We all know there's nothing as sweet as enjoying a homemade dessert on Halloween, but whipping up goodies for trick-or-treaters in the entire neighborhood and then some is a tall order. As you prepare your candy bowl for an endless stream of visitors next month, you might want to stock up on Reese's peanut butter cups; according to a new survey of American children and teens, the bite-sized treat is the number one candy kids hope to receive in their trick-or-treating bags on Halloween.
The survey, published by YouGov, a data firm that conducts real-time surveys and marketing research, reveals that nearly one in five kids (just about 18 percent) consider peanut butter cups their favorite Halloween candy. YouGov's survey measures the preferences of kids and teens between the ages of 8 and 17; more than 1,000 families agreed to allow their children to rate their favorite Halloween candies. Believe it or not, the peanut butter cup actually beat out other popular candies by nearly twice the amount of votes—besides the 8-year-old age bracket in the survey's respondents, every other age group choose Reese's peanut butter cups as their favorite.
According to YouGov's in-depth data, the runner-up for best Halloween candy is the chocolate-covered wafer, Kit Kat. It was the top choice for nearly eight percent of the group. Beyond these two winners, it seems that trick-or-treaters may have diverse tastes; the third, fourth, and fifth most popular treats only garnered seven percent of votes combined. Hearty chocolate bar Snickers earned third, closely followed by classic M&M's, and Sour Patch Kids gummy worms in fifth place.
While the data reveals which candies are popular across the board, it gets trickier to know which treats are considered favorites in each age group. Per the YouGov data, 12 percent of 17 year olds voted Kit Kat bars as their favorite—but that's only true for five percent of 11-year-olds. It could be said that tastes for sweets evolve as one grows older, especially since some of the most iconic candies—including Tootsie Rolls, Junior Mints, and candy corn—couldn't even break the top 10 ranking.
Many kids may jump for joy at finding peanut butter cups at your door this Halloween, but it's important to note that some parents are trying their best to avoid this entirely—peanut butter is a top allergen for many American children, and the risk of life-threatening allergic reactions may make the prospect of trick-or-treating much less sweet. If you plan on giving out candy for Halloween this year, think about creating a Halloween basket that's free of allergens entirely—keep a bowl stocked with allergy-friendly options or non-edible items altogether, like any of the fun toys on this list inspired by the Teal Pumpkin Project. You'll truly be the most popular house on the block if you can cater to all kinds of trick-or-treaters this year.