Halloween is the most fun holiday of all. Ushered in by the fall season, Halloween decorations start going up just after Labor Day. More than the eight days of Hanukkah or twelve days of Christmas, Halloween provides almost two full months to get your ghoul on. There are a million little ways you can celebrate Halloween, but one of the most enjoyable, and certainly most appreciated, is with creative Halloween food. Paper ghosts and cardboard pumpkins help create an atmosphere, but when you decorate everything, including dinner, you’ll really set the mood.
Beyond Cookies, Candy and Cupcakes
Halloween food is more than just cookies shaped like witches’ hats and cupcakes with candy pumpkins pressed into the frosting. Halloween food is anything, from appetizers to entrees and beyond, that has a fun and creepy Halloween theme. All it takes is some imagination and soon you’ll be seeing monster mouths in the taco shells and ghosts in the whipped cream.
Whether you see it as a mission, a challenge or a holiday project, make it a priority to cook up some Halloween food each week in October. There’s sure to be a party or two that will require a few special recipes, but your family will appreciate an eerie entree a few times – you can even surprise them with a dreadfully delicious dessert after a weeknight meal.
Yummy Mummy Pizzas
These mini pizzas are quick and easy, perfect for a snack or even a weeknight meal when you don’t have a lot of time. Involve the family by having everyone prepare their own little mummies before you bake them. You can substitute English muffins for the bagels in a pinch.
- 1 plain bagel (3 1/2 inch), cut horizontally in half
- 1 Tbsp. pizza sauce
- 2 sticks mozzarella string cheese
- 4 slices black olives
- Heat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Spread bagel halves with sauce. Pull cheese into thin strips; place in random criss-cross fashion on tops of bagels to resemble mummy bandages. Trim ends with kitchen shears. Add olives for the eyes.
- Place on baking sheet
- Bake 10 min. or until bagels are crisp and cheese is melted.
Ghosts in the Graveyard Shepherd’s Pie
Reliable comfort food gets a fright with dollops of potato ghosts in place of the smooth layer of mashed potatoes. One skillet for the pie and one bowl to mix up the ghost potatoes makes for an easy clean up after dinner.
- 1 pkg. (16 oz.) frozen mixed vegetables
- 1 lb. ground beef
- 1 cup beef gravy
- 4 oz. (1/2 of 8-oz. pkg.) cream cheese, cubed
- 1 cup milk, divided
- 1 cup water
- 2 cups instant potato flakes
- 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
- Cook vegetables as directed on package. Meanwhile, brown meat in large skillet; drain. Stir in gravy; simmer until heated through, stirring occasionally.
- Microwave cream cheese and 1/4 cup milk in medium microwaveable bowl on HIGH 30 sec.; beat with whisk until smooth. Gradually whisk in remaining milk and water. Microwave 2-1/2 min. or until hot, stirring after each minute. Stir in potato flakes and Parmesan until well blended. Spoon into resealable plastic bag; cut 1 corner from bottom of bag.
- Remove 12 peas from mixed vegetables; stir remaining vegetables into meat mixture. Squeeze potato mixture into 6 mounds on meat mixture to resemble ghosts. Add 2 of the reserved peas to each for the eyes.
Spooky, Scary Spider Brownies
Three simple steps and you’ll have a delectable dessert perfect for a mid-week boost. Make this terrifying treat even more special by coarsely chopping 16 chocolate sandwich cookies and adding them or substituting them for the pecans in the batter before baking.
- 4 squares unsweetened chocolate
- 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) butter or margarine
- 2 cups sugar
- 3 eggs
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 1 cup flour
- 1 cup coarsely chopped pecans (optional)
- 1 jar (7 oz.) marshmallow cream
- 1 square semi-sweet chocolate, melted
- Line 13×9-inch baking pan with foil, with ends of foil extending over sides of pan to form handles. Grease foil.
- Microwave unsweetened chocolate and butter in large microwavable bowl on HIGH 2 minutes or until butter is melted. Stir until chocolate is completely melted. Add sugar; mix well. Stir in eggs and vanilla. Add flour and nuts; mix well. Spread into prepared pan.
- Bake at 350°F for 30 to 35 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out with fudgy crumbs. (Do not overbake.) Immediately drop marshmallow cream by spoonfuls over hot brownies; spread evenly over top of brownies. Cool in pan. Lift out of pan onto cutting board using foil handles. Remove foil. Place on serving tray. Drizzle melted chocolate over marshmallow cream to create a spider web design. Cut into 32 brownies just before serving.
Once you’ve made these darling and scrumptious Halloween delicacies, you’ll have a hard time waiting for the holiday to come back around again. Feel free to make them anytime you have a horrifying chocolate craving.
- 1 pkg. (6 squares) bittersweet chocolate
- 1/4 cup whipping cream
- 1 Tbsp butter, softened
- 1 pkg. (6 squares) white chocolate, divided
- Yellow and red food colorings (3 drops yellow and 2 drops red)
- 3 Tbsp. shredded coconut, tinted orange*
- Black decorating gel
- Microwave bittersweet chocolate squares, cream and butter in microwaveable bowl on HIGH 1-1/2 to 2 min., stirring after 1 min. Stir until chocolate is completely melted; cover. Freeze 1 hour or until firm enough to handle. Use teaspoon to scoop and roll chocolate mixture into 20 balls, each about 1 inch in diameter; place on waxed paper-covered baking sheet. Freeze 20 min.
- Microwave 3 white chocolate squares in clean microwaveable 1-cup measuring cup or small bowl 1 to 1-1/2 min., stirring after 1 min. Stir until chocolate is completely melted. Set aside. Repeat with remaining white chocolate squares in separate bowl; stir in food colorings. Cool chocolates completely.
- Dip 10 chocolate balls in tinted chocolate, turning to evenly coat each ball. Return to baking sheet. Repeat with remaining chocolate balls and untinted chocolate. Decorate orange truffles with coconut to resemble pumpkins. Use decorating gel to draw eyes and mouths on white truffles to resemble ghosts. Refrigerate 30 min. or until chocolate is firm. Keep refrigerated.
*To tint coconut: Place coconut in resealable plastic bag; seal bag. Add 1 to 2 drops each of red and yellow food coloring; close bag and shake until coconut is evenly tinted.
YUM! Which treat will you make?