Trick or animal-friendly treat?


Halloween to some is merely an excuse to freely indulge in tasty treats such as candy, chocolate bars and endless bags of salted and flavored chips. However, for vegans, Halloween can be viewed as a hassle, as they are limited in their selection to the treats given out generously.

Veganism is the practice in which one eliminates the use of animal products, such as eggs and dairy. The exclusion of dairy and eggs helps build compassion for animals, but it also means that vegans are unable to from indulging in chocolate bars and an assortment of candies, as their ingredients contain gelatin, pepsin, stearic acid and other animal products.

However, there are several alternatives for vegans to consider this Halloween. After researching and even tasting the vegan suggestions that PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) had to offer on their website, I learned about several Halloween delicacies that are not only animal friendly, but taste absolutely marvelous.

Alyson Rudnitski, a first year science student at Queens University, has been a proud vegan for three years and wishes to continue supporting animals through her choices. Rudnitski has tried a number of vegan Halloween treats and can agree that chocolate and candy can still be an option for vegans, if they make the proper choices. She took the time to show me on how to select the vegan variety of treats without the stress of searching far.

As an alternative for milk chocolate bars, Rudnitski claims that vegans can indulge in dark chocolate, as it has a higher chocolate content, pure ingredients and no additives, containing merely cocoa, cocoa butter, lecithin, sugar and no dairy products.

There are a variety of dark chocolate bars sold in Waterloo, such as Cadbury dark chocolate bars and Mars Bars. Another option in regards to dark chocolate is to buy the dark chocolate varieties of Reese’s, as they do not contain dairy supplements.

Although most candies sold today do not contain dairy products, Rudnitski taught me that there are still some candies that are still subject to animal cruelty. There is a red coloring used in some candies called Carmine, which is made from ground-up bugs. Not only does it sound unappetizing, but also it is off limits for a vegan.

Always positive, Rudnitski maintains that there are other options. Candies that are vegan-friendly include Swedish Fish, Mike & Ike’s, Jolly Ranchers and Sweet Tarts. Candies such as these are still appetizing while allowing vegans to maintain their no-dairy diets.

The delicacies of vegan eatery do not have to be limited to just chocolate and candies sold in a grocery store. There is also the option of organic bakeries. Healthy Foods and More is Waterloo’s largest natural food store and gluten-free bakery. This bakery on Bridgeport offers an extensive selection of organic supplements. The unique bakery and snack bar provides a magnificent arrangement of breads, muffins, cookies, and cakes, which are all organic and do not sever the diets of vegans.

For those vegans who plan on hosting a Halloween party and want a wider variety of treats, the bakery sells a plethora of pumpkin specials this season.
According to experimental baker Rachel, pumpkin treats are the most popular items this season and the bakery is always swarmed with customers looking for goods.

“This time of year, we get a lot of requests for pumpkin brownies, pies, cookies that are in the shape of Halloween characters and many other pumpkin requests.” Rachel shares.

These include pumpkin pie, cookies, cupcakes, muffins and tarts. Treats like these are ideal for any Halloween party or to just freely indulge. Special orders can be made to ensure that the foods contain no traces of eggs or dairy.

“I’m a vegan as well, so I always make certain that my pastries are animal-friendly, healthy and still taste delicious.” Rachel adds.

Halloween can still be delicious, regardless of your diet. By making animal-friendly options, anyone can enjoy the treats that veganism has to offer.

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