Devilishly delicious haunted house cakes are the perfect centerpiece for your Halloween party dessert table. Whether you decide to make a 3D version or go with a decorated sheetcake, your cake is sure to be devoured.
How to Make a 3D Haunted House
A 3D haunted house can be a complicated mansion or a simple cottage fit for a witch and her ghouls. To make a cake similar to the creepy cottage above, you'll need some basic fondant knowledge and a little patience.
Materials and Supplies
- 1 tall square layer cake, cut, filled, and crumb coated
- 1 cake board
- Cake dowels for support
- Crispy rice treats, shaped in a triangle to fit the cake's dimensions
- Double or triple batch of rolled fondant, ready for coloring
- Small amount of black fondant
- Gel food coloring in various colors
- Food-safe paintbrush
- Texture mat in woodgrain or wood
- Fondant knife
- Cake-safe food wires
- Round biscuit cutter
- Witch cookie cutter
- Royal icing to use as adhesive
How to Put the House Together
- Tint fondant green and roll out. Cover the cake board.
- Cut dowels to fit the cake's height and carefully place through the cake's center. This will help provide just enough additional support to hold up the roof.
- Tint fondant light beige and roll out. Use the impression mat to create the wooden slats.
- Carefully cover the cake, make sure not to stretch the imprinted fondant as you place it on the cake.
- Tint portion of the fondant dark blue. Roll out and use the impression mat to create a woodgrain look. Carefully cover the crispy rice treats, smoothing as you go.
- Add royal icing adhesive to the top of the cake and place the crispy rice roof on top.
- Once the roof has set, add color variations to the roof and walls as needed, using your paintbrush and gel food coloring. This gives the house a more realistic look. You can also do this very carefully with an airbrush, if you happen to own one.
How to Make the House Accessories
- Tint a small bit of fondant brown and roll out.
- Use the wood impression mat to add a grain look. Cut into shutters and the door shape, making sure the woodgrain is vertically oriented. Set aside and allow to firm.
- Roll out the ready-made black fondant and cut out the upper half of the door. Use the witch cookie cutter to cut the witch shape.
- Place a wire on the back of the witch.
- Roll out white (untinted) fondant and use a round biscuit cutter to create the moon. Use royal icing adhesive to attach the witch to the moon. Set aside and allow it to firm for a while.
- Going back to the black fondant, shape small spiders and bats. Place wires in the bats.
- Use leftover dark blue fondant and roll out a small square for the window.
- Roll out the window pane markings from black fondant.
- Tint a small amount of white fondant yellow. Roll out and cut eyes. Attach to the black part of the door using royal icing adhesive.
- Once house pieces have dried, attach them using royal icing adhesive. Hold in place for a moment, until pieces stay on their own. Once the house decorations have been attached, add the witch on the moon and the bats by sticking the wires into the roof.
Additional Décor Ideas
Getting the haunted house done is just the start. You'll also need additional pieces to create the entire scene.
- Cauldron: A cauldron with bubbles coming out is a great addition. Make a cupcake-sized cauldron and place it atop a pile of rolled brown fondant sticks. Make a second one to put by the door.
- Pumpkins, spiders, and more: Fondant pumpkins, spiders, ghosts and other Halloween cake decorations can be placed throughout the scene.
- Witch's broom: Prop a small broom alongside the house. To make one, use your leftover fondant in beige and brown. Roll the handle out of brown. Then roll the broom portion out of the beige. Shape around the bottom of the handle. Use a small strip of brown to show where the broom's bristles are attached. Use a fondant knife to draw bristle lines on the broom's bottom.
- Bones: Make bones out of fondant or candy melts and a bone mold. You can also pick up small candies in the shape of bones near Halloween.
- Cat: Add a black cat to the haunted house's front yard. Roll black fondant into an oval shape for the body. Add a small round piece of fondant for the head. Cut small eyes out of the leftover yellow fondant and attach with royal icing adhesive. Add two small triangles for ears.
- Border: Roll the rest of the green fondant into various sizes of balls and attach with royal icing adhesive around the outside of the cake board.
Keep these tips in mind as you work:
- Save and cover fondant scraps with cling wrap when not in use. You will want them for decorations later.
- Premade black fondant is recommended because dying frosting black can be time consuming and messy.
- Consider swapping out the woodgrain impression for stone or bricks to create a different look for your house.
- If you don't want to make all the accessories, you can buy them. Near the holiday, it's easy to find pumkin candies, chocolate cats, and even cookies decorated like witches.
Easy Haunted House Sheet Cake
If you don't have the time to make a 3D haunted house, a sheet cake will work just as well. It also requires fewer shaping and molding skills, so you don't have to be a decorating whiz to complete it.
Materials and Supplies
- 1 sheet cake, crumb coated
- Purple buttercream
- Teal buttercream
- Gray buttercream
- Yellow buttercream
- Brown buttercream
- Black buttercream
- Straight or angled spatula (depending on your preference)
- Round tip
- Shell tip
- Piping bags and couplers
- Glass of hot water
- Paper towel
- Cover the cake with purple buttercream. Smooth using the spatula, dipping into the hot water, wiping with the paper towel, as needed, to create a smooth surface.
- Use a toothpick to lightly sketch out where the house and its features will be on the cake. Then mark out the moon and tree.
- Fill the piping bags with teal buttercream and fill in the areas on the house. Smooth with the spatula.
- Fill a piping bag with purple buttercream and add the roof. Smooth with the spatula, making flecks to represent the roof's texture.
- Fill a piping bag with gray buttercream and make the steps for the house, smoothing them with the spatula.
- Use a piping bag filled with yellow buttercream to make the moon, and smooth it using the spatula.
- Add black buttercream to a bag fitted with a round tip and pipe long strips for the tree trunk. Add branches.
- Move back to the house and make the windows, panes, doors, and gable vent with the yellow and brown buttercream.
- Add the shell tip to a piping bag filled with purple frosting. Use the piping technique for a shell border and complete the cake.
- Don't worry if your house is crooked or things don't look perfect. A haunted house can be crooked or rickety-looking -- that only adds to its charm.
- However, if you want a more precise look, use a piping gel transfer to help you make the house.
- Consider making the house brown and the roof black for a more realistic version.
- Add marshmallow ghosts to up the creepy factor.
Other Haunted House Cake Tutorials
If neither of the haunted house cakes above suit your skills, you can find plenty of tutorials and instructions elseswhere. Check out these hauntingly awesome options:
- Craftsy's two-tiered cake includes lots of illustrated images to make the gray house with second-floor ghost and modeling chocolate roof.
- Martha Stewart has a basic two-tiered round cake that is topped with a cookie house. This is a fun and easy option if you are a novice decorator.
- Cakes.com offers a 20-step house with so many details, you will feel like you're staring at the real thing; the three-tiered blue house even has a third floor balcony with railing.
- Mom Endeavors has instructions for a unique cupcake cake that looks like a rustic dirt cottage when you add a few decorative touches.
A Spooktacular Cake Centerpiece
The haunted house is a classic Halloween icon. By turning it into a cake, you can take the scary out and add some sweetness in!