Not Martha

three words: Skull Cake Pan

a skull made of cake staring straight at the camera

Ok, look. I know it’s maybe a bit early to be talking about Halloween but I myself think that celebrating Halloween for 1/6th of the year is perfectly reasonable. Also I want you to know about this so you can made as many skull shaped cakes as possible before Halloween because a mid-November skull cake is far less acceptable to take into the office than an early-October skull cake.

(Please excuse the crumbs on his nose, you have to trim the cake after it comes out of the pan and, this being my trial run, things got a little messy.)

This is a 3-D skull cake pan sold by Wilton. You can also find it on Amazon and at the usual suspects of craft stores, at least during the Halloween season.

I went through a serious crush on the 3-D pumpkin cake pan a few years back but never bought it, and I still look fondly at the giant cupcake pan when I see it but again I’ve never inspired to buy. But when I found this skull pan in I immediately grabbed it and carried it around the store with me while looking for all the stuff I came for, just in case all three pans on the shelf were gone by the time I came back around. Even though it was, at the time, August. At first I thought I might be overreacting but when I returned to the store a few days later all the pans were gone. It justified my crazy. A bit.

side of of the skull cake showing how the top and bottom pieces fit together

The back part of the skull is molded so that it sits at just the right angle to stare up at you menacingly from the plate.

butter softening next to my orange mixing bowl, with an orange pumpkin can label and orange logo of my favorite flour

The pan comes with a pumpkin spice cake recipe, and while making it I rediscovered how much I like the color orange.

two containers of cinnamon

Also, thanks to a wonderful girl who happens to be named Cinnamon, I had two types of cinnamon to choose from to use in the cake. The cake was good but too sweet for my preferences. I hope to change it a bit and then maybe add a cream cheese frosting brain surprise inside. Or, oh oh!, cream cheese frosting maggots. Ew.

a view looking inside the pan

The pan is nicely heavy and with a little Baker’s Joy I had no trouble getting the cake to slide out. (A tip from Alton Brown: spray it over the open door of your dishwasher, it won’t leave your floor or countertops slippery and it’s a surface that will be washed anyhow.)

another view of the a skull made of cake staring straight at the camera

I’m in love with this face.

What should I name him?

· comments [71] · 09-7-2010 · categories:food · halloween · things I think are neat ·

71 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Starstryder // Sep 7, 2010 at 1:51 am

    lol love him! I think you should call him Syd… :)

    This year Halloween is going to be fun, my little man is old enough to “appreciate” skull cakery and can just imagine him digging in with relish lol

  • 2 Kitkatcathy // Sep 7, 2010 at 4:23 am

    This is wonderful. And of course his name is Yorick!

  • 3 Lisa // Sep 7, 2010 at 5:05 am

    LOVE this post! The oldest daughter has a birthday very near Halloween so I may just have to get this and make her birthday cake this year….

  • 4 Elana // Sep 7, 2010 at 5:10 am


    LOVE the maggot idea. Maybe with a little bit of green frosting spots to look like…bits of stuff still there?

  • 5 Heather // Sep 7, 2010 at 6:36 am

    Every time I see “Ceylon” cinnamon, I misread it as “Cylon” cinnamon and I get really excited that it’s robot seasoning from the future (and the past).

    Also, I love the Alton tip. I always spray dishes with nonstick spray by holding them in my sink for the same reason (it’s a surface that’ll get cleaned)!

  • 6 Lora // Sep 7, 2010 at 6:47 am

    How fun! Skullicious!

  • 7 Seanna Lea // Sep 7, 2010 at 7:18 am

    I’m with Kitkatcathy, it might be overdone but Yorick is the name!

  • 8 WanderChow // Sep 7, 2010 at 7:54 am

    Why, Skeletor, of course.

  • 9 Marla // Sep 7, 2010 at 8:30 am

    I vote Yorick also!

    Love the cake and your cream cheesy ideas. You are so creative! Enjoy celebrating Halloween for the next (almost) 2 months!

  • 10 Quiana // Sep 7, 2010 at 8:52 am

    Frosting the cake white and then rolling it in glittery sugar would enable you to:
    1. paint it like a sugar skull with really cool colors.
    2. have a shiny glittery skull cake.

    I also like Yorick. But I’m a dork.

