How do you make fake blood without corn syrup?

Making fake blood is a fun way to get into the Halloween spirit or add effects to a theater production. Most fake blood recipes call for corn syrup as a base, but what if you want to avoid corn syrup? Luckily, there are many homemade fake blood options without corn syrup.

Why Avoid Corn Syrup in Fake Blood?

There are a few reasons you may want to steer clear of corn syrup:

  • You or someone you are making blood for has an allergy or sensitivity to corn ingredients
  • You want to avoid high fructose corn syrup for health reasons
  • You don’t have corn syrup on hand and want an easy substitution

The good news is, while corn syrup is a common ingredient in fake blood recipes, there are plenty of other ways to mimic the texture and viscosity of blood without using corn syrup.

Fake Blood Ingredients Without Corn Syrup

When you remove corn syrup from a fake blood recipe, you’ll need to replace it with another thick, sticky substance that can provide body. Here are some corn syrup substitutes to use instead:


Honey is one of the easiest ingredients to use in place of corn syrup. It has a similar thickness and high sugar content. Replace corn syrup in a 1:1 ratio with honey. The finished blood may be slightly more sticky than with corn syrup.


Molasses is another very viscous option that contains no high fructose corn syrup. Use blackstrap molasses for the darkest color. Replace corn syrup with an equal amount of molasses.

Maple syrup

For a lighter colored blood, use pure maple syrup. It won’t add as much body as honey or molasses, so you may want to combine it with a starch to thicken it up.

Simple syrup

Boil 1 cup water with 1 cup white sugar until the sugar dissolves. Let cool completely before using as you would corn syrup.

Light or dark corn syrup

If you want a product similar to corn syrup without the high fructose, you can use light or dark corn syrup, which does not go through the same chemical process.

Glucose syrup

Glucose syrup is made from starch rather than corn so it’s a corn-free substitute. Look for brands made from wheat or potato starch.


Starches like flour, cornstarch, arrowroot or potato starch can be used to add body and thickness. Mix 2 tablespoons starch with 1 cup water, heating until thick.

How to Thicken Fake Blood Without Corn Syrup

If you need an especially thick, oozing blood, you may want to use a starch in addition to another corn syrup replacement.

Here are a few ways to use starch to improve the consistency:

  • Add 1-2 tablespoons cornstarch to thin liquids
  • Whisk in flour or arrowroot powder for thickness
  • Create a slurry by mixing starch with a small amount of cool water before adding to the recipe
  • Combine starch with glycerin for shine and thickness

Start with small amounts and increase slowly until you reach the desired texture. Too much starch can make blood gloppy.

Choosing a Liquid for Homemade Fake Blood

In addition to a thickener, you’ll need a colored liquid to form the base of your fake blood. Here are some options:


For thin, runny blood, plain water is best. This works well for splatter effects.

Fruit juice

For thicker blood, try using 100% fruit juice rather than water. Go for dark berry juices like cranberry, pomegranate, or cherry for a blood-like tone.


Brewed black, green, or hibiscus tea can provide a dark colored liquid and some extra body. Cool before using.


A few drops of red and blue food dye can transform water into a blood-red color. Increase the red dye for brighter blood.

Food color gels

Specialty food color gels used for cake decorating come in shades like burgundy, red, and black. These provide intense color for dark fake blood.

Recipe for Fake Blood Without Corn Syrup

Now that you know the key ingredients, here is a simple recipe to make homemade fake blood without corn syrup:


  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • Red food coloring


  1. In a small saucepan, whisk together the water, honey, cocoa powder, and cornstarch.
  2. Heat over medium, stirring frequently, until thickened to a syrup consistency, about 5 minutes.
  3. Remove from heat and stir in 30-40 drops of red food coloring until fully combined.
  4. For thicker blood, allow to cool completely then add additional cornstarch or flour.
  5. Stir well, adding more food coloring if desired.
  6. Use immediately or refrigerate up to 1 week.

The honey provides sweetness and thickness, the cocoa powder adds color, and the cornstarch thickens it up. For edible blood, leave out the food coloring.

Tips for Using Fake Blood

Here are a few tips for working with homemade fake blood:

  • Add a small amount of dish soap to make removable blood – the soap will allow it to wash out of clothing
  • For splatter effects, transfer to a ketchup squeeze bottle or spray bottle
  • Store blood in a sealed container in the refrigerator to prevent mold growth
  • Shake or stir well before each use
  • Apply petroleum jelly to skin first for easy cleanup
  • Spray with hairspray after applying to help set it

Edible Fake Blood

For fake blood that you can safely eat, leave out the food coloring. Instead, use fruit juices, honey, and natural ingredients to make it red.

Here’s an edible recipe:


  • 1 cup pomegranate or cherry juice
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 3 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon red colored powdered sugar (optional)


  1. Whisk juice, honey, cocoa powder, and cornstarch in a saucepan.
  2. Heat over medium until thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 5 minutes.
  3. Remove from heat and stir in colored powdered sugar for extra color, if desired.
  4. Allow to cool before using on cakes, cupcakes, Halloween treats, etc.

You can also use beet juice or crushed raspberries to help deepen the red color naturally.

Fake Blood Variations

Once you have the basic recipe down, you can experiment with different ingredients to make unique blood types for specific looks:

Thick blood

For clotting blood, increase the cornstarch or add extra flour and cocoa powder.

Dripping blood

Thin out with more water and add red food coloring for deep color.

Scab blood

Add more starch or include crushed cereals to thicken.

Infection blood

Stir in a few drops of green or yellow food coloring.

Alien blood

Use brightly colored juice or dyes like neon green, orange, or blue.

Vampire blood

Opt for a deep burgundy color using grape juice and red dye.

Zombie blood

Make a brownish rotten blood with grape juice and green coloring.

Rusty dried blood

Add a pinch of cinnamon or nutmeg. Increase cornstarch for a flat finish.

Pre-Made Fake Blood Options

If you want to skip the DIY route, here are a few pre-made fake blood options that are corn-free:

Brand Details
Woochie Blood Corn syrup-free imitation blood available in different varieties
Ben Nye Stage Blood Corn syrup-free theatrical blood
Mehron Coagulated Blood Super thick stage blood without corn syrup
Graftobian Blood Gel Realistic scab blood made without corn syrup

These specialty blood products typically use thickening ingredients like methylcellulose instead of corn syrup. They provide intense color and viscosity for professional productions and Halloween.

Safety Tips for Fake Blood

A few precautions to take when working with fake blood:

  • Avoid getting into eyes as it can irritate and temporarily stain
  • Keep away from pets who may try to lick it off skin
  • For children, test a small amount on skin first to check for allergies
  • Wash hands thoroughly after handling
  • Store in sealed containers away from food
  • Supervise children when using fake blood

As long as you take care when handling, fake blood can provide loads of spooky fun!


With some simple substitutions, you can easily recreate the look and texture of blood without using corn syrup. Ingredients like honey, molasses, juice, and cocoa powder help thicken and color homemade blood. Take precautions, get creative with recipes, and enjoy all the creepy effects of fake blood without the corn syrup!

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