I have a love-hate relationship with cake pops. There cuteness is universally adored, yet they are a lot of work! I often wonder if the cuteness is worth the effort. But alas, I made these as a special request, and I have to say, this was one of the easiest batches I've made.
I've promised my student monitors I would make them each a treat for their half birthdays and this student requested vanilla cake pops with light blue candy melts. As I've discussed before, these girls are amazing! They keep my grades up-to-date, my room clean, and my bulletin boards beautiful! Making cake pops was the least I could do!
One of the many things I love about these girls is that they make cake pops at home! I made a batch for their class last year and the girls asked for the recipe. Ever since then, we are now able to openly discuss where to buy the best candy melts and the trials & tribulations of making cake pops. It's kind of awesome being a teacher!
As a double bonus, I sort of owed my homeroom, so there were enough cake pops for a two-for-one! We went to Fun Time America on a field trip and I told them if they chipped in and used their tickets to buy me something, I would bake them cake pops. This is what they got me.
A little ridiculous, especially when they brought it on the bus to go back to school! The kids deserved some cake pops after that. When the students are doing group work, I usually bring it into the middle of the room and bounce around, it's kind of awesome!
They also spontaneously wrote and performed this rap on the bus. It started on the way there and after several rounds of practicing, I made the recording on the way back. BTW, they are referring to the Oreo Cupcakes and Tie Dye Cupcakes I made them for raising the most money for Pennies for Patients!
The one thing I really hate about cake pops is how heavily most instructions rely on boxed mix. I don't want to sound like a food snob or anything, but I really don't like cake mixes and I can always taste when one is used. It surprises me how many commercially sold cake pops use boxed mix. To make these cake pops as delicious as they are adorable, I relied on my favorite vanilla cake recipe.
The cake is moist, full of vanilla flavor, and easy to prepare. I made and cooled the cake the day before I planned on making the cake pops. The frosting was quickly and easily thrown together and provided what was needed to hold everything together. I definitely recommend using your stand mixer to break apart the cake, it makes everything so much easier! These were probably the best cake pops I've ever had, definitely worth the extra effort making the cake and frosting from scratch.
Vanilla Cake Pops Yield - 50 cake pops
Vanilla Cake Adapted from Cupcake Project
1 1/2 cup sugar 2 1/4 cup cake flour 6 tablespoons all purpose flour 2 1/4 tea. baking powder 3/4 tea. baking soda 3/4 tea. salt 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature 3 eggs 1/2 cup non-fat Greek yogurt 6 tablespoons vegetable oil 1 1/2 tablespoons vanilla 1 cup milk
- Preheat the oven to 350 F. Grease and flour a 11 x 9” pan.
- In the bowl of a mixer add the sugar, flour, powder, soda, and salt, mix slowly with the paddle attachment. Add the butter and beat for several minutes until the mixture becomes nice and crumbly.
- While the mixer is mixing, whisk together the sour cream, oil, eggs, and vanilla. Pour this in the mixer and combine.
- Slowly add the milk in and turn on high for a few seconds.
- Pour into the prepared pan and bake 35-40 minutes until the top is golden brown and a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
- Let cool completely, overnight is best.
Simple Buttercream Yield - a cup, plus some extra
1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature 2 cups powdered sugar 1 tablespoon milk 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Beat the butter and sugar together until well combined and fluffy. Scrap down the bowl.
- Add in the milk and the vanilla and again beat until light and fluffy.
- Remove from the mixing bowl and set aside.
Assembly 2 bags candy melts 1-2 tablespoons shortening 50 lollipop sticks sprinkles 3 x 4 plastic bags ribbon
- After making the frosting, do NOT clean out the bowl. Remove the frosting and set aside.
- Break up the cake into large pieces and put in the bowl of a stand mixer. Using the paddle attachment, start mixing on low. This is a good time to use the batter guard. Keep mixing and gradually increase the speed until the cake is reduced to fine crumbs.
- Add in about 3/4 cup of frosting to the cake crumbs. Add more frosting if needed. Mix until the mixture sticks together well.
- Use a 2 tablespoon cookie scoop to portion out the cake mixture.
- Roll the scoops into balls and refrigerate 1 hour.
- Set up a double boiler with a heat proof bowl over about 1 inch of simmering water. Make sure the bowl is not touching the water.
- Add the candy melts and stir until they are all melted. Add the shortening if you prefer a thinner coat of candy melt coating. I think it is easier if the candy melts are less viscous.
- Dip about 1-inch of a lollipop stick into the melted candy melts and push into the cake ball. Refrigerate for about 10 minutes.
- Remove the cake pops from the fridge 10-15 at a time.
- Fully submerge the cake pop into the candy melts and then tap to shake off the extra.
- Let the cake pop dry in a styrofoam block. If you want sprinkles, add them right away before the candy melts harden.
- Once the cake pop dries, about 5-8 minutes, place in a small bag and tie with a ribbon.
- Try to not refrigerate because that often leads to cracking.