Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Summer Sunshine Cake Pops

I volunteered to bring treats for my boys' end-of-year concert, just so I could conjure up some summery cake pops.

I raided the candy aisle at Michaels, hoping for some perfect squares, triangles or diamonds to make sun rays. I was sure the "crazy bananas" would do the trick. I even had hope for the candy buttons. In the end... it was the pantry that saved the day.

Let me tell you that these cake pops were not quite as easy as I'd planned. See? These are the "Sunshine Reject Crew." (Although I do have some ideas now for lots of different kinds of flowers!)

What You (really) Need:
1 cake, baked and cooled
1-2 cups icing (I prefer cream cheese frosting)
2 bags Yellow Candy Melts
Vegetable Oil
Lollipop Sticks
White Chocolate Chips

Heating Pad

Ice Pack
Orange Triangle Candies from Wilton Mix
Yellow Sanding Sugar (sprinkles)
Candy Buttons for eyes
Black FoodWriter Marker
Black Licorice Rope

Start by making your cake balls. If you've never made cake pops before, you may want to check out these links first:
How to Make Cake Pops
How Long Does It Take to Make Cake Pops

I'll give you the quick version here.

Use a fork to make your cake into small crumbs. Add icing 1/2 cup at at time until the cake crumbs become like a ragged dough-- being careful not to add too much icing. (I think that's the biggest mistake most people make at first-- too much icing.)

Use a scoop or a small spoon to make balls that are about the size of a small ping-pong ball or a little smaller.

Roll the dough in your hands until the ball is smooth. Refrigerate the cake balls for at least 3 hours or overnight. (In a pinch, you can put them in the freezer for 30 minutes, then move them to the refrigerator, but this doesn't work as well as refrigerating them for hours.)

When your cake balls have rested and cooled, melt the Candy Melts with about 1 Tbsp. of vegetable oil for each bag of Candy Melts.
I prefer a tall mug, like this one, because it keeps you from wasting a lot of candy like a wide bowl does.
I microwave my Candy Melts for 3 minutes on power level 3, then stir, and usually I'm pretty close. I heat by 30 second intervals (power level 3) after that, stirring each time.

I usually only work with about 5-10 cake balls at a time, so that they don't get too warm while I'm working. And I've taken to putting an ice pack underneath the plate so they stay even that much cooler.

Keep the candy mug on top of a heating pad, set to medium. This way, the candy stays warm and you don't have to continually re-heat them. Eventually after so many re-heats, they tend to seize up on you.

Now, you always need to remember to dip your lollipop stick about 1/4" into the melted candy before you put it into the cake ball. This helps keep the pops from falling off of the stick.

Dip the cake pop into the candy. Remember not to twist or swirl it because that makes it more likely to fall off of the stick.

Remember that you always want to tap the stick on the side of the mug to get any extra candy off of the cake pop. If you skip this step, you'll likely have candy running all the way down the stick!

Here's where you have options.
The easiest way to finish your sunshine, is to use these little triangles to make the rays. Place them on immediately after tapping the stick. (You can buy them at the craft store in the Wilton aisle, or online here.)
The catch is that it takes 9-12 for each sun. I only made about 10 sunshines with these guys before I ran out of triangles. AND they tended to crack where the triangles were placed.
I think these are adorable, but not the most cost-effective way to go.

What I decided was my favorite way to decorate the sunshines was with white chocolate chips.
Again, you want to place these on the cake pop immediately after you tap off the excess candy.
Insert the stick into the styrofoam to let it set a little...

When it has set for a few minutes, dip the whole thing again.
(I usually would do dip #1, and add chips to about 5 pops... then go through and do dip #2 for all 5.)

To tap this one, I preferred to tap it with the "rays" on the sides, rather than on one side, because I found when I tapped it sideways, the candy would all get globbed onto the rays on the side I tapped it, and it didn't look as nice. (Does this make sense?)

You can also use chocolate chips, if you want, instead of white chocolate chips...

But they kind of show through after that re-dip.

You could always dip it yet again, like you see above, but then you're looking at three layers of candy on each pop. That's why I opted for the white ones.

To decorate these guys, you can sprinkle them with yellow sanding sugar. This was my favorite way to go. Though, I probably only sanded about 15-20 of them, and used up an entire bottle of yellow sugar.

To make the eyes, I used leftover royal icing dots, and colored on them with a black marker.
(I bought the candy buttons to use for the eyes, but I thought they looked a little crazy with colored eyes.)

I used black licorice rope for the mouths. ( I recommend placing the rope on their as soon as you get the rays placed, or as soon as you finish with the dipping because it's hard to get it to keep its shape.)

I really love these little rays of sunshine. I hope I made enough for all of the stars of the preschool concert!

Enter your email address below to receive the latest recipes, tips and ideas in your email inbox:

Delivered by FeedBurner

And don't forget, if you shop at through my link, you support this blog and its contents. Thank you!


  1. I love this idea! You can have sunshine on a cloudy day! Thanks for sharing:)

  2. Yes.A very nice idea.A sunny idea.

  3. do the chocolate chips fall off? mine always do....:(

    1. I was worried about that, but it actually didn't happen for me.
      If they're falling off, my guess is that you may not wait long enough for the first coat to completely set before you re-dip it.
      If it's warm where you are, you may need to pop them in the fridge for a few minutes??
      Let me know if you try it again.
      - Beki

  4. These are SO CUTE!!! I'm so glad you linked them up!

    1. Thank you so much...
      And you can see the "reject file" photo for how these were also an exercise in failure and frustration along the way! ;-)

  5. It's still February, but I'm counting down to the days to the sunshine. And my god, Beki, those cake pops are so lovely. They just radiate the light and warmth you'd associate with summer. Perfect. I highlighted them at my blog, of course! Summer Cake Pops! :)



Please note that comments containing profanity or those that are spam will not be approved on this website.