Halloween cakes come in all shapes and sizes. From a simple, easy-to-do pumpkin cake to a chocolate-ganache-filled bat cake, the season provides plenty of inspiration for home bakers. Whether you’re searching for the goriest and most gruesome Halloween cakes for the grown-ups or a scrumptious, but not-too-scary, sprinkle cake for the kids, there is sure to be an idea to inspire your creative-baking genius.

Our Top Halloween Cakes

From severed heads to rotting carcasses, horror-themed cakes may look disturbingly similar to something no one but a zombie would ever eat, but appearances can be deceiving. These horror-themes cakes are made from 100 percent edible (and delicious) ingredients and are sure to please even the pickiest pumpkin-eater.

Severed zombie head

Appearances aside, a severed zombie head (made of red velvet cake) could be the perfect centerpiece for a horror-themed party. Be warned though, this is a complicated cake, probably not for a beginner.

Ingredients

  • Skull head cake pan
  • Red velvet cake mix
  • Airbrush
  • Stainless steel bowls
  • Fondant rolling pin
  • Cake decorating tools
  • Fondant smoother
  • Piping tips
  • Fondant
  • Round cutters
  • Food coloring gel

You can buy all of those ingredients here. Next, watch the step-by-step tutorial below:

Brain cake

Red velvet cake

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon red gel food coloring
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Marshmallow fondant

  • 10 oz mini marshmallows
  • 6 cups powdered sugar divided into two parts
  • 3 tablespoons water

Fake blood topping

  • 1 jar raspberry jam
  • 1/4/ cup water
  • A fresh squeezed lemon
  • 1 container red food gel

Watch step-by-step instructions on how to make this cake in the video below:

Halloween blood cake

If you’re really short on time and energy, don’t despair. For a last minute Halloween centerpiece, first grab a cake (any cake). Then, stick a knife in it. Finally, make it bleed. If you are going to have a party with children, please use a prop knife to avoid any accidents. See how it’s done by watching the video below:

Spider cake

Ingredients

  • 2 cups white sugar
  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • One teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup boiling water

To make this simple, one-bowl chocolate cake, follow the directions as shown here.

The spider cake is a classic Halloween cake with several methods of construction. For example, if you add eyes, legs and fangs to a round layer cake, you get can easily create an exciting spider cake centerpiece without a lot of trouble or expense.

If you want something a little more involved, but still easy to manage, consider this spider cake from “Yeners Cake Tips” on YouTube. You can start with a store-bought cake or bake your own. Whichever you decide, this short video will show you how to decorate your Halloween cake like a pro.

To make your spider cake extra creepy, why not turn it into a whole nest of creepy crawlies instead? You can also try adding a few powdered-sugar donut “egg sacks” to the top of your cake. For the hatchlings, you can then either create smaller versions of the spider shown in the above video or you can use store-bought plastic spiders. Whichever you choose, a spider-nest cake is sure to give your guests the creeps.

Bat cake

Whether your guests are preschoolers, college students or senior citizens, this adorable bat cake is sure to be a party hit.

Ingredients

  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter in 16 pieces (plus 1 tablespoon softened butter for greasing pan)
  • 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour (more for pan)
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup cocoa
  • ½ cup buttermilk
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Frosting:

  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter in 8 pieces
  • ¼ cup cocoa
  • 6 tablespoons buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 pound confectioners’ sugar

In just over a minute, Hungry Happenings on YouTube demonstrates how to create a simple, but undeniably charming bat-shaped Halloween cake. Watch the video below.

Then, take your bat cake to the next level of deliciousness by filling with chocolate ganache.

First, whip up a batch of easy chocolate ganache according to the recipe here. After assembling the wings and body, as shown in the video above, hollow out a small trench in the center of the cake. Then, fill the trench with warm ganache, and replace the pieces of cake on top of the ganache. Let the ganache cool before you frost and decorate your bat cake.

Pumpkin cake

Ingredients

Cake

  • 3 cups sifted all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, room temperature
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 large fresh eggs, room temperature
  • 1 cup milk, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Directions

First grease two 8-inch round pans. Then, in a large bowl sift together dry ingredients. Next, cream butter for one minute in a mixing bowl. Then, add the sugar slowly and then beat until light and fluffy. Beat eggs in another bowl, then add to sugar mixture. Set your mixer to low, alternate adding dry ingredients and milk to sugar mixture. After it is mixed well, add the vanilla. Finally, spread evenly into pans and bake for 25-30 minutes. Allow the cake to cool completely.

Decorating ingredients

  • 2 cans buttercream frosting
  • Orange color food gel
  • #21 Star Tip or large star tip
  • Black gum drops or licorice or jelly beans
  • Green ice cream cone
  • Green chew or green watermelon Air Head candy
  • Decorating bag

Watch the video below for step-by-step instructions on how to make a pumpkin Halloween cake.

Halloween cake pops

What You Will Need:

  • 9 x 13 cake baked and cooled
  • 1 can frosting
  • 2 16 oz bags of candy melts
  • 3 TBSP shortening
  • Green tic tacs
  • 32 sucker sticks
  • Gel food coloring and/or food grade markers

Watch the video below for step-by-step instructions.

Halloween sprinkle cakes

One of the most popular, recent trends in cake-making, sprinkles are colorful and fun. What’s more, nothing says “It’s a party!” quite like sprinkles.

Ingredients:

  • 4 single layer, round cakes, baked and cooled
  • 2 cans white frosting
  • White fondant
  • food coloring
  • Water
  • Large container of sprinkles

Check out the sprinkle cake tutorial below. When you slice into the cake, a party pops out. What could be cooler than that? The video tutorial below is from “Sprinkle Pop” on YouTube.

In case you’re looking for more traditional sprinkle cake, check out this classic Halloween sprinkle cake recipe from SugarHero. Alternatively, you might also want to try this recipe for devil’s food and pumpkin sprinkle cake, complete with buttercream frosting. That cake is covered in black sparkling sugar, rather than sprinkles. The sparkling sugar serves as a grown-up alternative to throwing a boatload of sprinkles on your Halloween cake.

Premade Halloween cakes

Alternatively, sometimes the best solution is to let someone else do the baking and decorating. We searched the Internet to find the best places to order premade Halloween cakes. Candy’s Cake Pops will custom make cake pops to your specifications. The company’s webpage gives customers a lot of options for choosing the style, color, flavor and decorating used on your cake pop orders.

Likewise, you may want to check out the awesome selection of Halloween cakes offered by Pink Box Custom Cakes. Whether you’re looking for a horror-themed cake or a dozen cute cupcakes for a child’s party, you are sure to find something that meets your needs. If all else fails, Walmart stores also offer custom cakes for any occasion. While it may not be the ideal solution, it could be a solution if you need a cake in a hurry and can’t find time to bake.

Happy Halloween!

To sum it up, Halloween cakes can be as elaborate or as simple as your imagination allows. What’s more, cake lovers of all ages are sure to find something they can either create at home or even custom order. Whatever idea you choose, by combining fantastic flavors with your creative ideas, your Halloween cake is sure to be the hit of the party.

Regardless of your theme or cake, the most important thing is to remember to have fun. For more great Halloween party planning ideas, visit Wicked Ways Productions. Here you will find a step-by-step Halloween party planning checklists. There are also plenty of resources for all your party planning needs.

 

Featured image: CC by-NC-ND 2.0, by nodigio, via Flickr