As Halloween approaches the veil between worlds may be getting thinner, but the temptation to dive into the bags of candy being stashed for the trick-or-treaters gets thicker. Distract yourself from those snack-sized sugar bombs with these spooky treats instead:

Skeleton Gingerbread CookiesChocolate coated pecan-caramel spidersCupcakes piped with frosting to resemble brains

  • The Halloween version of the gingerbread man, these skeleton gingerbread cookies are a clever but simple take on the traditional cutout, and would work with any number of cookie cutters you might have on hand.
  • If you have arachnophobia, you might not want to turn your back on these chocolate coated pecan-caramel spiders.
  • Brains! Spook up your cupcakes with some smartly piped frosting, and serve up a tray of brains to your party zombies.

Bite-sized Caramel ApplesMarshmallow Peeps and candy corns make a cute Halloween centerpieceHalloween cupcake in a jar with chocolate spider web on top

  • These bite-sized caramel apples are more sophisticated take on the traditional treat with their diminutive size and real twig sticks. Now the trick is finding baby apples if you don’t have your own orchard…
  • Food as art. While I am still a firm believer that Peeps should be reserved solely for spring (chicks and bunnies only), stacking seasonal candies trifle-style for this Halloween centerpiece does redeem them to some degree. Bonus treat: The link also includes the most adorable owl cupcakes with eyes made from Oreo halves.
  • While I am a big fan of the desserts-in-a jar trend, it does require having a stash of glass jars. If you do, this chocolate spider web cake-in-a-jar has got to be one of the more clever approaches out there — the spider is chocolate cake mix piped to the inside of the jar, microwaved to set, then yellow cake mix is poured over top. But the real brilliance here is the chocolate spider web on top you have to break through to get to the cake.