Introduction: Halloween Human Torso Appetizer

Picture of Halloween Human Torso Appetizer

Also known as The ManWich.

This is a perfect appetizer for going over the top and impressing your guests on Halloween. It's both pretty and gruesome. :D

If you buy all the dips and fillings ready made, it's easy to put together. You've really just got to bake lots of puff pastry and then assemble! And now that I've made all the assembly mistakes you can avoid them.

If you've got lots of baking sheets laying around and some extra hands, I think this could come together in an hour or so!

Special thanks to canida for brainstorming with me and offering suggestions, and to wilgubeast for brainstorming and naming the torso ManWich! And HUGE thanks to audreyobscura for helping me take very pretty photos of the finished project - you're my hero!

P.S. Go to the last step for TONS more photos. :D

Step 1: Ingredients:

Picture of Ingredients:
This is what I used. You definitely don't have to do it this way!
  • for the torso base (skin), lung & liver bowls, ribs, etc: three packages puff pastry - Pepperidge Farms was the easiest to work with
  • an egg for eggwashin' the puff pastry
  • 16 oz+ white bean dip for one of the lungs (here's my white bean dip recipe!)
  • 16 oz+ hummus for one of the lungs (here's my recipe for hummus!)
  • pate for the liver
  • two packages smoked salmon to make the subcutaneous muscle lining the torso
  • 2 packages cream cheese for the cheeseball stomach and to keep the puff pastry bowls in place
  • shredded cheese (I used cheddar!) for the cheeseball stomach
  • a beet for the heart
  • a teeny pickle for the gallbladder
  • salami to make up the colon
I also made puff pastry intestines to go into the torso - you can find the recipe for that here!

You'll also need some parchment paper and aluminum foil to help with baking the puff pastry and beet. :) Oh, and I got some frilly toothpicks to stick in the edges of the puff pastry skin so it looked like it was pinned down to the cutting board.

Step 2: Planning

Picture of Planning

This required lots of brainstorming! It's really all going to depend on how large your serving platter/cutting board/baking sheet is. We have a huge cutting board at the office, so I based the size of my torso on that. 

Draw out the "flesh" part first and then cram in all the other organs. :D

For this, I chose to do lungs, a heart, liver, gallbladder, stomach, colon and intestines. Some organs are missing, I know. ;) But I couldn't get it all in there AND make it look nice!

I also decided to do little bits of spine coming out the top and bottom of the torso. I made tiny ribs out of the puff pastry too.

Step 3: Make the Intestines!

Picture of Make the Intestines!

You can make these first to get them out of the way - just assemble the puff pastry in the pan, cover it, and put it in the fridge. You can bake them while you assemble the rest of the torso.

The full recipe for these can be found here:

Step 4: Cut Out and Bake the Torso Base

Picture of Cut Out and Bake the Torso Base

This will take two sheets of puff pastry.

I did this on parchment paper so it was easy to transfer the pastry to what I would be baking it on.

I used a little water to connect the two pieces and then rolled it out lightly. Then I cut around the edges of my paper template so I could use it as a pattern. I laid the paper on top of the pastry and cut around the edges with a paring knife.

I then used some of the extra pieces of puff pastry to cut out the top and bottom of the "spine" and affixed them to the sheet of pastry with a little water. :)

Once everything is ready, coat it with a little egg wash.

Bake this at 400 F for about 20 minutes, or until nice and golden brown.

Step 5: Create the Cheeseball Stomach

Picture of Create the Cheeseball Stomach

For the cheeseball I used 1 1/2 boxes of cream cheese (it needs to be softened - if you forgot to leave it out at room temp, heat it in the microwave 30 seconds at a time until nice and soft.) and a couple handfuls of cheddar cheese. I mixed it all together with onion powder, garlic powder, cayenne, Italian seasoning, paprika, salt and pepper. I completely winged this part.

I then plopped the mixture out onto a bit of parchment paper and formed it into the shape of the stomach I drew out.

This needs to go into the fridge to firm up while you make the rest of the pieces!

Step 6: Make the Beet Heart

Picture of Make the Beet Heart

To roast the beet, you'll want to cut off the very top and bottom, wrap it in foil, put it in a little baking dish, and pop it in the oven at 400 F for at least 40 minutes. Smaller beets will be done in that time, but large beets might take a little longer.

