What you will need:
- Cake: your favorite from scratch or box mix. I used cherry chip for these guys!
- Mini chocolate chips to mix in to the cake (after it’s cooked)
- Butter ( as “glue”)
- Cake pop sticks (from a craft store)
- 2 bags of candy wafers (from a craft store)
- Wilton Chocolate Pro (optional)
- sweetened coconut (for fur)
- Red or pink food coloring (to color the coconut)
- A large Ziploc bag (for coloring the coconut)
- Yogurt covered raisins (for the eyes)
- One box or bag of royal icing mix
- Black food color for royal icing (I recommend Americolor)
- 2 piping bags (for icing)
- 1 plain tip (the very smallest you can find for eyes)
- 1 plain tip (slightly larger for swirls and feet)
- Wax paper for the swirls and feet
- Pink food color for royal icing swirls
- A space in your fridge for cooling.
- Something to stick your cake pops in for drying or a piece of wax paper to rest them on.
Unfortunately, the pink swirly antenna details and feet need to be done a day ahead. I try to post projects that can all be done in one day but these ones need to set up for at least 24 hours before you can use them. In the pictures you can’t really see the feet but what I did was just pipe out a circle with a few bumps as toes. These guys are a little on the messy side so don’t worry about being too neat or symmetrical with the feet.
If you can, this is also a great time to get to work on coloring that coconut pink. This way the coconut will have time to dry up. If you don’t have time, I would try mixing the color into it and then spreading it out on a cookie sheet and baking it at a low heat for a few minutes. To color the coconut simply add the coconut to the Ziploc bag with some food coloring and mix it around with the bag closed. I used Americolor pink for mine. I suggest mixing the color gel with a little bit of water before you add it to the coconut. I had a few parts where the gel just kind of lumped and dried out on me. Next I just spread the coconut out on a cookie sheet and let it dry out overnight.
You can bake the cake a day in advance too if you’d like. Bake your favorite flavor of cake in a regular cake pan. I used cherry chip for these guys!
When the cake is cooled take a fork and turn that cake into crumbs making sure to not leave the crumbs too big. You can crumble the cake when it is still slightly warm I think it actually helps cool the cake faster. Don’t add whatever you are using as “glue” to a warm cake however as you don’t want it to melt.
When the cake is cooled very gradually add your favorite “glue’. I started cake pops with traditional butter-cream but found it a little sweet. I have since moved to using anything creamy. Butter is perfect if you don’t want to change the flavour but cream cheese and peanut butter are great too! Nutella would be good too. Just always remember if you add too much “glue” to the mix it will get too soft and you will have to start over. So only add one tablespoon at a time! I have found that two tablespoons is the perfect amount for me. For these ones I used butter and I added some mini chocolate chips into the mix too. It was a fantastic combo!
Once your mix is together roll the mix into balls. The consistency should be prefect for making balls: not sticky or crumbly. As soon as you have all your cake balls made cover them with plastic wrap and cool them in the fridge for about 10 minutes or until they are firm. It is important to note here that foods with high fat content, like the butter in your cake balls, are notorious for absorbing flavor. If your fridge has any strong-smelling foods in it double cover your cake balls with plastic wrap. I love curry and onions and egg salad but those flavors don’t belong in cake pops. So be aware of that.
While you are waiting for the cake balls to harden get to work on melting your candy wafers. I strongly recommend using a chocolate melter. This will make the job much more fun and contribute to less waste of your candy coating. You can mix different colors of candy coating to get the color you desire. You can also add gel or oil based colors and flavors to your candy coating. Do not use water based flavors or colors. The candy coating is extremely sensitive to water and will just turn to liquid if water is introduced. You will see this when the time comes to clean up. I was dreading cleaning the hardened candy. I poured water over it to get started and it all just melted away in a few minutes.
Once your candy is melted take your cake balls out of the fridge and unwrap them. Dip a stick into the melted candy and then push it about 2/3 of the way into a cake ball. Do this until each cake ball has a stick in it and then wrap them back up and put them back in the fridge. The candy will harden in approximately 10 minutes or so and they will be ready for dipping.
Once the cake pop is securely hardened to its stick dip it into your melted candy and swirl it around making sure to evenly coat it. immediately dip the wet cake pop into the pink coconut and swirl it around coating it as evenly as you can. Remember that these cake pops are done with the stick coming out of the top so these ones can rest on a cookie sheet instead of a stand. Quickly set them down on a pair of feet and then still moving as quickly as you can, push two raisins in for eyes and two swirls in for antenna. After they are all done look around for details that need a little extra glue and glue them back on with some of the remaining melted candy. For the finishing touch pipe a black dot onto each of the raisins for the eyes. I used to put the dots on first but I found that the eyes were never quite facing in the same direction and they looked better if I could control the way that they faced.
The cake pops will take about 15 minutes to dry completely; maybe longer. I have found that if I refrigerate them the coating becomes slightly sticky so if you are planning for them to be served at room temperature it really is best not to put them in the fridge at all. They do taste great cold so if you are serving them at home where you can serve them cold that works too.
If you are thinking of making them in advance I just wanted to leave a little note here and say: I have never had any problem freezing cake pops. I have done it many times without cracking or discoloration. Lots of people have reported with these issues, but it has never happened to me even once. So if you are making cake pops for a special occasion and you want to have them ready in advance I say do them and freeze them. If you are worried maybe try it once first just to be sure.
Good luck and have fun with your cake pops!