Aren’t these the most adorable Halloween cupcakes ever? When you hear how fast and easy it is to put these cute little ghosts on cupcakes made out of carrot cake, you’ll really think so. You still have time, the witches and goblins aren’t coming down the street… yet. This cute design on my speedy recipe will get you ready for the party in no time.
But, first things first, these cupcakes are the creations of Phoenix’s very own neighborhood bakery and cupcake masters extraordinaire, Urban Cookies Ollie Cakes. Their head baker, Sal Garcia, was kind enough to share the ideas and directions with the Arizona Republic and well… the world. Talk about community! When I saw them in the food section of the paper the other day, I knew I had to share them with you.
My kids love Halloween and I usually have elaborate ideas about the treats and decorations and costumes for the dog that I plan to make floating around my in head for weeks leading up to the day. But, as life and errands and deadlines creep up, my visions get scaled back until the ideas are much more manageable. If you are anything like me, you are probably hunting for Halloween ideas that have “knock ‘em dead wow factor” tucked into a “quick and easy” package, too.
Well, these are the cupcakes for you! They are definitely “knock ‘em dead” and definitely “quick and easy.”
Here’s how I put Urban Cookies Ollie Cake’s designs on my cupcakes.
First, make the cupcakes. For speed and minimal clean up, I turned a spice cake mix into a carrot cake cupcake by adding shredded carrots, crushed pineapple and chopped walnuts. I used this recipe for the Ghoulish Ghosts with Cream Cheese Frosting.
Please feel free to use your own recipe if you don’t like using a cake mix or if you have enough time to bake from scratch. I don’t always have the time and, well, sometimes “a Mom’s got to do what a Mom’s got to do” to get the job done. I’d much rather spend the night passing out candy and visiting on the driveway with neighbors than measuring out flour and wiping the “dust” from it off of the kitchen light fixtures.
The frosting for the ghosts is a straight forward white cream cheese icing. Take the butter and cream cheese out of the fridge while you are mixing the cupcake batter so you won’t have to wait for it to come to room temperature.
Chef Garcia used chocolate covered pomegranate seeds for the eyes and mouth of the ghosts, if you can’t find them at your favorite store, there is no need to make a special trip, just use mini-chocolate chips and push the pointy end into the frosting. Try squishing or slightly melting them on waxed paper so they aren’t perfectly round.
If you don’t have a pastry bag and tip, just cut one of the corners off of a zip bag and use that as a pastry bag.
- 1 package spice cake mix without pudding (I use Duncan Hines)
- 1 package Jello Brand vanilla pudding (4 serving size)
- 1 cup water
- ⅓ cup vegetable oil
- 4 eggs
- 2 cups carrots, shredded
- 1 8 oz can crushed pineapple, drained
- 1 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
- 8 oz cream cheese, room temperature
- 8 oz butter, room temperature
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 3 chocolate covered pomegranates
- or mini-chocolate chips per cup cake
- Mix together the cake mix, pudding, eggs, oil, and water. Beat on medium speed for 2 minutes.
- Fold in shredded carrots, pineapple and nuts.
- Spoon batter into cupcake papers.
- Bake for 12 to 15 minutes.
- Beat together cream cheese and butter.
- Slowly add powdered sugar.
- Beat until fluffy.
- Mix in vanilla.
- Spoon frosting into pastry bag or zip bag (cut off one corner).
- Pipe a mound of frosting in the center of each cooled cupcake.
- Pipe a spiral circle around the base of the frosting mound and pushing out to the edge of the cup cake. Make the circles smaller as you go up. Pull the pastry bag away leaving a little "tail" at the very top.
- Place pomegranate seeds or chocolate chips in the position of eyes and mouth.
- Refrigerate until serving to keep the frosting from wilting.
Hope you have fun with this easy recipe!
—posted by Sandy