No reason to be afraid of these friendly ghosts – they’re not only adorable but easy to make! Have a scary good time with your own junior chefs, creating enough cute ghosts to cover the cake plus a few extra to peek out from behind. White frosting makes them look right at home. We promise you’ll only hear screams of delight when you bring out this Halloween treat!
Chocolate Marshmallow-Ghost Cake
Makes three 6-inch layers or about 6 dozen mini cupcakes
- 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened, plus more for pans
- 2/3 cup unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder, sifted, plus more for pans
- 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/4 cups sugar
- 4 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup whole milk
- 1 bag large marshmallows
- 1 bag mini marshmallows
- chocolate jimmies/sprinkles
- 16 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
- 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter three 6-inch round cake pans. Dust with cocoa powder, and tap out excess; set aside. Alternatively, line six mini muffin tins with paper liners.
- 2. Whisk together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. Put butter and sugar into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 4 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing until combined after each addition. Mix in vanilla.
- 3. Reduce speed to low. Add flour mixture in three batches, alternating with the milk. Mix until just combined. Divide batter evenly among pans (about 2 cups batter per pan) or lined muffin cups (about 1 tablespoon batter per cup).
- 4. Bake until a cake tester inserted into centers comes out clean, 30 to 40 minutes for cake layers and 14 to 16 minutes for mini cupcakes. Let cool in pans or muffin tins on a wire rack.
- 5. Make frosting: Put cream cheese and sugar into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on medium-high speed until blended, add vanilla and then beat until pale and fluffy, 5 to 7 minutes. Frost cake or cupcakes immediately.
- 6. To frost the ghost cake, cover each of two layers with two-thirds cup Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting, and stack the layers; spread remaining frosting over top and sides of assembled cake.
- 7. To make the ghosts, you will need a miniature marshmallow, 2 large marshmallows, and 2 chocolate sprinkles per ghost. Twist top of miniature marshmallow into a point by rolling it between your thumb and index finger. Lightly twist 2 large marshmallows to shape for the head and base of the ghost. With a toothpick, poke holes and insert chocolate sprinkles for eyes. To assemble ghosts, trim the bottom off of each marshmallow and stick together. As an alternative, use toothpicks or extra frosting to join marshmallows together.
- 8. Go for variety – little mini ghosts, tall ghosts, shy ghosts! Let the kids help position them on the cake and stand; accent with black candles and let the compliments flood in!
Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting:
Makes enough for one 6-inch 3-layer cake
Photo by Sang An. Copyright © 2006, Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, Inc. Originally published in the October 2006 issue of Martha Stewart Living. For more great Halloween recipes visit marthastewart.com.