This Halloween spider cupcakes recipe is the perfect treat for a Halloween party. Made with Oreo cookies and frosting, they’re super easy to put together and will be enjoyed by kids and adults alike.
It’s that time of year again!
You know, when we all start to plan for the most wonderful time of the year: Halloween.
And what better way to celebrate than with these cute and adorable Halloween spider cupcakes? (I never thought I would say that about spiders!)
Even better? These Halloween cupcakes are so simple to make, you don’t need to be a professional cake decorator to pull them off.
No web drawing required!
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Here is your shopping list:
- boxed cake mix – I used white cake mix, but you can use whatever flavor you want. For a more traditional spider color, chocolate cupcakes would work best.
- cake mix additions – You’ll need whatever other ingredients your cake mix requires. For mine, it was 1/3 cup vegetable oil, 3 eggs and 1 1/4 cups water.
- frosting – This will be used under the body of the spider. If your cake mix comes with frosting, use that. Otherwise, you can buy a container of either chocolate or vanilla buttercream frosting. (I used white frosting for mine because it makes the “legs” easier to see). It will take about 3 cups to cover all of the cupcakes, so you may need more than one container depending on its size.
- Oreo cookies – The Oreos are for the body of the spider. You’ll need about 24 cookies. A standard 14-ounce package of Oreos should have enough.
- black icing – This will be for the legs. You’ll need 1 tube of black decorator icing*. To make it easier to put on, try to find the tubes that come with piping tips.
- candy eyes – You’ll need 48 small candy eyeballs. (You can order them HERE* from Amazon if you can’t find them locally).
- cupcake liners – 24 of them.
Substitutions and additions
- If you don’t mind doing more work, you can use your favorite homemade cupcake and buttercream frosting recipes.
- Or for even less work, buy pre-made cupcakes that already have icing on them. Then just add the spider decorations on top.
- If you’re making white cupcakes, you can mix in a drop or two of food coloring with the cake batter to make them into fun colors. I used green. But other Halloween colors like orange and purple also work well.
- The legs can also be made with black licorice, straight pretzels or black fondant if you don’t want to bother with black icing. See the “Other variations” section below for more information.
- Substitute red or green M&M’s for the eyes if you want a spookier look. See the “Other variations” section below to get an idea of what it would look like.
Since we’re dealing with frosting, piping is the best way to get a good looking finished product.
If you don’t want to get that fancy, you can just spread the icing on with a knife, but it usually ends up looking a little messier.
As I mentioned above, buying the black decorator icing in a tube that comes with the piping tip is the easiest way to do it.
In a pinch, you can also put the black icing in a small ziploc bag and cut a small hole in one corner.
How to make Halloween spider cupcakes
Make sure that the oven rack is in the middle position.
Preheat the oven to 350°F.
Line two cupcake tins with 24 cupcake liners.
Prepare the cupcake batter
Add the cake mix and all of its additional required ingredients to a large bowl.
Beat on medium speed until combined.
Fill each of the muffin cups about 3/4 full with batter. Don’t go much higher than this as the cupcakes will overflow when they’re baked.
It should fill about 24 cupcakes.
Now we’re ready to put them in the oven.
Stacking cupcake tins on two different racks in the oven will result in uneven baking. So if your oven isn’t large enough to hold both tins on the same rack, cook them in two batches.
Bake the cupcakes for 15-18 mins, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, or the top bounces back when pressed with your finger.
Take the cupcakes out of the oven and allow them to cool in the pans for 10 minutes.
Then remove from the tins and let them finishing cooling on a wire rack.
Add the Oreo spiders
Before starting this step, make sure that the cupcakes have cooled completely. Otherwise, the frosting will start to melt.
Fit a piping bag or ziploc bag with a 1M or 2D piping tip.
Add the frosting to the bag. I find it easier to do about 1 cup of frosting at a time rather than trying to stuff it all in at once.
Pipe a circle around the top of each cupcake.
As I mentioned above, you can also frost the cupcakes with a knife if you don’t have a piping bag. It’s just a little harder to get the icing evenly distributed.
Place an Oreo in the middle of each the cupcakes on top of the icing.
With the black decorators icing, pipe “legs” going from the Oreo cookie down the sides of the icing until it reaches the cupcake.
To be realistic, you’ll need to pipe 8 legs for each spider, but I sometimes do 6 because it’s easier to fit them in.
Then add a small dab of icing on the backs of the eyeball candies and stick them to the top of the Oreo cookies.
How cute are these? Even if they are spiders 🙂
How to store cupcakes
These Oreo spider cupcakes can be stored in an air tight container at room temperature for up to 48 hours.
The cookies do tend to get a little soggy if you leave them for too long, so it’s best to eat these cupcakes fairly soon after putting them together.
