Spooky Treats to Celebrate Autumn

Autumn, it’s finally here. That statement doesn’t mean much thanks to the wonderfully hot and humid climate of the Carolinas, though that doesn’t mean you still can’t be festive and celebrate! Halloween parties are one of my favorites because you get to decorate with the intent of looking scary and have themed snacks to match! Plus there’s the costumes; who wants to pass up the importunity to dress up? Anyways, whether you’re hosting or attending a Halloween function this year, check out the spooky but fun recipes below to add some extra pizzazz to the event!

Candy Corn Bark

Candy Bark with a Fall twist, this easy to make treat is customizable with different toppings if Candy Corn isn’t your thing. With only a handful of ingredients and steps, this is quick and easy to make before any festive function!

Ingredients:

75 pretzels (Waffle style works best because the flat sides line up)
16 ounces vanilla Candiquik coating (feel free to use your favorite flavor)
11 ounces Caramel Bits
9 ounces Candy Corn (or Candy Corn M&Ms, or another hard shell candy)

  1. Line a standard baking sheet with wax paper (not parchment paper) and lightly spray with non-stick cooking spray. Then place the pretzels in the pan side by side. The Waffle style ones will line up perfectly with each other.
  2. Melt caramel in a microwavable bowl according to package directions. Stir caramel until smooth and then spoon caramel over each individual pretzel. Work quickly because the caramel will begin to harden after a few second. Allow to cool for 5 minutes.
  3. Melt the Candiquick coating in the microwave according to package directions. Pour the coating over the hardened caramel and spread evenly. Sprinkle Candy Corn or M&Ms on top but again, work quickly. You could add crushed Oreo cookies, crushed pretzels (if you want to utilize those left overs), sprinkles, or other hard candy if you’d liked to spice it up a bit. Let everything set until hardened, and then cut (or break!) into pieces. Remember to peel the wax paper from the bottom. Enjoy!!

Butterfinger Candy Corn Fudge

Okay, so now you have left over Candy Corn and no place for it to go. Solution? Fudge. Smooth and creamy with a crunch on top, this fudge recipe won’t disappoint you or your party guests, plus now you won’t have extra Candy Corn.

Ingredients:

Fudge

3 cups candy corn
1 cup creamy peanut butter
1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
1 1/4 cup white chocolate chips
1/2 cup butterscotch chips

Topping

7 ounces milk chocolate, melted
1 Butterfinger candy bar, chopped

  1. Line a 9 x 9 inch square dish pan with parchment paper (make sure it goes up the sides) and spray (thoroughly!) with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a medium saucepan (nonstick if you have it) over medium heat, stir the candy corn and peanut butter together for 3-4 minutes until candy corn begins to melt and break up. Make sure to constantly stir so the mixture doesn’t burn.
  3. Add the sweetened condensed milk and stir over medium heat for another 3-4 minutes, allowing everything to slowly melt together. Again, continuous stirring. When the mixture is smooth, drop the heat to low.
  4. Add the white chocolate and butterscotch chips and stir for 6-7 minutes until mixture is completely smooth with no chunks or lumps.
  5. Pour mixture into the pan then chill until cooled and hardened.
  6. While fudge is cooling, melt the chocolate in the microwave according to packaged directions. Unwrap the Butterfinger bar and put it in a Ziploc bag and crush with a rolling pin. You could always use a small food processor to chop the candy bar up.
  7. Once cooled, lift the fudge from the pan onto cutting board and cut into 1-inch cubes. Dip fudge cubes into chocolate so that the top is coated and sprinkle with chopped Butterfinger crumbs.

Mummy Cheesecake Truffles

Cheesecake with no baking required? Awesome! Adorable little Mummies that are almost too cute to eat? Even more awesome! Noticed I said almost, because I will definitely be eating these.

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups gingersnap cookie crumbs*
1/4 cup canned pumpkin puree
1/3 cup graham cracker crumbs*
3 tablespoons powdered sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon salt
3 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 cup white chocolate chips, separated
red food coloring

**use a Ziploc bag with a rolling pin, or a food processor to chop

  1. In a large bowl, combine gingersnap crumbs, pumpkin puree, graham cracker crumbs, powdered sugar, cinnamon, salt, and cream cheese. Mix until smooth. Melt 1/2 cup white chocolate chips via the microwave and mix into truffle mixture.  Mix until well incorporated and smooth.
  2. Cover and chill until dough is firm enough to handle, about 1 hour in the fridge or 30 minutes in the freezer. When cold enough, roll mixture into even bite-sized balls. Place a toothpick in each ball.
  3. Melt remaining white chocolate chips in a small bowl in the microwave via packaged directions. Holding the toothpick, dip each truffle ball into the melted white chocolate, being sure to coat all sides. Gently shake off excess chocolate.
  4. Place chocolate-covered truffle balls on a baking sheet or plate lined with wax paper or foil. Chill in the refrigerator for 3-5 minutes until chocolate hardens.
  5. Using a spoon, drizzle more white chocolate over the truffles to form the mummy “bandages”. Carefully soak the end of the Q-tip in red food coloring. Dab 2 dots of food coloring to make the mummy eyes. Handle carefully so you don’t wipe off the eyes. Store chilled in airtight container.

