It’s a fact: Your blog is one of the yummiest and cutest around. There’s no disputing it – with sweets such as your extra-peanut-butter-cup-peanut-butter-cup-cake and Carebear cupcakes, how long can a gal ogle your site on her screen before scurrying off to the kitchen to try it herself? When I heard about your Cupcake Pops, I was nearly as smitten as Martha herself. Unfortunately, I had to wait for just the right occasion; but good thing my birthday was just a few weeks away and I have no shame in baking my own cake. Whether that be a traditional one, or in cupcake-truffle-lollipop form. And this year, I’d rather the latter! I knew if I could pull this off I’d impress all my friends and family nearly as much as myself. Since my birthday happens to fall within one week of my cousin Hannah’s birthday, I planned to debut the Cupcake Pops at our joint birthday celebration.
So, I went ahead and studied your instructions and gathered supplies. When the time came, I went with strawberry cake and cream cheese frosting. Baking the cake, mushing it with frosting, and rolling the balls is the easy part. I was cruising along at this point. Then it was time to play with my mini flower cookie cutter. I went with the one from the Wilton mini set. This part didn’t go too badly; I was a bit skeptical because what I saw looked more like chefs’ hats than mini cupcakes. But I kept going. With the mini cupcake cake balls back in the freezer, I went ahead and melted the chocolate – I wanted a white cupcake liner, so I purchased Wilton candy melts in white. Is it possible I made a big error in not going with your suggestion of chocolate bark? I’m not sure, but this is where things just started to get messy. Literally. Trying to hold the tops of the cakes in my fingers and dip the bottom parts in the melted chocolate did not go as seamlessly as you’ve shown. And that’s fine; I’m sure you practiced many times before meeting Martha! But I was sad. My mini cupcakes, at this point, were looking like total blobs. The detail of the cookie cutter shape was completely lost in chocolate goo, and even though I had chilled the cakes as instructed, the tops didn’t want to hold their shape very well either. I felt defeated. I mean, sure, they would still taste good, but I think you will agree, that is not entirely the point here! I was going for looks as well as taste, and I was shooting for near perfection. After I got about halfway through, I stopped to re-evaluate my plan.
Of course, I had also seen your follow-up post on how to make the cupcake bites using a candy mold. I have to admit, I love the detail here and think they look even more like cupcakes, and of course, you promise it’s easier! So I went out in search of some candy molds. Of course, my first stop was sold out and I had to trek across town to the rival craft store. Is everyone making cupcake bites this weekend? When I finally had my molds and hand, and I was heading home, I was excited, but still feeling a little depressed. Sure, these cupcake bites would be more adorable than my previous blob-failure, but, I had set out with a mission – I wanted to make cupcakes on a stick! There had to be a way to turn these into lollipops, and I was determined to figure out what it was. Obviously, you can’t just insert the stick in later, when the chocolate is hard. I thought about trying to re-melt the bottom of the molded chocolate by holding it over a warm pan, but I had a feeling that would turn messy. It was not until I was at home, holding my squeeze bottle filled with warm, melted chocolate, that I had the revelation. It was pretty simple, actually, but I was amazed with my own results. At the site of the first completely decorated Cupcake Pop, I turned giddy. It was just so darn adorable! So, I hope you’ll read ahead and see what I did, and let me know what you think!
My family absolutely adored these – they couldn’t get enough. And while enjoying our Cupcake Pops we were brainstorming ideas for future holiday-themed pops. I am in Cupcake Pop love! Thank you for the wonderful inspiration, I am sure I will be sharing these cuties with family and friends over and over again – they are absolutely the perfect treat for any party!
Cupcake Pops: How to get the candy mold look on a lollipop!
After following the initial steps of preparing a cake, crumbling it up and mixing with frosting, rolling the mixture into little balls and placing these into the freezer to chill, we pick up here.
Grab your squeeze bottle full of melted chocolate, or even a microwave safe zipper bag with a corner snipped off will do. Pipe the chocolate into the candy mold in a circle as shown below, leaving an empty hole in the center, but go around probably twice with the chocolate. You want there to be enough to push up the sides; it will take some practice. Immediately after piping, place a cake ball into the mold, take a lollipop stick, insert it right through the center and press down. This will push the cake ball down into the mold, and push the chocolate up the sides.
The bottom of the stick will not be touching chocolate. Obviously, if it was, the stick would be stuck in the hardened chocolate, and then it would be on the wrong end of the lollipop, and you will not be able to remove it. This was difficult to photograph, but if you look carefully, you can see it in the picture below. I left the lollipop sticks in while letting the chocolate set. I don’t know if this is necessary, but I think it made it easier to remove the cupcake bites from the mold later on.
Place the molds in the fridge for about 5-10 minutes to let the chocolate harden. Carefully remove one cupcake bite at a time (you may need to bend the mold a bit). Remove the stick, dip the end in melted chocolate, and then push it into the bottom of the cupcake, through the hole that is already formed. You’ll have something that looks like this, and you can take a toothpick to smooth out that bit of melted chocolate over the bottom; this will secure the lollipop stick.
Place them upside down on a baking sheet lined with wax paper, and place back in the fridge to chill while you prepare your melting chocolate for the tops, and your desired decorations.
Here are the goodies I used. I particularly enjoyed the Wild Cherry m&m’s – this is the only way I know to get a bag of all red m&m’s (unless you place an order, or happen to live near a specialty candy store), plus I just think it is extra fitting that they taste like a cherry. So appropriate!Now, you’re ready to decorate! Dip the tops of the cupcake bites in the melted chocolate, using a toothpick or spoon to smooth / fill-in as necessary. Give it a little twirl to smooth it out, then place an m&m on top and decorate with sprinkles. Place the pops in a piece of styrofoam and let them set in a cool place.
And here I am… yum!