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Pumpkin Cake Pops

Photo: Katherine Flynn

Yield

Serves 16 (serving size: 1 cake pop)

These adorable pumpkin pops are the perfect sweet addition to any fall festivity. Not to mention, they're a great interactive food craft to tackle with the kids. Once you've given your pops their orange candy coating, use decorative icings and sprinkles to add extra  autumnal flair--such as jack-o'-lantern faces and pumpkin vines. Keep in mind that the candy melt coating will harden quickly, so if you do want to hit your cake pops with some sprinkle action, do so immediately after dipping each pop so that the sprinkles will stick. Look for lollipop sticks at your local craft store. 

Ingredients

  • PUMPKIN CAKE
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups canned pumpkin puree
  • CREAM CHEESE FROSTING
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 6 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 11/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • PUMPKIN CAKE POPS ASSEMBLY
  • 2 (8-ounce) bags orange colored candy melts
  • 1/2 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 tube green decorating icing (optional)
  • 1 tube black decorating icing (optional)
  • Orange and green sprinkles (optional)

How to Make It

  1. Make the Pumpkin Cake: Preheat oven to 350°. Grease and flour a 9x13-inch glass baking dish.

  2. Beat eggs and sugar together in a bowl until blended. Beat in oil. Sift flour, pumpkin pie spice, baking soda, and salt over egg mixture; fold dry ingredients gently into egg mixture. Fold pumpkin puree into batter. Pour batter into prepared pan and bake at 350° until a skewer into center of cake comes out clean, 40 to 50 minutes. Cool cake in pan on a wire rack for 15 minutes. 

  3. Make the Frosting: Cream together the first 3 ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment until fluffy. Add vanilla to bowl; mix well. Refrigerate for 20 minutes. 

  4. Make the Pumpkin Cake Pops: When cake is cool enough to handle, crumble into a large bowl. Add 1/2 cup chilled cream cheese frosting to bowl; mix well with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula. The mixture should stick together firmly; add more Cream Cheese Frosting if necessary. Roll the cake mixture into 16 (1-inch) balls and place on a rimmed baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Freeze for 20 minutes (or chill in the refrigerator for 2 hours). 

  5. Heat candy melts according to package instructions until melted; stir in coconut oil. Remove cake balls from freezer or refrigerator. Dip the end of a white lollipop stick into the melted candy melts (about 1/4 of the way up the the stick); insert dipped end of lollipop stick into a cake ball. Return the cake pop to parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Repeat process with remaining 15 cake balls. Freeze cake balls 10 minutes. 

  6. Reheat candy melts on LOW, if necessary (add an additonal 1/2 teaspoon of coconut oil, if mixture seems too stiff). Remove cake balls from freezer. Dip the cake pops into the melted candy melts to fully cover, lightly tapping lollipop stick to remove excess. Repeat with remaining cake pops. Decorate as desired using decorating icings and sprinkles.