20 Amazing Ways to Use Leftover Halloween Candy

Oct 26, 2020 | Food, Holidays

Are you drowning in buckets of leftover Halloween candy? There are SO many ways to reuse those sweet treats! Here are a few of our favorites. You’ll thank us later!

woman grabbing leftover Halloween candy from a pumpkin bucket, from Fun Cheap or Free

The crisp fall air, the festive decorations, and all the candy are just a few of our favorite things about this time of year. But if your house is anything like ours, we’re willing to bet you’ll end up with more candy than you know how to handle. 

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Don’t worry! We’ve rounded up some clever ways to bring leftover Halloween candy back to life. From irresistible cookie recipes to storage tips and more, we’ve got you covered. Let’s start with the basics! 


Wondering how long you can keep your candy before it’s time to toss it? In general, it’s best to store candy in an airtight container or bag and keep it in a cool place. Even then, some candy keeps longer than others. Here's what you need to know about storing different types of Halloween candy:

  • Chocolate – Store it in a cool, dry place to keep chocolate from melting. Both milk and white chocolate will last for up to ten months. Dark? Up to TWO years!
  • Hard Candies – Candy like peppermint or Jolly Ranchers, last for about a year. Keep them in a dry, room temperature cabinet, so they don’t get sticky. 
  • Gummies – Bears, worms, frogs, we love ‘em all! Gummies usually last about six months. Be sure to keep them sealed, so they don’t harden.
  • Jelly Beans – You guys know we love us some jelly beans around here! Word to the wise — they’ll last about a year past the expiration date, so don’t throw them away! 
  • Candy Corn – An unopened package can last for nine months. If you’ve already opened yours, put the leftover candy in a reusable container or ziplock bag. They should keep for up to six months. 

Don't store hard candies and soft candies in the same container! Hard candies like peppermints and caramels can soak up the moisture from softer candies. To preserve your hard candy, toss it in a mason jar and sprinkle with just a bit of sugar. We suggest only keeping peppermints with other mints unless you want everything they touch to taste like peppermint!

Pro Tip: Did you know you can freeze leftover candy? You sure can! We love to keep some on hand to toss into baked goods. In an airtight container, most chocolate will last for two months in the freezer. Avoid freezing candy that’s filled with fruit or nuts.


Peanut butter cookies with chocolate candy in the middle, from Fun Cheap or Free

We sure do love cookies around here! Cake mix cookies, chocolate chip cookies, pretty much all cookies. Adding candy to the mix only sweetens the deal! Here are a few of our favorite cookie recipes for using up that leftover Halloween candy:

  • Peanut Butter Cup Cookies – These are pretty much a match made in heaven! A peanut butter cookie filled with peanut butter and chocolate candy? Um, yes, please! Sally’s Baking Addiction has a great recipe. 
  • Mini Candy Bar Cookies – Mini candy bars are the perfect cookie add-in, so use what you’ve got! 
  • Candy Acorn Cookies – These are adorable, so stinking easy, and yummy! That’s a win in our book. Get the allrecipes acorn cookie recipe.
  • $400 Cookies – Don’t worry, these won’t set you back that much moola, but they sure do taste like a million bucks! The secret ingredient is the key. Any guesses?! Peep the cookie recipe on our site
  • Rolo Cake Mix Cookies – These cookies from I Heart Naptime are so unbelievably delicious! 

Okay, we tried. We really, really tried, but we couldn’t share just five cookies! We’d be remiss if we didn’t mention a classic — sugar cookies filled with M&Ms. Toss a few of those chocolate candies into some store-bought dough to make it even tastier. 


two cups of dirt cake with gummy worms, from Fun Cheap or Free

Get your aprons and whisks ready, because these cakes will have you feeling like Betty Crocker! Skip the expensive bakery and wow your friends and family with some seriously sweet cake for your next special occasion. 

