Just in time for spooky season, decorate some boo-tiful Halloween ghost cupcakes!
Chocolate cupcakes with homemade purple buttercream frosting and ghost meringues on top – what more could you want? The best thing about them is how easy they are to bake and decorate.
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Make a batch of cupcakes for a fun Halloween party treat. And if you’re looking for a party activity for kids, they’ll love making this easy pumpkin craft.
Yes, the meringues might take a few hours to bake, but with a little patience, these will become the talk of your party. They are so cute and not at all scary.
How To Make Spooky Ghost Cupcakes
What is your favorite Halloween theme? Is it witchy? Gnomes? Spiders? Bats?
If you love ghosts, then these cupcakes are for you! The little faces are easy to paint – they are just three little circles! So, anyone can make them!
What You Need
Here’s what you’ll need from the store. The exact amounts are in the printable craft card at the bottom of this post.
- Chocolate Cupcakes
For the Meringue Ghosts
For the Buttercream Frosting
- Unsalted butter, softened
- Confectioners’ sugar
- Purple gel food coloring
Meringue Steps and Tips
If this is your first time making meringue, I’ll share all my best tips so you can make cute ghosts perfectly the first time!
What Is Meringue?
Before we make it, we need to know what it is. Meringue is a mixture of sugar and egg whites. When you beat it with a whisk or mixer, it stiffens because the it traps the air within the egg whites.
When you bake meringue, it stiffens even more and becomes crispy. As you bite into it, it melts in your mouth in the most amazing way.
Use Real Egg Whites At Room Temperature
Do not use pre-packaged egg whites or chilled egg whites right from the refrigerator. In fact, older eggs will whip up fluffier.
Here is how to tell if an egg is ready to be used in meringue. Drop an egg into a glass of water. If it sinks to the bottom and lays on its side, it is too fresh. Don’t use it. If it stands up, then it’s ready for you to use. If it floats, it’s bad; throw it away.
Use a Metal Bowl
Plastic mixing bowls might have traces of oils or soap trapped in the scratches and marks, and this could negatively affect how the meringue whips. For the purest and best meringue, use a metal or glass bowl.
Don’t Forget Cream Of Tartar
The secret to getting the meringue ghosts to sit up nice and tall is cream of tartar. It’s an acidic salt that stabilizes the stiff egg whites.
Ghost Cupcake Decorating Tips
After you master the meringues, the rest is super easy! Here are some additional tips for you that will help you make the cutest ghost cupcakes.
Add The Food Coloring Slowly
You can always add more coloring to make it darker, but you’ll have to make more buttercream frosting to lighten it back up. That’s why it’s best to add a few drops at a time and mix it really well until you get the shade you like.
Let Cupcakes Cool Completely
Cupcakes that are even slightly warm will soften or melt the frosting. I like to make the cupcakes the day before and let them sit at room temperature overnight before decorating them.
Use A Toothpick To Add The Face
If you don’t have a tiny decorating tip or a small bottle of black decorating gel that has a tip on it, you can make black frosting yourself and use a toothpick to add the face.
The face is just three ovals. It’s really easy!
The ghost meringues and frosting need to be eaten soon. The buttercream frosting can’t sit out at room temperature for very long.
I suggest letting the ghost meringues cool to room temperature, then adding the purple frosting to the cupcakes , putting the ghosts on top, and serving them as soon as you can.
Use Googly Eyes
Of course, you can also skip the black frosting entirely! Instead of black frosting, use edible candy eyes on the ghosts. The mouth is optional, since not all ghosts have mouths.
See how easy they are?
What do you think of these Halloween treats? These Ghost Cupcakes are the perfect addition to any spooky-sweet table. Do you like the fact that we used meringue instead of buttercream to create the ghosts?
Halloween Ghost Cupcakes
Purple Buttercream Frosting
- 1 stick Unsalted Butter softened
- 2 cups Confectioner's Sugar
- 2 tbsp Milk
- Purple Gel Food Coloring
- Preheat oven to 200 degrees F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
- Pour egg whites in a large bowl and using an electric mixer, start beating it on low.
- Add cream of tartare.
- Slowly add sugar and gradually increase mixer to its highest speed.
- Continue mixing until mixture turns bright white and forms semi-stiff peaks.
- Scoop meringue mixture into a piping bag with Wilton tip #12 attached.
- Pipe out meringue mounds on lined baking sheet – to do so, create a base about 1 inch in diameter and continue piping until it’s about 2 inches high, pulling and quickly releasing your grip on the icing bag to create a pointed tip.
- Bake for 2 hours. Once time is up, turn off the heat on the oven and leave inside for an additional 30 minutes.
- As the meringue bakes, prepare your buttercream frosting – to start, add butter, confectioners’ sugar and milk into a large bowl.
- Use an electric mixer to beat together all ingredients.
- Once everything is well-incorporated and smooth, add one small drop of violet gel food coloring. Continue to mix until the buttercream is completely tinted purple.
- Scoop out the buttercream into a piping bag with Wilton tip #12 attached. Frost each cupcake.
- Remove meringue from oven and allow to cool for a few minutes.
- Attach Wilton tip #3 on black decorating frosting and pipe out eyes and mouth on each meringue cookie.
- Place one meringue ghost on each cupcake. If there are any extras, serve alongside the cupcakes.
More Halloween Treats To Make
Keep the spooky vibes going! Here are some more fun Halloween crafts you can make with your kids next!