16 Clever Pumpkin Carving Ideas

1Skull-A-Day Pumpkin

We all know what's inside a regular pumpkin, but it's a lot more chilling to give it a brain inside a human-like skull.

2Bloody Brains

Like the idea of brains in your pumpkin, but not up to the challenge of carving them out? Follow this Extreme Pumpkins example and use some self-expanding foam to fill in the brain cavity of your jack-o-lantern. Add a little fake blood and you'll have a horrifyingly cool design in no time.

3 Smashed Up

Another great alternative to carving your own pumpkin brain is using cauliflower and fake blood. The end effect is a delightfully smashed up victim.

4Alien Chestburster

This awesome Extreme Pumpkins creation reimagines the chestburster scene from Alien. Few movie moments are as memorable.


Looking to do something a little practical with your pumpkin this year? Why not make it into a chandelier for your Halloween bash? The Christmas lights inside may not light up the whole room, but it's certain to create a great atmosphere anyway.

6Frankenstein Pumpkins

Who says you need to carve or even paint your pumpkins to make them Halloween-ready? With the crazy Frankenstein pumpkins from Molded Melons, you can have a creepy movie monster without ever lifting a finger since they actually grow their pumpkins into this shape.

7Fairy Tale Carriage

A few mini-pumpkins and some hardware can turn a regular pumpkin into a magical carriage fit for a tiny princess. For extra affect, feel free to add some mice coachmen or a princess Barbie doll.

8Eyeball Mouth

Whether this pumpkin shows an eyeball being eaten or an eyeball that grows inside of a mouth, the result is creepy either way—especially with the bloody accents.


You don't need to carve your pumpkin to make something incredible. This cool Yoda design uses bamboo skewers and other fruits and vegetables to create a likeness of everyone's favorite Jedi master.

10Nailed It

You don't need to make an over-the-top pumpkin carving to create something terrifying —just try adding delightfully horrible effects to your jack-o-lantern, like dozens of nails.

11Lizard Skeleton

Pumpkins make a great carving material for skeletons. With its cute face and spiky back ridges, this little guy is adorable!


This pumpkin isn't just cute, but it's also a great backup plan if you ever mess up one of your carvings—just peel off the skin, scoop out a few sponge holes and then paint on your facial expressions.


What happens when the pumpkin next door is everyone's favorite serial killer? You get a display that's equally creepy and hilarious, that's what.


We're used to lighting up the pumpkins we carve, but for a more daylight friendly option you can always try planting something in them instead. Best of all, you can remove the plants after Halloween and use the pumpkin as compost to keep them alive longer.

15Jack Skellington

It's simple enough to carve Jack Skellington's face into a white pumpkin, but with a green glow stick to light up the whole thing, this Flickr user brought their jack-o-lantern to a whole new level.

16Cookie Cutter Pumpkins

You don't need a ton of artistic skill to make a cool jack-o-lantern—all you need are some cookie cutters. They may not look like traditional Halloween pumpkins, but they sure are cute.