My daughter’s 3rd birthday is Saturday and I was determined to make Bakerella’s cupcake pops for that special occasion. This is my cupcake pop story. I won’t bore you with step by step photos as you can find that on Bakerella’s website, but I will note my supplies.
Make ‘n Mold – pink chocolate melts, dark chocolate melts*, lollipop sticks (4.5″)
Grocery store – Duncan Hines vanilla cake mix**, Duncan Hines vanilla frosting**, nonpareils***, M&Ms
Cookie cutters – Ateco Aspic cutters #4848****
* I could not find chocolate bark
** I have to use vanilla because my mom can’t have a lot of chocolate (due to migraines), also I want to state that I’m not a huge fan of boxed cake mixes or frostings, but since they are just the right quantities for the cupcake pops I decided to use them
*** I could not find Mr Sprinkles
**** This cutter set, in a round tin, is the exact same (or very very similar) to the discontinued Williams-Sonoma cutters that Bakerella uses. See photos below.
If you do a search for your own Ateco Aspic cutters, be sure you look for model number #4848, as they come in different sizes. #4848 is the size you’ll want.
First, bake the cake. My vanilla cake had browned edges, as well as a browned top and bottom. I trimmed these off with a serrated knife so that the finished cupcake would be more white, like the inside of the cake.
Second, crumble, mix and roll. I had to use my blender to crumble my cake, since I don’t have a food processor. I had to crumble them in batches, otherwise it’d overload the blender, but it didn’t do too bad. Then, mix the frosting in with the crumbled cake. Then, roll into 1.25″-1.5″ balls.
Let me take a second to talk about the rolling step. This is very messy! Here is a very helpful tip, however – wash your hands often and keep your hands damp. The cake mix won’t stick so bad if you do this.
I accidentally rolled my cake balls too big, just slightly. But they’re fine. I ended up with 43 balls instead of 50. I attribute this to the fact that the cake balls were a bit too big, and/or maybe trimming off the browned parts of the cake lessened the amount.
Third, freeze the cake balls until firm. This is very important. Make sure they are very firm before shaping in the cutter. Otherwise the mix will stick to your hands and the cutter, making it very hard to shape.
Fourth, shape with cutter. This part is actually quite fun. It took me a while to get the hang of it, but a technique that worked for me by the end was placing my thumb under the cutter and shaping the top of the cupcake with the fingers and palm of the same hand. I held the cutter itself with my other hand.
Fifth, freeze the cupcakes until firm. Once again, very important. If they are not firm enough you will not be able to dip them into the chocolate without having them fall apart or get misshapen.
Sixth, coat the cupcakes. This part was pretty fun, too. Dip the bottoms of the cupcakes in the chocolate bark (or chocolate melts) to coat, place them upside down on your cookie sheet, insert lollipop stick. Important – freeze until firm, again. Then, dip the tops of the cupcakes in colored chocolate (or candy melts) while holding the lollipop stick. When coated, decorate with sprinkles and M&Ms and stick the lollipop stick into styrofoam, or in my case, just a glass, to dry.
Dipping the tops proved to be the hardest part for me because it was hard to get the colored chocolate to cover all the crevices under the mound of the cupcake. Using a toothpick, like Bakerella suggested, helps a lot, but it is very difficult to keep the chocolate coating smooth.
Someone has noted this, but I’d like to note it again – do not use the green floral foam to stick your cupcake pops in. This foam is messy and little crumbs of it will stick to the lollipop sticks and your cupcake pop itself – you don’t want to eat that stuff! So use styrofoam, or improvise with a cup or glass.
It took me two days to make these (after shaping the cake balls into cupcakes I let them sit in the refrigerator, covered, overnight). The process was fun and would be great to do with your kids. I will definitely be making these again.
The best thing about these cupcake pops is that not only are they cute, but they taste so incredibly good!
Thank you to Cupcakes Take The Cake for posting my version of cupcake pops!