  • 11 Bess // Sep 7, 2010 at 9:22 am

    Fantastic! I bet you could do some fun stuff with drippy-type icing too. Nice red blood, or maybe some delicious chocolate putrefaction…

    It looks a bit like Norman Bates’s mother. Mrs. Bates, I guess.

  • 12 campblsoupgrl // Sep 7, 2010 at 10:00 am

    I am in full agreeance with Kitkatcathy that it’s name is Yorick. You can just LOOK at him and know that Yorick is his name. She must have a sixth sense or something… :)

  • 13 kate // Sep 7, 2010 at 11:08 am

    yorick is a fine name. what about a hardboiled egg for eyes?

  • 14 Entropy's Bitch // Sep 7, 2010 at 11:19 am

    Oh, h*** yes. I have a really good pumpkin bread recipe that’s going to get all skully. And really, aren’t skulls seasonless? We all have one all the time! I think a pink skull cake for easter would be awesome.

  • 15 Jilliana // Sep 7, 2010 at 1:11 pm

    We had already picked up the brain-shaped jello mold for this year’s Halloween party, the skull cake would be the perfect edition!

  • 16 anne // Sep 7, 2010 at 1:11 pm

    YAY! for Spice House (and the awesome Ms. Cinnamon). This is inspiring. Might just have to make me some of these!

  • 17 Elizabeth // Sep 7, 2010 at 1:18 pm

    How ’bout putting some gummy worm-like things sticking out the top and name it Medusa?!

  • 18 poxymash magazine // Sep 7, 2010 at 1:27 pm

    based on the colour, perhaps donatella might be a good name option? definitely going to have this on the cobweb-strewn dinner table come this halloween (if not before, housekeeping skills being what they are!).

  • 19 herschel // Sep 7, 2010 at 3:01 pm

    He’s got a “Cedric” air about him.

  • 20 alycia // Sep 7, 2010 at 4:23 pm

    i so want that skull cake pan! thats so cool!

  • 21 susan@pocacosas // Sep 7, 2010 at 5:07 pm

    My boys are calling him Skele-Cake but I like Edgar-we loved your creation so much I featured you today:

  • 22 missval // Sep 7, 2010 at 5:34 pm

    Name him Horace. I love the cake mold and now want some pumpkin bread. I will wait until after I use all the fruit from Chelan in a cobbler.

  • 23 brooke @ claremont road // Sep 7, 2010 at 6:28 pm

    Harry. He’s definitely a Harry.

  • 24 Suszu // Sep 7, 2010 at 10:08 pm

    Love the Spice House!

  • 25 Things I’m Digging Now | The Curly Knitter // Sep 7, 2010 at 11:10 pm

    […] fact, her recent post made me swoon and I had to add the skull cake pan to my wish list […]

  • 26 Carla // Sep 8, 2010 at 6:44 am

    I read this post and thought you had been following me around! Halloween and Skulls, what could be better? Well you found it, Skull Cake!!! Thank you. I am buying a pan right now!

  • 27 CardiganNation » Archives » Some Baking to Scare By… // Sep 8, 2010 at 10:15 am

    […] Before I run off to grab a cup of coffee, a big cozy cardigan, and a seat by the window so I can listen to the rain while I read, I leave you with a great post by not martha on a 3D skull cake mold. Wouldn’t that be fabulous for a Halloween program? […]

  • 28 Mallory // Sep 8, 2010 at 10:33 am

    I don’t think there is any reason why you couldn’t make skull cakes year round… I have skulls on clothing that I wear them all the time. Besides, you can fill the centre with custard or jam and have the “brains” ooze out when you cut the cake! Most awesome!

  • 29 Cake Betch // Sep 8, 2010 at 11:11 am

    It is NEVER too late to start planning for Halloween. Back when I actually had the time I would start building a new ‘prop’ for my Halloween display right around this time of year. Halloween is easily my favorite holiday… I wish people spent more time celebrating it!

  • 30 Skull Cake Anyone? – Latest Nerdy Pop Culture News - // Sep 8, 2010 at 4:44 pm

    […] notmartha, this is a pretty cool looking cake, it’s nothing pretty or colorful, but it’s […]

  • 31 Erica // Sep 8, 2010 at 6:08 pm

    Awesome!!! I am definitely going to have to look for one of these.

