Flaming Jack-o-lantern

How To Make a Flaming Jack-o’ Lantern

Halloween is always a big deal in my house. There’s something about fire that draws us in and excites us in a primal way. Whether it is fireworks in the air or a carved pumpkin with flames shooting out the head.

Read on to see how to create a DIY flaming jack-o’-lantern!

Prepare the Pumpkin

First you’ll need to buy a big pumpkin and carve it. Cut a hole in the top and clean the pumpkin guts off it. Use your hands or other tools to scoop all of the pumpkin guts out as best as you can. I typically use a paper template I want to carve and tape it to the pumpkin and make small holes with a knife tracing around the template until I get the design I want. Lastly use a knife to cut the outline you traced.

Prepare the Fire

You’ll need some items:

  • Kerosene – nice because slow burning and harder to light
  • Toliet paper – single ply works best
  • Empty paint bucket
  • Wooden board
  • Aluminum pan tray
  • Long reach wooden matches
  • Hand sanitizer alcohol
  • Boric acid – can be found in roach killing power
  • Funnell – for pouring kerosene
  • Firestarter (optional)

Prior to Halloween, put a roll of single ply toliet paper in the paint bucket and soak it in kerosene. This will allow it to burn for longer than if you just doused it right before.

Sprinkle the boric acid on the soaked toliet paper to produce some small effects with the flames color. Lastly, rub the pumpkin with hand sanitizer (alcohol based). This will produce a whisking flames effect on the outside of the pumpkin.

It should stay lit with flames coming out the top for an hour or 2 depending on how much fuel you use.

WARNING! Make certain the location where you light it on fire is away from anything easily flamable e.g. trees, children costumes walking past, etc. I put a small wooden plank down on top of concrete away from flamable things and where people, especially children, walk.

Set the Stage

I had a couple of dance party lights and a fog machine to incorporate into the show. These sit behind the fire and produce some nice effects.


The end result looks like this.

Here’s some video that shows the fog and lights with the flaming jack-o’-lantern.

This is a nice touch to the holiday. I have influenced several others to try the same. The neighborhood kids remember our house from last year when we did the same and stayed a bit to watch the show! Happy Halloween!

If you liked this post then you might also like my post about My Amateur Backyard Fireworks Show – 2020

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