How to make cake pops

So You Think You Can Bake? Everything You Need To Know To Make The Best Cake Pops EVER

Secrets from a cake pop baker that pastry chefs don't want you to know.


When I was about 14 and going through a "Mom, please buy more flour so I can make desserts" phase, my mom bought me a cake pop/donut hole machine.

Now, five years later, I can tell you that my cake pop machine is long gone! When my brother, Jacob, asked me to make "something good" for his upcoming dessert silent auction, I knew right away what would entice little kids in attendance to ask their parents to bid on... cake pops.

Here's every step I'll be taking to make these cake pops tempting to all in attendance.

1. Bake a cake.

I'll be using this recipe and following instructions for the "one pan cake." Although I prefer vanilla, I'll be baking a chocolate cake because there is a higher percentage of (strange) people who choose chocolate over vanilla.

2. Let the cake cool, and trim away the "crusts."

After letting the cake sit for about an hour or two, I'll carefully cut off the sides, edges, and top of the cake. This ensures there are no "crunchy" parts of the soon-to-be cake pops.

3. Crumble the cake.

It may seem counterproductive to crumble the cake I just spent hours baking, but TRUST ME, this is how the best cake pops are made! The finer pieces of cake will allow you to shape the cake pops however you please later in the process.

4. Mix in half a can of (or homemade) chocolate frosting to the crumbled cake.

Add just enough frosting until the consistency will allow you to form balls from the batter. Too much frosting will cause the balls to be too "mushy." In my opinion, it doesn't really matter that the frosting isn't homemade. Although it contributes to the taste, it's main function is to serve as the "glue" that holds the cake ball together. But if you're going to use homemade frosting, use this recipe.

5. Form the cake balls.

Using a cookie scooper, dish out as many cake balls as the batter will allow. Compact and press the scoops together tightly, as you don't want them to crack later when dipped. Place on wax paper to prevent them from sticking to the plate.

6. Freeze for 30 minutes.

Placing the cake balls in the freezer will allow them to harden and make dipping 100x easier!

7. Affix a fork/cake pop stick about halfway into the cake balls.

A fork is sturdier and more secure when dipping; I recommend using a plastic fork if it is your first time making cake pops. I've found that the lowest price for cake pop sticks is at Walmart.

8. Prepare the "candy melts" for dipping.

Candy Melts are available at Walmart or Michaels, and come in various colors. For best results, melt according to the package instructions, and add in one tablespoon of Crisco.

9. Dip the cake balls.

Begin by submerging half of the cake ball into the candy melts. Use a spoon to pour candy melts over the rest of the cake ball. Submerging the cake ball all at once increases your chances of causing the cake ball to fall off the fork/stick.

10. Stick cake pops upright into styrofoam.

It's a better idea to stick the cake pops upright into styrofoam than to place down onto wax paper. This will ensure that your cake pop is round. Drips make occur, but you can prevent this by gently tapping the cake ball on the side of the bowl after dipping.

11. Add sprinkles/decorations.

Check out this website for some of the best cake pop ideas. Experiment until you you've made the perfect pop! I'll be making the cake pops pictured next week. Bakerella and Pinterest also have tons of ideas for decorating cake pops.

12. Use gel for extra decoration.

From previous experience, I know that black candy melts fade when melted, so it's really more of a gray color. This color won't work for my cow pop spots, so I'll be adding a few drops of this gel to darken my black candy melts.

13. Cover the cake pops with mini treat bags.

Buy these sleeves from Walmart to ensure your cake pop stays in one piece! These are not necessary, but nice to have on hand.

14. Make an interesting cake pop stand.

Now that your cake pops are ready, you'll want to show them off! Get creative! To transport the cow cake pops I'll be making, I plan to stick styrofoam inside a pair of new cowboy boots! I'm also considering painting a styrofoam block to look like a hay bale.

15. Eat in at least two bites.

Sure, anyone can eat a cake pop in one bite, but why not savor it? It will be well worth it!

Now that you're an expert cake pop chef, you'll be a hit at events and parties!

And if you're ever in need of a good laugh, perhaps you can pull this prank on someone!

Cover Image Credit:

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The Definitive College Ranking Of 16 Ramen Noodle Flavors

I ate all of these for you!

Ramen noodles are the staple food of the modern American college student. They're cheap, filling and widely available, and as such, they have become a sort of cultural icon. Every kid who has set foot on a college campus in the last twenty years knows what ramen noodles taste like.

This is why I am here to provide you with a service. For too long the debate has raged on: “What's the best ramen flavor? What should I spend my hard-earned 25 cents on?" The little round head on the plastic packaging smiles at you from all angles. It's a desperate smile. He's imploring you -- make a decision, quickly. But there are so many choices lined up on the shelf. You have been standing in the aisle for what feels like multiple millennia; your friends, who were kind enough to take you out to the supermarket with them, are starting to really hate you. Everything around you is crumbling as you are absolutely unable to make up your mind.

I am presenting to you a way out of this situation, in the form of a definitive ranking, top to bottom, of every Maruchan ramen flavor, so that nobody has to spend this long in the ramen aisle ever again.

(Disclaimer: this is just an opinion, and I know opinions can be both wrong and scary, but know that if you give them no power they cannot hurt you. I am just a ramen enthusiast trying to help the poor soul lost in the aisle.)

