Halloween is like a big “f#@! you” to someone with type 1 diabetes. It’s also a big “f#@! you” to people with celiac disease or other food allergies and restrictions.
I’ve never loved the holiday and never gotten into the joy of dressing up; the feeling of being left out, in terms of the candy part, always took precedence.
As a kid, my parents felt so bad for me, that they allowed me to go trick or treating, but then bought back my candy at a nickel a piece. They thought that was being helpful and nice, but at a young age, I would have rather eaten the candy and made myself sick, than get a few dollars.
You guys get it.
It’s about that feeling of being denied something. I hated it, still do....
Fast forward to being an adult, the year of my celiac diagnosis. I found out Reese’s peanut butter cups were gluten-free. I decided I would eat as many as I wanted that Halloween. Now, that wasn’t a good decision for my diabetes, but I wasn’t about to deny myself further. I ate about 10-15 that night. I was sick for about a day after with blood sugar levels that wouldn’t come down, but it was my way of getting it out of my system. It wasn’t the smartest thing to do, but after that, I didn’t care so much about the candy on Halloween.
I’m not telling anyone what to do, but often denying yourself something can cause years of emotional damage that far exceeds the physical damage endured from a one timer. It always seemed to be an all or nothing thing, but as I have gotten older (and wiser), indulging can be done in a more health-conscious way.
As an adult with type 1 diabetes and celiac, now for Halloween, I use that as an excuse to create a recipe that reminds me of the candy I used to long for, and I Debbify it (that’s my term for making it No Denial style).
This year, I’m creating a spin on a classic Reese’s cup. It’s one you can easily make at home, isn’t loaded with sugar, and will satisfy your taste buds more than the real thing!
Cheers to a safe, fun and No Denial Halloween.
Debbie's Peanut Butter Coconut Chocolate Balls
- 1 cup natural unsweetened peanut butter (I use a brand with added salt. If your PB does not have salt, add 1/4 tsp sea salt to this recipe)
- 1 TBSP coconut flour
- 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes (fine shred)
- 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
- 3/4 cup dairy free dark chocolate chips (we use Enjoy Life brand)
In a medium bowl, mix together all ingredient (except chocolate chips) until well combined. Place bowl in freezer for an hour to chill PB mixture (it firms it up and makes it easier to roll into balls)
Prepare a baking sheet lined with wax paper or parchment paper. Remove mixture from freezer and roll into about 20-24 balls. Place balls on the lined baking sheet. Place back in the freezer while preparing the chocolate.
Melt 3/4 cup of dark chocolate chips (30 second intervals in the microwave - stirring after each interval). When chocolate is fully melted, remove sheet pan from freezer. Using a spoon, drizzle the chocolate over each PB ball. Have fun with this part. It will look messy and that is the point. Once chocolate is drizzled over each ball, sprinkle with a pinch of sea salt first then additional coconut flakes. Store in the freezer. These will get soft quickly at room temp. From my kitchen to yours, enjoy!