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These Broken Glass Cupcakes are the perfect Halloween bake if you want something gluten free, ‘spooktacular’ and fun to make.

Red Velvet Cupcakes are topped with a cream cheese frosting, spiked with ‘shards’ of edible glass and then drizzled in edible blood.

They’re the perfect spooky bake for Halloween which will look shocking but are actually completely edible – and delicious.

The glass shards are made from melted sweets and the fake blood is actually white chocolate ganache – both of which are SO easy to make.

Plus these easy bloody broken glass cupcakes are completely gluten free and coeliac-safe.

They make a great Halloween baking activity for kids and the only ‘trick’ is that no-one will ever know they’re gluten free. The rest is ALL treat!

Why not also bake up a batch of my Gluten Free Monster Cupcakes for the perfect Halloween party spread?

I’ve packed this blog post with lots of hints and tips to make the easy edible glass shards and fake blood to guide you along the way.

Or just hit ‘jump to the recipe’ at the top of this post to get straight to it!

broken glass cupcakes gluten free
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Ingredients and Substitutions

There’s a full printable recipe card with the ingredients, quantities and method below.

But instead of list them all here, I just wanted to add a few ideas for substitutions.

To make this recipe dairy free:

You could easily make these broken glass cupcakes dairy free with a few simple swaps.

Use the Stork Baking Block in the cake, and for the frosting use a dairy free cream cheese (I recommend Violife) and dairy free butter.

You’ll also need to use a dairy free white chocolate and cream replacement for the white chocolate ganache ‘blood’.

For the buttermilk, you can make your own dairy free version using the instructions below.

To make your own buttermilk:

If you don’t have buttermilk, don’t worry – you can easily make your own at home.

Simply add 1 tbsp of white wine vinegar to 150ml of milk (dairy or dairy free) and stir well.

Leave this for 5 minutes and it will thicken and sour to create buttermilk.

You can also use 1 tbsp lemon juice – but as we’re already adding white wine vinegar to this it made sense to use that!

Can I make one big broken glass cupcake?

The simple answer to this is yes!

If you’d rather make one large cake instead of cupcakes, I recommend following the recipe for my Gluten Free Red Velvet Cake.

It’s exactly the same as this just with the right quantities and cooking times to make a larger cake instead.

Then use the edible blood and glass shards in this recipe to create the finished cake!

broken glass cupcakes gluten free

How to make fake broken glass

I tried a few variations of making fake broken glass – and there were lots of complicated options involving sugar syrup and thermometers.

In the end I found THE simplest technique which takes only 5 minutes!

All I did was lay out a bag of (unwrapped!) Fox’s Glacier Mints on a lined baking tray, no more than 1-2 inches apart.

Once the cakes were done I popped this in the hot oven for 5 minutes until the sweets had *just* melted.

Take it out and leave to cool completely before shattering the ‘glass’ with a good whack of the rolling pin!

It’s a super simple method and much simpler than trying it in a saucepan which left me scrubbing burnt sugar off my pans with boiling water for 30 minutes!

broken glass cupcakes gluten free

How do you make edible blood for Halloween cakes?

For this recipe I also tried a few different methods for edible blood which would look realistic enough and still taste good.

I did consider using raspberries pressed through a sieve but the idea of this with the peppermint just didn’t work for me.

In the end I made a super simple white chocolate ganache and dyed it red using food colouring.

The ganache is formed of white chocolate and double cream – and I used a whole tube or this Dr Oetker Extra Strong Red food colouring I found in the supermarket.

I usually use the Sugarflair Red Extra Food Colouring which is labelled gluten free.

However I used the last of this in my cake on this occasion – the Dr Oetker one worked pretty well though I thought!

broken glass cupcakes gluten free

How to make broken glass cupcakes

Although there are a few different components to these broken glass cupcakes they are actually very easy to make.

The cupcakes uses a half-quantity of my Gluten Free Red Velvet Cake recipe which is simply split between 12 cupcake cases.

Once cooled I topped these with a cream cheese frosting, then decorated them with the glass shards and fake blood.

If you’re looking for a super fun Halloween bake or a great activity to keep kids busy then this bake would be absolutely perfect.

broken glass cupcakes gluten free

My broken glass cupcakes recipe

This recipe makes 12 broken glass cupcakes with cream cheese frosting, edible glass shards and edible fake blood.

Although the recipe looks like long it’s actually pretty simple – I just wanted to explain every single step thoroughly!

If you make this recipe and love it, please do let me know by tagging me on my Instagram or using #theglutenfreeblogger. I love seeing your creations!

And please do leave a review to let others know you loved it too! It would mean the world to me.

broken glass cupcakes gluten free
Yield: 12 cupcakes

Broken Glass Cupcakes (Red Velvet, Gluten Free)

Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 25 minutes

These spooky broken glass cupcakes are the perfect Halloween bake! A simple gluten free red velvet cake, topped with cream cheese frosting and decorated with shards of edible broken glass and fake blood.