You'll know if you can easily piece it with a paring knife. :)

Once it's out, let it cool down enough so you can touch it, and carve it a bit so it looks more like a heart than it did. :D

Step 7: Make the Lung and Liver Bowls

Picture of Make the Lung and Liver Bowls

To do this, cut a sheet of puff pastry into strips, and rolled the strips. I cut out one of the lungs and the liver from my paper template to use as a pattern.

Imagine it's like you're making a bowl from clay - just wind the rolled pastry around the pattern, adding at least two layers. Use a bit of water to get it to stay together.

You might want to brace it in the middle with a little bit of aluminum foil - mine collapsed in a little bit while baking!

Bake at 400 F for about 15-20 minutes, or until golden brown.

Step 8: Make the Ribs

Picture of Make the Ribs

I was starting to lose track of what I was and wasn't documenting at this time, so there's only one photo of this part. :)

I cut out six ribs total - two large, two medium, and two small. At this point I wasn't sure if I was going to use them or not, but I think they looked pretty nice!

I baked these at 400 F for about 20 minutes, and coated them with egg wash before!

Step 9: Lay Down the Subcutaneous Muscles

Picture of Lay Down the Subcutaneous Muscles

Place the smoked salmon around the edges of the torso. You'll want to save a little bit to fill in any space between the dip bowls and the lungs and kidneys. :D

Step 10: Place the Lungs, Liver and Stomach Into Place

Picture of Place the Lungs, Liver and Stomach Into Place

Check the placement of everything first! At this point you can lay down some extra salmon to cover the puff pastry in places it might be exposed. Once you're happy with it, apply a good bit of cream cheese to the backs of the lungs and liver. This will help keep them in place and keep your dips from leaking. :)

I put the cheeseball stomach on first, and then pressed the liver into it. That made it look nicer and also helped the liver stay in place.

Step 11: Fill the Bowls and Add the Heart!

Picture of Fill the Bowls and Add the Heart!

In the end, I overfilled the bowls so the puff pastry is a little hidden. You definitely don't have to do this - it just made it look nicer for photos. :D

Make sure to put the beet on only after you're really happy with the dip - it will bleed!

Step 12: Put the Colon Into Place

Picture of Put the Colon Into Place

I didn't get photos of this while I was doing this, but I peeled the casing off the salami and then cut it on an angle. I used this to form the colon.

Step 13: Add the Intestines!

Picture of Add the Intestines!

To do this, I just measured the area I had left on the torso and cut out an appropriate sized piece to insert. :)

Step 14: Remember the Gallbladder!

Picture of Remember the Gallbladder!

Put that pickle in its place! Don't want to forget it.

Step 15: Want to See the 3D Version?

Picture of Want to See the 3D Version?

I managed to get a pretty excellent Catch of it!

Click here to see it in the 3D viewer. :D

Step 16: The Finished Torso!

Picture of The Finished Torso!

And now we get to the food porn part of the evening.

Nothing to see here but pretty pictures of delicious foods arranged like a flayed human torso. Move along. :D


kwatson2 made it! (author)2016-10-23

This was SO much fun to make and your instructions were perfect. Everyone went crazy for it and it grossed out a fair amount of people mission accomplished :)

jessyratfink (author)kwatson22016-10-24

seriously, yours is so good!!! love those little forks too :D

RobJ3 made it! (author)2014-10-26

Thanks for sharing this... it was a hit!

Buckeye Colin made it! (author)2013-10-29

Oops. here it is. (I hope)

So I love this idea, and will be attempting it this weekend... What did you use for the intestines? I can't figure it out.

That is amazing. I love it. :D Sandwich fixings are such a smart idea!

Cthulhumon made it! (author)2013-01-03

Thanks for these instructions, my modified version was a big hit at my Post-Apocalypse Party!

jessyratfink (author)Cthulhumon2013-01-04

Ahhhhhhhhhhh! That is so exciting - I never thought anyone would make one. It looks awesome! You've made my day. :D :D :D

lallerb (author)2016-08-30

The only thing missing is a dish of chocolates at the end of the colon. I'm going to have to make this for my next party!

olivia11 (author)2015-03-29


davis31 (author)2015-01-21


Deepakjuneja (author)2015-01-21

amazing i loved it

adriana1616 (author)2014-10-08

this is simply amazing!!! I loved it!

ThisIsMyNameOK (author)2014-10-07

Eeeew. That's gross. Which is a sure sign it will be a hit with the kids. At least the ones I know.

Izzypup (author)2014-10-07

Absolutely gruesome! I'm not sure I'd be able to eat it. It's a bit like the Kitty Litter cake I've made (by request) several times. Looks like a used litter box - complete with little piles of s__ oftened mini Tootsie rolls. Delicious but there have always been a few whose eyes overrule their appetites.