16. Sriracha Chicken

sriracha chicken ramen

Alright, so, I'm a huge sriracha fan (I own that one shirt and everything), and when I saw this product on the shelves, I thought this flavor would make perfect sense. It's chicken with a kick, so to speak. The flavor packet provided is the foulest smelling thing I have experienced in quite a while. It just smells like straight up poison. So after going through that, I pull out my bowl and go to town. What do I find? This stuff has not even the slightest hint of sriracha flavor! It just tastes like a thing of chicken-flavored ramen that has gone kinda stale. Gross.

15. Lime Chili / Lime Chili Shrimp (tie)

lime chili shrimp ramen

I know a lot of people who are going to be mad at me, so let me preface this: I really don't like lime-flavored anything. There are very few things I like that have lime in them and that's why I have to rank these two so low. It does have a solid kick to it, but the lime taste really puts me off of it.

13. Shrimp

shrimp ramen

Serious question: why is this one of the most readily available flavors of ramen? I don't understand how something like this sells to anyone. It is just gross, artificial fish flavoring steeped in hot water. I just don't get it. The broth, while sufficiently salty, reeks of fish and even the sheer heat of it cannot mask the taste. I totally get why mom never let us keep this flavor around the house.

12. Picante Beef / Picante Chicken (tie)

picante beef ramen

I've only had these once and I was left entirely underwhelmed. Not very “Picante" at all.

10. Chicken Mushroom / Chicken Tortilla / Creamy Chicken

Creamy chicken ramen

Maruchan absolutely loves their twists on chicken flavored ramen. They're like the Fast and Furious sequels of ramen. There's too many of them, and they keep getting more and more ridiculous. Maybe it's because American audiences (i.e. me and you) eat that stuff up. That being said, these three are pretty alright as far as flavors go. I was incredibly skeptical of Creamy Chicken, because creamy is not an adjective I necessarily look for in ramen, but I found myself pleasantly surprised. Chicken Mushroom is good, too, but it has really stiff competition.

7. Chili

chili ramen

Finally, a ramen with some kick. There's not much else going for it flavor-wise, but if you like heat, then this is probably your best bet, barring doing some ramen-doctoring of your own.

6. Chicken

chicken ramen

Everyone loves Chicken because it's a staple, but for me, it's simply average. It tastes like chicken, but it doesn't “aspire to anything great" to use my movie critic voice. It is and always will be there for you. Clean, simple chicken ramen.

5. Roast Beef

roast beef ramen

Roast Beef is the sequel to Beef that gives the fans what they want, but deep down, they know it's not as good as the original. Roasting the beef gives you more of that juicy broth you love, but something is missing in those spices. Still a good flavor, though.

4. Oriental

oriental ramen

Oriental Ramen tastes like what ramen should taste like all the time -- loaded with soy sauce, salty, savory and delicious. I add soy sauce to most of my ramen, but Oriental doesn't really need it because it already has that soy flavor packed in really well.

3. Beef

beef ramen

The staple. The classic. Number one in the hearts and minds of millions. The thick beef flavor overwhelms your taste buds (alright, let's be real here -- it's just packaged ramen. But still, this is some solid ramen.).

2. Roast Chicken

roast chicken ramen

If Roast Beef is the sequel that satisfies, Roast Chicken is the sequel that manages to surpass the original, like "Toy Story 2" or "Aliens." It takes it in a whole new direction, fleshes out the characters you know and love even more and gives you and your taste buds an experience that you wish you could relive again and again.

1. Pork

pork ramen

My mouth is salivating as I type this. I need to find more Pork ramen to complete my Pork ramen basement for when Doomsday comes. I will live and have lived off of Pork ramen for weeks at a time. It's the perfect ramen to dress up. Throw in some sesame oil and some soy sauce, some chives and maybe an egg. Ugh. This is ramen you can take home to Mom and Dad. This is ramen at its most complete. Maru-chan, that little round face on the plastic packaging, smiles because he knows that he has achieved perfection.

Please note that all items are in stock as of the time of publication. As an Amazon Associate, Odyssey may earn a portion of qualifying sales.

Cover Image Credit: NYT Cooking

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The Cheesecake Recipe You NEED To Add To Your Repertoire

GREAT eats alert!!


Everyone loves a good cheesecake. It is a classic dessert staple appropriate for all occasions. Although I'm sure you're all aware of the delicious tase of a cheesecake that melts in your mouth you have never seen anything like this. Prepare yourselves to experience the most magical cheesecake of all time. Follow this simple recipe, garnish with your favorite fruits, add whipped cream if desired, and enjoy with family and friends!

Cooking Time: 10min/60 min

Preheat Oven to: 350/300


1.5 cup graham cracker crumbs

2 teaspoons sugar

3 tablespoons melted butter


20 oz cream cheese

1 cup sugar

.5 teaspoon vanilla

3 eggs

Mix crust ingredients, form into pie pan and bake at 350 for 10 minutes. Cool. Reduce oven temperature to 300. with an electric mixer, beat cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Add vanilla and eggs one at a time. Pour into crust and bake at 300 for one hour or until firm. Cool completely and top with fruit.

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