These Jack O’ Lantern Cake Pops are sure to make your guests smile this Halloween. I love cake pops, but hardly ever make them because they are much more difficult to make than they appear. I save them for special occasions, such as Halloween and they are always a hit.
Most cake pop recipes use boxed cake and a can of frosting. Although that may make it seem like an easier process, it really isn’t. Every time I make them that way the mixture is way too sticky, and the balls don’t keep their shape. These are 100% homemade and I’m telling you now, you can really taste the difference. If you’re going to take the time to make homemade cake pops, I believe they should be 100% homemade. Plus it doesn’t take that much more time to make them.
Whenever I made cake pops in the past, I could never figure out how to keep the candy coating perfectly round without messing it up. The best way to allow the coating to dry and set– without ruining the perfectly round cake pop– is to place them right side up in a large styrofoam block or even a box. Poke super tiny holes in a box or in a large styrofoam block. It’s easy and cheap.
- 1 and 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 large egg, at room temperature
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup whole milk
- 7 Tablespoons unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 1 and 3/4 cups confectioners’ sugar
- 2-3 teaspoons heavy cream or milk
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 40 ounces candy melts or coating (or pure white chocolate)*
- orange food dye
- orange sugar sprinkles
- black fondant (rolled out thin and cut into shapes to make the faces)
- Preheat oven to 350°F . Grease a 9 inch spring form pan.
- Make the cake: Whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together in a medium bowl. Set aside. Using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle or whisk attachment, beat the butter and sugar together in a large bowl until creamed, about 2 minutes. Add the egg and vanilla extract and beat on high speed until combined. Scrape down the bottom and sides of the bowl as needed.
- With the mixer running on low speed, add the dry ingredients and milk to the wet ingredients until combined. Manually whisk the batter to ensure there are no large lumps at the bottom of the bowl. Batter will be slightly thick. Pour the batter evenly into the prepared pan. Bake for 30-36 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. If the top begins browning too quickly in the oven, loosely place a piece of aluminum foil on top.
- All the cake to cool completely in the pan set on a wire rack.
- Make the frosting: With a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium speed until creamy, about 2 minutes. Add confectioners’ sugar, heavy cream, and vanilla extract with the mixer running on low. Increase to high speed and beat for 3 full minutes.
- Crumble the cooled cake into the bowl on top of the frosting. Make sure there are no large lumps. Turn the mixer on low and beat the frosting and cake crumbles together until combined.
- Measure 1 Tablespoon of moist cake mixture and roll into a ball. Place balls on a lined baking sheet. Refrigerate for 2 hours or freeze for 1 hour. Re-roll the chilled balls to smooth out, if needed. Place back into the fridge as you’ll only work with a couple at a time.
- Melt the coating in a 2 cup liquid measuring cup. You can use a double boiler or microwave. Add the orange food dye until it is the desired shade of orange.
- Coat the cake balls: Remove only 2-3 cake balls from the refrigerator at a time. Dip a lollipop stick about 1/2 inch into the coating, then insert into the center or the cake ball. Only push it about halfway through the cake ball. Dip the cake ball into the coating until it is completely covered. Make sure the coating covers the base of the cake ball where it meets the lollipop stick. Very gently tap the stick against the edge of the measuring cup to allow excess coating to drop off. Roll them with sprinkles and place upright into a styrofoam block or box (as explained above). Repeat with remaining cake balls, only working with some out of the refrigerator at a time. The cake balls must be very cold when dipping!
- Add the fondant cut outs for the jack o’latern face.
- Coating will set within an hour. Store cake pops in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.