  • 32 Katie // Sep 8, 2010 at 6:10 pm

    Greg. He definitely looks like a Greg to me =) How fun would it be to get some of those colored frosting pen things and decorate him like a Sugar Skull?!?!

  • 33 Carolyn J. // Sep 8, 2010 at 7:23 pm

    If not Yorick, how about Scully?

  • 34 Saple // Sep 8, 2010 at 7:26 pm

    I want the pan and to have Alton Brown’s babies

  • 35 Karen // Sep 8, 2010 at 10:49 pm

    I’d name him Scully!

  • 36 Find of the Day: Skull Cake Pan « Brass Sight-Glass // Sep 9, 2010 at 1:21 am

    […] Skull shaped cakes. To make it you’ll need a skull cake pan and you can read all about it on Not Martha. Skull Cake […]

  • 37 Carrie Anne // Sep 9, 2010 at 11:20 am


    Or Murry! Like in Escape from Monkey Island.

  • 38 Me // Sep 10, 2010 at 12:34 pm

    Sorry, he looks like an Edward to me.

  • 39 kay // Sep 10, 2010 at 6:23 pm

    I would call him yummy. but he looks like my son in laws tatto

  • 40 Foodie Death Wish: Skull Shaped Cakes | The Luxury Spot // Sep 11, 2010 at 4:57 pm

    […] VIA Related Posts:Insect Tasting & Wine Pairing At The Brooklyn KitchenNatural Allergy HelpersHangovers & The Monte Carlo ResortTrue Life: I Did A Cleanse… And Enjoyed It. The Solution To World Peace: Cake […]

  • 41 mandy // Sep 12, 2010 at 4:23 pm

    Skully (Scully).

    Great Halloween project… or really anytime of the year if you are prone to the wierd like I am!

  • 42 Angelique from Bitchin' Kitchen // Sep 13, 2010 at 8:04 am

    This is fun! I would totally make this for Halloween… or you know, for a bitchin’ dinner party! You can always name him Bob.

  • 43 megan // Sep 13, 2010 at 11:55 am

    Quiana – I really like the glittery skull cake idea!

    Thanks so much for all the name suggestions, we have not decided but the Monkey Island reference is winning me over :)

  • 44 Honor // Sep 21, 2010 at 12:05 pm

    Ack! The update of doom: Amazon is out of them!

    Still… Thank you for pointing this out :-)

  • 45 kim // Sep 22, 2010 at 7:45 pm

    This looks great and i am going to get one to use on top of our 25th Anniversary cake!

  • 46 Lisa // Oct 3, 2010 at 11:35 am

    I’ve been hunting for this pan for a month! Finally found it today at michaels! I’m going to cover the cake in white fondant and use black color spray for the eyes and nose!

  • 47 Theron Willis // Oct 4, 2010 at 1:08 pm

    Alas…poor Yorick.

  • 48 Debby // Oct 10, 2010 at 10:47 am

    He’s very cool! Since I LOVE anything pumpkin flavored. . .he looks like a good candidate!

  • 49 Tammy // Oct 13, 2010 at 4:21 pm

    I just got off the phone with Wilton and they said they are out of stock and they are not getting in anymore of these pans! They also said they won’t have them next year either! Next years 3D pan is going to be a Haunted House.
    I have searched everywhere. All the big craft stores are out of stock and they can’t get in anymore because Wilton is sold out! Help!

  • 50 megan // Oct 13, 2010 at 7:24 pm

    Tammy – Oh no! I had no idea. I wonder if somebody else will carry them in the future? King Arthur Flour always seems to have the shaped pans that were in Williams-Sonoma in the past. Fingers crossed.

  • 51 megan // Oct 15, 2010 at 10:00 am

    Tammy – I just got off the phone with Wilton and they told me that while the item hasn’t been re-ordered for this year they will bring it back for halloween next year, so with two different responses cross your fingers they’ll carry it again.

    She suggested looking at Hobby Lobby and Party City to see if they can do a store to store transfer, or if you happen to live in Illinois the Wilton store might still have some.

    Baking Bites tracked down the pan here at Baker’s Nook.

