Ghostly Party Cake + Tips for Layered Cakes

Ghost cakeHere's a super simple idea for an impressive Halloween party cake. Create ghost cake toppers from wooden skewers, cotton balls, cheese cloth or burlap and thread. Simply cut small squares of fabric to cover the cotton ball and tie onto the top of the skewer. Ta-da: mini ghosts!White cake recipeAdd interest (and flavor) with a special frosting inside. I chose dark chocolate frosting to contrast with my white vanilla frosting. But you could instead fill your cake with red frosting (blood!) or green frosting (monster blood!?) or dark purple (???). I'm not totally sure what dark purple has to do with Halloween, but it seems to be a color that is strongly represented during this season. Maybe it's witch's blood. I dunno… Just get into it, guys. It's Halloween!Halloween cakeWhen you are planning to make a layered cake, I recommend using a cake recipe that can withstand some weight. My usual go-to vanilla cake recipe is super moist, which is delicious, but not the best option for a layered cake, as it's just too soft. Instead it's best to find a recipe that is firm enough to withstand some added weight (like layers of added cake and frosting). Here's my current favorite:

Vanilla Cake, makes four thin layers

Needed: 2 cups + 4 tablespoons flour, 4 tablespoons corn starch, 2-1/2 teaspoons baking powder, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1-1/2 cups sugar, 4 eggs, 2 teaspoons vanilla extract, 1/2 cup softened butter, 1/2 cup vegetable or canola oil and 1 cup milk.

In a bowl combine the flour, corn starch, baking powder and salt. Whisk to combine. In a another bowl cream together the sugar and softened butter. Add the eggs and vanilla extract and stir until just combined. Mix in the dry ingredients. Stir in the oil and milk until nearly no lumps remain in the batter. Pour batter into 4 prepared* round cake pans and bake at 350 F for 20-24 minutes. Until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool before use.How to make a layered cakeVanilla Butter Cream Frosting, makes about 5 cups

Needed: 3/4 cup softened butter, 5 cups powder sugar, 4 tablespoons milk and 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract.

Cream together the butter and extract until smooth. Add 1 cup of powdered sugar and a tablespoon of milk—cream until smooth. Repeat until you achieve the consistency you prefer.

For the dark chocolate frosting in this cake I totally cheated and used a store bought kind. 🙂Ghost cake toppersTips for Layered Cakes:

-I always prepare my baking pans by lining the bottoms with parchment paper. To do, simply lay out a large piece of parchment paper, lay your pan over it, and trace around the edge. Cut out and lay in the pan. This makes the cake layer super easy to remove from the pan after baking.

-Use a large sharp knife to remove excess cake between each layer. You want your cake layers to be perfectly flat in order to layer them easily. So use a knife to trim off the slight dome that each layer will naturally have.

-Use cardboard cake circles to easily transfer and move layers of cake. I usually use two circles for every cake. I flip the layers out of their pans onto a circle and I will gently push each additional layer off it's circle onto the base as I am building up my layers. It might seem annoying to go to the trouble of purchases cake circles but they truly do make layered cakes so much easier.

Have fun making your own spooky party cake this season! xo. Emma

  • Haha, that is just adorable! I love how they stick out of the cake. I would write “Boo” on the cake just for fun. Looks delicious, too!

    xo, Adriana.

  • Boo! Those ghosties are soooooooo darling and the cake looks yummy too!

  • Looks good. I’ve never been good at layering but I’ll give it a try one day.

  • Mmmm… looks delicious!


  • So simple, but so cute! That cake looks amazing and delicious! I’ve been on the lookout for a vanilla cake recipe that’s not dry.


  • This is amazing. Perfect for a party! And thanks for the tips…my layered cakes always come out lopsided.

    The Glossy Life

  • I absolutely love this! It’s not over commercialised like other decorations, super simple and looks super yummy!


  • Yummmmm!! And the goshts detail is PERFECT!!! I think I’ll make a garland with them! Thank you for the ideas

  • So simple and so cool. I love it. I can see ghost cake pops on a cake like this! I wish I could try a slice right now, it would pair so perfectly with my coffee and soymilk.

  • Oooh thanks for the tips! I’m actually making a layered birthday cake TONIGHT, so this is perfect timing!

  • Ah, homemade ghosts! When I was little, we used to buy tootsie pops, use a kleenex to cover, and tied them up with ribbon. Perfect ghosts every time, I tell ya.

  • Another idea for the ghost toppers is using lolipops! That way the kiddos around can have a treat to go with their cake 🙂 Lovely idea you created! x

  • Love the little ghosts! Theses would look really sweet in cupcakes too.Rx

  • I love how simple the ghosts are – so pretty!

    Stephanie May*

  • I’m totally doing this! Halloween is in my top 3 holidays to celebrate and this is perfection!! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  • The ghosts are adorable! I might cheat on the cake and just make my own ghosts 🙂 Great idea!

  • I LOVE this cake. When you were doing the previews for this month, I looked forward to these little ghosts making their appearance. I’m definitely going to be trying this!

  • This is so cute! I absolutely love the little ghosts. So simple!
    xo Heather

  • This is so cute! Plus it looks seriously delicious. You could also do like, a bat one or a jack-o-lantern one too. 🙂


  • yum! emma, who eats all of these delicious cakes you make all of the time? 😀 they look grrrrrrrrreat!

  • What a clever and inspiring idea! So easy! It looks great.

    Ali of aliandang

  • This cake would fit a white Halloween theme I guess 🙂 Those ghost thingy look quite funny and cute. Well I’m not much into Halloween thingy but this cake must be in my to-do list 🙂

    Anh @

  • gosh it looks so tasty.. I instantly get hungry! The little ghosts are such a lovely idea, definitely will be trying this out sometime.

  • SO easy and fun – I LOVE it! This is something even I could do!

    -Daisy Nguyen from PS BANANAS fashion blog:

  • This is looking so delicious!
    My mom is coming back from a long trip tomorrow, think I gonna try to make this cake as a welcome-cake :).


  • I love these “kitchen basics” posts. I love cooking but I’m pretty new. So having super easy recipes really boots confidence in the kitchen. Thanks!!

  • Such a cute cake and I love your cake circle tips. You guys rock!


  • this cake looks amazing ! thanks for sharing !

    XX Luba
    Well Living Blog

  • Pastry chef’s secret to a flatter cake:
    When you take the cake out of the oven, immediately flip it upside down onto a tray (but leave it in the pan) so it’ll flatten itself out while it cools! You’ll still need to do a teeny bit of trimming, but you won’t have the huge dome.

  • SO cute! I love Halloween crafts. 🙂
    This one looks super easy too.

  • That’s one amazing idea.

    Rachel Nicole @ Summer Breeze

  • Oh boy…growing up, chocolate was my go to for every dessert, but as I get I older I find that I really really like white (and yellow!) cakes too. This looks DELISH!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.