  • 60g Stork baking margarine (or softened butter)
  • 150g caster sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1-2 tsp red food colouring
  • 150g plain gluten free flour
  • 1.5 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp xanthan gum (omit if your flour contains this already)
  • 20g cocoa powder
  • 150ml buttermilk (see notes if you don't have this)
  • 1 tsp white wine vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda

For the frosting:

  • 85g unsalted butter (at room temperature)
  • 350g icing sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 165g full fat cream cheese (I recommend Philadelphia)

For the edible glass:

  • 200g Fox's Glacier Mints

For the fake blood:


  1. Preheat the oven to 180'C / Fan 160'C / Gas Mark 4. Line a 12-hole cupcake tin with cake cases and set to one side.
  2. Add the Stork (or butter) and caster sugar to a large mixing bowl and beat until pale and fluffy. Add the eggs and mix again until combined.
  3. In a small bowl, mix the red food colouring and vanilla extract together - this will help it mix evenly into the cake batter a bit more. Pour the colouring/vanilla mix into the cake batter and beat again with the mixer until it is an even. vibrant crimson colour.
  4. Mix the gluten free flour, baking powder, xanthan gum and cocoa powder in a separate bowl and then sift into the mixture. It's important to use a sieve here to ensure you don't get any lumps!
  5. Pour in the buttermilk and then beat with the mixture again until you have a smooth batter with no lumps of flour.
  6. Add the vinegar to a small bowl, pour in the bicarbonate of soda, stir briefly to mix (it should fizz and bubble a little!) and then pour into the cake mixture. Beat with the electric mixer until combined.
  7. Pour the cake batter evenly between the cupcake cases and then place in the oven for 22-25 minutes. Do not open the oven door until at least 20 minutes! The cakes should have risen nicely. Remove from the oven to cool completely - but while the oven is still hot, make the edible glass.

To make the edible glass:

  1. Unwrap the Glacier Mints and spread them out on a lined baking sheet with no more than 1-2 inches between them. Place in the hot oven as soon as the cakes are out for 5 minutes (or until completely melted). Keep an eye on them - remove from the oven as soon as they have melted into one layer and place on a cooling rack for cool completely and harden up.
  2. Once ready to decorate, use the end of a rolling pin or a pestle to smash the sheet into shards.

To make the frosting:

  1. Add the butter (it's very important this is at room temperature!) to a large mixing bowl and beat with the electric mixer for 1-2 minutes.
  2. Add the icing sugar and vanilla extract to the mix and beat again until fully combined.
  3. Add the cream cheese and beat the mixture for several minutes until it is thick, light and fluffy with no lumps of cream cheese. Note - I strongly recommend using Philadelphia cheese, and ABSOLUTELY a full-fat version, as cheaper brands or non-fat ones may result in runny frosting!

To make the ganache:

  1. Note: Do this just before decorating as if you make it too far in advance the ganache will stiffen and not pour so easily! When ready, break the white chocolate into a microwaveable bowl and heat in short bursts of 10-20 seconds until just melted.
  2. Add the cream and food colouring and stir well.

To assemble the cupcakes:

  1. Spoon the frosting into a piping bag - I used one with a star nozzle - and pipe swirls onto the cupcakes. You can be generous with these!
  2. Stand the shards of 'glass' up in the frosting and then drizzle with the ganache 'blood' to finish. Spooky!


  • If using butter instead of Stork, soften the butter slightly in the microwave for 5-10 seconds before starting the cake. I find Stork gives a nicer texture to the sponge.
  • To make your own buttermilk, mix 150ml of any milk with 1 tbsp white wine vinegar, stir and leave to stand and thicken for 5 minutes. Simple!
  • These cupcakes will keep for up to 5 days in an airtight container. You can also make the sponges ahead of time and freeze them - simple defrost when you're ready to decorate the cakes.

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Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:

1 cupcake

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 408Total Fat: 14gSaturated Fat: 8gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 57mgSodium: 166mgCarbohydrates: 68gFiber: 1gSugar: 51gProtein: 5g

Need more gluten free Halloween bakes?

Here are some more easy baking recipes you can try out once you’ve made this Gluten Free Broken Glass Cupcakes.

If you do make this recipe please let me know! I’d love to see your photos using #theglutenfreeblogger, share them in my Facebook group or tag me on Instagram. 

If you have any recipe suggestions, please let me know in the comments what you’d like to see next!

Like this Broken Glass Cupcakes recipe?

Make sure you follow me on Pinterest and pin this recipe card below for later!

broken glass cupcakes gluten free
broken glass cupcakes gluten free

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About Sarah Howells

Hi, I'm Sarah! Diagnosed with coeliac disease 20 years ago, I'm on a mission to create the best gluten free recipes since sliced bread. No fruit salads or dry brownies here.

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