Ick-or-Treat: The yums and yucks of an Irish Halloween haul

As an Irish company, we love Halloween. The holiday has its roots in the ancient Irish festival of Samhain, plus, it's a great excuse for a much needed banker. However, the thing that delights us most about All Hallows Eve is the not-so-ancient tradition of trick-or-treating. Among other things, treats are our specialty - especially Irish ones.

We know our customers well and we know that they too share those memories of Oíche Shamhnas gone by. You’d arrive at your neighbours door wearing a standard black bin bag as your costume. After an awkward, half-arsed attempt at singing a song (kids these days will never know), came the big moment. The treats. Would they be the deliciously sugary splendours you dreamt about all year, or would they be… well, shite. Here is our list of the best and the worst treats, the yums and yucks you might collect while trick or treating in Ireland… let us know if you agree!

Yum: Banshee Bones


By the grace of the crisp gods, Tayto Banshee Bones have recently made a come back. These Irish crisps were an iconic Halloween tradition for kids growing up in the 90s. Now they are back for good, and not just for the spooky season. You can now get your fix all year round!

Yuck: Monkey Nuts

The disappointment was real back in the day when you reached into your bag and pulled out a squished monkey nut instead of a lolly. Most of us didn’t even bother eating them as the de-shelling processes took too long. However, you’d always get one mad kid who would put the whole thing in their mouth and chew, shell and all. Stunning.

Yum: Refresher Bars

The paediatric dentists of Ireland owe much of their business to these bad boys. The joy of chewing on that sticky stick as you bopped from house to house was unmatched. Kids these days can experience this joy too as Refreshers are alive and well and come in some of our most popular boxes!

Yuck: Mandarins

An excellent source of vitamin D? Yes. The perfect afterschool snack? Of course. An appropriate item to place loose in a child’s Halloween bag? Eh, no. They’d immediately turn to mush making everything else including your hands sticky. Lovely.

Yum: Fredo Bars

This Cadbury staple was - and still is - a key part of the Halloween loot. Full of that Dairy Milk goodness, the tiny frog was the perfect size to nibble on between houses.

Yuck: Raisins

Ah here. If you are the type of person to offer a pack of raisins to unsuspecting treat-or-treaters, you deserve a visit from the Banshee herself on Halloween. Again, they were grand as a snack at school. At Halloween though, the dried candied grapes tasted of pure disappointment. Fact.

Yum: False Teeth

Not just a sweet, but a game. Even as an adult, it's impossible to eat these pick-and-mix favourites without wearing them first.

Yuck: Black Licorice

This is a controversial one because fans of Liquorice Allsorts swear by them. There's a whole Irish contingent that - no joke - claims liquorice as their sweet of choice. We are not entirely convinced though and it certainly did not go down well back in the day. Kids want uncomplicated, simple sweets and liquorice is the definition of “notions” in sweet form.

Yum: Meanies

Once you saw that gleaming green crisp bag, you knew you’d scored. Savouring each meanie was a craft, a creative process. The salty pickled flavour was perfect after an hour of stuffing your face with sugar. It felt like a hearty meal.


Double Yuck: Clove Rocks

Does anyone remember these absolute abominations? These literally taste like the inside of your Granny's handbag. They were not for kids and whoever gave them out at Halloween was quickly shunned. RIP.

Double Yum: Dip Dabs

These were the gems of the Halloween hauls. The tangy deliciousness, the sherbet powder and the fact that a lolly would last twice as long as all the other sweets. The perfect treat.

What do you think? Did we nail the yums and yucks of an Irish Halloween haul? Let us know!