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Sugar Skull Recipe for Day of the Dead

Recipe by About Chef Austin Chef Austin


It's easier than you think to make your next party SPOOKY. Nordic Ware's skull baking tray can be used as a cake pan or to make sugar skulls for Day of the Dead. With fondant stamps and a simple frosting, you can easily make an impressive sugar skull with Nordic Ware's skull cake pan. Find the directions below and make this the scariest Halloween ever!


Sugar Skull Recipe

 Nordic Ware Skull Cake Pan

Makes: 1 Spooky Skull

Prep Time: 1 Hour
Inactive Time: 24 Hours
Cook Time: 2 Hours


9 Cups Sugar
1/3 Cup Water
Corn Starch for dusting

Royal Icing store-bought or


3 Tbsp Meringue Powder
4 Cups Powdered Sugar
4 Tbsp water

Small LED Tea Candle



Featured Products:

Fat Daddio's Fondant Impression Cutter (Hanging Lace)

Nordic Ware Haunted Skull Cake Pan


Nordic Ware Skull Cake Pan

Step 1
In a large bowl, add sugar and water. Mix together until you have a wet and sandy consistency that will pack together.


Nordic Ware Skull Cake Pan

Step 2
Dust the inside of the Nordic Ware Haunted Skull Baking Tray with cornstarch.

Nordic Ware Skull Cake Pan

Step 3
Firmly pack in wet sugar mixture into the skull cake pan. Try not to be too scared.

Nordic Ware Skull Cake Pan

Step 4
Scoop out a cavity on both sides of the skull cake pan. This makes space to place an LED tea candle. Hollow out the eye sockets. Let the skull baking tray rest in peace for 24 hours.

Nordic Ware Skull Cake Pan

Step 5
Carefully slide out dried sugar skull pieces onto a baking tray. Bake in a preheated 200°F oven for 45 minutes.

Nordic Ware Skull Cake Pan

Step 6
Remove from oven and let cool to room temperature. If you are using store-bought royal icing, skip to Step 7. If you are making home-made royal icing, with an electric mixer, whip together the powdered sugar water and meringue powder to stiff peaks. You'll want the frosting the consistency of glue. If it is too runny, add more powdered sugar - if it is too thick, add 1 tsp of water at a time and mix in. 

Step 7
Place frosting into a piping bag and layer a thick line of frosting on the edge of the backside of the skull. Turn on a small LED candle and place it in the skull cavity. Carefully place
 the face side of the skull on the frosting and let sit to dry. Do not disturb, the skull needs its rest.  

Nordic Ware Skull Cake Pan

Step 8
In the meantime, roll out store-bought fondant (you can find it by all the cake decorating tools). Use the fondant stamps to make designs to decorate your skull with.

Nordic Ware Skull Cake Pan

Step 9
Wet the back of the fondant decoration with a small amount of royal icing and place them on the sugar skull as you wish. Be sure to get extra spooky with Skull & Vine plates from Fiesta Dinnerware!


About Chef Austin

About the Author: 

Chef Austin Merath is Everything Kitchen's Culinary Wizard, Kitchen-Gadget Reviewer, and New-Product Tester. He studied under chefs in College of the Ozarks' Culinary Program. It's his job to make sure you choose the kitchen tools that are right for you by testing the best we have to offer. When not cooking, Austin is tinkering with computers or exploring the Ozarks with his wife Amy. Click here for his full bio.