Marshmallow Spooks

Simple and easy to make, these cute little monster marshmallows will steal your heart rather than scare you. On the positive side, they’re super tasty too.

Ingredients:

1 cup Wilton candy melts (Vibrant Green looks really creepy, but you an have different colored Spooks! )
1 tablespoon oil
8 jumbo marshmallows
Candy Eyeballs (you can get some here )

  1. In a microwave safe bowl, melt chocolate following packaged instructions, stirring in intervals.
  2. Stir in oil until incorporated.
  3. Place marshmallows on a lined baking sheet, spaced evenly apart.
  4. Using a tablespoon, pour melted chocolate over the top of each marshmallow. Use the back of a spoon and move in a circular motion so chocolate runs down the side. Add more chocolate slowly until it puddles and pools on the sides you desire.
  5. Place candy eyes wherever you like. For the sunken eye look, add the eyes before the chocolate sets. To have eyes that stay where you place them, let the chocolate harden most of the way before placing. The eyes can be on the top, side, or even in the puddles for different, creepy looks.
  6. Let chocolate harden at room temperature.
  7. Store at room temperature in an airtight container.

Halloween Stuffed Rice Crispy Treats

Everyone loves Rice Crispy Treats. Sweet and salty and easy to eat. Using Cocoa Krispies adds a different flavor, plus gives this family treat a spooky look!

Ingredients:

1 – 16 ounce bag mini marshmallows (8 cups)
6 Tablespoons butter
8 cups Cocoa Krispies
24 Halloween Oreos (orange cream filling is a must)
1 -10 ounce bag dark chocolate melts
Colored Sprinkles and Candy Eyes (If you can’t find in store, check online! They’re available at Amazon)

  1. Line a 9 x 13 pan with foil. Use soft butter or cooking spray to lightly coat the bottom of the pan.
  2. In a large pot over medium low heat, melt the marshmallows and butter. Stir until melted and creamy.
  3. Stir in the Rice Krispies Cereal until everything is evenly coated.
  4. Press half the cereal mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan using parchment paper to keep it even. This will help keep the mixture from sticking to your hands.
  5. Place the 24 cookies on top leaving a little bit of room around each on.
  6. Spoon the rest of the cereal mixture on top and press down using the parchment paper. Make sure to get some of the cereal mixture down between the cookies. Let it cool.
  7. Melt the bag of chocolate melts according to the package directions. Pour on top of the cooled treats and spread out evenly. Top with sprinkles and candy eyes before it sets.
  8. Let the chocolate set, then cut the Rice Krispies treats into 24 squares. Store in a tightly sealed container.

Bloody Cake Bites

This creepy treat is a little more complicated and difficult to make, though the results are worth the little bit of extra time. I promise. These will dazzle and amaze all of the party guests!! Plus you’ll have fun murdering your cake!

Ingredients:

Cake Bites:

1 Frozen Pound cake
1 lb of powered sugar
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup corn syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla
Red Food Coloring

Sugar Glass Shards:

1 3/4 cups sugar
1 cup water
1/2 cup corn syrup
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar

  1. First, trim your frozen pound cake down to more of an even rectangle (take the top off and parts of the ends). This will help with cutting the cake into equal cubes. Cube the cake and set the pieces aside to glaze.
  2. To make the glaze, mix the powered sugar, corn syrup, water, and vanilla extract in a bowl. Stir until smooth.
  3. Dip the cake cubes into the glaze. To keep your hands mess free, use food service gloves. You can also use two forks, or chopsticks. Placed the glazed caked cubes on a cooling rack with parchment paper or foil beneath it to collect any of the dripping mess.
  4. While the glaze is setting, you can drip or splatter the cake cubes with red food coloring to give them a unique, but creepy murdered look. Use the ends of your chop sticks to flick the dye on them, or the prongs of a fork.
  5. As the cake cubes rest, begin making your sugar glass. Combine all the sugar glass ingredients in a medium sauce pan and heat over medium heat for about an hour. The candy needs to be about 300 degrees to crystallize properly once cooled, so use a candy thermometer if you have one.
  6. While the candy cooks, line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Once the sugared candy mixture reaches the correct temperature, remove from the heat and pour onto the baking sheet using a spatula to carefully spread the mixture. CAUTION: The liquid candy will be EXTREMELY HOT. Be mindful of your movements to avoid getting burned.
  7. Allow the sugar glass to cool for an hour (or longer). Once cooled, cover the candy glass with a kitchen towel. With a blunt, solid object, break the candy glass in to smaller pieces. Careful! These shards are sharp and can cut you.
  8. Using a pastry brush, paint red food coloring on the candy glass edges. You can also splatter and drip the food coloring on the glass the way you did for the cake cubes. Carefully place a sugar shard in the top of each cake cube, inserting the candy partially into the cake to hold it in place.
  9. Enjoy your murdered cake!

 

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