  • 52 cmb3 // Oct 17, 2010 at 1:00 pm

    Found and purchased 30 minutes ago at JoAnn Fabric and Crafts
    West Oaks
    43570 W Oaks Dr # B-3
    Novi, Michigan 48377-3302

    40% off

  • 53 Pattie @ Olla-Podrida // Oct 21, 2010 at 10:16 am

    Three more words: I WANT ONE!

  • 54 NotMartha's Megan Reardon Spills her Secrets to Making Food Fun | The Family Kitchen // Oct 21, 2010 at 11:33 am

    […] mashed potatoes.  This year, she’s working through a penchant for her newest kitchen toy, a Skull Cake pan, which has already produced a pumpkin cake and Cinnamon Swirl Skull Cake of the Week. Not to […]

  • 55 Creative and homemade Halloween ideas from Megan at Not | Haunted San Diego Blog // Oct 22, 2010 at 11:11 am

    […] and she’s got a skull cake pan. […]

  • 56 Kristi // Oct 25, 2010 at 10:12 am

    Came across a skull pan today at Michael’s in Indianapolis. It was the last one and was 30% off so I snatched it up. Wouldn’t it be cool if you could just rent these when you needed them? I’m thinking a red velvet cake in this with strips of white fondant would make for a super cool mummy cake.

  • 57 Lita A // Oct 25, 2010 at 1:26 pm

    This is awesome! This is definitely another pan for my collection! Using a white batter and sponging gray/black food coloring to shade with for depth could also be a possibility! Thanks!

  • 58 Loretta // Oct 28, 2010 at 6:27 pm

    I found one of these at my local Joann (still one left!) and I have cooked all sorts of cakes in it already. Though I may have crossed the line this evening. I threw a lump of BREAD DOUGH in it. It came out pretty well.

  • 59 megan // Oct 28, 2010 at 8:30 pm

    Loretta – That is genius! I’ll have to do that soon to see how it works out.

  • 60 kim // Oct 29, 2010 at 1:49 pm

    Loretta, does the skull pan hold a regular amount of cake batter? Like for a 9×13 or 8″ or 9″ rounds? I wanted to make a cake that wasn’t pumpkin in mine that is the recipe that comes with it. I have a 3 d pumpkin pan i can make that one pumpkin lol Thanks!

  • 61 Sandra // Feb 23, 2011 at 6:02 pm

    I have been desperate to find this skull cake pan for my sister’s wedding in early August. I’d be willing to pay shipping to borrow this pan. I’ll even let you borrow my Wilton Jumbo Cupcake pan, which I haven’t even used yet, while I borrow yours. Please say you’ll help.

  • 62 rex holcomb // Apr 5, 2011 at 12:13 pm

    well i bet it might be a little better than triming it out i have just donr..thought i would try this for son’s bday ..cause he is into the biker stuff also.yes triming him out is a lot of work getting it just right ..but does great if you freez the cake first if u are triming one out .

  • 63 Maddie // Aug 20, 2012 at 12:50 pm

    Did the cake come out dry at all?

  • 64 megan // Aug 23, 2012 at 5:14 pm

    Maggie – No, though the bits around the details on top were a bit bit more done than the flatter sides of the cake.

  • 65 Lynette // Oct 24, 2012 at 12:53 pm

    ooooh… just imagine,
    use it for Meatloaf!
    With rice maggots, maybe (ketchup-pink or gravy-grey) potato brains…..

  • 66 Lynette // Oct 24, 2012 at 12:54 pm

    And make the BACK a cornbread loaf to go with it!

  • 67 Jennifer // May 27, 2013 at 2:10 am

    He should be called (EARL)

  • 68 Design Bridge blog // Jun 7, 2013 at 8:51 am

    […] The Meat Hand is quite good – or check out how to make this Skull Cake: […]

  • 69 Ju-Ju Bean Bakes // Oct 6, 2013 at 4:17 pm

    You can still get them at JoAnn Fabric and Craft Stores. I work there and picked it up almost as soon as It went on the shelf!

  • 70 theresa // Oct 21, 2014 at 9:18 am

    Sir Bonerific Cakeman

  • 71 Carol // Oct 31, 2014 at 10:52 am

    I think I would use my pastry needle to inject some pudding into the skull… a gooey suprise for the gang.

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