A Sally Obsession with Baking: Homemade Cake Pops

vanilla cake pops on a sprinkle plate

The weekend was great, how about you? My friend's birthday party took up most of the day. I baked a chocolate zucchini cake (in cupcake form), these salted caramel dark chocolate cookies, and these peanut butter M&M cookies, the latter of which I haven't made in far too long. Since the celebrant of the day has a penchant for the flavors of chocolate, peanut butter, and caramel, those three were an obvious choice.

No time to have a batter (pun intended) batter ) than a celebratory event where you can eat all the cake you want (birthday, bridal shower, wedding, etc. When my mother and her two sisters threw me a baby shower last month, one of the many surprises they prepared for me was a massive spread of cake pops. While cake pops are a favorite, I rarely make them. However, in the past few years I have made a batch for both of my sisters' wedding showers.

See The most exceptional treats should be saved for the most exceptional of occasions.

vanilla cake pop with a bite taken out showing the center

Unlike store-bought cake pops, these are made entirely from scratch. Cake pops made without a cake mix or store-bought frosting are unlike any other. The homemade flavor is very apparent. All the heart, soul, and dedication that goes into making each little pop

So anyway When I wrote Sally's Candy Addiction, I first started making cake pops from scratch. This recipe is actually printed in the book. Due to the high demand for my advice on how to bake cake pops from scratch, I feel compelled to publish it here on the blog.

My homemade vanilla cake and vanilla buttercream will be revealed today, along with all of my tricks of the trade for making the peeeeeerfect pop. Let's get down to business and cover a lot of ground quickly. (I simply cannot contain my nerdiness at the moment. )

vanilla cake batter in a glass bowl with a metal whisk

We're going to have to spend some extra time baking and frosting a cake from scratch because we're not using any store-bought cake mix or canned frosting. My standard procedure is to bake the cake the night before, and then decorate the cake pops the following day. To summarize the procedure:

  1. Bake a cake from scratch.
  2. Prepare your own icing.
  3. Combine cake crumbs with homemade icing.
  4. Mix
  5. Form little balls.
  6. Dip
  7. EAT

Recipes for the vanilla cake and the frosting are extremely simple, but it's important to use the right sized pan. No standard 9-inch cake pan can contain this spongy masterpiece. Since it rises significantly, a 9-inch springform pan is required. The alternative is to use a 117-inch pan. Alternatively, you could use a 10-inch springform pan.

Recipes for cakes are simple. Common ingredients include: flour, butter, sugar, vanilla extract, and milk. The same ingredients used for the vanilla frosting are also used for the vanilla cake. The flavor is what sets this apart from prepackaged options. These cake pops are truly exceptional, and it's clear that you put in extra effort to make them from scratch. WORTH IT

2 images of vanilla cake in a cake pan after baking and vanilla frosting in a glass bowl with a paddle attachment

Crumble the cake and combine it with the frosting.

(When you put it like that, crumbling the cake into the frosting sounds super weird, and that's exactly what cake pops are. These cake and frosting truffles are a combination of the two ingredients. Simply poke a stick into the center and dip it in the sugary sauce. Accept it and enjoy it because it's weirdly delicious and awesome. )

On the left, a piece of cake has fallen into a puddle of icing.  ↓

Images on the right show the two blended together.  ↓

2 images of cake crumbled into glass bowl of frosting and cake and frosting mixed together in a glass bowl

2 images of cake pop balls on a baking sheet lined with a silpat baking mat

After incorporating both ingredients, shape the dough into balls. And here's my secret technique for doing it:

A Trick I Use to Roll

Cake frosting mixture can be rolled into more uniform balls when chilled. And then, after combining the two, I roll the balls. Cake frosting mixture, when at room temperature, is extremely moist, causing the cookies to spread and become lopsided. Once I've rolled the balls, I put them in the fridge for at least two hours to chill. Then, I give them a final, tiny roll to make the edges nice and smooth. They can be more easily shaped into perfect spheres when cold.

Here's how you make it: first, roll; then, chill; finally, roll once more to even it out.

Cake balls, like Oreo balls, need to be extremely chilled before being dipped; this method accomplishes both of those tasks in one fell swoop.

2 images of cake pop balls on a baking sheet with a lollipop stick and melted white chocolate in a glass measuring cup and dipping a cake pop on a lollipop stick into a glass measuring cup of melted white chocolate

Okay, time to slam some dunks Pure white chocolate, which is what I recommend dipping the cake balls into for optimal flavor, is quite pricey. For all 40 cake pops, you'll need a substantial amount. Confectionery melts or coatings can be substituted. The recipe below includes both variations and my thoughts on them.

