Earlier this month we announced the first-ever Fooducopia Halloween Recipe Contest (here)…and today, it is time to announce our winning recipes!
First off, a big thank-you to everyone who submitted recipes. After some testing and eating, and much deliberation, we have chosen three simple, tasty recipes that are both visually spooky AND easy to eat at a party:
- Best Halloween Appetizer: Spicy Pumpkin Cheese Ball, from Jane M. of Aurora, CO
- Best Halloween Main Dish: Mummy Dogs, from Cheryl K. of New York, NY
- Best Halloween Dessert: Chocolate Peanut Butter Spider Bites, from Sarah L. of Providence, RI.
Check out all of these great recipes below!
Spicy Halloween Cheese Ball
This appetizer is an awesome centerpiece for any Halloween eats table. Start making this dish at least 3 hours before the party to allow for the requisite refrigeration time.
- 16 oz cream cheese (2 8-oz blocks), at room-temperature
- 1 1/2 cups cheddar cheese, shredded
- 3 tablespoons minced onion
- 2 tablespoons salsa (Try: Rocky Mountain Salsa)
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon minced jalapeno
- Blue tortilla chips to serve
- Carrot sticks to serve
Method: Place all ingredients together in a large bowl. Using an electric mixer, blend until well-combined. Scoop the mixture out onto plastic wrap and use the wrap to form into a 5-inch pumpkin-shaped ball. Chill at least 2 hours. Remove your cold cheese ball, still in the plastic wrap, and use your hands to quickly shape it into a better pumpkin. Then remove the wrap and place the ball on a large platter. Use clean fingers or a butter knife to make pumpkin-like groves down the sides if you like, then top it with the stem of a bell-pepper for an authentic pumpkin-y flourish. Add eyes, nose, and a mouth with chip-pieces, and surround your cheese ball with blue tortilla chips and carrot sticks to serve.
This dish couldn’t be simpler and is a crowd-pleaser for kids and adults alike. Make it a bit healthier by looking for low-sodium hot dogs. Just make sure to buy bun-length dogs, not the cocktail-style mini-dogs.
- 1 (11-oz.) can refrigerated plain breadstick dough (or experiment with varieties like Garlic, Garlic ‘n Herb, or Parmesan!)
- 12 hot dogs
- Ketchup and Mustard
- Preheat oven to 400°. Unroll breadstick dough, and separate into 12 strips at perforations. Gently stretch each strip to a length of 8 inches.
- Wrap 1 dough strip lengthwise around each hot dog. Secure with wooden picks, if necessary. Coat lightly with cooking spray. Place on a lightly greased baking sheet.
- Bake at 400° for 15 minutes or until golden brown. Let stand 5 minutes. (If using wooden picks, remove before serving.)
- Dot in eyes using ketchup or mustard.
- Serve with a ketchup-’n-mustard “spider web dipping sauce” by filling a small bowl with ketchup, drawing concentric circles over it with squeeze-able mustard, and then drawing a tooth-pick from the center out the side 8 times to make the web.
Best Halloween Dessert: No-Bake Chocolate Peanut-Butter Spider Bites
These tasty treats are the perfect combination of sweet and salty. A warning: they’re so delicious, it’s spooky how fast they’ll disappear!
- 1 (12-ounce) package semisweet morsels
- 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
- 6 cups pretzel sticks, separated
- White chocolate chips for eyes
- Line three baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
- Combine the chocolate chips and peanut butter in a sturdy pot on the stove. Heat on low for a few minutes, until the chocolate has melted. Then remove the pot from heat and stir until smooth. Pour 1/3 of this mixture onto a small plate and set aside.
- Meanwhile, reserve one cup of pretzel sticks before breaking the rest of them into smaller pieces by squeezing the pretzel bag with your hands. Pour your broken sticks into a large glass mixing bowl, then add the remaining 2/3 of the chocolate-peanut butter mixture. Stir to combine.
- Make one whole spider first to get the hang of it. Drop two tablespoons of the chunky pretzel mixture in the middle of your parchment sheet and shape the blob into an oval. This is your first “spider body.” Then, grab one of your reserved pretzel sticks and roll it in the reserved chocolate, coating about half of the stick. Place the chocolate end on the oval—this is your first “leg.” Repeat 8 times to make a spider. Then, spoon a bit of extra chocolate onto the top of the spider to cover its legs. Add 2 white chocolate chips for eyes, and viola! Your first “spider bite.”
- Repeat the process, leaving plenty of space in between each body for the legs. (I made 6 spiders per large cookie sheet.) Place your first sheet of spiders in the freezer for 5-10 minutes while you work on your second sheet. Once your spiders are “chilled” you can pile them in layers of wax paper on a plate in the refrigerator until serving time. (Incidentally, this recipes came from the Food Network, and Sandra Lee has a helpful video about how to make the spiders here.)
Congratulations to our winners!! Happy Halloween Everyone!