STATEWIDE — Maybe you have been hoping to whip up some themed desserts for Halloween, but you do not have much free time in your schedule, or you have picky eaters in your home who are difficult to please.
Holidays can present the perfect opportunities to experiment in the kitchen, especially if you have kids who eat with their eyes before eating with their mouths.
Continue reading to find some fun and simple Halloween recipes for the whole family. But, be warned, these treats may trick you into overindulging in sweets this season.
Apple Hand Pies (Makes Four Pies)
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 large green apples – peeled, cored, and cut into chunks
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- ¼ cup white sugar
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 ½ teaspoons ground cinnamon, or to taste
- 1 teaspoon water, or more if needed (Optional)
- 1 pound prepared pie dough, cut into 4 pieces
- 1 egg
- 2 teaspoons milk
- 1 teaspoon white sugar, or as needed.
- Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat; let butter brown to a light golden color and smell toasted, about 1 minute. Stir apples into hot butter; sprinkle with 1/4 cup white sugar, brown sugar, and salt. Cook and stir apple mixture until apples are softened, about 5 minutes. Mix in cinnamon and water; continue cooking until apples are soft and sticky, 1 to 2 more minutes. Spread apple filling onto a plate to cool.
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with a silicone mat or parchment paper.
- Form a dough piece into a ball, place on a floured work surface, and roll into a circle about 8 inches in diameter.
- Spoon 1/3 to 1/2 cup apple filling in the center.
- Fold dough over filling, leaving about 1 inch of dough on the bottom side visible below the top side. Gently press dough closed around filling, using your fingertips.
- Fold the overhanging bottom part of dough up over the top edge, working your way around the crust, and pinch the overhang tightly to the top part of the crust.
- Crimp the edge tightly closed, pinching a little bit of dough with the thumb and forefinger of one hand and using your index finger on the other hand to push a small notch into the pinched dough. Continue pinching and notching all the way around until crust is tightly crimped together. Repeat with remaining dough and filling. Transfer pies onto prepared baking sheet.
- Whisk egg with milk in a small bowl until thoroughly combined. Brush top of each hand pie with egg mixture and sprinkle with about 1/4 teaspoon white sugar. Cut 3 small vent holes in the top of each pie.
- Bake in the preheated oven until pies are golden brown and filling is bubbling, 25 to 30 minutes. Let cool for at least 15 minutes before serving.
Apple Spider Web Pops (Makes Eight Pops)
- 2 large Granny Smith apples, stemmed
- 4 ounces chopped bittersweet chocolate
- 2 teaspoons coconut oil
- 4 ounces chopped white chocolate
- 8 wooden popsicle sticks
- Line a baking sheet with parchment or a silicon baking mat.
- Cut the apples lengthwise (stem to bottom) into 4 thick slices each. Remove any visible seeds and keep the core intact. The end slices will be rounded; cut a thin slice off so they lay flat. Poke a small hole in the bottom of each slice with a wooden ice-pop stick and push halfway into the apple.
- Combine the bittersweet chocolate and 1 teaspoon of the coconut oil in a medium microwave-safe bowl and microwave at 50 percent power for 30-second increments, stirring in between, until melted and smooth. Add the white chocolate and remaining 1 teaspoon coconut oil to another medium microwave-safe bowl and microwave at 50 percent power for 30-second increments, stirring in between, until melted and smooth.
- Dip half of the apple slices completely in the bittersweet chocolate, letting the excess drip back into the bowl, and place on the prepared baking sheet. Dip the remaining apple slices in the white chocolate. Let sit at room temperature so the chocolate thickens a bit, 10 to 15 minutes.
- Transfer the leftover dark and white chocolate to 2 separate small resealable plastic bags and snip a small corner off each bag. Pipe 3 to 4 dark chocolate concentric circles on the white chocolate-dipped apples and visa-versa. Drag a toothpick through the circles, starting the center and working your way out to create a spider web design. Refrigerate until hardened, 15 to 20 minutes.
Caramel Apple Cookies (Makes 24 Cookies)
- 3/4 cup salted butter (1 1/2 sticks)
- 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon apple pie spice
- 3/4 cup rolled oats
- 1 Granny Smith apple, grated (about 1/2 cup)
- 1/2 cup chopped apple chips
- 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
- 2 tablespoons apple cider or juice
- 3 tablespoons caramel sauce
- 1/2 cup apple chips, chopped
- For the cookies: Preheat the oven to 350˚.
