Whether you need a Halloween dessert or a spooky-themed party cake, this Zombie Brain Cake is perfect! Dark chocolate cake with vanilla frosting and bloody effects is the ultimate party food!
Everyone will love this spooky-themed party cake!
Halloween desserts are always my favorite to make! It’s the one time of year we can make really weird things, and everyone is happy to see how it turns out. In this case, a creepy, bloody Zombie Brain Cake is sure to be the centerpiece of your Halloween party this year! As far as cake decorating goes, this brain cake is the easiest way to create a gross but attractive Halloween cake to share with your friends. Plus, the dark chocolate cake recipe I shared below is to-die-for! Get it???
The dark chocolate cake recipe is to die for!
I’ve shared a small batch version of my dark chocolate cake recipe because you don’t need much batter to fill this half-spherical cake pan. If there is any batter leftover though, I’ve shared a fun use for it in the recipe notes. This is the type of batter that will be very thin, but still rise once baked and turn out incredibly fluffy in the end. When baking with a spherical pan, keep in mind it will probably take longer to bake than a traditional cake pan or cupcakes, so just be patient. I swear this cake is easier to make than anyone would guess!
The “blood” makes this the ultimate party food!
What makes this cake extra spooky is the “blood.” Gross, I know! However, if you look closely, you’ll see that it shimmers just slightly. You can make this bloody effect on your brain cake by purchasing pre-made red icing from your local grocery store. It’s often difficult to achieve this bright red color at home. Also, if you want to make the inside of the cake as creepy as the outside, you can try making a red velvet cake or even finish decorating the cake with a surprise inside. What would be more creepy than gummy eyeballs falling out of your brain cake when you cut into it?!
- 1/2 cup + 6 tbsp all purpose flour
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 6 tbsp dark unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1 large egg
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 tbsp ground coffee or espresso powder
- 1/2 cup hot water
- 2 cups butter, room temperature
- 3-4 cups powdered sugar
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract (or other desired flavor)
- Light pink food coloring
- Red gel icing
- Preheat oven to 350ºF and spray half of a spherical baking pan with cooking spray. Set on the accompanying silicone ring on top of a flat baking sheet to stabilize the pan.
- Mix the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in large bowl.
- Whisk together the milk, eggs, vegetable oil, and vanilla extract in a separate bowl until smooth.
- Slowly mix the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and beat with a whisk attachment of your mixer until well combined. Scrape the bowl as needed in between.
- In a separate bowl, mix together boiling water and ground coffee. Slowly add the hot coffee mixture to the batter and mix on low speed until batter is smooth (it will be thin).
- Pour the batter into the prepared spherical pan and bake for 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out free of liquid batter.
- Allow the cake to cool completely before removing from the pan(s).
- Beat the butter with a paddle attachment until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.
- Add the powdered sugar in batches, scraping the bowl frequently.
- Once you've reached your desired sweetness, add the vanilla and food coloring.
- Mix the food coloring until you reach a very pale pink color.
- Carefully remove the completely cooled cake from the pan and level the flat bottom. Place flat side down on a cake stand or plate.
- Cover the entire cake with a coat of pink frosting.
- Move the rest of the frosting to a large pastry bag fitted with a large round piping tip.
- Start by piping a straight line down the approximate middle, allowing the frosting to create thick lines, then continue down the side with a wave pattern to resemble a brain.
- Repeat this pattern on the opposite side so that the brain looks somewhat symmetrical. All of the cake should be covered with thick frosting.
- Finish the cake with "blood" from pre-made bright red icing and stick a knife in the top for a more spooky look.
Home Chef Tip: Because you only need a small half spherical pan for this cake, you can use leftover batter to make cupcakes! Then top the cupcakes with the same spooky brain design.
We hope you love this Zombie Brain Cake from SoFabFood Home Chef, Holly from Club Crafted. If you enjoyed this delicious recipe, you can find more like it by visiting our dessert section. For weekly daily recipe inspiration, like us on Facebook and follow us on Pinterest. Enjoy!