How To Make Cake Pops | A Step-By-Step Tutorial

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One of my most rewarding kitchen adventures has been learning how to make cake pops. I always know that if I want to let my baking imagination run wild, I can just start with a cake pop recipe and see where it takes me! The possibilities are endless.

That’s why today I am sharing with you a basic cake pop how to. If cake pops are new to you or you have tried them in the past and never gone back, this cake pop recipe is the perfect place to start.

Cake Pop Supplies

To make cake pops, you will need:

- A box cake mix and ingredients to make the cake

- A can of frosting

- Candy melts

- Lollipop sticks

- A styrofoam block or cake pop stand

How to Make Cake Balls

To create cake pops, you need to start by making cake balls that you will later apply to lollipop sticks. The easiest way to make cake balls is to follow the directions on a box of cake mix. I usually deviate from the directions in one way, I use half the amount of oil. This helps create the right consistency for your cake balls. If you are not a fan of boxed cake mix, you can also bake a homemade cake (more power to you!).

How To Make Cake Pops - sugarkissed.net

After you bake your cake, let it cool completely and… get ready for destruction! Your goal is to crumble your cake into fine crumbs. You can do this one of two ways:

1) Use your hands. Put chunks of your cake into a large mixing bowl and use your hands to crumble it into a pile of fine crumbs. If you use this method, I suggest cutting off the hard edges of your baked cake.

2) Use a food processor. Put chunks of your cake into a food processor and pulse it into fine crumbs. Move the crumbs into a large mixing bowl.

Add a small amount of frosting to your cake crumbs and thoroughly combine using your hands. Continue to add small amounts of frosting until your crumb mixture becomes the consistency of clay.

Helpful Hint: Some cake pop recipes call for you to add an entire container of frosting. I have found that this is way too much. I generally add 1/3 to 1/2 cup of frosting. A good rule of thumb is to start with a small amount and then add more frosting as needed.

How To Make Cake Pops - sugarkissed.net

Once you have created your “dough”, you can begin rolling your cake balls. I like to use a stainless steel coffee scoop to portion out my cake mixture so that all my cake balls are the same size, about 1.25″. Roll the mixture in the palm of your hand to create round cake balls.

Set your cake balls onto a parchment lined baking sheet or plate and put them in the freezer or refrigerator. If you have time, keep the cake balls in the fridge for a few hours until chilled. If this just doesn’t fit into your busy schedule, about 15 to 20 minutes in the freezer will do the trick. Do keep in mind that making cake pops is a temperature sensitive process. Putting cake balls in the freezer may make them too cold for dipping, so you will need to let them sit for a few minutes after removing them.

How To Make Cake Pops - sugarkissed.net

How To Turn Your Cake Balls Into Cake Pops

Helpful Hint: For the next few steps, work with just a handful of cake balls at a time, rotating them in and out of the fridge. This will ensure that you always have chilled cake balls ready to go. This is where it comes in handy to have a few petite cake pop stands to rotate around!

Microwave your candy melts in a bowl on low power for 30-seconds at a time. Stop and stir after each 30-second interval then repeat until the coating is completely melted. Do not overheat the candy melts or your coating will become lumpy. If the coating is too thick, add a small amount of vegetable oil to thin it out.

Dip the end of a lollipop stick into the melted coating and then into a cake ball, gently pushing until the stick is about half way through the cake ball. Set your cake pops in the fridge to chill for dipping. (You can also turn your cake pop upright and set it in your styrofoam block or cake pop stand.)

How To Make Cake Pops - sugarkissed.net

Dip each chilled cake pop straight down into the melted coating until the cake ball is completely covered and sealed. If you need to angle the cake pop, gently tilt it in one direction and then another. Resist the temptation to stir the coating with the cake pop. If you do, your cake pop may fall off of the stick into a candy coating abyss.

Remove the cake pop from the melted coating by pulling it straight up. Then, turn the cake pop at an angle and gently tap off any excess coating. Don’t get fancy, keep it simple.

Helpful Hint: A tall narrow bowl works best for dipping cake pops. Keeping the coating warm throughout the entire dipping process is key to having a smooth coating on your cake pops. To avoid having to repeatedly reheat your coating, a chocolate melting pot is a great tool.

Set your cake pops in your styrofoam block or cake pop stand until the coating has hardened. Or while the coating is still wet use sprinkles, candies, or sugars to decorate your cake pops.

How To Make Cake Pops - sugarkissed.net

How To Make Cake Pops
sugarkissed.net

Ingredients and Supplies
- A box cake mix and ingredients to make the cake
- A can of frosting
- Candy melts
- Lollipop sticks
- A styrofoam block or cake pop stand

Directions
1. Follow the directions on a box of cake mix with one exception: use only half the amount of oil.
2. Let the baked cake cool completely. Then, crumble the cake into fine crumbs using your hands or a food processor.
3. Add a small amount of frosting to your cake crumbs and thoroughly combine using your hands. Continue to add small amounts of frosting until your crumb mixture becomes the consistency of clay.
4. Roll the cake mixture into balls about 1.25″ wide.
5. Set your cake balls onto a parchment lined baking sheet or plate and put them in the freezer or refrigerator until chilled.
6. Microwave your candy melts in a bowl on low power for 30-seconds at a time. Stop and stir after each 30-second interval then repeat until the coating is completely melted.
7. Dip the end of a lollipop stick into the melted coating and then into a cake ball, gently pushing until the stick is about half way through the cake ball. Turn your cake pop upright and set it in your styrofoam block or cake pop stand.
8. Set the cake pops in the fridge to chill for dipping.
9. Dip each chilled cake pop straight down into the melted coating until the cake ball is completely covered and sealed. Remove the cake pop from the melted coating by pulling it straight up. Then, turn the cake pop at an angle and gently tap off any excess coating. Turn the cake pop upright.
10. Set your cake pops in your styrofoam block or cake pop stand until the coating has hardened. Or while the coating is still wet use sprinkles, candies, or sugars to decorate your cake pops.

