Spooooooky Sweets: 21 Halloween Desserts to Thrill and Terrify | Yummly

Spooooooky Sweets: 21 Halloween Desserts to Thrill and Terrify

No creepy claw shall pry these delicious candies, cakes, and clever treats out of your cold, costumed hand this Halloween 

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Devil’s Inferno Cake from Martha Stewart

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Halloween comes at a strange time of year. Summer is gone and autumn stands on the precipice, dry leaves swirling, about to fall to winter’s icy silence. It’s a gauzy, liminal time you can feel in the wind: Things are about to change. Perhaps that’s why we comfort ourselves with sweetness while we’re straddling this in-between space — curling up on the couch and gobbling up mini candy bars like there's no tomorrow. 

In Halloween’s early incarnation, the ancient Celts made offerings of food to the wandering spirits and souls of their ancestors to ward off evil and celebrate the new year. So in that spirit, we’ve assembled 21 recipes, both cute and creepy, for you to create and enjoy with all the souls you welcome in this Halloween. Transcend couch candy this year and fling open your kitchens to make these tasty treats: The Devil’s Inferno Cake, wild with flames; a graveyard pie, the delicious domain of the departed; marzipan creepy crawlers for brave bug lovers; and sweet green monster marshmallow pops and pretzels transformed into chocolatey pumpkins and owls to delight the trick-or-treat-loving kid in each of us

There are even a few sweetly devilish drinks at the end, both spirit-infused and family-friendly, to help you celebrate. Don your spookiest mask and get ready to have some fun in the kitchen: Happy Halloween! Let the fiery festival of sweets begin!    

Jump ahead to:

Tips (but no tricks!) for making easy Halloween desserts >>

Fiendish baked goods >>

Creepy candies >>

Spooky sweets >>

Devilish drinks >>

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Tips (but no tricks!) for making easy Halloween desserts

Follow these suggestions to make your scary Halloween dessert ideas come to life

Is there any special equipment I need? 

Most of these recipes can be prepared with equipment you already have in your kitchen, but for making candies it’s important to have a candy thermometer when recipes call for boiling sugar mixtures. (This tool can also be used to monitor the temperature of fat when deep frying.) One that clips to the side of the pot is ideal for monitoring temperature changes while keeping your hands free (and safe). Note: At approximately 300°F the mixture will enter the “hard crack” stage and begin to turn amber as the sugar caramelizes. This creates a hard candy. For softer candies, somewhere between 240-248°F is generally the sweet spot to shoot for.

Candy-making often requires parchment paper for cooling and the ease of lifting the candy off once it’s hardened. A Silpat mat can also be used (and is more eco-friendly in the long run), but note it will leave a tiny basket-weave texture on the finished candy. 

Where can I find awesome edible Halloween decorations? 

Specialty baking shops and kitchen equipment stores like Williams-Sonoma or Sur La Table sell fun and clever edible decorations for Halloween dessert recipes. King Arthur Baking Company sells high quality flavored chips as well as excellent food dyes and a variety of decorative sugars. Sprinkle Pop and Wilton also make a variety of decorations to top fun Halloween desserts, and in a pinch there’s always the big online retailers.

Fiendish baked goods

Don’t let these scary Halloween dessert ideas frighten you!

Halloween Blondies

Little hands can help decorate these molasses-y blondies with chocolate candies in fall shades of brown, yellow, and orange. Butter, vanilla, and brown sugar give these chewy brownie-type bars a sweetly tempting scent. 

Halloween Cinder Cake

Orange sherbet and lightly sweetened homemade whipped cream float above a crunchy Oreo crust to create a soft and crunchy black, orange, and white Halloween cake that tastes like a spooky creamsicle.

“I Scream” Graveyard Pie

Set aside some of your Halloween candy to mix into this luscious vanilla and chocolate ice cream pie, and prepare for gasps of surprise (and ok, delight) when you unveil this edible graveyard.

Swirly Halloween Cookies

This cookie recipe requires some skill to make, but oh the results! Food coloring gel lets you customize your colors — from creepy to cute — and sprinkles give the edges some style.

Mini Triple-Treat Cupcakes

These perfect Halloween cupcakes put the treat in the holiday — a homemade brown sugar-peanut butter cupcake has a mini Reese's peanut butter cup nestled inside before baking, and once the little cakes are out of the oven, a candy corn adorns each tricky treat. 

Halloween Trifle - Spooky and Delicious

Trifles are great for serving a crowd and can be as easy as you want them to be. Big cubes of chocolate cake are layered with chocolate pudding, as scary marshmallow ghosts and friendly jack o’ lanterns peer out through the glass. And a sweet field of candy corn waits to be harvested on top.  

Devil’s Inferno Cake

A chocolatey devil’s food cake is already a natural fit for Halloween, but add these sweet and scary flames on top — well, even Lucifer himself might be tempted to take a bite. And while they look complex and impressive, they’re fairly simple to make at home.