CREATECRAFTANDLIVE (author)2014-10-07

lol the pickle is perfectly placed! wink wink.

jmyers1 (author)2014-10-07

Yuck. And also just great! Kids would love this for a Halloween party!

NamedJohnny (author)2014-10-07

I would eat everything, thanks for sharing this

Arghus (author)2013-10-31

damn, hannibal would be proud

Jayefuu (author)2012-10-19

Outstanding Jessy! And congratulations on being featured on the Huffington Post :)

porcupinemamma (author)Jayefuu2013-10-30

The Huffington Post? Where? When? Oh! Oh! Tell me more. Please

porcupinemamma (author)2013-10-30

eeww-yuck! That is DISGUSTING!!!! Way to go ;0) LOVE it!

inkbladder (author)2013-10-30

My wife teaches Anatomy at a local college. The next get together they have, I will be making this. Great job, love it.

Buckeye Colin (author)2013-10-29

Awesome idea! Here is my version from our Halloween party. We had hummous and jarlsburg dips in the two lungs and spinach artichoke dip in the liver. Lots of meats and cheeses surround the organs for sandwiches. i added a skull skewer head with goat cheese grapes.

BTW - Far less intimidating than I thought it would be. The puff pastry is very forgiving. I skipped the puff pastry spine/base and had the corpse resting on a bed of chopped lettuce which could also be used in sandwiches. It was a huge hit at the party and I would encourage anyone to gve it a try.

truliwicked (author)2013-10-27

this would be great for my birthday...even if it is close to Christmas!! Thanks for sharing.

Kdemon (author)2013-10-27

I think I would used canned cranberry and carve the heart and wrap in gelatin.

I really enjoyed the 3D view from 123D, Instructables need to include that in the submission process!

Kdemon (author)2013-10-27

I think I would used canned cranberry to make the heart and wrap in genital.

I really enjoyed the 3D view from 123D, Instructables need to include that in the submission process!

ktana (author)2013-10-07

Best Halloween food item EVER. I LOVE IT!!!!!

JensonBut (author)2013-01-25

They all look so good. I think I've gained a pound or two just looking at the pics. Thanks for all the recipes together.

DividersMaker (author)2013-01-18

that looks AWESOME, Where did the idea come from.

bajablue (author)2012-12-02

Hey Jessy-WINNER-ratfink... Congrats on winning Autodesk's Halloween Food Contest!!!

Great Gross Job!!! ;-D

scoochmaroo (author)2012-11-08

I am still amazed by all of the work you did on this.

poofrabbit (author)2012-10-31

This is just plain awesome!

mariesegal (author)2012-10-23

This is a riot, great job!!

twighahn (author)2012-10-14

what is on the liver?

jessyratfink (author)twighahn2012-10-14

The aspic that came on the pate. I thought it made it look extra gross. :D

jcosta-1 (author)jessyratfink2012-10-23

You were right...ewww!

Dusk Shadows (author)2012-10-20

Epic nice 1 jes (i hope u dont mind me call u jes =/)

kitschkitty (author)2012-10-15

shroomgirl - I worked out it is the layer of jelly that you get on top of the pate.

LesB (author)2012-10-14

Really gross. And the funniest I'ble I've ever seen.

jessyratfink (author)LesB2012-10-14

Yaaaaaaaaay! Thanks :D

Chookums (author)2012-10-14

O M G !!! I'm repulsed + fascinated + laughing my head off. This would be just perfect for a gathering of medical students. Very clever, well done!

jessyratfink (author)Chookums2012-10-14

Thank you! :)

mikeasaurus (author)2012-10-13

Inaccurate. I feel with the amount of beer I consume my liver resembles more of a pickle than my gall bladder :D

jessyratfink (author)mikeasaurus2012-10-14

We'll have to customize one for you, then :D

kcli (author)2012-10-13

Not sure I'll think of body parts the same way ever again. Save the colon for me!

jessyratfink (author)kcli2012-10-14

It was probably one of the yummiest parts. :D

shroomgirl (author)2012-10-14

This is fantastic!
One question: What is package on top of the liver?

jessyratfink (author)shroomgirl2012-10-14

Thank you! It's the aspic that was on top of the pate!

About This Instructable




Bio: I work at instructables by day, and turn into a stitch witch by night. follow me on instagram @makingjiggy to see what i'm working ... More »
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