If you’re making them in advance for a party, you may want to wait to add the Oreos, legs and eyes until the day of the event.
Other spider cupcake variations
If you aren’t going to use icing for the legs, remember to keep a little of the cupcake frosting aside so you can stick the eyes on the cookies.
But if you forget, you can always steal a little icing from under the cookie. (Nobody will notice.)
Spider cupcakes with black licorice legs
To use licorice for the legs, you have a couple of options.
The first is to stick them to the sides of the frosting, similar to the way the black icing looks above. In this case, I like to use white icing so you can see the legs.
The second way is to stick the licorice into the icing so that it sticks straight out. I like to sprinkle black sugar over the white frosting or use chocolate icing on the cupcake so that it looks like it’s part of the spider body.
If you’re using thick licorice, you may want to cut it in half (or even in quarters) length wise to make it look better.
To use pretzel sticks as the legs, just push them into the frosting so that they are sticking out the sides.
Using a darker colored icing or white frosting with black sugar sprinkled makes it look like it’s part of the spider body.
Fondant spider legs
Another option for the legs is to make them out of black fondant.
Simply roll pieces of it into long tubes.
Then stick one end into the frosting and the other end touching the floor.
In this case, they used plain chocolate frosting for the spider body. And white and brown frosting to make the eyes (although candy eyes would work here, too).
If you don’t want to use Oreos, you can simply cover the frosting with chocolate sprinkles. Then stick the candy eyes into the frosting.
This works best with chocolate frosting so that it blends in with the sprinkles.
Use black licorice laces or pretzel sticks for the legs.
Black sugar and red candy eyes
Another no-Oreo option is to sprinkle black sugar over the icing (again chocolate frosting works best for this).
These spider cupcakes also have red sugar balls* instead of the candy eyes and black licorice strings for the legs.
You could also use red M&M’s to achieve the same kind of look.
More Halloween cupcakes you might like
- Easy tombstone cupcakes
- Halloween ghost cupcakes
- Devil red velvet Halloween cupcakes
- Bloody knife cupcakes
- 15+ Halloween cupcake recipes
Easy Halloween Spider Cupcakes With Oreo Cookies Recipe
- mixer and mixing bowl
- 2 12-cup cupcake tins
- 24 cupcake liners
- wire cooling rack
- Pastry bag fitted with 1M or 2D tip (optional)
- size 18 or 21 piping tip with a coupler (optional)
- 1 package cake mix any flavor and brand
- 1¼ cups water or whatever your cake mix calls for
- ⅓ cup vegetable oil or whatever your cake mix calls for
- 3 eggs or whatever your cake mix calls for
- 3 cups store-bought buttercream frosting
- 24 Oreo cookies
- 1 tube black decorator icing
- 48 small candy eyeballs
- Preheat the oven to 350°F.
- Line the muffin tins with cupcake liners.
- Add all of the ingredients for the cupcakes to a mixing bowl and mix.1 package cake mix, 1¼ cups water, 1/3 cup vegetable oil, 3 eggs
- Divide the mix evenly between 24 cupcake liners.
- Bake for 15 to 18 mins until a toothpick comes out clean or the top bounces back when pressed with your finger.
- Allow cupcakes to cool in the pans for 10 minutes.
- Then remove them from the tins and let them finish cooling on a wire rack.
- Fit a piping bag or ziploc bag with a 1M or 2D piping tip.
- Add frosting to the bag.3 cups store-bought buttercream frosting
- Pipe a circle around the top of each cupcake with the buttercream frosting.
- Place an Oreo in the middle of the cupcake on top of the icing.24 Oreo cookies
- With the black decorators icing, pipe “legs” going from the oreo cookie down the sides of the cupcake.1 tube black decorator icing
- Add a small dab of icing on the backs of the eyeball candies and stick them to the top of the oreo cookies.48 small candy eyeballs
- The cake mix and store-bought frosting can be replaced with your favorite homemade cupcake and buttercream icing recipes.
- Or for an even easier version, buy pre-made cupcakes that already have icing on them and just add the Oreo spider decorations to them.
- Putting the buttercream frosting on the cupcakes doesn’t have to be done with a piping bag. You can just spread the icing on with a knife, but piping the frosting will yield a prettier design.
- If you don’t have a piping bag and tips, adding the decorator icing to a small ziploc bag and cutting a small hole in one corner will also work.
- Substitute black licorice, pretzel sticks or rolled black fondant for the legs if you don’t want to use the icing.
Nutrition values are estimates only, using online calculators. Please verify using your own data.
Have comments or questions about our Halloween spider cupcakes with Oreo cookies? Tell us in the section below.
This post was originally published on October 1, 2021 but was updated with new content on April 20, 2023.