Halloween has always been one of my oldest son's favorite holidays. I think that's because it is filled with creepy crawly boy stuff rather than mushy girly stuff. It doesn't hurt that he's an October baby either. Last year both of my boys had treat duty for their school Halloween parties. My preschooler took a fun cat skeleton sculpture made out of veggies (he totally preferred these treats though) while my other son took these Spooky Graveyard Treat Cups. We had fun planning something festive for him to take and he was rather excited when his classmates commented on how cool his treats were. We used my mom's dirt cake recipe (sooooo good) and then topped them off with Oreo dirt, cookie tombstones, and candy spiders. If I were to do it over again, I would truly consider buying chocolate pudding cups or just making simple instant chocolate pudding and decorating them with all the goodies rather than making everything from scratch. It isn't that they weren't good, in fact they were extremely delicious, but it's Halloween, the kids are loaded with treats, and really could have cared less whether these were the real deal or not. At that point, sugar was sugar. Really just think about who the treats are for. If you're making them for your family or a small get together or as a treat to take to work or for a birthday, totally put forth the effort using the recipe below, you won't regret it. But if you are making them for a class party, TAKE THE SHORTCUT! You already have a million-ba-jillion things to worry about - costumes, parties, trick-or-treating, dinner, and the kids are going to have so many treats they seriously will not realize or care that you took the shortcut. Take it from me. As much as my kid loves this dirt cake and as excited as he was about bringing these to school, he ate ONE bite before running out of time and throwing it in the garbage right before my very eyes (I was crushed). When things had calmed down, he was excited I that I had saved some extras for later at home, as was his dad and his brother, and even his uncle, but at school he was overwhelmed and rushed and didn't have time to appreciate the time it took to put his treats together. Which is why I would take the shortcut given the same situation. Friends, learn from my mistakes. Sometimes it's worth it to go the extra "homemade" mile and sometime it isn't. Either way, these spooky graveyard treats are festive and sure to impress.
Spooky Halloween Graveyard Cups
1 package Oreo Cookies
8 oz cream cheese
1 cup powdered sugar
1 cube (1/2) cup butter
3 1/2 cups milk
2 small packages of instant chocolate pudding
12 oz. cool whip
Milano Cookies or other tombstone shaped cookies
Chocolate Frosting in the tube, the kind you can write with
other decorations, candy or plastic spiders, snakes, bugs, candy pumpkins, skeletons would be totally fun, whatever you can find
plastic cups, I used the plain clear cocktail cups, but use whatever you like
*Note - One batch probably makes about 12 servings, I doubled mine and ended up with about 26 treats.
With a food processor or in a baggie with a rolling pin, crush cookies until they resemble potting soil. Set aside. Use chocolate frosting to write on tombstone cookies and set aside to dry. In a large bowl, cream the cream cheese, powdered sugar, and butter until light and fluffy. In another bowl whisk together milk and pudding until thickened, for about 2 minutes. Fold cool whip into pudding mixture. Now fold into cream cheese mixture so you have one chocolate mousse-like dessert. Spoon into individual cups. Sprinkle with Oreo Dirt. Refrigerate until chilled. Decorate with tombstone cookies and other spooky treats before serving, or just before taking to party. Enjoy!