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With chocolate bodies and licorice legs, these cute spiders on cobwebs will "catch" attention fast! They're easy to scare up, too—our home economists simply put a Halloween spin on cupcakes they baked from a purchased mix.
Here comes the big yellow bus! Kayla could hardly wait to board a real one to go to kindergarten, so I made her birthday cake to look like a school bus. It wasn't very complicated to decorate, yet everyone immediately recognized the sweet vehicle.
-Leslie Miller, Butler, Pennsylvania
I dress up a boxed cake mix by stirring in sour cream, red food coloring and chocolate chips. A white chocolate and cream cheese frosting—sprinkled with crushed mints—is the crowning touch.—Donna Bardocz, Howell, Michigan
At the root of this treat is plenty of penny-wise practicality. "I first started making the 'logs' after I saw some chocolate-dipped pretzels at a shop," explains Mary Biebl of St. Paul, Minnesota. "They sure were appealing—but the price was outrageous. So I came up with my own version. "Nowadays, I often tie bundles of plastic-wrapped 'logs' with ribbons to give out a Christmas, or I'll set a stack out on a pretty plate for a party."—Mary Biebl, St. Paul, Minnesota
Some of the strawberry jam I put up every year makes its way into these brownies. I like to bake up a batch as a special treat for the learning-disabled students I teach. My husband and three sons enjoy them, too. —Teresa Jansen, Advance, Missouri
Decorated with names or not, LaTressa Allen's treats have rich fudge flavor and a gooey marshmallow layer that'll surely be a hit with your family. "Mine, for one, absolutely loves chocolate," she chuckles from Fort Worth, Texas. "I'm constantly trying new desserts with that ingredient—and have found these brownies please young and old alike."