Halloween kicks off my most favorite time of year! And this is because it’s filled with food. And dessert. Loads of it! To kick off this glorious holiday season, I’ve baked up these Halloween Spider Cupcakes to share with you. Yes, you! You will love them, I promise. They’re chocolate cupcakes topped with chocolate ganache and the simplest of spider webs and a cute little candy spider. Now that’s how to celebrate Halloween!
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Making Spider Cupcakes for Halloween
These spider cupcakes are easy to make and assemble. I used my go-to chocolate fudge cupcake recipe. I also used the frosting from this recipe, cut it in half, and used it to create a sweet surprise in the middle. I cut out a tunnel from the middle of the chocolate cupcakes and filled them with orange buttercream. Who doesn’t like filled cupcakes?! Especially when the orange and blackish colors are perfect for Halloween!
For the topping, first dip the cupcakes in chocolate ganache then fill a piping bag with melted white chocolate to create the spider web design. Starting in the middle of the cupcake, create a swirl leading out to the edge of the cupcake. The swirl does not need to be perfect whatsoever. Then take a toothpick or tip of a knife and drag it from the center, creating the web effect.
Next, create the spider on top. Place a brown m&m in the center for the spider’s body. Pipe some chocolate legs onto parchment, allow to set, and place those next to the spider’s body for legs. I got this idea from John over at Preppy Kitchen – thanks John!
Tips for Making This Recipe
- To fill each cupcake, you’ll need to first cut a “tunnel” in each. The best way I found to do this is to use an apple corer. I press it straight down into the center of each cupcake, setting aside the piece that comes out for noshing on while I’m finishing the cupcakes. If you don’t have an apple corer, you can use a small paring knife to cut about a 1/2-inch wide circular tunnel out from the cupcake’s center. You can replace the piece that comes out of your tunnel on top of the filling. This makes for a smooth top to your cupcake. I usually have eaten them all by this point in the process, though…
- To make the spider web design, melt some white chocolate in the microwave and scrape it into a small ziptop bag. Cut a very small corner off the bag to create a fine-tip piping bag. Starting in the center of the cupcake, create a spiral moving out towards the edge of the cupcake as you go. Take a toothpick or sharp knife and starting in the middle of the cupcake, drag it through the white chocolate spiral to create the web effect. Repeat this dragging technique around the cupcake, making the lines about 1 inch apart
- To create the spider legs, melt the semi-sweet chocolate in a bowl then scrape into a small ziptop bag. Cut a corner off the bag to create a piping tip. Make this tip a bit wider than the one you did for the spider web design. On a piece of parchment paper, pipe small Vs using the melted chocolate. Be sure not to make these too thin otherwise they will surely break as you assemble the spiders. Place in the fridge to set. I would highly recommend making extra legs just in case you break a few during assembly, as I did
- To assemble the spiders, place one brown m&m candy in the center of each cupcake. Carefully peel the spider legs off the parchment paper and press gently into the cupcake in the desired position. I broke my fair share of legs during this process, so this is where the extra legs you made come in handy! Assembling the spiders is easiest to do when the chocolate ganache and chocolate spider web are still wet so the pieces stick to the top of the cupcake.
Useful Kitchen Tools for This Recipe
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For more Halloween and Fall-inspired treats try these recipes:Print
These Halloween Spider Cupcakes are super fun to make! They are chocolate cupcakes topped with chocolate ganache, the simplest of spider webs and a cute little candy spider topper.
- 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 cup brewed coffee, hot
- ½ cup sour cream
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup light brown sugar, packed
- 3 large eggs, room temperature
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
For Cupcake Filling:
- ¼ cup (½ stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 4 ounces cream cheese, brick-style, room temperature
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- Pinch of kosher salt
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- orange (or yellow + red) gel food coloring
- 1/4 cup semi-sweet chocolate baking bars, chopped, or semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 18 brown M&Ms candies
For Chocolate Ganache:
- ¾ cup semi-sweet chocolate baking bars, chopped, or semi-sweet chocolate chips
- ½ cup heavy whipping cream
For Spider Web Design:
- Make the Cupcakes: Preheat oven to 350°F. Line muffin pan with 18 cupcake liners or place paper cupcake cups on a sheet tray and set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together the cocoa powder, coffee, sour cream, and vanilla to make a shiny fudge. Set aside. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter until smooth and shiny, about 2-3 minutes. Add the granulated and brown sugars and continue beating until fluffy, and then beat in the eggs one at a time, mixing between each addition. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt. Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture in thirds, alternating with the fudge mixture, scraping down the bowl several times as you go. Divide the batter between the cupcake liners and bake for 28 – 30 mins. A toothpick inserted into the center of the middle cupcake should come out clean when they are done. If there’s batter on the toothpick, continue baking for a few minutes more until it comes out clean. Let the cupcakes cool before turning them out on a wire rack to cool completely before filling and topping
- Make the Cupcake Filling: In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter and cream cheese on medium to high speed until smooth and creamy, about 2-3 minutes. Add in vanilla and salt and mix well to combine. With mixer on low, gradually add the powdered sugar one cup at a time until completely combined and no dry spots are left. Add orange food coloring to reach desired color
- Fill the Cupcakes: When cupcakes are cool, use a small knife or apple corer to remove the center of each cupcake to form a ½-inch wide tunnel. Spoon frosting into each cupcake, making sure not to overfill. Filling should be level with top of the cupcake
- Make Spider Legs: Melt a small amount of chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl in 30 second increments at 50% power, stirring in between, until smooth. Place chocolate into a small ziptop bag, cutting a small corner to create a fine tip piping bag. On a small piece of parchment paper, pipe V’s, being sure not to make them too thin otherwise they’ll break when you place them on the cupcakes. I made 4 legs per spider, but feel free to go all out and make 8 per spider if you so wish! Place in the fridge to set while you make the ganache and spider web design
- Make the Chocolate Ganache: Place chocolate in a medium-sized bowl. Heat whipping cream in the microwave for 1 minute. Pour over chocolate and let sit for 5 minutes. Stir until smooth
- Top the Cupcakes: Carefully dip the top of each cupcake in the chocolate ganache. Smooth ganache with an offset spatula or butter knife, if needed. Set aside. Place white coating chocolate in a small microwave-safe bowl and melt in 30 second increments at 50% power, stirring in between, until smooth. Place chocolate into a small ziptop bag, cutting a small corner to create a fine tip piping bag. Pipe a spiral around the top of each the cupcake then drag a toothpick or sharp end of a knife through the ganache, working from the inside out to create the spider web design. Place a brown M&M candy in the center of each cupcake and arrange 2 of the chocolate legs on either side of the body. Place in the fridge to set
- Decorated cupcakes can be stored in the refrigerator for up to one week
- Undecorated cupcakes can be frozen. Wrap them individually in plastic wrap and freeze up to 3 months. Bring to room temperature before frosting
- Unused frosting should be stored in the refrigerator. Bring to room temperature before using. If the frosting looks to be separated or lumpy, mix briskly with a spoon or with a handheld mixer for a minute or two
- Spider design adapted from Preppy Kitchen
- Category: Cupcakes, Halloween, Holiday
- Method: Bake
- Cuisine: American
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