Mandy Sacher Halloween marble cake with banana ghosts

Halloween marble cake with banana ghosts

In Celebrations, Features, Nourish, Stories by Nicole Fuge

Looking for a delicious sweet treat to make for Halloween? Well, the kiddies will love this marble cake. Not only is it healthy but the decorations look out of this world and are pretty easy to do. There are also tips on how to make the cake gluten and dairy free.

by Mandy Sacher, paediatric nutritionist, mum and author of Wholesome Child: Complete Nutrition Guide and Cookbook

Halloween chocolate cake with marble inside and ghost decorationsPrep time: 1 hour

Cooking time: 30 mins

Serves: 12

You will need: Electric hand mixer

// Ingredients

Chocolate ganache

  • 250ml coconut cream
  • 250g organic dark chocolate (70% or above), chopped
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3-5 tbs maple syrup
  • Pinch sea salt


  • 1 ¾ cups (175g) wholemeal spelt flour
  • ½ tbs baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • Pinch sea salt
  • ½ cup (120g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • ¾ cup (180ml) maple syrup
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract or powder
  • ¼ cup (60ml) coconut milk
  • 1 tbs raw cacao
  • Pinch stevia or ½ tbs maple syrup


  • 100g dark chocolate (70% or above), melted
  • 5 small lady-finger bananas, cut in half
Halloween chocolate cake and ghost decorations// Method 
  1. To make the chocolate ganache, heat coconut cream in a medium-sized saucepan until just before boiling.
  2. Remove from heat and add chocolate, vanilla extract, maple syrup and salt and let sit for three to four minutes without stirring through.
  3. Stir through until well combined. Place in the fridge to cool down while making the cake.
  4. To make the cake, preheat oven to 170°C and line two 21cm cake tins with baking paper.
  5. In a large bowl, add flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Stir to combine.
  6. In a medium-sized bowl, beat butter and maple syrup with an electric hand mixer. Add eggs, vanilla and coconut milk and mix for another minute.
  7. Divide batter into two bowls. Add cacao and stevia (or maple syrup) to one batch and mix for another minute.
  8. Pour both batters into prepared tins or divide both batters between the two tins and gently stir through with a skewer to create a marbled effect.
  9. Bake for approximately 30 mins, or until a cake tester comes out clean.
  10. Turn both cakes out onto a cooling rack and leave to cool. Once cooled completely, cut both cakes in half to get four layers.
  11. Put the first cake layer on a cake board or directly onto a cake stand or plate. Spread a layer of chocolate ganache on the first layer. Repeat this until you’ve used up all layers.
  12. Spread a thin layer of frosting all over the cake. Place the cake in the fridge while melting the chocolate for the decoration.
  13. Now for the decoration. Melt the dark chocolate in a heat proof bowl over a saucepan with boiling water.
  14. Take cake out of the fridge and pour the melted chocolate over the cake, letting it drip down the sides. Make sure you leave a little bit of chocolate to make ghost faces on the banana halves. Top with bananas.
  15. Using a wooden skewer, dip into the leftover melted chocolate and paint “spooky faces” onto the bananas.
  16. Place cake in the fridge until chocolate has set, approximately five minutes. Then serve immediately.

Storing leftovers: Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to one week or freeze for up to four months.

Tip: For a gluten-free version, swap spelt flour for two cups of gluten-free flour. For a dairy-free version, use coconut oil instead of butter.

You might also like: Soul Food: Lamb kofta recipeSoul Food: Sweet potato and almond butter brownies, and Soul Food: Supercharged bolognaise.