Valentine’s Day Cake Pop Bites

{originally posted on Mama Hen’s Kitchen, before Happy Food Healthy Life was born}

I love cake.
I love strawberry cake.
I love bite-sized treats that I can just pop in my mouth thinking that I’m being smart by eating a small treat, when in all actuality I convince myself that it’s ok to eat twelve of these goodies.
I love treats in fun shapes.
I love Valentine’s Day!

Because of all of these reasons, I decided to make these deliciously addictive bites of heaven.  Anyone who knows me personally, knows that I will come up with any excuse or reason to make cake pops.  Office potlucks, bridal or baby showers, holiday, Fridays… really, cake pops are a go any time or day, in my opinion.  We even had a cake pop wedding cake at our reception, and instead of feeding each other from a slice of cake, we fed each other cake pops!  It was so fun!

All you need is a box of cake, some frosting, and candy melts & sprinkles or whatever other decor you prefer.  In this instance, I used Pillsbury’s Moist Supreme Strawberry cake mix, to celebrate the fact that it is almost the big VEE DAY!

A few people have asked me why I don’t make my own cake and frosting for cake pops since I’m big into making everything from scratch and not using mixes.  If you’ve ever made a cake pop, you know the answer to this.  Cake pops are exTENsive!  For example, this one little heart-shaped pop project took me three days to actually complete. Sunday I made the cake.  Monday I only had time to crumble the cake and mix in the frosting.  Tuesday I hurried and shaped the cake into hearts before rushing off to Zumba.  Finally Wednesday, I found an hour or so after a late dinner to coat the hearts in melted candy coating.  Phew!  So, really, do you think I would want to attempt to find the time in my life to make a cake and frosting from scratch in this case?  Highly doubt anyone would be able to notice the difference.

So anyway, back to the simplicity of cake pops.  You bake your cake.  Crumble and mix with frosting.

Shape into a small heart-shaped cookie or fondant cutter.  I used Wilton brand fondant cut-outs.

Then you just coat in melted candy coating.  I wasn’t able to photograph this part because it’s a definite two-hand job, and the Mrs wasn’t available to snap a few.  It’s really quite simple though.  I really should try my hand at the self-timer on my camera.  It just seems too much of a task, and I ask myself if it’s worth it.

I’m curious how all of you celebrate Valentine’s Day.  Is it just another day to you?  Do you go all out with gifts and dinners and treats?  Maybe you should make your Valentine some of these!  They would thank you.  I’m sure of it.  Maybe put them in a small box tied up with ribbon so they look like a box of chocolates.  And of course a mushy love note about how they “take the cake” over anyone else in this world.  Do it!  Be sappy!  Or if you prefer… make these for yourself, Netflix some kick-ass girl power movie like Charlie’s Angels or Kill Bill, and don’t share one bite with anyone.  Either way you choose – I think making these cake pop bites equal a win-win situation.
Valentine’s Day Cake Pop Bites
inspired by Bakerella
1 box of strawberry cake mix (I used Pillsbury)
1/2 cup cream cheese frosting
1 bag Wilton Candy melts (I used multiple colors that I had on hand, but I believe it equaled about the amount of one bag)
Sprinkles, Jimmies, Hundreds and Thousands, Nonperils, etc. for decorating
Bake cake as instructed on cake box.  Of course, you can use your own cake recipe if you would like.  Let cake cool completely.
Once cool, crumble the cake completely in a large bowl.  If you have some edges that got a little overbaked, just toss them out.  No biggie.  Add the 1/2 cup of cream cheese frosting to the crumbled cake and mix well.  At this point, I like to cover with saran wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour.
Spoon out about a Tablespoon at a time. I like to roll it around tight between my hands first to make sure the cake is all really stuck together before pressing it down into into your heart mold (cookie or fondant cutter).  Once it’s filled to the top of the mold, carefully push it right out on to a lined baking sheet.  I like to pop the molded treats back into the fridge until I’m ready to coat with chocolate.
Melt the chocolate candy melts in a microwave-safe bowl (tall and skinny is better than a shallow bowl) for about 30 seconds at a time, stirring in between, until completely melted.  Dip your cake bites in the chocolate carefully and tap off the excess.  My method is dipping with a spoon, and then transfer to a fork.  That way, when you tap off the excess chocolate, it drips down between the fork tines.
Place back on the lined-tray, and if you are going to be decorating with sugars or sprinkles, now is the time to do it before the chocolate sets.  Put back in the fridge until you’re ready to serve or package for gifting.

This post is linked to:
Tip Junkie
The Shabby Nest
Toys in the Dryer


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