Creepy Halloween Candy – Brain Hemorrhage Gumdrops

Oh, why didn’t I come up with this idea last year for our zombie party? These bleeding candy brains would have been a killer addition to our zombie dessert table served alongside my Cake Ball Brains.
I have a bit of an obsession with bleeding brains for Halloween. Although I love creating cute party food, when it comes to Halloween the creepier the better. These are definitely in the gruesome category.

Each candy brain is hemorrhaging blood, or so it appears. Really they are just homemade gumdrops filled with red food coloring.

It’s really cool how you can see the ruby red blood inside the clear gummy brain.

It’s even better when you cut into the brains, er, I mean gumdrops. The cross section really shows the blood.

Have you ever made homemade gumdrops? I did. last year, for the first time. I made Red, White and Blue Gumdrop Stars, and I fell in love with their soft chewy texture. They are much better than store bought candies and the best part is that you can make them any flavor you like.

I’ll admit that making gumdrops can be a bit challenging, but I promise you once you get the hang of it, you’ll want to make them over and over again, in various shapes and flavors. I got a bit carried away the other day, and made three different batches of Halloween gumdrops. I’ll share the other two tutorials with you soon.

Don’t forget to enter the giveaway at the end of today’s tutorial. 

Homemade Halloween Candy – Brain Hemorrhage Gumdrops   

Ingredients: (makes 8)

butter (to grease pan and brain mold)
3/4 cup water
1 (1.75 ounce) package powdered fruit pectin (original not low or no sugar pectin)
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup sugar
1 cup light corn syrup
1/4 -1/2 teaspoon flavored oil (I used LorAnn Sour Apple oil)
optional, food coloring

granulated sugar to coat gumdrops

red liquid food coloring

NOTE: You want pectin that is white or clear looking. I used Sure-Jell for this recipe. Pectin made my Ball has a brown hue to it, so I don’t suggest it for this project.


2 Fred and Friends Brain Freeze Molds (with 8 brain cavities)
optional, food handling glove to help with greasing your molds
1 1/2  or 2 quart saucepan, preferably a good quality stainless steel pan
2 or 3 quart saucepan
candy thermometer
glass bowl with spout or a glass mixing bowl
skewer or toothpick


Butter your brain molds before you make your batch of gumdrops.

Click here, to see the recipe for homemade gumdrops. As soon as your gumdrop mixture is ready, pour it into a glass bowl, preferably with a spout. 

Fill up each brain cavity about 3/4 full. You can top them off after you fill up all 8 brains. You wont have enough to completely fill the molds. 

Immediately, poke a hole in each brain using a skewer or toothpick that has been dipped in red food coloring. Swirl the skewer around a bit, spreading the red coloring around inside the brains. 

Allow the gumdrops to cool for 1 hour then pop the molds into the freezer for an hour. Remove, and un-mold the brains onto some sugar. Coat all the gumdrop brains in sugar. 

The brains look eerily transparent without sugar, but they are pretty sticky, so I do recommend coating them.

Store in an airtight container for up to a month. That means you have plenty of time to make these for  your Halloween party. Now onto the really fun part…

The Giveaway
Win an autographed copy of my cookbook, Hungry Halloween featuring Movie Monster Munchies Bewitched Buffet and Dead Man’s Diner PLUS a $25 Amazon gift card.

Giveaway Rules: Winner to be drawn at random from all valid entries. Entrants must reside in the United States and be over 18 years of age. (I’m so sorry to all of my world wide readers. Hosting an international contest has become too difficult due to all of the laws around the world.) Void where prohibited by law. No purchase necessary. Odds of winning are based on the total number of valid entries Winner will be notified and have 48 hours to respond.This contest is in no way sponsored by Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Google  +, or Amazon. This prize is provided by Hungry Happenings. 

Thanks for sharing this on Pinterest, Facebook, 
your blog, etc. by using the buttons below. 

Please post one picture, mention
 and link back to Hungry Happenings.

