These graveyard Halloween cupcakes complete with tombstones and skeleton bones (or skulls) are really easy to make and will be the hit of your spooky Halloween party.
For my Halloween parties, I love making Halloween cupcakes just like the ones you see on Pinterest but I’m not a very talented baker. That means my main goal is to have decent looking cupcakes that are really easy to make like these graveyard cupcakes, these bloody knife cupcakes and these devilish cupcakes. So if you’re looking for simple but spooky you’ve come to the right place!
Before we get start on this cupcake recipe, let me just say…I am definitely NOT a baker and I am not very good at doing fancy cake decorations with icing.
So these graveyard Halloween cupcakes are meant for all of you who are like me. You want the easy version of the cool Halloween cupcakes.
My inspiration for these cupcakes was this graveyard brownies recipe from culinaryginger.com that I found on Pinterest.
I think it looks awesome, but I know from experience that I would never get the grass to look like that using frosting.
And any attempt I would make to create proper-looking tombstones would probably look so bad they would end up in the garbage can.
Fortunately, Milano cookies are the perfect shape for tombstones and make a great edible Halloween cupcake topper!
How To Make Graveyard Halloween Cupcakes
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For the cupcakes and icing, I chose the easiest route possible.
I went to the store and bought a chocolate cake mix and some tinned icing.
After baking the cupcakes and letting them cool, add a dollop of icing on top of each one and spread it out with a knife so that it is fairly flat.
Adding The Cookie Tombstones
That means the bulk of the time went to making the tombstones.
I started out by attempting to use a tube of cake decorating icing to write directly on to the “tombstones”.
This was pretty much a disaster…I couldn’t write small enough to actually spell out anything, the letters all ran together, it just generally didn’t work for me…so on to plan B.
By squeezing some of the icing into a small bowl, I could dip the end of the toothpick into the icing and use it like a pen to write on the cookies. (In my case, the small “bowl” was actually the plastic container that the cookies came in).
Then I ran into a problem where the icing was too stiff to write with.
So I floated the small bowl in a larger bowl filled with hot water.
That melted the icing enough to be “write-able”.
Finally I stuck the cookies into the cupcakes and added some skeleton bone sprinkles* in front of the tombstones to finish them off.
Other Halloween desserts you might like
- Graveyard dirt pudding cups
- Bloody knife cupcakes
- Devil Halloween cupcakes
- Ghost cupcakes
- 15 Halloween cupcake recipes
Graveyard Halloween Cupcakes
- 1 box Chocolate cake mix
- 1 Tin of chocolate frosting
- 24 Milano cookies
- 1 Tube of cake decorating frosting
- 1 Halloween bones sprinkles
Pots and Utensils
- 2 12-cup Muffin/cupcake tins
- 24 Muffin cups
- 2 small bowls one that can fit inside the other
- Line the cupcake tins with the muffin cups.
- Mix the cake batter as directed on the package (or make your favorite chocolate cake recipe if you are so inclined).
- Equally divide the batter into the muffin tins.
- Follow the instructions on the package for baking the cupcakes (usually about 15 minutes).
- Let cool completely on a cake rack.
- If you are using the tinned variety, there isn’t much to do here other than open the tin 🙂 Otherwise, you will need to follow your favorite chocolate frosting recipe to get it ready.
- Use a large spoon to place a scoop of icing on the top of each cupcake. Then spread it out flat with a knife.
Making the Tombstones
- Squeeze out some of the cake decorating icing into the smaller bowl.
- Fill the bottom of the larger bowl with hot water.
- Float the smaller bowl in the hot water in the larger bowl. There should be enough water to come most of the way up the sides of the small bowl but not run over the edges.
- Use one of the toothpicks to stir the icing in the smaller bowl. The heat from the water should make it runnier so that it is easier to work with.
- Use the toothpick like an old-style pen, by dipping it into the icing and then writing on the cookie. You will need to dip it quite frequently to get each of the letters written (a little slow) but I found that I had much better control over what it looked like.
- When your tombstones are written, stick them into the chocolate frosting on the cupcake.
- Then add some bone sprinkles to each of the cupcakes.
Nutrition values are estimates only, using online calculators. Please verify using your own data.
Have comments or questions on our graveyard Halloween cupcakes? Tell us in the section below.
This post was originally published on July 20, 2018 but was updated with new content on September 8, 2023.