Bleeding Brain Cupcakes

Bleeding Brain Cupcakes

I love celebrating Halloween and every year I decorate my home with candles and pumpkins to celebrate. It’s such a fun time of year and a great opportunity to get creative with baking. These Bleeding Brain Cupcakes are perfect spooky treats to delight family, friends, or your local trick or treaters! They are made with a simple red velvet sponge, filled with strawberry or raspberry jam and then decorated to look like a brain, which is so easy to do. They’re definitely the yummiest brains I’ve ever eaten!

How to make Bleeding Brain Cupcakes…

To make the sponge I whisked together the butter and sugar, then I whisked in the eggs, vanilla extract and buttermilk. Next I added the cocoa powder, bicarbonate of soda and flour and whisked them in, then enough red food colouring for a bright shade. Then I divided the mixture between 12 black cupcake cases.

They baked for 20 minutes, then I put them on a rack to cool fully. Once they were fully cool, I removed the centre with a cupcake corer and filled them with strawberry jam.

I made the buttercream by mixing the icing sugar, butter, vanilla extract and pink food colouring together. Then I piped it onto the cupcakes using a circular nozzle, I piped a line down the centre first, then squiggles on either side.

Bleeding Brain Cupcakes

And the Bleeding Brain Cupcakes were ready for any nearby hungry zombies!

Bleeding Brain Cupcakes

My friends and colleagues absolutely loved these creepy Bleeding Brain Cupcakes! They were gone in no time and I had lots of compliments on the flavour and appearance. I hope you enjoy making them for your Halloween celebrations!

Recommended equipment & ingredients*

Cupcake tinElectric hand mixerPiping bags
Cupcake corerRed food colouringPink food colouring
Round piping nozzle  

*I earn a small amount of money if you buy the products after clicking on the links. You will not be charged anything extra for this. Thank you for supporting The Baking Explorer!

More Halloween Cupcake recipes…

Halloween Vampire Bat CupcakesHalloween Graveyard Cupcakes
Halloween Vampire Bat CupcakesSlime CupcakesHalloween Graveyard Cupcakes
Bleeding Brain Cupcakes

Bleeding Brain Cupcakes

Red velvet sponge, filled with jam, topped with brain themed pink icing
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Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Cupcake
Prep Time: 40 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 12
Author: thebakingexplorer


For the sponge

  • 150 g Butter or baking spread
  • 150 g Caster sugar
  • 2 Eggs large
  • 1 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 85 ml Buttermilk
  • 165 g Self raising flour
  • 1 1/2 tbsp Cocoa powder
  • 1/2 tsp Bicarbonate of soda
  • 1 tsp Red food colouring I use Pro Gel

For the filling

  • 200 g Strawberry or Raspberry Jam

For the buttercream

  • 200 g Butter unsalted, softened
  • 400 g Icing sugar
  • 1 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp Milk
  • Pink food colouring I use Pro Gel


  • Pre-heat your oven to 160C Fan/180C/350F/Gas Mark 4 and line a muffin/cupcake tin with black cupcake cases
  • Whisk the butter and sugar together in a bowl, ideally with an electric mixer
  • Add the eggs, vanilla extract, buttermilk and enough red food colouring to get a very bright red colour, and whisk them in
  • Add the cocoa powder, bicarbonate of soda and self raising flour, whisk in
  • Divide the mixture between the cupcake cases
  • Bake for 20 minutes or until a skewer inserted comes out clean, then put them on a rack to cool full
  • Once fully cool, use a cupcake corer or a knife to make a hole in the centre of each cupcake
  • Fill each hole with the jam
  • To make the buttercream, mix together the butter and icing sugar with a spoon or electric hand whisk, when it starts to come together, add the vanilla and a small amount of pink food colouring and mix until smooth. (You only want a pale pink colour so be sparing with the pink food colouring.) If the buttercream is too stiff then you can add a little more milk
  • Put the buttercream in a piping bag fitted with a circular nozzle. Pipe a line down the centre of the cupcake, then squiggles on either side for the brain effect
  • Keep in an airtight container in a cool place, and eat leftovers within 3 days
Made this recipe?Share on Instagram with me @TheBakingExplorer or tag #thebakingexplorer!


Calories: 456kcal | Carbohydrates: 57g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 25g | Saturated Fat: 15g | Cholesterol: 91mg | Sodium: 273mg | Potassium: 50mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 46g | Vitamin A: 780IU | Calcium: 23mg | Iron: 1mg

If you like this, check out more of my Cupcake recipes!

Or you might like my Halloween recipes!

Bleeding Brain Cupcakes

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6 comments / Add your comment below

  1. Kat, love your broken glass idea. The claw cakes are kind of scary and the brain is disturbing. You've come up with some real horrors for Halloween! Thanks for sending them in the direction of We Should Cocoa and enjoy the festivities πŸ™‚

  2. How gruesomely tasty! The brain icing looks disgustingly lovely and actually, the fact that the cherry sauce was jelly-like definitely adds to the visuals! Congealed blood is a MUST for halloween! Should NEVER be runny!!!!!

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