Be sure to send pictures of your
 recipe recreations
to share in the Readers’ Gallery

For a complete list of linky parties I attend, go here

Thank you for visiting Hungry Happenings 

– Beth

Items used to create this project that are available on (commission earned for sales)

More Creepy Halloween Edible Crafts
 from Hungry Happenings fit for a Zombie party
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Thanks for sharing!


    • says

      I too love watching my party guests squirm a bit. Only one of my guests has been too grossed out to eat something, which is good:)

  1. Anonymous says

    You are so talented! That is such a great idea! I just bought that brain mold to try out your cake pops this year! Love it!

  2. says

    I'm having trouble with one of your entries; I tried to see which chef reviewed your book; it gave me entries for visiting, but when I try to go to the link, it won't allow me see it without being an Amazon affiliate; what can we do? ♥

    • says

      Hi Jamie, thanks for letting me know. I think I fixed it. It's my first time using the giveaway widget from PunchTab. Let me know it you get it to work. Thanks for entering!

  3. says

    How very cool. I actually have some Sure-Jell I got in the bargain bin at the grocery store and I have the brain freeze ice cube trays too!. I'm thinking of bring brains to school as treats for the teachers. (I'm the librarian). Thanks so much for the inspiration.

    • says

      Perfect! It's a new use for Sure-Jell for most people, and I really love using it as apposed to gelatin for gumdrops. I hope you like it too!

  4. says

    Sara Moulton! I got that part situated Beth, but even if I follow and unfollow on Twitter 900 times [I really want this cookbook!], it still will not allow me add this entry. You're welcome. Thanks for the chance.

    • says

      I'm so sorry about that Jamie. No one apparently has been able to get that to work and it must be a bug in PunchTab's html. I don't know how to fix it. So at least everyone is on the same playing field. I can't even delete it. I just looked at the giveaway entry form, and really don't like it very much. I wont use it again, but I cant get rid of it now. Live and learn. I really appreciate you working so hard to enter! Good luck:)

  5. says

    These seriously creep me out. You are so awesome with all your Halloween ideas!
    Do you think I could sneak some kind of a fruit puree into this recipe. I've tried last year using some other recipe
    and it didn't work.

    • says

      If you actually made the brains, you could probably use a fruit syrup in place of the red food coloring. Otherwise, I bet you can just swap out some of the water for the fruit puree. I'll have to give that a try.

  6. Anonymous says

    Now that's the Beth I have been waiting for. This is totally gross and I have to make 105 of these and the best thing, I already have the molds. Can you tell you have made me a happy ghoul? Thank you for all of your hard work and great brain. Trish Butler

  7. Anonymous says

    I love creepy halloween food. Your food manages to be both creepy and cute at the same time. I love it! — Sara Jelinek ([email protected])

  8. Anonymous says

    Sara Moulton wrote a review for your book — Sara Jelinek ([email protected])

    • says

      I love cute, classy, and creepy and think Halloween has become my favorite holiday, just because it's all about fun. Unless, like me you host a party for over 100 guests, there isn't usually much stress involved in Halloween. I love Christmas too!

  9. Anonymous says

    Beth, how can I store these? Can I put them in the fridge without the powdered sugar while making more? I am making so many, I have to put them somewhere. lol Can I stack them with wax paper between? Again, these are awesome. Trish Butler

    • says

      Hi Trish, I don't suggest storing these in the refrigerator. They will get really sticky. I would definitely coat them in granulated sugar (not powdered sugar) if you are making a lot. Once coated line them up in a single layer in large zip top bags. You can then stack those bags on top of each other in a larger box. Wax paper should work as well. Have fun! I hope you have a lot of molds.

    • says

      It was totally cool. I learned to cook by watching her show on Food Network. I got the chance to meet her a few years ago and she is an amazingly talented and sweet lady.

  10. says

    I love creepy Halloween food! I always make witch finger cookies, bloody stump and all, every year. I've had people shy away from them based on looks alone!

    • says

      It always cracks me up when people wont eat a treat because it looks like fingers or a brain. It's food! I know people who wont eat a teddy bear cake too.

    • says

      It's so funny how zombies are so popular right now. Our Halloween party last year was all about zombies and it was such a great theme.

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