What a wicked web we weave...

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two-tiered cake with dark chocolate frosting and marshmallow spider web decoration
Credit: Jessica Furniss

This spiderweb cake is the perfect mix of spooky and delicious! No complicated weaving required, this cake is sure to get everyone excited for fright night. Read on to learn how to make a spiderweb cake that'll be the highlight of your Halloween.

Before you get started:

Let's talk cake

You have so many options! Because this cake is such a show-stopper on the outside, it's totally fine to keep it simple on the inside with a traditional yellow cake. But if you want it to be really festive you can add in some different colors, like alternating purple and orange layers or a fall flavor like pumpkin spice cake. When it comes to the size of the cake, that's completely up to you! Although we opted for a two-tier cake with a smaller layer topping a larger one, this spiderweb design will be just as cute on a Bundt cake, a 9x13, or a sheet pan cake. No tiers necessary! Although a round cake will work best for the spiderwebbing step, if all you have are square or rectangular cake pans, they'll work too!

Let's talk frosting

We chose to do a black buttercream, using a traditional buttercream frosting and black gel food coloring. But black food coloring can be hard to find and it can get really messy. Another great option is dark chocolate frosting. You can do a pre-made chocolate frosting or make your own. To really amp up the dark color you can add Dutch black cocoa powder. This is a special dark cocoa that will give a beautiful rich flavor and color almost as dark as black food dye. No matter what frosting you choose, make sure the cake is chilled well in the fridge before you start spiderwebbing.

Let's talk marshmallows

Any brand of store-bought marshmallows will work. While I definitely prefer to use the microwave to melt the marshmallows, you can also use a medium sized saucepan on low heat. You'll know the marshmallows are melted to the right temperature when they are sticky when you test them with a fork. If you opt for the microwave, put them in a microwave-safe bowl (they'll puff up a lot so use a large enough bowl) and zap them in 10-second increments until they feel sticky. Be careful when checking, as they will get really hot while melting. If they go beyond sticky and instead feel wet, that just means they overheated a little. Let them cool a minute or two and they should be sticky enough to use.

Let's talk method

This is the fun (and messy) part! You'll need to decide what level of messy you're comfortable with. Using your gloved hands will give you the most control over how the spiderweb cake design looks. Another great option is to use two forks. This is a lot less mess and still gives a lovely finished cake. I'll give you instructions for both methods below.

How to Make a Spooky Spiderweb Cake

What you'll need:

  • A frosted and chilled cake. 
  • One 10.5 oz bag marshmallows (any size marshmallows will work)
  • Medium-sized microwave-safe bowl 
  • Food-safe gloves or two forks (for pulling the marshmallows)
  • Edible or toy spiders (we recommend edible if the cake is being served to little ones)

Instructions:

In your microwave-safe bowl melt your marshmallows at 10-second increments until they are sticky to the touch, or melt marshmallows in a saucepan until they're sticky but cool enough to handle.

Stretching the marshmallows: hand method

gloved hands stretching melted marshmallow to form a spiderweb decoration on a two-tiered dark chocolate cake for Halloween
Credit: Jessica Furniss

If you're using your gloved hands, pick up a glob of melted marshmallow and smush it between your hands. Then pull your hands apart and the marshmallow should start to create a webbing pattern. Drag that webbing across the cake until you get the design you want. If you want to test it before going straight to the cake, play around with it over your bowl until you're comfortable with how the webbing looks. 

Stretching the marshmallows: fork method

using a pair of forks to apply melted marshmallow onto a two-tiered dark chocolate cake to form a spiderweb decorations
Credit: Jessica Furniss

Dip your two forks into the melted marshmallow and smush them together with the forks facing the same way, as seen above. Then drag them apart. The marshmallow will naturally be stringy as you stretch it, so it will create a web-like design. Drag those sticky marshmallow strings across the cake. 

using two forks to stretch melted marshmallows to form a spiderweb decoration for a two-tiered dark chocolate cake for Halloween
Credit: Jessica Furniss

Next, decorate with edible or toy spiders. These Spider Cookies or Edible Spiders would be adorable on top of the cake. If using toy spiders, wash them first and add a small piece of plastic cling wrap underneath any spot where they would come in contact with the marshmallow. Food safety is important! 

If you opted not to put a small piece of plastic wrap under each spider, be aware that the toy spiders will stick to the marshmallow and pull it along with the icing when you remove them. So it's best to cut the slices first, then remove any spiders from the slices before eating. 

Hot tip: To make it easier to slice through the marshmallow, run your cake knife under hot water first.

Now, let your taste buds get tangled in the tasty web of your spooky spiderweb cake!

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