Easy Halloween Dinner Meal Ideas

For many kids and parents alike, Halloween is one of the most fun and anticipated nights of the year.

But by the time the kids are done with schoolwork or homework and put the final touches on their costumes, there is often not much time to eat dinner.

I spoke about this topic on Fox TV on 10/21/17. Watch the Replay Video Here:

By planning ahead this year, you will be able to get everyone out the door on a full stomach and not have to worry about them overeating candy for dinner.

I tell my kids, the more full and satisfied your tummy is with nutritious and healthy food, the longer you will be able to go trick-or-treating!

Let me give you a few super simple (and relatively nutritious) meals that you can whip out on a busy Halloween evening:

Spooky Worm Spaghetti

1. Spooky Spaghetti

This is seriously my favorite meal to cook and I’ve almost made it an annual Halloween tradition at our house.

Head up to the craft store and grab some icing coloring. You know, the kind that colors fondant. It’s a small bottle and costs around $2.50 but it will last you a LONG time and you will use it for several food safe crafts.

You only need to add 1/2 Teaspoon to your boiling water for cooking spaghetti.

Cook spaghetti noodles per the package instructions, drain right away (as usual) and add olive oil to make sure the “worms” don’t stick.

Top with meat sauce and pimento stuffed olives for eyes. Dinner is done! {and everyone thinks you are a creative genius!!} I’ve got more pictures with the step-by-step instructions here.

You could also use food coloring if you forget to stop off at the craft store for icing coloring, it just requires a little more work because you can’t just add the coloring to the water. Instead, cook the noodles as usual, then rinse them with cold water, then put them in a bag with a 2 TBS of water and 20 drops food coloring. Squish the noodles around in the bag for about 5 minutes. Then rinse the pasta again to get the excess color off. The other thing I don’t like about this method is that the meal is now cold. But some pasta dishes are served cold, so you could plan that method for another meal experiment. There are step-by-step photos of this process here.

 

2. Walking Tacos

This is the fastest “meal” ever because you can eat it while you are walking out the door (or walking through the neighborhood). Plus, it’s disposable!

All you need is to have taco ingredients ready to go and you dump them into snack size bags of Fritos or Doritos. We use shredded lettuce, cheese, refried beans, sour cream, hot sauce and cooked chili or just seasoned ground beef or turkey.

Seriously, just open the Frito or Dorito bag, sprinkle ingredients inside (the cheese & sour cream makes it all meld together perfectly), add a plastic fork and head out the door.

And because everything is disposable, clean up is super easy also! {you’re welcome}

Here’s a Photo Step-by-Step for Walking Tacos

3. Boo-Ritos

An alternative to the Walking Tacos is to use those same simple ingredients and wrap them inside a burrito instead.

The key is to have everything prepared ahead of time so all you need to do is load it in the burrito and head out the door.

The trick is to make sure you don’t overstuff them (we don’t use lettuce when we are planning to take these and just go). and fold the back inside the burrito so that it is easy to carry as a finger food.

Alternatively, if you have a little more time before things get underway, as a healthy option you could make Taco Lettuce Wraps

Or you could always take cold ingredients and wrap them up! Turkey, Mayo and Cheese are delicious wrapped up in a nice neat package to go!

4. Scary Soup

Really tight for time? Simply heat up any light colored soup and sprinkle spices in the shape of evil faces!

I used Pumpkin Soup sprinkled with Paprika in the photo above. And Campbell’s has instructions for Spider Web Tomato Soup with a swirl of sour cream using a toothpick to make a spider web (then goldfish “caught” in the web). Oooo scary, right?!

If you have more time to make a crockpot a meal… this great Tomato Soup recipe would be perfect also!

5. Creepy Chili 

Get your crock-pot going for this easy, nutritious meal.

Brown your meat then throw your spices, beans and veggies into the crock-pot and allow to simmer for about 4 hours.

Have some small fresh buns on hand. (side note: have you ever tried potato buns or Hawaiian rolls? They’re small and smooshy soft) and voila! Your protein-packed, delicious, hot meal is ready when you are!

You could serve the chili with a face made from shredded cheese to create a melted zombie look. And even try vegetarian options by substituting the meat with tofu, textured veggie protein or quinoa.

Another easy option is to make make the chili for dinner a few nights before Halloween and then make Crock Pot Baked Potatoes and simply serve the leftover chili on top! That truly feels like your cheating with a quick, easy, yummy (and filling) dinner.

Creepy Chili photo credit.

6. Mummy Pot Pie

This Mummy Pot Pie is a fun Halloween food you can make simply by arranging an easy flaky pie crust in strips to look like a mummy face.

Add a dollop of sour cream and two black beans and you’ve got the perfect eyes on the top of your favorite chicken, beef or chili pot pie recipe.

Bonus Snack #1: Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

One of the best parts about carving your jack-o-lantern is being able to roast the seeds afterward.

Pumpkin seeds are high in zinc and super beneficial for your immune system!

Simply scoop out the guts of your pumpkin after cutting the top off. Separate seeds from the slimy orange innards. {Your kids will love to help with this task!}

Rinse your pumpkin seeds and use paper-towel to absorb excess water.

Spread your seeds on a lightly greased cookie sheet (use parchment underneath for easier clean up). You can use olive oil, butter, coconut oil or whatever you have available. Season your pumpkin seeds with salt alone for traditional flavor or jazz it up with what’s in your spice cupboard.

Bake at 350 until golden brown and crunchy. Use a spatula to flip seeds over throughout cooking.

Here are some great flavors options we’ve tried before and loved:

  • Parmesan cheese and black pepper
  • Garlic salt and dill seasoning
  • Cajun spice
  • Nutritional yeast (makes them taste “cheesy”)
  • Simple salt and pepper
  • Soy sauce and sesame oil

If you have never made them before, let this new tradition take root in your home! I promise it’s easier than you thought!

Bonus Snack #2: Veggie Platter Pumpkin

If you really don’t have time to sit down and eat dinner at all, make this healthy snack platter to eat while you get those last minute costume details attended to.

Create a giant pumpkin shape with the help of some raw baby carrots arranged on a round platter.

Cut up a Cucumber for the green mouth highlights and stem (you could also use broccoli but my kids prefer cukes).

Fill 3 large Yellow Peppers with a creamy dip (or cream cheese) for the eyes and nose! You can use my delicious French Onion Dip, it’s yummy with veggies.

Hopefully you have an ALDI near you where you can get cheap produce.

Scary Ghost Marshmallows

Not-Healthy (Nor Quick), But Super Cute: Ghost Marshmallows

I promise every one of your kids will love to make this treat. Although, what’s not to love? Marshmallows and creative face painting?!!

Just take a bag of marshmallows and the icing coloring you bought from the craft store to use in your spaghetti above.

Use toothpicks to draw fun (or scary) faces on them. They dry in about 5 minutes.

And if it is cold in your area then you can drop them into hot cocoa for a scary treat!

OoooooooooOOOOOOOOoooooooooo

Need ghost face ideas? Here’s the quick google search I did for ours.

MORE Halloween Fun Recipes:

Other fun Halloween food ideas include Clementine Pumpkin and Banana Ghosts, Orange Jack-o-Lantern Fruit Cups, or even Gluten Free Spiced Pumpkin Muffins!

Fill their tummy's with a nutritious dinner before they get all that candy!

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