Published on October 21st, 2012 | by Jane


Make Your Own Sugar Skulls for Halloween!

Remember when we learned about Día de los Muertos, the Mexican version of Halloween? I sincerely hope so, because today we have something sweet that is just “dying” to be made! Meh, that was a kinda lame introduction but whatever, you get the gist.

A prominent custom for Day of the Dead is the creation of colourful sugar skulls. Which you can make. And you can eat. Yay!

What You Need:

  • 2 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 egg white from an extra large egg, or 2 from small eggs
  • 1 teaspoons light corn syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • Cornstarch, about a half cup, for powdering surface
  • Colored sprinkles
  • Food coloring
  • Fine paint brush
  • Colored icing
  • Candy sticks (optional)

Here’s How:

  1. Sift sugar into a large mixing bowl.
  2. In another bowl, mix the egg whites, corn syrup and vanilla.
  3. Slowly pour the liquid into the powdered sugar. Mix with your hands until a sandy dough forms.
  4. Form dough into a ball. At this point you can continue or you can refrigerate dough for later use.
  5. Lightly dust surface with cornstarch as well as your hands. Pinch off a heaping tablespoon of dough and shape it into a skull.
  6. Press the candy sticks into the bottom of each skull.
  7. If you’re using them, lightly press colored sprinkles into the soft candy.
  8. Let the candy dry overnight.
  9. When candy is dry, use the paint brush with food coloring to decorate the skulls. Or you can use frosting (one that will dry hard) with a find tip to decorate them.
  10. Hand them out as is, or wrap in a small cellophane bag tied closed with a small ribbon.
Here are some tips that I found that might be helpful if you make these!


  1. The skulls may not dry completely on a humid or rainy day.
  2. If you use the molds, you should follow each manufacturer’s instructions as some molds only work with certain recipes.
  3. The “dough” should be the consistency of damp sand. Just moist enough to hold together. If “dough” is too dry and crumbly, add 1 teaspoon of water at a time to moisten.
  4. If “dough” is too moist, add sugar one tablespoon at a time until “dough” is the right consistency.
  5. If the candy has trouble drying completely, place in a 125 degree warm oven until dry.

Yes, Moms, it is candy, but it’s also culture.

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