Pro Tip: You can freeze any leftover cake for up three months! If your cake has frosting, put it in the freezer for an hour or two to allow the icing to harden. Then cover with two layers of cling wrap and one layer of foil before returning to the freezer. You can freeze cake without frosting, too! Follow the same process.


a bowl of snickers apple salad, from Fun Cheap or Free

Cakes, cookies, and baked goods, oh my! Anyone else dying for dessert time now?! Wait until you try these. We’ve got five more oh-so-easy and super tasty treats coming your way:

  • Chocolate-Dipped Pretzel Rods – Melt your chocolate down to make these dipped pretzel rods. They’re super tasty, and they make really fun gifts!
  • Pretzel Turtles – Ooey, gooey, caramel goodness! We’re drooling already. These are the easiest to throw together! This turtles recipe video from allrecipes will show you how. 
  • Snickers Apple Salad – This Snickers apple salad recipe is Ah-MAZING. And there’s fruit in it, so that makes it healthy(ish), right?!
  • Candy Bar Brownies – You thought brownies couldn’t get any better! Oh, but they can. We’re obsessed with this candy bar brownie recipe from Taste of Home
  • Cookie Bars – The only thing more fun than cookies are cookie bars! Check out this recipe from Together as Family. It’s your new favorite cookie bar! 

You can also toss together any leftover pretzels, nuts, and candies to make an awesome trail mix! (Throw in some dried fruit to sneak in the nutrients.) 


Knife chopping Hershey's candy bar on cutting board, from Fun Cheap or Free

Want to enjoy your Halloween goodies beyond October? Around here, we’ve even been known to use leftover Halloween candy for our Christmas parties! Here are a few of our favorite creative uses for any leftover candy.

  • Ice Cream Sundae Toppings – Who’s ready for an ice cream party?! Gather up all that leftover candy, chop it up, and make the ultimate ice cream sundaes. Don't forget the cherries on top!
  • Christmas Cookies – Save your peppermint or red and green candies to make your Christmas cookies even more festive! Such a fun tradition. (And we’ve got tons more holiday activity ideas here.)
  • Caramel Apple Bar – Use the candy for caramel apple toppings for a caramel apple bar!
  • Make a Holiday Centerpiece – You guys! It does not get easier or more fun than this. Set aside green, red, or other festively colored candy to fill a vase or apothecary jar. Use the jar(s) as your centerpiece for Christmas dinner
  • Stocking Stuffers –  We like to keep a secret stash of Halloween candy to fill the kids’ stockings at Christmas. There is no shame in re-gifting! 

Pro Tip: November 1 is the PERFECT time to stock up on Halloween candy. Most stores offer deals up to 80% off. Buy those stocking stuffers then! We’ve got all the deets on scoring sweet deals on Halloween candy. 

What do you do with your leftover Halloween candy? Leave us a comment below!

Image with text that reads "clever ways to use leftover Halloween candy and treats," from Fun Cheap or Free

Looking for more creative ways to use up your leftovers? We’ve got you covered.

Stay sweet!


  1. Whitney

    Left over candy? What’s that?

    • FunCheapOrFree

      Haha right?!

    • FunCheapOrFree


  2. Lindsay Ashton

    Our kids’ teachers appreciate donations of candy to their prize boxes at school…not that we ever have leftovers, haha.

    • FunCheapOrFree

      Haha that’s our problem too! 😉

  3. Joe

    I always make to many cookies for Halloween and I never know what to do with them. Thanks for these amazing recipes.

    • Fun Cheap or Free

      So glad they’re helpful to you!

  4. Rosemary Grabowski

    What is this thing you call “leftover candy”?LOL!!

    • Fun Cheap or Free

      LOL, right?!

  5. Jamie Fieber

    Our kids pick a certain amount that they want to eat soon, and then we save the rest to use when we decorate gingerbread houses in December! It’s funny to watch my kids decide if they want to eat it or save it to use on their house.


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