheesecakes. Once you start thinking about it, some chopped-up Halloween candy can make for some unique treats.

Sink it into pancakes and waffles

You could even splurge a little and use chopped Halloween candy for pancakes and waffles. Or, for a quick weeknight dessert, place a piece of a Hershey’s fun-size chocolate bar inside a crescent roll, sprinkle it with sugar and bake for a chocolate pseudo-danish.

Freeze it and repurpose later

Naturally, if your willpower is in check, you can bag the Halloween candy and freeze it for Christmas, New Year’s parties, even Easter. Candy freezes and defrosts perfectly, so don’t worry the candy will be ruined. Pull the leftover Halloween candy out for Christmas parties or for decorating gingerbread houses and sugar cookies. Candy is always in good form for those events.

Use it as a reward

Some like to use leftover Halloween candy as rewards for good behavior or scores for children. If your child has a favorite candy, make sure to save some of that for them to earn. Skittles, M&M’s and Reese’s Pieces make excellent spelling rewards. Or save it for daily lunch treats for kids and adults alike.

Turn it into a mixed drink

For adults only, fruit-flavored candy can make for a super-fun adult beverage. Use Skittles or other non-chocolate Halloween candy to flavor vodka as both a fun and easy way to spice up a cocktail party. This recipe for candy vodka calls for Jolly Ranchers, and it makes a great gift and a delicious cocktail.

Donate it

Of course, the ideas above are new ways for you to eat and keep the candy, and maybe that’s what you’re trying to avoid. If you’re looking for ways to cleanse the house from the ghost of Halloween-past, then your best bet is to give the candy away. If you’re looking for where to donate leftover Halloween candy, check with your dentist. Many dentists will even pay for the Halloween candy to help incentivize reluctant kids.

Send to the troops!

Additionally, several organizations collect the candy and send it overseas to our troops. The gift of candy for our soldiers gives them a little taste of home, not to mention a sweet treat. Soldiers’ Angels Treats for Troops and Operation Gratitude make donating the candy easy. These organizations collect Halloween candy locally and then send it to troops and first responders. Even kids will get into the joy of supporting our troops and first responders.

Create a syrup

Or you could make a syrup. This idea may be venturing into unknown lands; however, this recipe for using candy canes to make flavored simple syrup might just be the inspiration needed to come up with the next cocktail go-to. Try making a syrup with a non-chocolate candy and let us know how it turns out. Who knew leftover Halloween candy could be this fun?

While leftovers are usually not this interesting, we think Halloween candy has the most potential for repurposing in a fun way.

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