Creepy candies

Some of these are very easy Halloween desserts, while a few require a bit more skull — er, skill to prepare!

Halloween Oreo Truffles

Truffles easily lend themselves to a Halloween celebration, and homemade ones put most packaged candies to shame. Oreos are a surprising filling in these easy-to-make sweet treats, and your choice of sprinkles on top make decorating quick and fun.

Creepy Halloween Candy Creatures with Marzipan

Raise your eek! factor to the next level with these terrifyingly realistic looking marzipan creepy crawlers. Detailed instructions make it easy to take four ingredients and either gross out or utterly delight any Halloween party-goers! 

Candy Corn Pretzel Bites

With only three ingredients, these sweet and salty crispy treats come together in about 10 minutes and look as fun as they taste, with a bit of a “Beetlejuice” vibe from the striped chocolate.

Halloween Trash Bark  

There’s something for every ghost and ghoul in this sweet and simple bark: broken graham crackers, candy corn, pretzels, dark chocolate, and white chocolate. You’ll know there’s sorcery afoot when it disappears in a flash.

DIY Halloween Candy Pops

It’s a monster bash! These colorful candy pops require no baking or cooking — instead your kitchen time can be spent doing the festive part: dipping cookies and marshmallows, then decorating. Don't forget the candy eyeballs. And remember, the more help, the merrier … or scarier?

Candy “Bloody” Slides – Halloween Treats

In a mad scientist’s mind, anything is possible — even eating all the research! Get out your candy thermometer and pizza cutter, follow these clear steps, and prepare to frighten every unsuspecting victim who is foolish enough to enter your laboratory. 

Popcorn on the Cob

This genius recipe combines the best of two sweet worlds: the marshmallow-y goodness of a Rice Krispie treat, and the crunch of that favorite fall snack, popcorn. Shaping the ears is simple and the parchment “husk” wrapping ensures no one’s fingers get sticky. 

Spooky sweets 

These delightful and scary Halloween dessert ideas will have everyone “booing” for more!

Halloween Apples 

Small Granny Smith apples are the perfect foundation for these healthy-ish candy apples. They differ from caramel apples, thanks to a coating of melted cinnamon chips and granulated sugar instead, creating a ghoulish apple pie-on-a-stick effect. Switch out white chocolate chips for the candy melts to make it the ultimate treat. 

Halloween Pretzels

Grab your best bag of pretzels and get going on these fun and creative decorated Halloween snacks. Pumpkins, Frankenstein, watchful owls, and spooky ghosts — the only limit is when the pretzels run out. 

Easy Halloween Boo-Nana Pops

Yummly Original

Be sure to use firmer bananas for these fun and spooky frozen banana treats. Not only are they healthier than candy, but kids can help assemble and draw faces on them, too (a toothpick may be a useful tool).

Halloween Pudding Cups

Frankenstein has got nothing on these adorable three-ingredient pudding cups, which are perfect for kids and grown-ups alike. Vanilla pudding is dyed green, Oreos get monstrously crushed — a fun task for any wee ones armed with a potato masher, and a permanent marker makes short work of decorating the cups!

Halloween Puppy Chow

This sweet and crunchy mix is quick to put together and will be a favorite of ghouls and goblins alike. Peanut butter, vanilla, and two kinds of chocolate coat Chex rice cereal before coming alive with candy corn.

Devilish drinks

A fun time on Halloween includes dessert and candy, but a spooky quaff sets the tone for a howlin’ good time

Blood-Moon Punch

This non-alcoholic punch gets its spooky moon from a round of frozen orange juice, while Concord grape juice, lime, and ginger soda give the bloody base a zesty bite. Seltzer water adds some bubble, bubble, toil, and trouble — especially if you add a shot of vodka to the grown ups’ glasses.

Haunted Graveyard Halloween Cocktail

Maple syrup and orange blunt the edge of the bourbon, while the scary smoking rosemary sprig makes it clear that something is afoot in this creepy cocktail.

Witches Blood - A Halloween Cocktail

Cherry schnapps and cherry soda provide the sweet and tart bloody notes in this sugary, vodka-based drink. Black sanding sugar on the rim would make this cocktail even spookier, if you can find it.   

More Halloween eats to explore 

You'll want to dig your fangs into the recipes in these Yummly articles:

46 Halloween Cookies from Cute to Spooky

Monsters, ghouls, and goblins, oh m-eye! Get our best Halloween cookie recipes, including homemade sugar cookies, no-bake treats, and cookies for special diets. We've got more Halloween cookie decorating ideas than you can shake a broomstick at!

28 Truly Awesome Halloween Appetizer Recipes ... If You Dare

With so many creepy ways to reimagine everyday ingredients, appetizers are just more fun to make at Halloween. We dare you to check out this frightfully creative list of recipes. Deviled Egg Brains, anyone?

Easy Halloween Dirt Cup Recipes for Digging Your Own Grave

Dirt parfaits transform a table of treats into a sweet cemetery where you can eat, creep, and be scary!