- Brown the butter by melting it over medium heat in a medium saucepan, then let it cook and bubble for an additional 3 to 5 minutes or until the foam and butter underneath is golden brown. Transfer it to a large, heatproof mixing bowl and swirl a few times to help stop the browning. Let it cool to room temperature, about 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, whisk together the flour, baking soda, salt, and apple pie spice in a medium bowl; set aside.
- Add the brown and granulated sugars to the mixing bowl with the browned butter and beat with an electric mixer on medium speed for about 1 minute until creamy. Add the egg and vanilla, and mix on low just until combined.
- Add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture and mix until combined. Mix in the oats and grated apple. Fold in the apple chips with a rubber spatula.
- Scoop the dough into balls, about 1 1/2 tablespoons in size, onto two parchment lined baking sheets and and press gently with the bottom of a glass. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, or until the edges are golden brown. Cool for 5 minutes on the sheet tray, before transferring to a wire cooling rack to cool completely.
- For the caramel icing: Whisk together the powdered sugar, apple juice, and caramel sauce. Using a spoon, drizzle the cookies generously with the icing and top with the chopped apple chips. Allow the glaze to set before serving, about 1 hour (at room temperature).
- Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.
Chocolate Trail Mix (Makes Four Cups)
- 1 cup raw, unsalted almonds or pistachios
- 1 cup raw, unsalted cashews or pecans
- ½ cup raw, unsalted pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds
- ½ cup dried cherries, raisins, blueberries, goldenberries or chopped dried apricots, mango, pineapple or prunes
- ½ cup dark or semisweet chocolate pieces or chips, peanut butter cups or chips
- Heat the oven to 275 degrees. Scatter the nuts and seeds on a large sheet pan in an even layer. Bake until they are lightly toasted and maybe browned in spots, about 12 minutes, turning the nuts and seeds over as best you can and rotating the sheet pan halfway through cooking.
- Remove from the oven, add the cherries and ¼ teaspoon salt and stir with a wooden spoon. Spread the mixture out again to let cool until you can easily handle the sheet pan with bare hands, 15 to 20 minutes. (If you add the chocolate to the sheet pan directly at this stage, it might melt a little. But if you prefer the chocolate to melt into your clusters, add half the chocolate directly to the sheet pan along with the dried fruit. After cooling, add remaining chocolate then transfer to a bowl, using a flat spatula to scrape any chocolate from the pan, and let cool until solid again, 30 to 90 minutes.)
- Transfer to a bowl, then stir in the chocolate (if you haven’t already added it). Enjoy immediately, or store for up to one month in an airtight container at a cool temperature.
Easy Chocolate Fudge (Makes 16 Squares)
- 4 tablespoons (½ stick) butter, plus extra for greasing the pan
- 1 pound semisweet or bittersweet chocolate
- 1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
- ⅛ teaspoon salt (optional)
- ½ cup chopped nuts (optional)
- Butter an 8-inch-square baking pan. Line with parchment or wax paper, letting edges of paper hang over sides of pan.
- In top of a double boiler or a metal bowl set over (not resting in) simmering water, combine all ingredients except nuts. Mix just until melted and well combined. (Alternatively, use a microwave on low power to melt ingredients, stopping every 10 to 20 seconds to mix well.) The mixture should be heated as little as possible. Mix in nuts, if using.
- Scrape mixture into prepared pan. Refrigerate until set, about 4 hours or overnight. Lift fudge on paper out of pan and use a large knife to cut into squares.
Melting Witches Bark (Makes Eight Servings)
- Eight 1-inch strips sour candy belts (a mix of color works great)
- 8 pretzel sticks
- 4 ounces (about 2/3 cup) orange candy melting wafers
- 1 teaspoon refined coconut oil
- 8 fudge-covered chocolate sandwich cookies, such as Oreos
- 8 cone-shaped corn snacks, such as Bugles
- Coarse black sanding sugar or regular sanding sugar
- 8 ounces (about 1 1/3 cups) green candy melting wafers
- 4 ounces (about 2/3 cup) black candy melting wafers
- 12 ounces (about 2 cups) brown candy melting wafers
- 16 candy eyeballs
- Halloween sprinkles, for topping
- 8 mini candy pumpkins, such as Mellowcreme, for topping, optional
- Preheat the oven to 250 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with a silicone baking mat or parchment and set aside.
