The Easter Bunny is not your friend: don’t let the chocolate smile fool you

easter candy

Much like Halloween, my boys have celebrated Easter enough times to know that they better hide their baskets if they want any of the ‘good stuff’ left after the first day.  What can I say? I have no problem leaving a jar of Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups in my kitchen for weeks without touching them, but there’s something about the shape of a Reese’s Peanut Butter Egg that gets me every single time.

Imagine my dismay when I stumbled on an old article from Newsweek summing up how bad all of that Easter candy is for you…. let me just lick the chocolate off my fingers, and I’ll tell you all about it. Be prepared – you’re going to see some of your favs top the list of worst candies, ranging in calories from a demure 130 (phew!) to a whopping 1050. (please don’t be the reese’s egg!!)

easter candy

freshly hatched peeps

1. Peeps. A few of these fluffy, sugar-filled treats can add up quickly. Go through a row of four bunnies and you’re at 130 calories. Peeps are fat-free but do weigh in heavy on the carb count–each little rabbit has 8 grams of sugar alone, adding up to 32 grams in a serving of four. Personally, I think Peeps are disgusting.  I heard recently that they have a shelf life of two years – I can only imagine how long they stay in your stomach.  I’m pretty sure they just made chocolate covered Peeps this year too.  Sorry if you’re a Peep lover, but that is one Easter candy that never makes it into our baskets.  Figures it’s the one that’s lowest on the calorie count.

2. Jelly Beans. These can be your worst foe or your best friend in the Easter basket, depending on how many you eat. For me, they’re kind of like Lay’s Potato Chips – can’t eat just one. Each individual bean is pretty low in calorie count, with usually around 5 or 6 calories, but munching through a handful, or worse, an entire bagful of Jelly Bellys, adds up quickly. The recommended 35-bean serving comes in at 140 calories from 37 grams of sugar. To avoid jelly bean overdose, it’s probably best to grab a handful and then keep the Easter basket out of reach. (yeah, right….)

3. Cadbury Chocolate Eggs. These eggs may look tiny, but their calorie count is anything but. A handful of 12 eggs comes with 190 calories and 8 grams of fat. You might want to skip over these high-cal eggs if you come across them on the hunt.

4. Cadbury Creme Egg. It’s possibly the quintessential Easter treat, but most people won’t be surprised to find out that the creamy egg packs in the calories. The 1.2-ounce egg comes with 150 calories, 5 grams of fat and 25 grams of carbs. If you’re looking for an excuse to indulge, there is a slight silver lining: the tasty milk chocolate comes with 40 mg of calcium, which is about 5 percent of the recommended daily value. (so if i skip breakfast, lunch, and dinner, i can eat 10 eggs, still stay within my daily calorie limit and get 50% of my calcium in-take for the day…..probably not my best idea ever.)

easter candy

i don’t take the time to decorate my reese’s eggs….if i did, they’d ALL say ‘maria’, ‘maria’, ‘maria’

5. Reese’s Peanut Butter Egg. This egg slightly edges out its creme-filled rival in the unhealthy Easter-egg competition. All three varieties of the Reese’s egg–milk chocolate, fudge and white chocolate–have a calorie count of 180. The fat content weighs in around 10 grams, double that of the Cadbury Creme Egg, with the white-chocolate egg the worst, at 11 grams. Stick to the traditional Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup, which, though it lacks the festive Easter element, has nearly half the calories of its egg-shaped relatives. (no mention of the calcium content here, but i might do some investigating work so i can swap the meals for the eggs….i’m just saying….)

6. Lindt Chocolate Carrots. In a sea of eggs and bunnies, chocolate carrots are one of the more unusual Easter candy options–Lindt only started offering them seven years ago. A box of four carrot-shaped chocolates has 210 calories. I found these this year for the first time and thought they were the cutest thing.  Of course my boys popped these right into their mouths – they certainly don’t do that with real carrots.

7. Hershey’s Hollow Milk Chocolate Egg. This might come as the biggest surprise: one hollow Hershey’s egg (4.65 ounces) has more than three times as many calories as the Cadbury Creme Egg. The shell alone has 570 calories. Start munching on the four Hershey’s kisses included inside and you’re up to a whooping 660 calories and 41 grams of fat. This may be one of the few Easter offerings that makes a Reese’s Peanut Butter Egg look like health food. 🙂

8. Large Chocolate Bunny. Not surprisingly, the bunny is champ when it comes to Easter calories. But the calorie count may still raise a few eyebrows: the average seven-ounce rabbit clocks an impressive 1,050 calories. Smaller bunnies are better–rabbits of the one-ounce variety only rack up 140 calories. C’mon – are they trying to tell us that a one ounce bunny should take over ‘Too Tall Tom’s’ job as king of the basket?  Sorry – not going to happen at this house. We’ll just have to ration ourselves to one body part a day.

easter candy

Happy Easter.
The best place to work off all of those jelly beans.
Suite 215 | 4211 Fairfax Corner East Ave., Fairfax, VA 22030 | Phone: 703-222-0122
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