Dirt Worm Cupcakes

Here is another project that kids will enjoy helping with as much as eating. It is a great Halloween or Birthday dessert.Dirt worm cupcakes on a platterHalloween is a few short days away. Are you going to wear a costume this year? What are you going to be? Whether you are going to a party and need a dessert to bring with you or staying home to give away some treats, these cupcakes are perfect for either occasion.  And they are so much fun to make. Kids will be jumping in to help for sure! I’m not big on decorating and these cupcakes don’t need to look too polished since “the worms are eating them”!

These chocolate cupcakes are very good; sweet, moist and light. I love coconut flavor and here I used coconut oil to make the batter. If you really don’t like the coconut flavor use vegetable oil.

milk and cocoa powder mixture in a measuring cupStart by warming up some milk and whisking in 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder. Let it cool a bit and add sugar, coconut oil (or vegetable oil), egg and vanilla extract. Whisk until smooth ( I used a stand mixer). In a separate bowl combine flour, salt and baking soda. Slowly whisk the flour mixture into the oil mixture and mix until smooth.stand mixer with flour and chocolate mixturePour the batter into a prepared cupcake pan. Bake in preheated to 350 degrees oven for about 23 -25 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.cupcake pan filled with chocolate batterCool the cupcakes before decorating them with frosting.

baked chocolate cupcakesTo make the frosting I used cream cheese, butter, vanilla extract, salt  and powdered sugar. I divided it in half (approximately) and mixed in a few drops of purple food coloring into one half and put 1/4 cup of unsweetened cocoa powder into the second half.

Cream cheese frosting mixed with purple food coloringChoose any color and shade you like. The gel food coloring is more preferable since it won’t dilute the frosting.

Purple frosting in a bowlTo make the “dirt” I used several Oreo Cookies. I scraped the white filling away, put the cookies into a small ziplock bag and crushed them using a meat tenderizer.

To decorate the cupcakes, using a small spatula or a knife, spread the frosting around. If you have never done it before, play a bit and see what works and what you like. This frosting won’t become too runny or stiff right away so you have time to decorate.

chocolate cupcake with purple frostingNext, add the gummy worms and crushed cookies. For some of the cupcakes here, I cut the gummy worm in half and pushed one half into the frosting so it looks like it’s burrowed. My older son actually  expected the entire gummy worm in there and was surprised a bit!Chocolate cupcake decorated with gummy worms and Oreo "dirt"Makes: 12 cupcakes         Prep time: 20 minutes          Ready in: 1 hr 15 min



  • 3/4 cup milk (I used 2%), heated
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup coconut oil (or vegetable oil)
  • 1 egg at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup unbleached, all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda


  • 1/2 stick unsalted butter, softened
  • 6 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • For white frosting: don’t need to add anything
  • For one color frosting: few drops of gel food coloring
  • For only chocolate frosting: 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, mixed in
  • For chocolate/color frosting: divide in half, add 1/4 cup of cocoa powder to one half, few drops of food coloring to the other half
  • 1 pack (about 24 pieces) gummy worms
  • about 7-10 Oreo cookies, filling removed, cookies crushed


  1. Cupcakes: preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line up the muffin pan with paper liners. Heat up the milk and whisk in the cocoa powder. Let it cool down. Pour the mixture into the stand mixer and add sugar, oil, egg and vanilla extract. Mix well for about 1 minute. In a small bowl combine flour, salt and baking soda. Add to the oil mixture and mix for another minute.
  2. Pour the batter into prepared muffin pan and bake for about 22-25 minutes or until the toothpick comes out clean. Cool the cupcakes on a cooling rack.
  3. Frosting: cream together butter and cream cheese for about 2 minutes then add vanilla extract and pinch of salt. With mixer set on low, slowly add powdered sugar and beat 2-3 minutes until smooth and thick. If desired, divide the frosting in half and separately mix in food coloring(s) and cocoa powder. Stir really well.
  4. Using spatula spread the frosting on cupcakes and decorate with crushed Oreo cookies and gummy worms.
  5. Store, covered, in a fridge. Bring to room temperature before serving.



  1. Pingback: Chocolate Peppermint Cupcakes with White Chocolate Frosting | It's Cooking with Magda

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