Another tip is to lightly coat the cake ball in the coating before placing it on the lollipop stick. Finally, insert into the center of the cake ball. View the image above

As an additional tip, a large styrofoam block or even a box can be used to hold the cake pops upright while the coating dries and sets without damaging the perfectly spherical shape. Below is a picture of the box I used for this batch. I merely pierced it with teeny, tiny needles. Low-cost and simple

Within an hour or so, your cake pops will be completely dry.

vanilla cake pops stuck into a cardboard box to dry

As they defrost beautifully, cake pops are a brilliant pre-party dessert idea. After they are completely dry, I place them in a large freezer bag and place the zip top on it. Good for up to 6 weeks, you can thaw them in the fridge overnight before eating.

Here are some more suggestions from me. Given their significance, I discussed them at length in Sally's Sweet Addiction.

Advice on Making Cake Pops

  1. The icing on the cake is the most delicious part, right? But that's obviously not true for cake pops. If you use too much frosting, your cake pops will be soggy and greasy instead of moist and delicious. There is *barely* enough frosting in this recipe to moisten the cake crumbs. The importance of the right proportion cannot be overstated
  2. For the best results, dip the cake balls when they are very cold. Take care to leave adequate storage space for them in your freezer and fridge. I use a large baking sheet lined with parchment paper to chill them first.
  3. When dipping cake pops, the depth of a glass liquid measuring cup that holds 2 cups is ideal.
  4. Adding color to the coating makes for a refreshing POP. For the most part, I only wear white and one other color. Also, no more than two hues Teal is achieved with Americolor's gel food coloring.
  5. Sprinklers are a must in any garden. But I think you already knew that

vanilla cake pops on a sprinkle plate

You can get started with just lollipop sticks and a suitable cake pan.

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Cake balls filled with homemade vanilla buttercream, not a cake mix or store-bought icing.

  1. Turn the oven on to 350 degrees Fahrenheit (177 degrees Celsius). Prepare a 9-inch springform pan with butter.
  2. Mix the dry ingredients for the cake in a medium bowl: flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside Cream the butter and sugar together in a large bowl for 2 minutes using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle or whisk attachment. Beat in the egg and vanilla extract on high speed until incorporated. When necessary, scrape the bowl's bottom and sides.
  3. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients, then add the dry ingredients and milk while the mixer is running on low speed. Make sure there are no big clumps of batter at the bottom of the bowl by whisking it by hand. Consistency of the batter will be somewhat thick. Slowly and evenly add the batter to the greased pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 30 to 36 minutes. Loosely cover the top with aluminum foil if it browns too quickly in the oven.
  4. Leave the cake in the pan on a wire rack to cool completely.
  5. To prepare the frosting, beat the butter on medium speed for about 2 minutes using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Then, with the mixer on low, add the confectioners' sugar, heavy cream, and vanilla extract. Raise the speed to high and continue beating for three full minutes.
  6. The cake should be cool before you start crumbling it into the bowl with the frosting. Examine it thoroughly to make sure there are no clumps. Mix the cake crumbs and frosting together in a mixer on a low speed.
  7. Take one tablespoon of the cake batter and form it into a ball. Roll the dough into balls, then place them on a baking sheet. Cool for 2 hours in the fridge or 1 hour in the freezer. If necessary, re-roll the chilled balls to make them smooth. Put back in the fridge because you will only be using a few at a time.
  8. Use a two-cup liquid measuring cup (ideal for dipping) to melt the coating. ) Either a double boiler or microwave oven can be used.
  9. Prepare to coat the cake balls: pull out no more than two or three cake balls from the fridge at a time. Insert a lollipop stick, about half an inch long, into the center of the cake ball and dip it in the coating. Try to get it only halfway into the cake ball. Roll the cake dough into a ball, then roll it in the coating until it is evenly coated. Cover the bottom of the cake ball where it meets the lollipop stick with the coating. Tap the stick very gently against the side of the measuring cup to remove any excess coating. Using sprinkles, decorate the top and stand it up in a styrofoam block or box (as described above). Repeat with the remaining cake balls, taking a small amount out of the fridge at a time to prevent them from drying out. It's important to dip the cake balls while they're still very cold.
  10. Within an hour, the coating will be set. You can keep cake pops in the fridge for up to a week.

  1. Note: I recommend making the cake at least one day in advance. It should be stored at room temperature, covered. The uncoated cake balls will keep in the refrigerator for up to 2 days or in the freezer for up to 6 weeks. Put in the fridge to thaw, and proceed to step 9 once it's ready. After the coating has hardened, the cake pops can be frozen for up to six weeks. Soak in cold water overnight to defrost.
  2. Use these specialized ingredients and equipment: KitchenAid Stand Mixer, KitchenAid Hand Mixer, Glass Measuring Cup, Springform Pan, Silpat Baking Mat, Half Sheet Baking Pan, Lollipop Sticks, Americolor Food Coloring
  3. White chocolate, almond bark, candy coating, and candy melts are all great options for coating. To facilitate melting, chopping almond bark or pure white chocolate is recommended. Reduce its thickness by melting it with 1/2 teaspoon of vegetable oil. Any kind of chocolate will do, whether it's semisweet, bittersweet, or milk. Reduce by half with 1/2 teaspoon of vegetable oil and coarsely chop. Maintain heat over two boilers.
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