- Working with 1 strip of candy belt at a time, use sharp kitchen shears to make thin verticals cuts in the candy, leaving a 1/4-inch strip at the top of the candy uncut. It will look like fringe. Wrap the uncut strip of the candy around the tip of a pretzel stick; the 2 ends should overlap slightly. Use your fingers to gently press the candy so that it clings to the pretzel, being careful not to break the pretzel. Fan out the fringe a bit so it resembles a small broom. Repeat with the remaining sour candy and pretzels, making 8 brooms. Set aside.
- Put the orange candy wafers in a small ovensafe ramekin. Bake until the wafers are glossy and begin to melt, 3 to 4 minutes. Give the wafers a good stir; if the mixture isn’t smooth return it to the oven for 30 seconds and stir again. Repeat until smooth, then stir in the coconut oil. Set aside to cool completely, 5 to 10 minutes.
- Arrange the fudge-covered cookies on a plate or small baking sheet and place the ramekin of melted orange candy next to it. Drop a cone-shaped corn snack into the orange candy, then use 2 wooden skewers or chopsticks to turn the snack so it’s completely coated. Lift it out and place it on an empty part of the plate or baking sheet. Sprinkle liberally with sanding sugar. Use your fingers to carefully pick the coated corn snack up by the tip and the bottom and place it pointed-side up onto a cookie. Repeat with the remaining corn snacks and cookies to make 8 witch hats total. Set aside until set, about 15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, divide the green candy wafers into 8 even mounds around the prepared baking sheet spacing them evenly apart. Break 4 of the black candy wafers in half, then place a half on top of each mound of green wafers. In a medium bowl, combine the brown candy wafers and remaining black wafers, then scatter the mix around all sides of the green mounds, creating a rough rectangle. Bake until the wafers are glossy and begin to melt, 3 to 4 minutes. Immediately use a small offset spatula to smooth and spread the green wafers into rough circles. Wipe the offset spatula clean, then spread the black and brown wafers out around the green circles.
- Place 1 witch hat slightly off-center on each green circle, then place 2 candy eyeballs below each hat. Lay a broomstick to the side of the eyes. Scatter the Halloween sprinkles on top of the black and brown melting candies. Arrange the candy pumpkins on top if using. Set aside until the bark is solid, about 1 hour. Break apart and serve.
Monster Cookies (Makes 12 Cookies)
- 1 cup flour
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup rolled oats
- 9 tablespoons butter, at room temperature
- ½ cup light brown sugar
- ½ cup superfine sugar
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¾ cup chopped pecans
- 1 cup M&M’s or other sugar-coated candies like Reese’s pieces
- Heat oven to 350 degrees. In a small bowl combine flour, baking powder, salt and rolled oats. Set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer combine butter, light brown sugar and superfine sugar. Beat until creamy. Add egg and vanilla, and beat again until smooth.
- Add flour mixture to butter mixture, and beat until smooth. By hand, fold in chopped pecans and M&M’s.
- Roll quarter-cup measures of dough into balls and flatten them into fat disks (about ½ inch thick). Place on a parchment-lined or greased baking sheet, about 6 at a time, so they have room to spread.
- Bake until cookies are risen, dry on surface and very lightly browned, 15 to 20 minutes. They will be too soft to lift from baking sheet. Set aside to harden for 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool.
Mummy Pumpkin Cookies (Makes Nine Mummies)
- 1 package Refrigerated Pie Crust
- 3/4 cup reduced pumpkin puree (place 1 cup pumpkin puree on several layers of paper towel, wrap and press to soak excess moisture until you get 3/4 cup pumpkin puree)
- 2 oz cream cheese – slightly softened
- 2 tablespoons packed light-brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon of nutmeg
- 1/8 teaspoon allspice
- 1 egg yolk
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 egg white-lightly beaten
- 1/2 tablespoon water
- 2 tablespoon sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- To make the pumpkin pie filling in a bowl stir together cream cheese, granulated sugar and brown sugar to blend. Add reduced pumpkin puree to cream cheese mixture along with cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and allspice. Mix in egg yolk and vanilla extract. Cover bowl and chill until ready to assemble the cookies.
- Preheat oven to 375 F and line large baking sheet with parchment paper, set aside.
