One of my daughter’s favorite treats are cake pops. Whenever she sees them at a bakery or coffee shop, her big blue eyes quickly move from the cake pops and then to me. She doesn’t even need to say anything. I instantly know what her heart desires.
Eventually her love of cake pops, and my love of her, led us to the kitchen one weekend where we set out to create sweet memories and sweet treats. This special edition of TRIO consists of takeaway tips from our time in the kitchen.
One thing you should probably know before you get started – Your first batch of cake pops is not going to turn out like the ones you’ve tried at the store. At least ours didn’t.
Cake pops really are just a mixture of a box of cake that’s been baked, frosting and chocolate coating. I read A LOT of websites before we embarked on our cake pop adventure because you certainly want your three-year-old to think you can do it all. I guess we succeeded because she and her dad ate all 20 cake pops between the two of them before it was over, regardless of what they looked like. Here are a few things we learned.
When you’re making cake pops with a three-year-old, keep in mind that cake pops take time. We started late in the afternoon before dinner. It takes time for the cake to bake – and cool – plus the cake pops need 30-60 minutes in the freezer to sit up. Given that, plus time to dip about 20 pops, we had to carry over our culinary delights into the following day.
Bake your cake in two halves. Use one half for the cake pops and the other as a cake (if you’re not taking any cake pops to friends). After you crumble the baked cake, add frosting a little at a time. Everything I read said to use no more than half the container of frosting. I added a little in at a time and didn’t even use half of a container. I did not want them to be too gooey. We used a coffee scoop to get them rounded. My recommendation: Use a smaller scoop. As we started to eat the cake pops, they were too heavy and fell off the stick halfway through. Our large scoop made about 20 pops from half of the cake. That was plenty considering I didn’t want friends to sample our first try.
We used a CANDIQUIK® coating. For someone who doesn’t bake much, the idea of melting chocolate in a double boiler was a little much. I wasn’t even sure I owned one. I was able to heat the coating in the microwave until it was soft enough, plus it’s re-heatable. I’m convinced that coating alone could be the reason why our cake pops were “the best ever, mom!” We bought a styrofoam board to put the sticks in but didn’t end up using it. The coating dries so quickly that by the time you dip it and add sprinkles immediately, you can put them on wax paper without any problem.
Looking for a fun Valentine’s Day mom/daughter or dad/son in-person experience? Join our upcoming Cake Pops: Treats On a Stick course or any other cooking courses. Visit the cooking section of our catalog and call 405.377.3333 to register. These tips are just a sample of how to make cake pops that delight.
Dana Wallace is the Executive Director of Communications and Marketing at Meridian.