Halloween Chocolate Cake

So I know this post is super late but better late than never!!! Also – there are a number of lessons I learned about fondant while making this cake. I will note the better way to assemble the cake below… if you do it the way I did, you will end up with a saggy pumpkin face.

Halloween Chocolate Cake

Halloween Pumpkin Cake

Chocolate Cake (adapted from Martha Stewart’s Cupcakes) – makes 4 x 8″ cakes

Chocolate Cake

  • 4 1/2 cups flour
  • 2 1/4 cups unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 4 1/2 cups sugar
  • 4 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 2 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 2 1/4 tsp salt
  • 6 eggs
  • 2 1/4 cups plain yogurt (or buttermilk)
  • 9 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 3 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 1/4 warm water

I split the ingredients in half and made this in two batches because it’s a lot of batter to work with.

Preheat the oven 350°F.  Prepare 2 x 8″ cake tins by buttering the tins and dusting with flour.

Whisk the flour, cocoa, sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Add eggs, yogurt, oil, vanilla, and water. Beat until smooth. Divide the batter into the tins and bake for about 40 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Let the cake cool for about 10 minutes before turning out of the tins. If you have split the ingredients in half – repeat for the 3rd and 4th cake.

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Frosting (adapted from the Joy of Cooking)

Pumpkin Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 24 oz cream cheese
  • 8 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 6 tsp vanilla
  • 6 cups sifted powdered sugar
  • 3/4 cup pumpkin puree
  • 3 tsp pumpkin pie spice (you can make your own variation as well)

Have the cream cheese cold and the butter at room temp. Beat the cream cheese, butter, vanilla, and pumpkin until just blended. Add the powdered sugar 2 cups at a time until smooth. Add in the pumpkin spice. You can also add food coloring at this point if you want to make it more orange.


  • Black sugar paste (or marzipan)
  • Orange sugar paste (or marzipan)
  • Green sugar paste (or marzipan)

Even out each cake so it’s level. Then layer the cakes – cake, frosting, cake frosting, etc.

Layering the cake

Then carve out the cake to the shape of a pumpkin.

Cake carving

If necessary – use an example!

Pumpkin cake

Once carved – cover in frosting.

Halloween cake

Ok – so this is the point where i messed up. I wanted to carve out the eyes – don’t do this! By adding the black fondant under the orange fondant you just make it too heavy and you get a saggy face. So instead – roll out the orange fondant.

Rolling fondant


And place it over the cake. Smooth out all the edges. If you like, you can add little details of the stripes on pumpkins or whatever other details you want to add. Then roll out the black sugar paste and cut out the eyes and nose and mouth. Add this ON TOP of the orange fondant. Then shape the green fondant into a stem. Wha-la! You now have a chocolate cake in the shape of a pumpkin (without a saggy face).

IMG_20141031_082909 IMG_20141031_082924 IMG_20141031_111257



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