April 4, 2011
Omg….What took me so long?? These are so cute! I have heard a lot about these little bebes, browsed through Bakerella’s book Cake Pops at Powell’s, and recently have seen them pop up in coffee shops…PS, Starbucks did not invent these, they’re not that cool, okay? So anyway, it happens to be my sister Natasha’s 28th birthday, and it just so happens that she has recently become infatuated with cake pops at her local coffee shop. She even brought me one and said “I know yours would be better so I need you to make them.” So here I am…about to dive into the world of cake on a stick..
A lot of people still do not know what they are. They are, in fact, crumbled cake mixed with frosting, formed into a ball, stuck on a lollipop stick, and dipped in chocolate. Voila. I have very easy steps that I will break down for you, and they can be done in any style, flavor, or theme that you’d like. However, I have found that most people use a boxed cake mix and a can of frosting to create theirs….. This is fine, but I find canned frosting so freaking sweet that I preferred to make a cake from scratch as well as a homemade frosting. Doesn’t matter, if you have a cake mix, use it. Whatevs.
Here is a list of what you’ll need:
-Lollipop Sticks, I used 6 inch ones but they sell them in 4 inches too, whatever you prefer. I got mine at Sur La Table.
– Melting Coating, no regular chocolate. I talk more about this down below in “Melting Tips”
– A Cake, made with a mix or from scratch, whatever your <3 desires. This will make about 60 pops.
– Wax or Parchment Paper
– Frosting, about two cups, canned or homemade.
– Topping, sprinkles, nuts, marshmallows, whatever.
So I’m going to break it down for you into a few steps, here we go. If you have any questions just post them and I’ll answer. I never know if I’m being clear enough.. :)
1. Bake your cake. It’s best to use a big 9×13 inch pan. Once your cake has cooled you need to fluff it all up with a fork, turn the whole cake into crumbs! Make sure to sample some, “QC” quality control you know.. ;)
2. If you haven’t already, transfer the crumbled cake to a big bowl. Add about 1/2 the can of frosting to the cake and mix. The goal is to make your cake sticky enough to roll into balls. So maybe test one and if it’s too dry add some more. You shouldn’t use more than one can…That would be too much.
3. Line a baking sheet with wax or parchment paper. Start rolling your balls by grabbing or scooping an amount and forming it between your hands. They shouldn’t be too big or too small, think of the amount you’d like to eat. Place on the sheet once rolled. Continue until you run out of cake.
4. A lot of directions will tell you to refrigerate them but that takes way too long for my impatient self, so I flash freeze them for about 15 minutes, uncovered is fine.
5. While the balls are in the freezer you want to take your coating candies and melt a small amount, just enough to dip the tips of the lollipop sticks.
Melting Tips —–> You need to use the coating candies for this. You cannot use regular chocolate. It seizes too easily and doesn’t get thin enough, etc. So no, go to the grocery store and get some “almond bark” or melting chips. I use the melting chips, they are easy and you don’t have to break them apart or chop them. They even sell them in the bulk bins at Winco, easy. :) To melt them I place them in a somewhat deep bowl that is safe for the microwave and melt them in 30 second increments. After each 30 seconds, take it out and stir with a little fork or whatever. Once it stirs and looks all melted, you are ready to go. I also found that I did not need to clean out the bowl before adding more to melt once one batch ran out, it just remelts. Fabulous!
6. Using a lollipop stick and your melted coating, dip just the tip about 2 centimeters in. At this point you will need your balls back and waiting next to your station. After you have just dipped the tip, stick it in about half way into the center of each cake ball. After you have finished all of these, back into the freezer they go. I left mine in for about 30 minutes. They are so much easier to work with while cold, do not skip this step.
7. Right before taking them back out, you need to get your stations ready. Melt a bunch of coating and prepare your toppings. Now, if you are going to be serving them pop-up you will want a piece of styrofoam or some mugs or cups to set your drying pops in so they don’t get a flat top. If you are fine serving them down, prepare a wax paper station or mini cupcake liners or whatever. Also prepare your sprinkles or nuts or whatever you plan on sprinkling them with.
8. While your coating is hot, take a lolli and dip it into the coating, coming to the point where the cake meets the stick. Lightly tap the extra coating off on the side of your bowl/mug/etc. Move it to your sprinkling station and sprinkle with whatever.
9. Now they just need to dry. I didn’t have any styrofoam around so I just set mine in my coffee mugs to try, so easy, not to mention cute!
Now how easy is that??? Just a few steps to get familiar with and you’ll be Cake Pop Queen! The possibilities are endless. I made a chocolate coconut cake and after dipping some in chocolate coating, I sprinkled them in almonds, somewhat like an Almond Joy candy bar. I also dipped some in vanilla coating and used some springtime sprinkles :) Yum. I can’t wait to make more and do a different variation, red velvet, something with peanut butter, cookies n’ cream…. Eek! They were a huge hit with my sister and her friends, along with the extras I took to work with me the next day.
They are very tasty and not as messy to eat as a cupcake or dealing with a large cake, cutting and serving pieces with plates, forks, etc. Great for a large group of people, and very impressive. “Whoa what are those?? You made those?” :)
Good luck, let me know if you have questions.
PS Happy Birthday Natasha! :)