This Spider Breadstick Bowl for Halloween is a fun appetizer made with pizza dough shaped like a spider with a space in his back for a bowl of marinara dipping sauce.
This spider bowl is a fun way to serve breadsticks with dipping sauce at your Halloween party. It’s made using pizza dough, rolled into a large circle as the spider’s body, with and eight dough ropes as legs, and 8 more breadstick legs on the side to dip in the sauce.
We found this recipe on Women’s Day and fell in love with the simplicity of it. The legs are sprinkled with grated Parmesan cheese ot make it look like it has hairy spider legs and we’ve used olive slices for the eyes and mouth. It’s served with warm marinara sauce for dipping, making it a fantastic spooky appetizer or treat.
If you enjoy making spooky-themed food, then you will really enjoy this! You can form the spider any way you like, and serve any type of dip in it’s bowl.
- Pizza Dough – You can use any pizza dough of your choice, store-bought or homemade.
- Egg – The beaten egg is used to give the spider a golden, glossy finish.
- Finely Grated Parmesan Cheese – Use freshly grated parmesan cheese or a finely shredded cheese to mimic hairy legs.
- Pitted Black Olive – a sliced black olive is used for the spider’s eyes, you can use green if you prefer but black stands out more.
- Marinara Sauce – Warm marinara sauce is served as a dipping sauce. I used my favorite jarred sauce. Pizza sauce would be great as well.
- 2x baking sheets
- Parchment paper or silicon mat
- Small bowl to fit in the spiders back to hold the sauce (optional)
- Bake in the oven or in the air fryer
How to Make this Spider Breadstick Bowl for Halloween
Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C). Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper.
Cut one ball of dough in half. Make the spider body with one half by shaping it into a large 5” ball. Cut the other half in half again. Use it to make a 2 1/2” ball for the head. Cut the remaining dough into 8 pieces. Roll each piece into 6” legs.
On the first baking sheet, arrange the pieces to form a spider, gently pressing each piece together. Brush the entire body with the beaten egg.
Sprinkle some of the Parmesan cheese onto the legs. Place the olive slices on the head for eyes and pinchers. I had a hard time getting them to stay in the dough, but you can try cutting a slit in the dough and lodging it in.
Bake 25-30 minutes, until golden brown. You may need to cover the legs with foil if they brown too quickly. Mine cooked at a very even rate, so I didn’t have to do that.
With the other ball of dough, make 8 more breadstick legs. Shape them to resemble legs. Place them on the second baking sheet. Brush with egg and sprinkle with the remaining Parmesan cheese. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until golden brown.
Hollow out the body of the spider and fill it with warm marinara sauce. Serve with the leg breadsticks on the side. As you can see in my photos, I placed a small dish in the back to hold the sauce. That kept the sauce from seeping into the bread and making it soggy. I would recommend doing that if you have a bowl that would fit.
Additional Helpful Tips
- Fresh pizza dough, either homemade or store-bought, works best for this recipe. It’s pliable and easy to shape. I usually use Trader Joe’s or Von’s (Safeway) brand fresh dough.
- When attaching the dough ropes for the spider’s legs, try to space them evenly around the body for a balanced appearance. It’s best to roll the legs very thin, because they puff up when they cook.
- Make sure to brush the entire spider including the legs, with the beaten egg for an even, golden-brown finish.
- Keep an eye on the spider while it bakes, as oven temperatures can vary. Remove it from the oven when it’s golden brown and the cheese is bubbling.
- You might need to cover the legs with tin foil if they start to get too dark while the base is still cooking.
How to Store and Reheat
This saucy spider is best served immediately, but if you do have a lot left over you can store it in the fridge for up to 3 days in an airtight bag. It will soften in the refrigerator so you will have to bake it again for 5 minutes at 350 degrees to get it toasty again. You can also reheat it in the air fryer!
If you want to make this in advance, you’ll need to bake it, then cool it completely before storing it in an airtight bag in the refrigerator. It can be frozen as well. This is a great way to prep in advance for a Halloween party.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I use pre-made pizza dough for this recipe?
Absolutely! You can use store-bought pizza dough to save time, or you can make your own pizza dough from scratch if you prefer.
What can I use instead of egg wash if I have an egg allergy?
You can substitute the egg wash with a brush of olive oil or milk for a similar golden-brown finish.
Can I freeze the spider breadstick bowl for later?
Yes, you can bake and then freeze the spider for later. It’s best to wait to carve out the back until you’re ready to serve it.
What type of dipping sauce goes best with the breadstick bowl?
Marinara sauce or pizza sauce is the best choice, but you can also serve it with garlic aioli, ranch dressing, or any dipping sauce you prefer.
Can I make mini saucy spiders instead of one large one?
Yes, you can divide the dough into smaller portions to create individual-sized saucy spiders.
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Spider Breadstick Bowl for Halloween
- 2 balls pizza dough
- 1 large egg beaten
- 1/3 cup (33 g) finely grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 large pitted black olive sliced
- 2 cups (473 ml) marinara sauce warmed
- Preheat oven to 375°F (190°C). Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper.
- Cut one ball of dough in half. Make the spider body with one half by shaping it into a large 5” ball. Cut the other half in half again. Use it to make a 2 1/2” ball for the head. Cut the remaining dough into 8 pieces. Roll each piece into 6” legs.
- On the first baking sheet, arrange the pieces to form a spider, gently pressing each piece together. Brush the entire body with the beaten egg.
- Sprinkle some of the Parmesan cheese onto the legs. Place the olive slices on the head for eyes and pinchers.
- Bake 25-30 minutes, until golden brown. You may need to cover the legs with foil if they brown too quickly.
- With the other ball of dough, make 8 more breadstick legs. Shape them to resemble legs. Place them on the second baking sheet. Brush with egg and sprinkle with the remaining Parmesan cheese. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until golden brown.
- Hollow out the body of the spider and fill it with warm marinara sauce. Serve with the leg sticks on the side.