Easter is coming!
One of my big challenges as a parent is to limit the amount of sugar that my kids consume.
I am truly NOT against sugar and do let my kids eat crap here and there. I believe that the more I try to control them in that regard, the more they will rebel later. My hope is that they will learn to enjoy sugar in moderation and learn how to make healthy choices on their own.
As holiday traditions go, I feel that there are some traditions which seem so completely sugar-crazed that it drives me a little crazy myself!
Easter baskets are one of those traditions for me. I love the tradition of a basket and even the Easter egg hunts. They are so much fun! Watching the kids searching for those eggs and seeing the glee and excitement on their faces when they find them brings out the kid inside me.
Unfortunately, marketing focuses on candy and junk, and many parents fall into that because it is easy and accessible.
In the essence of full disclosure, I do tend to pick one type of small candy and fill a few eggs with those. Last year it was Smarties. Two years ago I chose mini M&Ms.
Despite that, I make a concerted effort to fill the vast majority of our Easter Eggs with non-candy surprises.
In an effort to make it easier to add variety or steer away from candy, below is a list of 100 candy alternatives that you can use this year to fill your Easter eggs or Easter baskets!
Note that there are a few food options – my goal is to avoid candy overload, not necessarily all food.
Finally, something to consider is that many of these items can be found at the Dollar Store. You may find off brands there, but the items are essentially the same.
Further, one idea that I've used in the past is to buy from there and use any unused items as prizes for future classroom parties. I love it when I can kill two birds with one stone (so to speak) and save money!
100+ Easter basket ideas
- Lego figurine
- fun erasers
- finger puppet
- temporary tattoos
- jax game (great for indoor play!)
- mini buttons
- water balloons
- punch balls
- glow-in-the-dark stars
- sponge capsules (the capsules that you put into water so it expands into a shaped sponge)
- toy bead necklace
- fun band-aids
- magic washcloths (the ones that are packed into a tiny square and expand when put in water)
- Friendship bracelets (the colorful string kind)
- Jibbitz (for Crocs)
- mini potato head figures
- hair chalk
- bathtub crayons
- fountain bath toys
- bath toys numbers and letters
- bath finger paint
- window crayons
- spin tops
- mini rubber duck
- fun keychain
- egg-shaped porcupine balls
- keychain flashlight
- squeeze ball
- Koosh ball
- mini rubber stamps
- silly putty
- glitter glue
- wind up toys (especially the kind that flip or walk!)
- toy bugs
- whistle (if you can stand the noise!)
- slide flute/whistle combo (if you can stand it!)
- toy animals
- ear buds
- eye patches
- Wikki stix (wind them up so they fit)
- pencil grippers
- pencil top erasers
- light up rings
- pencil sharpeners
- sticky frogs
- mini Yo-yo
- flip frog or bunny (the kind where you press on its butt and it flips backward)
- Mini magnifying glass
- Silly Bandz (the bracelets that are different shapes)
- mini compass
- mini slinky
- finger lights
- grow insects (the kind you put in water and it gets bigger)
- sticky hand (think small hand with long skinny arm that kids can throw and sticks to the wall or window)
- Interesting stones, gems, or rocks (my kids LOVE these)
- bath bomb
- mini poppers
- fun Rainbow Loom bands
- crazy balls
- slap bracelet
- sidewalk chalk
- crazy hair pop ups
- egg-shaped shakers (like maracas without handles)
- mini inflatable beach ball
- crazy socks
- play foam
- mini paratroopers (think small man with a plastic parachute attached)
- jokes written on a piece of paper
- coupon on a piece of paper for a treat: pick your favorite movie, alone activity with mom or dad, get ice cream, etc
- coin money – pennies, nickels, dimes, quarters
- money bills (for the bigger kids) – $1, $5
Download the Printable!
- Yogurt-covered raisins
- Goldfish of any variety
- small pretzels
- trail mix
- vanilla wafers
- cereal (Cheerios, Chex, etc)
Whether you are looking for fresh ideas to use as Easter Egg fillers or wanting to avoid sugar overload, check out the items on this list and try a few this year!