For those of us dealing with peanut allergies and other food allergies at Easter, we often feel like the Easter Bunny may have a sparse basket to share with our food-allergic kids and family members. I'm happy to report that there seems to be more options than ever before that make it a lot easier on EB. Also, non-edible items are a big hit at my house and I encourage you to try those as well. I'll have more on non-edible suggestions in an upcoming post. Now, onto the candy!
Divvies is a fabulous choice for egg-, nut- and dairy-allergic people. Click the link to discover chocolate bunnies, jelly beans and other fabulously delicious "safe" candies for Easter. Hurry though--they tend to sell out quickly--they're that good!
For nut allergies only (this is what my family deals with) we love, love, love Vermont Nut-Free Chocolate. This is guaranteed, nut-free goodness made in a dedicated nut-free facility. Currently, Vermont Nut Free is backed up with Easter orders and can no longer guarantee Easter delivery. However, Vermont Nut-Free was also kind enough to offer a nut-free chocolate Easter giveaway to readers of The Nut-Free Mom blog! VNF recently provided me with Easter chocolate and I can ship it to you directly. The winner will receive: a dark chocolate Easter Bunny pop, a crispy rice chocolate bunny bar and a small Easter-shaped chocolate assortment (2.8 oz). Yum! That certainly dresses up a nut-free Easter basket! Please note: this is peanut- and tree nut-free only. May contain other food allergens such as egg and soy.
All you have to do is comment on this post TODAY and TOMORROW ONLY (Wed. and Thurs.) for your chance to win. When commenting, I'd love to hear how you celebrate Easter nut-free (or other holidays nut-free, egg-free, wheat-free, dairy-free, etc.). I will announce the winner on Friday so that we can get your candy to you in time for Easter Sunday! Winner will be chosen at random.
Note: When commenting, please give your first name and an initial. Please do NOT post as Anonymous. I need to know how to identify the winner. Thanks in advance for this!
Finally, if you're in the supermarket and want to pick something up, I've got a few suggestions that are safe for nut allergies since that is what I am most familiar with, but I also have a couple of choices safe for the Top 8 food allergies as well. The list below in no way encompasses everything out there, so I'm welcome to comments that share your "finds."
Chocolate eggs:Cadbury mini chocolate CANDY COATED eggs. These are made by Hershey. Hershey has stated to me that they will always mark for cross-contact, so read the labels. Creme-filled and caramel Cadbury eggs have nut allergy warnings but the candy coated ones, called Cadbury Mini Eggs do not.
Hershey chocolate for Easter. Not everything is free of nut warnings, but many of you have reported finding "safe" chocolate bunnies, chocolate eggs and more. Always check the label on these and contact Hershey for more info, but it looks like there is a fair amount to choose from these days.
Starburst jellybeans, Gimbals jelly beans. I don't recommend Jelly Belly just yet though they recently went "peanut-free." The company has reported that older bags of candy may still contain peanut flour.
Sweet Tarts "Eggs, Chicks and Bunnies": Egg and wheat allergy warnings.
Marshmallow Peeps: These are gluten-free as well and do not contain egg ingredients; gelatin is listed as an ingredient. There are SO many kinds of Peeps out there now; it's mind boggling. :) If you can have them, go for it.
Safe for the Top 8 (including celiac disease)
Surf Sweets Gummy Bears. You can find these in the candy section at Whole Foods as well as other natural markets. These are made with organic fruit juice and no artificial dyes.
Yummy Earth Lollipops. These are also available at Whole Foods and they are natural and delicious besides being allergy-friendly.
Enjoy Life Candy Bars. These are free of the Top 8 allergens and the crispy rice Boom Choco Boom is a little slice of heaven. Anyone would like this in their Easter Basket. Find these at Whole Foods; for other retailers visit their web site.
Note: It is always your decision what to serve your child, so if you have questions or concerns, please always contact the candy manufacturer for more info. Food labels can change; always read the label to be sure of ingredients/cross-contact risk.