If you're in need of a cute Halloween cookie decorating idea, look no further! Made with just 5 basic ingredients, these marshmallow ghost cookies are sure to be a standout at your next ghoulish gathering!
Sometimes, after eating a lot of Halloween candy, I think I look like these ghosts. Chubby and sugary.
I might look like that. But it was worth it if I got to eat a few of these little marshmallow ghost cookies.
And no one tells me I look like that because I have lovely friends. Thank you, lovely friends. Just more reason to eat half (or all) of these by myself.
For these Halloween ghost cookies, I made homemade marshmallow and then piped it on top of store-bought cookies. Sort of a semi-homemade thing!
If you've never made homemade marshmallow, you're in for a treat. It is the most wonderful tasting sweet in the world.
A homemade topping makes these cute Halloween cookies a melt-in-your-mouth dream!
Ingredients in Marshmallow Ghost Cookies
For the homemade marshmallow, you'll need unflavored gelatin, granulated sugar, and water.
For the cookie base, you could really use any nice, flat cookie for these (gingersnaps anyone!?), but Nabisco Famous chocolate wafers are perfection.
If you miss them in the cookie aisle or your grocer doesn’t carry them (as is the case in some western states, don’t ask me why), they look like this:
Mini M&M's make perfect eyes for these ghoulish treats. You attach the eyes right after you pipe the marshmallow so they stick.
Then, cover the entire thing with crunchy crystal sugar. I love how simple the ingredients list is for this cute Halloween cookie!
How to Make Marshmallow Ghost Cookies
To start, you need to make a soft homemade marshmallow. If you've never made homemade marshmallow before, don't be intimidated. It's so easy, I promise!
Simply sprinkle the unflavored gelatin over a dish of cold water. This softens the gelatin.
Then, boil a mixture of granulated sugar and water until it reaches the soft-ball stage (I've given exact timing and temperatures in the recipe card below).
Add the hot sugar mixture to the gelatin mixture. Transfer everything to a stand mixer and whisk until soft peaks form.
Then, all that's left to do is pipe the homemade marshmallow onto the chocolate cookies and decorate them to look like ghosts!
Do I Have to Use a Candy Thermometer?
Yes, you need a candy thermometer to make the marshmallow ghosts. Homemade marshmallow is SO stinking easy…but requires that one gadget.
Can I Make This Recipe in Advance?
Yes, you can make the Halloween ghost cookies up to 2 days in advance. Store them in an airtight container at room temperature.
Tips for Making Ghost Cookies
- I used chocolate cookies as the base for these Halloween cookies, but you can use any store-bought cookie base you'd like.
- If you'd rather make homemade chocolate cookies, I have a great recipe here. The recipe I just linked is for chocolate snowman cookies, but obviously you won't be making those!
- I recommend piping out just five marshmallow ghosts at a time. You need to add the eyes and crystal sugar before the marshmallow sets.
More Halloween Cookie Ideas:
Looking for additional Halloween cookie decorating ideas? I have lots of cute Halloween desserts on my blog already.
Here are a few of my favorites:
- Halloween Graham Cracker Cookies
- Chocolate Skeleton Cookies
- Halloween Monster Cookies
- Spiral Halloween Cookies
Marshmallow Ghost Cookies
- 22 chocolate wafer cookies
- 2 ¾ teaspoon unflavored gelatin (1 envelope)
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- Brown mini M&M's
- 1 ½ cups sanding sugar
Make the marshmallows:
- Line cookies in a single layer on a baking sheet with sides; set aside.
- In a medium mixing bowl, sprinkle gelatin over ⅓ cup cold water to soften.
- In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, dissolve granulated sugar in ¼ cup water, stirring. Remove spoon, brush inside edges of pan with water to remove sugar crystals and boil until the temperature reaches the soft-ball stage (238ºF) on a candy thermometer.
- Add sugar mixture to gelatin and, using an electric mixer, whisk on medium speed for 3 min. Increase speed to high and whisk until soft peaks form, 8 to 10 min.
- Transfer marshmallow to a piping bag fitted with a ½-inch-diameter plain tip, or coupler, and immediately pipe pointed mounds onto cookies (pipe just 5 ghosts at a time so marshmallow doesn’t set before you decorate).
- Working quickly, add candy eyes and coat generously with crystal sugar.
- Allow ghosts to set about 1 hour before serving.
Spooky & Fun Halloween Recipes
About Tara Teaspoon
I’ve been in the food publishing business for over 20 years, creating recipes & food-styling for magazines, books, television & advertising. Order my new cookbook & stick around for amazing things to eat.
Recipe by Tara Teaspoon. Originally published LHJ Oct/09. Photography Hallie Burton. Food Styling Joyce Sangirardi. Prop Styling Lynsey Freyers.
Mary Bench says
Cutest little ghosties!
Brittany Smart says
Their adorable little eyes! Love these
This was my first time making homemade marshmallows. I'm amazed at how easy it was! This quarantine has us all mixed up with the days and seasons. It is Halloween, right?! These were almost too cute to eat!