Monday, October 29, 2012

Basic Cake-Pop instructions (and our Halloween Cake Pops)

As I mentioned in this post, several months ago, I became obsessed with making cake pops.  I mean, what could be more fun than cake on a stick?  OK, I can think of a lot of things that would be more fun, but you've got to admit cake pops are pretty fun.  And they're so easy to make, really.
So I mentioned to my mustache friends that we should get together and make Halloween cake pops, and I was looking for a good basic explanation online of how to make them (because my friend J was the only one among us who had made them before), and didn't really find any.
So, my friends, here you go.  Basic cake pop recipe plus some Halloween cake pop inspiration.
First, bake a cake and let it cool.  Any flavor will do. 
 Next, crumble the cake into a bowl--you're looking for a fine crumb.  Use a large bowl, because for some reason, cake gets bigger when you crumble it. 
 Then, add a 16 oz can of frosting to your cake crumbs and mix well.  Again, any flavor will do.  You don't have to use your hands, in fact, I would recommend against it--but it seemed like the thing to do at the time.
 Finally, roll the cake mixture into balls.  I knew y'all were going to ask me how big the balls should be, and here's what I have to say about that--make them however big you want them to be.  Mine were about 1.5 inches, and I got 30 of them from one cake, but J's (the expert) were larger, like about 2 inches.  Then stick your cake balls in the freezer to firm up.

Give 'em an hour or two, or four, just let them get nice and firm.

Then melt some chocolate, almond bark, or candy melts in the color of your choice.  Take a lollipop stick (mine were 6 inches long), and dip it about half an inch into your melted goodness.  Then, gently, using a swirly motion, poke the stick about half an inch or more into your cake ball.  Once all of the cake balls have a stick in them, put them back in the freezer or refrigerator or out on the screen porch for a bit to firm back up.

Now for the moment of truth: dip the cake ball into your melted yummy stuff and gently spoon it over while turning, to cover completely.  If it falls off and it can't be salvaged, no worries--just put it on the "failure" tray for sampling while you work.  Um, yummy :)

Remove the cake ball from the melted stuff and hold it over the bowl while slowly turning to allow excess to drip off.  When all the excess drips off, or you get tired of holding it, you can place the stick into a sheet of styrofoam to hold it while the coating hardens.

That's it!  You've made cake pops--wasn't that easy?  Now comes the fun part: decorating.  If you want to add sprinkles or colored sugar to your cake pop, sprinkle those on while the coating is still wet, holding the pop over a bowl to catch errant sprinkles.  Otherwise, allow it to cool and harden and then go to town.  Here are some of the ideas our group came up with:

Dip first in white, then orange, then yellow for candy corn.

I used a chocolate chip for the pupil on this eyeball

Frank and two ghosts--we used black string licorice for Frank's mouth and bolts

Pumpkins--some of the girls used black candy melts to paint a jack-o-lantern face on their pumpkins

Jack Skellington--we tried using a food marker to draw his face, but it didn't work after the first one.

And, of course, my spiders.  As you can see, I never did find black sprinkles, but the spiders are pretty darn cute anyway.


  1. Too cute! I would love to try this some day. Silly question, but what is the best type of glass/container to pour the melted chocolate in so that you can dip it, but it is not too shallow or too deep?

  2. In response to Anonymous--not a silly question at all--I was actually wondering the same thing before we made ours. We just used glass bowls and melted them in the microwave. The chocolate wasn't deep enough to dip the whole cake ball in, so we just spooned it over. You could also just melt it in a double boiler to keep it warm or one of the girls brought a small crockpot to keep the chocolate warm. Let me know if you try it :)


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