Easy homemade cake pops covered in a sweet chocolate coating. The perfect bite-sized party treat or favor for any occasion!
This recipe reminds me of my sugar cookie truffles, but with a delicious cake base instead. Moist and crumbly cake is mixed with rich buttercream frosting, then dipped in a sweet chocolate coating. Not only do these cake pops taste incredible, but they look amazing too!
There’s just something about eating a decorative, bite-sized dessert on a stick that is so fun. My kids love these! These homemade cake pops are the perfect treat for birthdays, baby showers, wedding showers, holidays or when hosting a dinner party. You can even wrap them up individually and give them to guests as party favors!
This recipe is perfect for beginners, with an easy step by step tutorial included. It’s a great way to use up any leftover cake and frosting. I love the classic white cake + buttercream combo, but there are so many other yummy variations you can make too. They are so fun to decorate and can be served at literally any occasion!
How to make cake pops
Mix and roll. Crumble the cooled cake in a large bowl. Then add a few spoonfuls of frosting and use your hands to combine. The mixture should hold together if squeezed. If it’s still crumbly, add a little more frosting. Then scoop out the mixture with a medium cookie scoop and roll into a ball. Repeat until you’ve used all of the mixture.
Add cake pop stick. Melt a few of the dark and white chocolate wafers in two separate bowls. Then dip the end of the cake pop stick into the melted chocolate and push that same end into the cake ball. The melted chocolate helps “glue” the stick to the cake ball. Once each ball has a stick, place them in the freezer to harden for about 20 minutes.
Coat in chocolate. Melt the remaining dark and white chocolate in separate bowls. Dip the cake balls into the melted chocolate, making sure it’s fully coated. Gently tap the stick on the side of the dish to remove any excess chocolate.
Add decorations. Add sprinkles or jimmies while the chocolate is still wet. If decorating with a chocolate drizzle, let the chocolate coating harden first, then drizzle more chocolate on top. Then let them set for about an hour before serving.
There are so many ways to decorate cake pops! Really the sky is the limit when decorating them. Below are a few easy and adorable ideas:
- Add sprinkles or jimmies
- Drizzle with more melted chocolate
- Use colored candy melts
- Dye the cake batter with food coloring for a fun surprise when biting into them
I used white cake for this recipe, but you can really use any flavor. A classic buttercream is also my favorite type of frosting for cake pops, but feel free to use others like chocolate buttercream, cream cheese frosting or strawberry buttercream.
Below are a few different flavor combinations that would taste delicious:
- White cake + classic buttercream
- Chocolate cake + classic buttercream
- Red velvet cake + cream cheese frosting
- Birthday cake (funfetti) + classic buttercream
- Lemon cake + lemon frosting
- Carrot cake + cream cheese frosting
- Strawberry cake + strawberry frosting
- Half batch of frosting – I made a half batch of my buttercream frosting and used only half of that amount. How much frosting you need will depend largely on how moist the cake is. Mine was VERY moist, so I didn’t need that much. If you have leftover frosting, you can easily store it in an air sealed zip top bag in the freezer.
- Add enough frosting – Make sure to add enough frosting or else they will crack and fall apart after freezing. Add the frosting in gradually though, because including too much could cause them to be soggy.
- Chill in freezer – It is very important that they are cold. They will not hold form or hang onto the stick if they aren’t cold enough, especially when you start dipping and covering with the melted chocolate. Sometimes I freeze mine for closer to 45 minutes to ensure they’re cool enough. I also take half of the batch out at a time, so the other half doesn’t soften up while I’m coating in chocolate.
- Melting the chocolate – If the chocolate hardens up while in the bowls, you may need to reheat and melt again. Make sure to only heat the chocolate for 30 second increments. Any longer can burn the chocolate.
- Dipping method – You can either dip the cake ball into a deep, 2 cup measuring cup filled with melted chocolate or spoon the chocolate over in a shallow dish. A few of the cake balls fell off of the stick when dipping into a measuring cup, so the spoon method worked better for me. It is important to note that they will look a little misshapen at first, but as the chocolate cools, it smoothes out. Any decorations will hide imperfections.
- Decorating tips – While decorating, have an empty plate or bowl below to help catch the excess decorations that don’t stick.
- Holding upright – Use a glass filled with rice or sprinkles (above), or a styrofoam block to hold the cake pops upright.
More bite-sized party treats:
- Valentine cake pops
- 3-ingredient Oreo balls
- Brownie truffles
- Chocolate peanut butter balls
- Chocolate chip cookie dough truffles
Cake Pop Recipe
- 15 ounce box white cake mix , cook according to package directions in a 9x13" pan
- 10 ounce package dark chocolate melting wafers
- 10 ounce package white chocolate melting wafers ,I prefer Ghiradelli
- 1 stick salted butter , softened
- 2-2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 Tablespoon heavy cream or milk
Optional: Sprinkles, jimmies or other desired decorations
Make Buttercream Frosting
- In a medium bowl, whip the butter. Add in 1 cup of powdered sugar. Mix until combined. Add the vanilla and additional powdered sugar, a little at a time. Add 1 Tablespoon of heavy cream or milk to make the frosting thick and creamy. It should hold a point.
Make Cake Pops
- In a large bowl, crumble the prepared cake into fine crumbs (make sure it has cooled completely before crumbling). Add 2 spoonfuls of buttercream frosting to the cake. Combine with your hands or a spoon. Gradually add more frosting until the cake holds together if squeezed. You don't want it too crumbly or it won't hold together.
- Using a medium cookie scoop, scoop out 1 scoop of cake mixture. Roll into a ball and place onto a plate. Repeat until all the cake mixture has been formed into balls.
Dip in chocolate
- In two small microwave safe dishes, melt a few of the dark and white chocolate wafers. Begin by heating for 30 seconds and then stirring. Repeat until all the wafers are melted.
- Dip the end of the cake pop stick into the melted chocolate and then push the stick into the cake pop. Then push the stick into the cake pop. Repeat until all cake pops have a stick. Place the plate of cake pops in the freezer for about 20 minutes.
- Right before they are ready to be taken out of the freezer, melt the dark chocolate and the white chocolate in two separate bowls. A deep, 2 cup measuring cup will allow you to dip the cake pop in the chocolate, or in a shallow dish, you can spoon the melted chocolate over the cake pop.
- Once coated in chocolate, gently tap the stick on the side of the melting dish to let the excess drip off. You can also spin or twirl the cake pop to remove the excess.
- Before the chocolate starts to harden, add sprinkles, jimmies or other decorations. If decorating with more chocolate, let the chocolate covering harden on the cake pop. Then, using a spoon or fork, drizzle with the additional melted chocolate.
- Push the cake pop stick into a styrofoam block or use a glass filled with rice to hold them upright. The chocolate will be set in about an hour. Store for 3-4 days in an airtight container in a cool place.