Bring the iconic carved pumpkin face to the dinner table by cutting a jack o’lantern from purchased pie crust. Use the crust to top a chicken pot pie. Remove the tops and seeds from yellow or orange bell peppers. Carve jack o’lantern faces in the side of the peppers using a small knife. Stuff the peppers with your favorite stuffed pepper filling and bake.
Beat an egg with 1 tbsp. water and brush the mixture over the jack o’lantern crust before baking. This creates a shiny, golden brown surface.
Make mummy quesadillas by sprinkling your favorite shredded cheese on flour tortillas. Cut thin strips of tortillas and arrange them on top of the cheese to look like bandages on a mummy. Bake the quesadillas to melt the cheese then add halved black olives for “eyes.”
Cut slices of bread using a large house-shaped cookie cutter. Make “haunted house” sandwiches using fillings like “terrifying tuna” or “prankster PB&J.” Cut ghost shapes with a teardrop cutter from slices of cheese and arrange them on the sandwiches. Use tiny pieces of black olives to make ghost eyes.
Layer cream cheese, salsa and purchased guacamole in a flat dish. Cut flour tortillas into “tombstone” shapes and bake until crisp. Use a marker with food-based ink to write scary epitaphs on the chips, then perch the chips in the dip.
Make cake pops by threading pumpkin-flavored donut holes onto sucker sticks and dipping into melted candy coating. Before the coating sets sprinkle colored jimmies or sugar on the pops. Or wait until the coating sets then draw jack o’lantern faces on the pops with a food-safe edible marker.
Dip pretzel rods into green melted candy coating to resemble a witch’s finger. Press a sliced almond at the top of the rod to resemble a fingernail then use a toothpick to score lines in the coating to resemble knuckles. Arrange the “fingers” in a tall glass for serving once the coating is completely dry.
Make “bug juice” floats using colorful fruit juice blends, lemon-lime soda and vanilla ice cream. Garnish with a gummy worm—if you dare.
Find candy coating disks in a wide variety of colors at craft and cake decorating supply stores.