Introduction: The Pumpkiñata

About: I am not a tadpole.

Half pumpkin, half piñata, all wonderful. This exciting game combines candy, pumpkins, and smashing things with a baseball bat. Great for Halloween parties, or any party at all to be honest. I designed it with a satisfying "splat" in mind, but even I was pleasantly surprised by just how fun this was to bust open. But as fun as it is to destroy, it's even more fun to build. So let's get started.


1 large pumpkin

One mixing bowl

One carving or butter knife

One power drill with appropriate drill bit

As much candy as you want/can fit

A baseball bat or sturdy stick (for smashing)

Step 1: Cutting the Pumpkin

In order to preserve the top of the pumpkin for hanging later, we should make the access cut in the side. The pumpkin I was using was rather soft, so a safe butter knife was sufficient. If you have harder pumpkins, or if you want the process to go by faster, I suggest a carving knife (but be careful).

Step 2: Gutting the Pumpkin

This process is somewhat straightforward if you've ever carved a jack-o'-lantern before. Simply reach in with your hands and grab the weblike insides of the pumpkin, pull them out and put them in the mixing bowl. You can use the knife to scrape away at any pieces stuck to the walls of the pumpkin, and this will simultaneously thin those walls for an easier burst.

Step 3: Preparing the Candy

Once you have all the pumpkin insides set aside in a bowl you have two options.

1. Place the candy directly into the pumpkin for a relatively mess free piñata

2. Mix it with the extracted pumpkinnards for maximum "SPLAT".

If you choose the latter, you will want to pour the candy into your mixing bowl and thoroughly mix. The seeds will inevitably slip to the bottom. Do you best to keep them mixed in but do not worry. This will be addressed later.

Step 4: Loading It Up

Using your hands, scoop the candy and guts mixture or just candy in through the hole. Once it is all in, give it one last good mix before sealing it up. This should deal with those pesky seeds for the most part. Now seal it up with the piece you cut out initially. This is bound to fall out with the first hit, but helps keep it all together during transport.

Step 5: Drilling the Stem

Using a power drill and drill bit you should make a small hole in the base of the pumpkin's stem. This is what you will hang the pumpkin from. The size of the bit will vary depending on the size of the stem and the size rope you have available.

Step 6: Hang the Pumpkin Up

Thread your rope through the hole in the stem and tie a firm knot. Use the rope to suspend the pumpkin from a beam, tree branch, or anything that works for you. This will make quite a mess, so I highly suggest you do this outside. Take into account the height of those who will swing at this when hanging it. Once it is all hung up and ready, it's the moment we've all been waiting for.

Step 7: Pumpiñata Time!

Using a bat or sturdy stick, you should beat the pumpkin with no mercy. After five or six hits (probably less if you are stronger than me), it will give way, splattering candy and pumpkin bits all over the floor. Piking up the candy is such a joy due to the extreme sliminess. So there you have it. A pumpkin filled with candy. A pumpkiñata!

Pumpkin Challenge

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Pumpkin Challenge