Cake Balls – Carrot Cake & Chocolate

cake balls

Have leftover cake, icing or melted chocolate? Make cake balls!

For all of these, I used my small ice cream scoop, the one I usually use to scoop batter for mini cupcakes.

Carrot Cake Balls

The secret to cake balls is that they are really just crumbled cake mixed with frosting in most cases. I had leftover carrot cake and vanilla buttercream, these were the result.

carrot cake balls

Most cake balls have some sort of chocolate or candy coating, but mine went bare. If I’d planned ahead, I would have gotten some white chocolate to melt and dipped these. That may have made them over-the-top rich, but that just seems to be the deal with cake balls or pops.

Chocolate Balls

My first type of chocolate balls were really candy rather than cake. They were made from a mix of milk and dark chocolate melted with a little cream, scooped into balls when cooling and sprinkled with powdered sugar.

The second chocolate-based batch was basically chocolate icing and peanut butter, chilled and scooped, then dipped in chopped hazelnuts. I kept them in the freezer until I took them to the event (with ice packs), where they eventually reverted to mush. They made tasty mush, but I wouldn’t try this method again unless I were serving immediately.

Cake and Candy Balls

Carrot Cake, Chocolate with Powdered Sugar, and Peanut Butter Chocolate with Hazelnuts

These treats made good use of my leftovers!

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Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Swirl Cupcakes

peanut_chocolate_swirl3I’d never tried the swirl. It seems the perfect recipe to end up on Pinterest Fail. However, sometimes you’ve got to mix it up!

I stuffed a bag with chocolate icing on one side and peanut butter on the other. It worked out ok but wasn’t perfect. My main issue wasn’t in separating the flavors but that the chocolate and peanut butter icings were different consistencies. You can see in the photos how they didn’t behave the same, the peanut butter was not as smooth (probably not a frosting best suited to piping).

peanut_chocolate_swirl

I later saw someone doing this with three bags (two bags of icing in a third bag with tip), and I will try that method next time! I’ll also make sure my frostings are more similar.

I was fulfilling a birthday cupcake flavor request of peanut butter and chocolate. The swirled icing wasn’t the only chocolate in my peanut butter, the cupcakes themselves were peanut butter with chocolate chips.

chocolate chip peanut butter cupcakes

I added chips to peanut butter cupcakes for an extra punch of chocolate.

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Castle Cake – Chocolate Chip Bundt

castle chocolate chip bundt

What else was I going to bake for the Game of Thrones season premier?

It also happened to be my husband’s birthday, and he requested chocolate chip. I used this recipe from Southern Living, though I did not do the pecan crumble. I didn’t want to mess up my turrets!

The cake came out perfectly—I was so excited it didn’t stick or break—and even tasted great.

Game of Thrones Cake

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Cara Cara Orange Cake

Cara-Cara-Orange-Cupcake
Cara Cara oranges, available late winter to early spring, look like regular oranges on the outside, but they are red inside, much like a ruby red grapefruit. In fact, if you buy one by mistake, believing it a regular orange, you might think you’ve gotten a small grapefruit when you cut into it. They are sweet and a little tangy, though, not sour/tart like a grapefruit.

I based my cake on Martha Stewart’s Orange-Yogurt Cake recipe, making a small heart-shaped cake and a few cupcakes. This was a simple, light cake, finished with powdered sugar and served with orange slices and zest strips.

Orange Cake

I do not have a lemon zester that allows for peeling thin strips of zest, so I removed some zest with a knife and cut it into thin slices, which worked fine.

Cutting orange segments always reminds me of my grandmother, who taught me the method (thekitchenista.com has a nice tutorial).

Cara Cara Orange Cake

This cake would probably work well with any kind of citrus. I’m sure it would be a lovely summertime dessert with regular oranges or lemons. I served it after a heavier winter meal when a rich, frosted cake would have been overkill.

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Butterscotch Apple Cupcakes

butterscotch apple cupcakesI’m known for cupcakes and rarely is anyone surprised when I bring cupcakes to an event. However, sometimes I can be a little crafty.

A friend organized a last minute birthday dinner, and I whipped up a quick half batch that fit in a smaller container than my normal carrier. I was able to conceal the cupcakes for an afternoon of birthday pampering and most of the meal. Ha! I was pleased that the birthday girl was surprised.

katie bday surprise cupcake

For these cupcakes, I used an apple cupcake recipe from Chow, adding some butterscotch extract and using coriander instead of the other spices. I topped them with butterscotch buttercream frosting.

I’d bought the butterscotch extract at Olive Nation on a whim and had been waiting for an excuse to use it. It paired well with the moist and not-too-sweet apple cake.

inside apple cupcake

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