Its Christmas time again, my favorite time of the year! I love Christmas shopping, decorating, baking, and anything really if you slap the word Christmas in front of it. But Im aware that some people are grinches who arent very enthusiastic about the festivities. If thats you, dont you worry because I have whipped up this delicious recipe to liven your spirits. These are chocolate peppermint cake pops made using Simple Mills cake mix and frosting. These are gluten-free and almost sort of kind of dairy-free (use coconut oil instead of ghee to make them ULTRA dairy-free). You can get these on Amazon or at Whole Foods, or you can test your luck at Targets and H-E-Bs if youre in Laredo.
About the Cake
You can technically use any cake recipe to bake the cake, but of course, this will mean that you may need a bit more or less frosting than I used depending on the moistness of your cake. I chose to use Simple Mills to save time and energy (making a cake from scratch is not something I felt like doing), and because their mix contains very simple and clean ingredients that I can get behind. If you do choose to use this mix, keep in mind that I did NOT 100% follow the baking instructions on the box. Also, feel free to bake your cake a day prior to making the cake pops if you prefer to do so.
About the Cake Pops
I divided the cake balls in half and placed them on two separate baking sheets, one for the dark chocolate and one for the white chocolate. This is not necessary if you are coating all pops with the same colored chocolate. I also used a cake pop stand to chill the pops in the freezer after dipping them, and I highly recommend that you do as well to avoid a giant mess and over-complications. I used this one from Wal-Mart. I also recommend that you use the same chocolate chips that I did because a different brand that contains different ingredients may be more/less runny, cool more/less quickly, etc. I used Enjoy Life semi-sweet chocolate chips, which are available at Wal-Mart, H-E-B, and Whole Foods. I used Nestle Toll House Simply Delicious white chocolate morsels for the dairy-free white chocolate coating, which I found at Wal-Mart.
So basically, all the ingredients youll need are available at Wal-Mart, minus the cake mix and frosting, which you can order on Amazon. Ta-da.
Okay lets get down to business:
Total Time: 2 hours Servings: 24 cake pops
For the cake:
- 1 box of Simple Mills Chocolate Muffin & Cake Mix
- 3 eggs, at room temperature
- cup melted ghee or coconut oil (measured melted)
- cup cashew milk
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
For the cake pops:
- 6 Tbs Simple Mills Chocolate Frosting
- tsp peppermint extract
- 1.5 cup dairy-free semi-sweet chocolate chips (I used Enjoy Life)
- 1.5 cup dairy-free white chocolate chips (I used Nestle Toll House Simply Delicious)
- 6-8 mini candy canes (or 2-3 large ones)
For the cake:
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Oil an 88 baking dish and dust with 1 teaspoon of chocolate muffin & cake mix.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together eggs, oil, vanilla extract, and cashew milk.
- Add in the remainder of the chocolate cake mix and whisk until evenly mixed.
- Pour mix into baking dish and bake for 28 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and allow cake to cool for at least 1 hour.
Forming the cake pops:
- Once the cake has cooled, trim the edges and discard them (or eat them!).
- Add the remainder of the cake to a large mixing bowl.
- Using your hands, break and mix the cake so that there are no more clumps left.
- Add in peppermint extract and mix evenly with your hands.
- Slowly add in frosting 1-2 tablespoons at a time, mixing evenly with your hands before adding more.
- Continue adding frosting until the mix can be rolled into balls that dont break apart (about 6 tablespoons of frosting should do).
- Roll the mixture into even round balls about 1-inch in diameter. (You can use a tablespoon measurer to ensure even sizes.)
- Place half of the balls on one cookie sheet, and the other half on a separate one (if youre making both dark and white chocolate-covered cake pops).
- Use a double boiler OR a double boiler substitute to melt semi-sweet chocolate chips on low heat, and remove the bowl from the heat once its evenly melted.
- Dip the tip of a cake pop stick (about centimeter) into the melted chocolate and gently pierce it into the top of a cake ball. Repeat this step for half of your total cake pops.
- Place the sheet of sticked cake balls in the freezer and allow them to chill for about 20 min. Repeat steps 9-11 using white chocolate chips for the second half of your cake pops.
- While your pops are in the freezer, crush your candy canes into small pieces and place in a small bowl. (I crushed them on a cutting board using the bottom of a small mason jar).
Dipping and decorating your cake pops:
- Begin to reheat your chocolate on low heat, and remove it from the heat once its nicely melted and drippy.
- Once your pops are done chilling, remove them from the freezer, and place your empty cake pop rack in the freezer.
- Place a chilled cake pop into your bowl of melted chocolate and use a spoon to gently scoop chocolate onto the pop until its evenly covered. Allow excess chocolate to drip back into the bowl.
- Place your cake pop on the cake pop rack in the freezer for about 30 seconds (long enough to stop the chocolate from dripping, but short enough for the chocolate to maintain some stickiness.)**See note below!!!!!!
- Remove your pop from the freezer and use your fingers to sprinkle crushed candy canes onto the coating. Place the pop back in the freezer.
- Repeat this process for every cake pop.
**Step 4 is not necessary for the white chocolate since it cools within seconds of dipping.
Once all your pops have been decorated, you can move them to the fridge and store them there for up to one week!
Let me know if you try this recipe out, if you love or hate it, or if you have any questions regarding it! Enjoy your holidays! <3