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How to Carve a Cannibal Pumpkin

Get creative with your Halloween decorations this year and make a spooky cannibal jack-o'-lantern.


  • Step 1: Sketch the rest of the mouth, including teeth, around the hole. You can make rows of square, block teeth or jagged, pointy teeth. Then cut out the mouth and fit the tiny pumpkin in its place to check for stability.
  • Step 2: Sketch the rest of the large pumpkin's face, including eyes and a nose, and cut out the face. Give your cannibal a mean, menacing expression. Then cut the rind from the teeth and eyes and add detail to the face with the paring knife.
  • Step 3: Wedge the victim pumpkin into the cannibal's mouth and set your cannibal pumpkin out for display.
  • FACT: The jack-o'-lantern comes from the Irish tradition of carving and lighting turnips and potatoes.
  • TIP: Cut the hole around your tracing too small to fit the pumpkin at first. Enlarge it incrementally to be sure that you don't make the hole too big.
  • Step 4: Use your marker to trace the outline of the tiny pumpkin in the area where you will carve the mouth from the large pumpkin, and then cut out the hole. Cut the hole on an angle so that you will be able to wedge the tiny pumpkin into it.
  • Step 5: Draw a face on the tiny pumpkin, making sure that the face conveys a terrified expression. Remember -- it's about to be eaten. Use a dry erase marker in case you make a mistake.
  • TIP: Make a wide enough mouth that you will be able to scoop out the guts after you cut it.
  • Step 6: Cut out the tiny pumpkin's face with a small carving knife and scoop out the guts with the small spoon. Then add detail by cutting the orange skin away from the pale meat of the pumpkin with a paring knife. This works best on teeth and eyes.
  • Step 7: Cut around the stem of the large pumpkin with a large carving knife, remove the top, and thoroughly clean and scrape out all of the guts until the inside is smooth. Start with a large spoon to get the bulk of the guts, and then finish it off with a smaller spoon or pumpkin scraper. Cut at an angle and leave a notch in the top so that you can easily replace the top later.
  • Step 8: Use a tiny pumpkin "victim" that is no larger that 1/4 the height of the large pumpkin. Find one with a long, straight stem. The stem will be the victim's hair, so you want it to look like it's standing on end.

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