We recently held a giveaway on the Northeast Ohio Parent Facebook page for tickets to the Greater Cleveland Aquarium’s annual Hauntaquarium event. To enter, parents were told to share their favorite candy that they’ll soon be “sampling” from their kids’ trick-or-treat bags.
Because after all, one of the perks of being a parent is getting to experience Halloween through the eyes — and candy stashes — of your kids, right? It was a passionate subject (with a great prize up for grabs), and we saw the highest number of entries ever for a Facebook giveaway.
I didn’t want to let all that sweet research go to waste, so here they are… the top Halloween candy picks as named by parents in Northeast Ohio.
Peanut Butter & Chocolate for the Win
Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups won by a landslide, with 156 mentions. Several parents simply answered “Reese’s,” but I assume that meant peanut butter cups, since they’re superior to all other Reese’s varieties…but I digress.
Facebook follower Bill agrees with me, as he commented, “If you don’t answer Reese’s, are you even a dad?”
The second place pick was Snickers, with 63 mentions, followed by Kit Kat at 39. The latter surprised me, but then I started thinking about the crisp, thin wafers and perfectly proportioned chocolate of a Kit Kat bar, and I gained an appreciation of its spot in the Top 3 (I also gained a pesky craving).
Rounding out the chocolate category were:
Twix – 20 mentions
Milky Way – 14 mentions
Butterfinger – 13 mentions
Almond Joy – 13 mentions (proving parents are way more nutty than not, as Almond Joy’s nut-less cousin Mounds only netted 2 mentions)
Take 5 – 6 mentions
M&Ms – 6 mentions
Baby Ruth – 5 mentions
Heath – 5 mentions
Hershey’s – 5 mentions
3 Musketeers – 5 mentions
100 Grand – 4 mentions
Much less specific but equally as passionate, there were 14 parents who said they’d be snitching “anything with chocolate” and two who staked claim to “anything dark chocolate.”
Chew on This
Smooth, creamy chocolate may be the most popular, but parents love their chewy, gummy and crunchy confections, too. (It turns out Halloween is a boon for all dentists, not just pediatric ones!)
Topping the non-chocolate options, there was a three-way tie between Sour Patch Kids, Skittles and Tootsie Rolls, which each receiving six mentions.
Rounding out the chewy category were:
Starburst – 4
Laffy Taffy – 4
Twizzlers – 4
Candy corn – 3
Smarties – 3
Dots – 2
Gummy bears – 2
One Facebook follower was even specific enough to say, “Anything red — Swedish Fish, Skittles, Starburst, gummy bears, etc.”
Still Loved, but not as Popular
Making the list of favorites, but with only one or two mentions, were: Clark Bar, Tootsie Fruit Rolls, gummy sharks, Nerds, Malley’s Pretzel Bars, Oh Henry, Payday, York Peppermint Patty, popcorn balls, Swedish Fish, SweeTarts and Sweet Tarts Rope.
Noteworthy Quotes from Parents
Reading through the comments/entries was entertaining, as many parents elaborated on the practice of helping themselves to their kids’ candy. These tended to fall into two camps:
Doing it “for the Kids”
It’s a tough job, but someone’s gotta make sure all the candy is safe for human consumption, right?
Jessica: “All the chocolate, momma has to make sure it’s safe.”
Gretchen: “Anything with peanuts since he’s allergic, especially Reese’s! I consider it my duty to eat it all to keep him safe!” (OK, you get a pass, Gretchen!)
Kristen: “I ‘test’ all the Snickers and Reese’s. She’s 4 1/2 this year though, so I don’t know if I will be able to pull the wool over her eyes again…LOL.”
Shameless Candy Grabs
These parents don’t need a fabricated reason to sneak into the candy stash.
Tracy: ”Considering telling my toddler that Snickers and Reese’s are ‘dangerous’ for toddlers and thus mommy has to eat them to keep them safe.”
Katherine: “Kit Kats…gimme gimme. LOL.”
Joleen: “Snickers is what i steal when she goes to bed.”
Jen: “I always sneak out any Reese’s I can find before he noticed he got them. Then I bargain with him for anything else chocolate and peanut.”
Amy: “The Butterfingers are all mine! Or actually, most of the chocolates because I need it for patience.” (May you receive an ample amount of “patience fuel” this holiday, Amy!)
Then there’s these parents, who have worked out an agreed-upon sharing system with their kids:
Alayna: “Kit Kats, but only if he says I can have some, because he told me I need to share nicely…”
Stephanie: “I will be taste testing probably everything because she does one bite for me, one bite for you, but the bite I get is normally shoved into my face til she finds a hole. LOL she’s 19 months and funny as can be!”
Vicki: “I sample all the candy! Actually, first we sort. We take what we like, she takes what she likes and we donate the rest.”
Carol: “My son is 2 and Type 1 diabetic so I will give him some of the candy over time; the rest I will buy from him for toys.” (Brilliant system, Carol!)
And finally, there’s Katnic, who is so awesome that she gets in on the fun herself: “I usually dress up and get my own separate bag and trick or treat with my kids! ‘Never too old’ is my life story!! My favorite is candy corn! The kids usually sneak in my bag!”