Serious Eats

Top Ten Worst Halloween 'Candies'

Editor's Note: To continue our Halloween coverage, here's a look at what the "bad houses" give out. Trick-or-treaters, beware: This is the gross stuff you probably want to avoid.

Toothbrushes

20081013-toothbrush.jpgDentists and orthodontists should not be allowed to celebrate Halloween if they're going to get all tooth doctory on us. Do not bring your work home with you, folks! We all have a personal responsibility to brush, and maybe some of us will forget, but your complimentary bristles on a stick (instead of a Snickers) will not help us remember. It will make us despise you and your trade.

Raisins

20081013-raisin-box.jpgLittle boxes of stuck-together shriveled globs are not what little kids schlep around the neighborhood for all night. When they say trick-or-treat, they want candy that will rot their teeth, not wrinkled grapes. (Using an empty box as a kazoolike instrument, though, is kinda fun.)

Candy Corn

20081013-candy-corn-2.jpgThe most polarizing candy of all. The fruitcake of Halloween; it just never goes away. If you love them, fine. But don't subject the rest of us haters to the sickeningly sweet triangle that tastes like neither candy nor corn.

Smarties and Necco Wafers

20081013-necco2.jpgThe chalky candy is supposedly "fruit-flavored," but no fruit I know tastes like dust—and makes everything eaten after taste like dust, too.

Dum Dum Lollipops

20081013-dumdum2.jpgUsually, foods on a stick are yummy (corn dogs, ice pops), but DumDums just can't be included on that list. Not even if they were breaded and deep-fried and served at a fair.

Apples

20081013-apple.jpgBefore the "poisoned candy scare," evil people handed out apples. After the scare (OK, perhaps it's an urban legend), even eviler people handed out apples with sharp blades and needles hidden inside, making this "treat" even more disappointing.

Tootsie Rolls

20081013-tootsie.jpgIt looks like chocolate and sort of smells like chocolate, but the mini brown tubes are not real chocolate. They taste like watered-down chocolate, and have a chewy texture that will strip the fillings right off your molars.

Miscellaneous, Wrapped Hard Candies

20081013-strawberryhard.jpgHalloween is supposed to be a holiday for young people, not senior citizens who suck on hard candies all day. Something about the strawberry-shaped strawberries, gold-wrapped butterscotch, and peppermint feels past the expiration date. (These usually get set aside for Granny.)

Laffy Taffy

20081013-laffytaffy2.jpgI do not laffy when I get these. I sobby. I get depressedy. Because it gets all stucky to my teethy and doesn't even taste that goody.

Anything Fun-Sized

20081013-funsized.jpgWho started calling it this? Since when is one bite fun?! Give us the rich houses with the sprawling driveways and full-sized candy bars any day. Portion control doesn't need to start this young.

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