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Halloween Dirt Cake is an easy Halloween dessert with chocolate cake, chocolate pudding and crushed Oreo cookie crumbs with gummy worms decorated as a graveyard. This easy recipe is perfect for a Halloween party and so much fun to make!

halloween dirt cake (graveyard cake) with ghost, pumpkins, gummy worms and gravestones in baking dish.

If you’re looking for a fun dessert for Halloween, you will love this super cute Halloween cake! It’s one of my family’s favorite Halloween cakes.

Some call this Ghosts in the Graveyard or graveyard cake or Halloween graveyard dirt cake because it’s decorated to look like a cemetery — in a cute way!

This graveyard cake is made without cream cheese. It has a chocolate cake as the base topped with creamy chocolate pudding frosting and Oreo crumbs on top.

Throw in some gummy worms, candy pumpkins, marshmallow ghosts (ghost peeps) and cookie tombstones to achieve the graveyard look! My kids have so much fun with this part!

chocolate cake, milk, oreo cookies, jello, cool whip, powdered sugar and decorations


You only need a few simple ingredients for this Halloween dirt cake recipe. Find them in your grocery store or online. Exact amounts are in the recipe card below.

  • Chocolate cake mix — and ingredients to make the cake
  • Instant Chocolate Pudding mix — not cook and serve
  • Milk — 2 percent milk or whole milk to make the pudding
  • Cool Whip — or any whipped topping
  • Powdered sugar — for the frosting
  • Oreo cookies — crushed into fine crumbs or any chocolate sandwich cookies
  • Milano cookies — or Nutter Butter cookies for gravestones
  • Candy — for decorating. We used candy corn, sour worms, Halloween sprinkles, candy bones and marshmallow pumpkins

You will also need melted chocolate, gel food coloring or edible markers to decorate the tombstone cookies. We used a toothpick and melted chocolate chips.

How to Make Halloween Dirt Cake

First, make the cake according to package directions in a 9 x 13 baking dish. I used a Pyrex dish. Then, allow it to cool completely.

Crush the Oreos in a plastic bag using a rolling pin or flat edge of a meat mallet. or, crush them in food processor or blender.

In a large bowl, mix the instant pudding mix with the milk and powdered sugar with an electric mixer. Then, fold in the Cool Whip until light and fluffy.

mix chocolate pudding and cool whip frosting in bowl

The combination of chocolate pudding and other ingredients make a delicious, light frosting.

Frost the top of the cake with the pudding mixture. An offset spatula is perfect for this!

The frosting thickens and firms up as it sets, so don’t worry if it seems runny.

spread pudding mixture over chocolate cake

After you spread the frosting on the top of the cake, spoon the crushed Oreos on top of the pudding mixture.

Make sure the pudding is completely covered with the Oreo cookie crumbs.

Next, pop the cake into the refrigerator while you make the tombstones and get the decorations ready.

spoon crushed oreo cookies over chocolate pudding

How to Decorate Halloween Graveyard Cake

Gently press the tombstone cookies into the top of the cake. Be careful not to smear the writing on the tombstones as you handle them!

Pro tip — If you are using Peeps ghosts or pumpkins, stick a wooden toothpick into the bottom of each candy, leaving the edge of the toothpick sticking out.

Then, press the ghosts in the graveyard. This will help them stay upright. Just be sure to remove the toothpicks before eating!

halloween graveyard cake with milano gravestones and candy in pan

Add gummy worms, marshmallow pumpkins and candy bones. We added candy sprinkles shaped like fall leaves and Halloween sprinkles for extra sparkle.

You can add your favorite Halloween candy to this Halloween graveyard dessert. There are so many different fun toppings to choose from — the possibilities are endless!

How to Store Dirt Cake

Place this graveyard Oreo dessert into the refrigerator until you’re ready to serve. You can make the cake a day ahead of time, but it’s best to decorate the cake the day you are serving.

Cover leftover cake with plastic wrap, or place in airtight container and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. The cookies will get softer the longer the cake sits.

halloween dirt cake with gummy worms, tombstones and ghost peeps on plate


You can leave the cake layer out for a more traditional dirt cake or Halloween dirt pudding. The cake layer makes it easier to serve and serves as a base for the decorations.

For a no bake Halloween dirt cake, make Halloween dirt pudding cups in clear plastic cups. Individual cups are a great idea for feeding a crowd.

You can see my Dirt Pie recipe for the instructions.

If you want to make a homemade chocolate cake, use your favorite recipe.

Helpful Tips

You can make this cake a day ahead of time. Just decorate it the day you are serving it for best results.

Make sure to buy instant pudding mix and not cook and serve pudding as these are 2 different products.

Use toothpicks to place peeps ghosts in the cake.

If you are taking this dessert to a party away from home, use a disposable foil cake pan with a plastic cover for easy transport.

More Halloween Desserts

For more Halloween recipes for Halloween parties or for your family, try my Halloween Cake Pops or easy Halloween Oreo pumpkins or my no bake Nutter Butter Ghost cookies, Halloween Popcorn snack mix and check out even more easy Halloween Recipes.

5 from 6 votes

Halloween Dirt Cake Recipe

By: Dee
Halloween Dirt Cake Recipe (Graveyard Cake) with cake mix, chocolate pudding, crushed Oreos, gummy worms and candy is a fun Halloween dessert. This easy recipe is perfect for a Halloween party and so much fun to make!
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Resting time: 1 hour
Total Time: 2 hours
Servings: 12


  • 15.25 oz chocolate cake mix Plus ingredients to make cake
  • 3.9 oz instant chocolate pudding mix
  • 1 cup milk 2 percent or whole
  • 2 tbsp powdered sugar
  • 8 oz Cool Whip thawed
  • 25 Oreo cookies crushed
  • Milano cookies
  • Halloween candy
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  • Make cake according to package directions, and allow to cool completely
  • In a large bowl, mix the instant pudding, milk and powdered sugar with a hand mixer until combined
  • Fold in the Cool Whip until well combined and smooth
  • Spread the pudding mixture over the top of the cake
  • Spoon the crushed Oreo cookies over the pudding layer
  • Decorate with Milano cookie tombstones, candy corn pumpkins, gummy worms and Halloween candy of your choice
  • Store in refrigerator until ready to serve


Use melted chocolate and a toothpick or edible markers or gel food coloring to write on tombstone cookies.
Crush cookies in plastic bag with rolling pin or in food processor.
Follow directions for making pudding frosting using this recipe, not the recipe on the box of pudding.


Calories: 348kcal, Carbohydrates: 59g, Protein: 5g, Fat: 12g, Saturated Fat: 3g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g, Monounsaturated Fat: 5g, Trans Fat: 0.03g, Cholesterol: 5mg, Sodium: 549mg, Potassium: 247mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 36g, Vitamin A: 55IU, Vitamin C: 0.04mg, Calcium: 104mg, Iron: 5mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
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Recipe Rating


  1. Anne B says:

    I saw this on your instagram page, so cute!! I missed it this year but this will be perfect for my son’s Halloween party next year!5 stars

  2. Heidi says:

    Made this with the kids yesterday! What fun and really very easy! Will make this again a few times before Halloween!5 stars

  3. Betty says:

    What a neat idea! Did this with the grandkids and it was a huge hit! We will be making this often in the coming weeks.5 stars