Cake pops can be trickier than some expect, but they make a wonderful, bite-sized sweet treat for kids and adults alike. Cake pops are quite straightforward: They are a combination of crumbled baked cake mixed and formed into a cake ball with frosting.
The trick is to keep the ratio of cake to frosting in proportion. You want to keep the mixture moist so it won't crumble apart but not too thick and heavy that a popsicle stick cannot support it. Using this easy cake pop recipe, getting cake balls or cake pops right every time will be a breeze with a little bit of practice and experience.
Cake Pop Ingredients
Cake pop ingredients are very simple, as they can be bought already prepared or made from scratch. If you are baking your own cake first, use a cake mix and a can of frosting to form the cake balls. If you are in a pinch for time, simply buy a ready-made cake and extra frosting for the cake balls.
Candy melts, which come in an array of flavors from chocolate and vanilla to mint and berry varieties, are the best way to melt chocolate without scorching. These are then used to coat the cake balls before decorating. Once coated, cake balls can be decorated with sprinkles or royal icing for a festive flare.
Easy Cake Pop Recipe
Though this cake pop recipe is straightforward, it might take a batch or two to achieve the perfect texture and consistency for the cake balls.
Total Time: 1 hour | Prep Time: 30 minutes | Serves: 36 cake balls
- 1 box chocolate cake mix
- Eggs, canola or vegetable oil and water in the quantities specified on cake mix box
- 1 cup and 2 tablespoons vanilla buttercream frosting
- 1 pound candy melts such as Wilson or Ghirardelli chocolate melts
- Optional: 1/2 cup sprinkles or colored sugar
- Prepare the cake following all directions listed on the cake mix box, including the bake time and temperature as well as ingredients.
- Once baked, turn the cake onto a wire cooling rack and allow it to completely cool. The cake should not be warm to the touch at all.
- Once completely cool, use your hands to break the cake apart into a fine crumb in a medium to large mixing bowl.
- Add in the frosting and mix until well combined. The frosting and cake should form a dough-like consistency, but if it feels dry to the touch, add more frosting 1 tablespoon at a time. Mix the dough thoroughly between each addition, taking care to note that there are not dry pockets to avoid adding too much frosting.
- Use a large spoon to measure out enough dough and roll into a cake ball.
- After rolling out all cake balls, pop them into the freezer while you prepare the candy melts. Once removed from the freezer, the cold temperature will help the candy melts to harden faster.
- Heat the candy melts in 30-second increments and stir well between heatings to keep lumps from forming and the candy melts from scorching.
- Use a fork to hold the cake balls above the melted candy and spoon the candy melts over the top of the cake balls.
- Once topped with candy melts, place the coated cake balls on a parchment-lined baking sheet to cool and harden.
- If using popsicle sticks, insert the sticks into the cake pops once they have set for several minutes. The cake pops can then be placed on their side, but again, make sure the candy melts are mostly cool before moving the coated cake balls.
- If using sprinkles, spoon another layer of candy melts over the cake balls. Top the second coat on the cake balls before the candy melts set.
- Once all cake balls are coated, sprinkled and have a stick inserted, place them in the freezer for at least 10 to 15 minutes to speed up the cooling and hardening process.
- Keep the cake balls in the fridge for up to 3 days.
For the best results, allow the candy melts to mostly harden at room temperature before inserting the stick. If the candy melts crack after inserting the stick, spoon another layer over the cake balls and then top with sprinkles.