How To Make Cake Pops - sugarkissed.net

That’s where this cake pop how to ends and another begins…

If you’re looking for inspiration for how to decorate cake pops, browse through my Cake Pop Gallery.

To learn step-by-step how to make cake pops into characters, check out my Santa Christmas Cake Pops, Snowman Christmas Cake Pops, and Spider Cake Pops with Sparkle.

For more creative cake pop recipe ideas, check out How To Make Cake Pops with Unique Flavors.

Cake Pops - sugarkissed.net

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About Janine

Creative sweets made simple. Learn how to easily make decorated treats through recipes and tutorials at sugarkissed.net. Are you ready for sweet inspiration?
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49 Responses to How To Make Cake Pops | A Step-By-Step Tutorial

  1. Reese says:

    Thank you this is so helpfull! I am curious how many cake pops u get from 1 box of cake mix?

  2. Colleen says:

    Janine – I have tried cake pops just a few times and they have never come out good. My problem probably sounds ridiculous, but it’s the truth – I roll them in my palms and they are never completely round!

    I swear, sometimes I think there must be something wrong with my palms!! LOL

    Do you have any tips or tricks? I see the most beautiful cake pops and mine have all looked disfigured. I need some serious help.

    Colleen

    • Janine says:

      Colleen, when I roll my cake pops I try to cup the palm of my hands a little to help make a round shape. Also, don’t apply too much pressure, you don’t want to flatten the cake pop. Let the rolling motion create the ball. Most importantly, make sure you are starting with the right consistency “dough”. It should be like working with Play-Doh. Hope this helps! Keep practicing!

  3. jaime says:

    I used this recipe/instructions the first time I made cake pops. They were very yummy! My only downfall was after I would dip the cake balls into the melted chocolate I had to wait a very long time for it to stop dripping – if I stood them up in a tray to let them dry the chocolate would drip down to the bottom and fall off – leaving the pops somewhat uncovered. Any ideas/tricks for this?

    • Janine says:

      Either your coating was a little to warm or your cake pops were not chilled enough. Try letting the coating sit a little longer before dipping so it thickens more. Also, take just a handful of cake pops out if the fridge at a time so that they are chilled for dipping. In a pinch, you can run frantically to the freezer and hold a pop in there for a few seconds. :)

  4. yoj cornejo says:

    so grateful to watch your cake pops instruction at least i have learned new ideas …thanks a lot..

  5. Amy T. says:

    I made cake pops this weekend using your instructions and they turned out great! Thanks so much for the detailed instructions. The one time I made them before, the popsicle sticks eventually made their way through the cake balls, this time, I had no such issues. Thanks!

    • Janine says:

      Awesome! That’s so great to hear, Amy! Thank you for taking the time to comment. I hope you have many more fun cake pop projects in your future now. :)

  6. Amelia says:

    Hi! Great tutorial. How far in advance can you make the cake pops? I’m making them for a shower and wondered if they would keep for a few days in the fridge. Thanks! :)

    • Janine says:

      A few days will be fine, Amelia. You can also freeze them if you need to make them ahead. Just make sure that you seal them air tight. When you are ready to thaw them, put them on the counter and let them thaw completely before opening the seal.

  7. Miley says:

    What cake mix did you use? Is it hard to put the candy melts on the cake ball?

    • Janine says:

      Miley, you can use any cake mix. I usually use Duncan Hines. Dipping the pops is not hard but it does take a little practice. Please feel free to let me know if you run into trouble and have questions.

  8. Bradi says:

    Hi there! Thank you so much for this how-to-tute! I have made lots of cakes but have never tried pops. I have 3 questions if you have a second?! :
    I plan on making a BUNCH, for a local lounge’s 5th yr anniversary. It’s a rock-n-roll craft cocktail lounge, that I used to manage. I used to make cakes for each of my employees bdays, and have always used box cake mixes. My friend had given me a tip on how to make the mixes come out more moist, by using a cup of mayo, 3 eggs, and a cup of water, instead of the usually called for amounts of the ingredients. Do you think that this would work for pops? I always get a ton of compliments from people that don’t usually like to even eat cake, on how moist it is, so I really would like to run with it. I’ve never eaten a cake pop, so I’m not sure if moistness is even an issue?! (Sorry I’m a pop virgin! ;)
    Question 2.
    From the above commenter, wondering about freezing them; the party is April 25th. However I’m making 4 other cakes the same week, and would love to be ahead of myself, if possible, if I can make them like a week or so ahead of time? Should I freeze them in wax paper lined rows in plastic-ware? Or not for that long?! Will they be sticking together when thawed?
    Question 3.
    is it always necessary to dip them in something? (Do they need the sealant step?!)

    Thanks so much (ahead of time), for the help! I really appreciate all your wisdom! Adorable mobile site too!!

    • Janine says:

      I’ve never added mayo to cake mix but I’m intrigued. As long as it’s not overly moist, I think it will be ok. Just reduce the amount of icing you add to compensate for the extra moisture.

      Yes, you can freeze ahead of time. I wrap each pop in wax paper, then seal in a freezer ziploc bag, then put in a Tupperware container. You just need to make sure the pops aren’t touching and everything is air tight. When thawing, don’t open any of your packaging until completely thawed.

      I’ve never had them indisposed before. I do think it helps to keep the pop fresh and moist by sealing it.

      Hope this helps! I’d love to see what you make!

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