- Roll out first disk of the dough onto a floured surface to about 13 x 11-inch rectangle. If the edges start to crack a little when rolling, seal them and continue rolling. Trim edges to get straight edges, then cut into rectangles. Roll out second dough disc and cut into 1/2 inch stripes.
- Arrange the rectangles, spaced apart on prepared baking sheet and spread heaping 1 1/2-2 tablespoons of pumpkin pie filling onto each rectangle, leaving rim on all sides uncoated. Brush uncoated edges with the mixture of lightly beaten egg white and 1 tbsp water. Top with strips to create mummy look, then seal edges with your fingertips, and trim the excess of the stripes. Brush the stripes with egg whites and sprinkle with mixture of 2 tbsp sugar and 1 tsp. cinnamon.
- Bake until golden brown, about 20 minutes.
- Stick candy eyes onto cooled mummies.
Popcorn Balls (Makes 22-24 Popcorn Balls)
- Mix-ins, such as candy corn, M&M’s, gummy worms, crushed pretzels, crumbled cookies or sprinkles (optional)
- 2 (3-ounce) bags plain microwave popcorn, ⅔ cup kernels or about 18 cups popped popcorn
- 2 ⅓ cups confectioners’ sugar
- 1 ¼ cup mini marshmallows
- ¾ cup light corn syrup
- ¼ cup unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt (such as Diamond Crystal)
- Food coloring (optional)
- Heat the oven to 200 degrees with the rack in the center position. If using mix-ins, place them in individual bowls and set aside. If using microwave popcorn or kernels, pop according to package instructions. (you should have about 18 cups). Transfer popped popcorn to a sheet pan, picking out any unpopped kernels, and place them in the oven to keep warm.
- In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine the confectioners’ sugar, marshmallows, corn syrup, butter, 1 tablespoon cold water, salt and food coloring, if using. Bring to a boil, stirring frequently, until the marshmallows melt and the mixture is smooth, 6 to 9 minutes. Remove from the heat.
- Transfer the popcorn to a mixing bowl large enough to comfortably hold all of the popcorn. Carefully add the hot marshmallow mixture, mixing gently with a spatula from the bottom of the bowl to ensure the popcorn is evenly coated. Allow the popcorn to cool slightly so the mixture doesn’t burn your hands and the popcorn balls don’t fall apart when shaping, about 5 minutes.
- Line a sheet pan with parchment paper. Grease a ½ cup measuring cup and your hands with butter. Fill the measuring cup with the popcorn mixture; transfer to your hands and shape into a ball by gently squeezing it together. Place the ball on the sheet pan and continue with the rest, greasing your hands as needed. (You’ll need to work fairly quickly so the mixture doesn’t get cold. If the popcorn balls start to fall apart slightly on the sheet pan, don’t panic. Give them another little squeeze.) If you’d like to add any candies, stick them in once you’ve formed a ball (see Tip). If using sprinkles, place them in a bowl, then roll the popcorn balls in the sprinkles.
- Once cool, wrap each popcorn ball in plastic wrap and store on the counter for up to 3 days. Do not refrigerate.
Soft Pumpkin Cookies (Makes 12 Cookies)
- 1 cup white sugar
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 egg, beaten
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup pumpkin puree
- ½ cup chopped walnuts
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Cream together sugar and butter. Add egg, vanilla, pumpkin and walnuts.
- Stir in flour, baking powder and salt; mix well.
- Drop by the tablespoon on cookie sheet and bake for 15 minutes.
- Pacers GM: Contract Extension Talks with Buddy Hield Are “At a Halt” But That Doesn’t Mean They’re Done
- FOUND: Momo the Monkey on the Loose: Indianapolis’ East Side on High Alert
- NWS: Expect a Rainy Wednesday Across Indiana
- Murder Suspect Kevin Mason Captured
- Pence: Trump Owes it to the American People to Debate
The Dangers of Brown Friday & How You Can Prepare for the Worst
Police: Woman Killed, Infant Hurt in Head-On Crash with Semi-Truck
ISP: Truck Driver Killed After Exiting Vehicle
Small Plane Crashes Near Shelbyville Airport, Two People Dead
Feds, Rush County Sheriff Search Home In Valerie Tindall's Disappearance
Fitness Studios Say Holding Company Has Not Paid Employees
Fishers Marching Band Appears in 2023 Macy's Parade
Red, White, & Bowl With Hammer & Nigel Presented By Jack Daniels