Easy spider cupcakes are the perfect fun Halloween dessert to do with the kids. Learn how to make these adorable creepy crawly cupcakes and celebrate Halloween from the comfort of your own kitchen.
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You know what’s fun? My daughter is at the age (she just turned 6) where doing cooking and baking projects totally engages her. She’s old enough to follow directions fairly well- when she wants to of course. And she also loves to put her own spin on projects we do together.
I swear I’ve been waiting for this forever! Kitchen projects have always been something that I loved doing with her but a lot of times it was just her eating the sprinkles while she kept me company instead of really doing whatever I was doing.
Now though, it’s game on!
These Halloween spider cupcakes were a hit with her. They were easy for her to do but engaging enough for her to be into the project the whole time instead of losing interest about halfway through.
To keep it simple and kid friendly, I’m using lots of short cuts here. To make these cupcakes you need:
- Chocolate cake mix and the ingredients listed on the package– Use your favorite brand or make it homemade. I took shortcuts here since I knew decorating these would be much more involved. You’ll generally also need eggs, oil and water.
- Chocolate frosting– Again store bought is fine here but you can make homemade chocolate buttercream if you prefer.
- Pretzels– Use the thin pretzels that are shaped like pretzels instead of sticks.
- Candy eyeballs– We used the small candy eyes because it’s what we had on hand (yes we really keep these on hand in our house) but the big ones would make ADORABLE spiders.
- Red decorator gel– To make the spider’s mouth. You can find this in the cake aisle at the grocery store or order it here.
- Candy corn– Totally optional but we trimmed the bottom third of the candy corn off to give the spiders some fangs.
You’ll need some basic kitchen supplies and non edible things to make these:
- Mixing bowl
- Spatula or sturdy spoon
- Measuring cups
- Cupcake tins
- Batter scoop
- Cupcake liners
- Small icing knife or butter knife
How to Make Cupcakes into Spiders
- Bake the cupcakes and then frost them.
Bake the cupcakes according to the instructions on the package. Let them thoroughly cool. Then, spread chocolate frosting out over each cupcake. There’s no need to use a piping bag or be extra neat with the frosting- in fact the messiness works here! My daughter frosted the cupcakes just using a butter knife.
- Break the pretzels apart and use them to make legs.
Break the pretzels apart so you have the curved outer part of the pretzel in a c shape. It’s ok if they aren’t perfect. Like with the frosting the messiness and imperfections add creepy character to these cupcakes. Once you have the pretzels all broken apart, push 4 into one side of the cupcake to form legs and 4 into the opposite side. Repeat with all the cupcakes.
- Decorate the faces.
Put the eyeballs on the face of the spider. Then draw a smile for the mouth. Cut the white part off of candy corn and press that into the mouth icing as fangs. Then enjoy!
Store these easy Halloween cupcakes loosely covered on your counter.
Can I use licorice for the spider’s legs instead of pretzels?
Yes! In fact I wanted to use black shoelace licorice for legs but it was impossible to find. If you want to do this, you can buy some here. Just cut the laces into roughly equal pieces before you put them in the cupcakes. You could also roll out Tootsie Rolls and cut them into equal pieces for spider legs if you prefer.
Tips and Tricks
- Remember, these don’t have to be perfect! In fact they are more fun if they are a bit messy and imperfect.
- Let the kids get creative when they decorate the spider faces. My daughter added eyebrows and angry faces etc.
- You could add sprinkles and other candies into the mix to decorate these cupcakes.
Other Easy Halloween Desserts You and Your Kids Might Love
These spider cupcakes are one of many Halloween treats my kids and I have done together. These are some of our favorites:
- Easy Pumpkin Patch Brownies– Perfect for decorating with littles, kids love sprinkling “dirt” on these festive brownies.
- Halloween Monster Bark– No baking required and super fun to have the kids press eyeballs into the melted candy.
- Pumpkin Oreos– Another no bake goodie and fun treat for fall and Halloween.
- Chocolate cake mix and the ingredients listed on the package
- Chocolate frosting
- Candy eyeballs
- Red decorator gel
- Candy corn
- Bake the cupcakes according to the directions on your package and let them cool completely.
- Frost the cupcakes by spreading chocolate frosting out over each cupcake with a butter knife or icing spatula. Don't worry about perfection here.
- Break the pretzels apart and use them to make legs. Break the pretzels apart so you have the curved outer part of the pretzel in a c shape. It's ok if they aren't perfect. Once you have the pretzels all broken apart, push 4 into one side of the cupcake to form legs and 4 into the opposite side. Repeat with all the cupcakes.
- Decorate the faces. Put the eyeballs on the face of the spider. Then draw a smile for the mouth. Cut the white part off of candy corn and press that into the mouth icing as fangs. Then enjoy!
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