The JV Baseball Team had a double header this past Saturday. It was perfect weather to take in a couple games of baseball! Baseball in high school is tough. It is a lot of games in a short period of time. In a month and half to two months time, these boys play so many games! I’m talking 3-5 games a week! The JV team also had at least 3 double headers!
We are coming close to an end to the season and I wanted to do something nice for the kiddos.
Around these parts, when you are the home team for a double header, it is the home team’s responsibility to provide a lunch for both teams between the games. The GMHS mommas (and dads) stepped up as usual and cooked/served a great lunch! The boys got hotdogs, chips, granola bars, apples, oranges and this special treat, Baseball Cake Pops. When you are providing team meals whether baseball, football or any other sport, it’s important to keep it as healthy as possible. Sure the chips were a stretch but there were pretzels available too.
I’m sure I pushed the health envelope with the Baseball Cake Pops, lol. I told one of the coaches it was made with low-fat butter with a wink of my eye, lol. Since it is literally just one bite of cake and frosting dipped in a candy coating, I thought maybe the coaches would let it slide. They didn’t mind it and the kids loved it. Leftovers were shared with the families in attendance and as usual, the cake pops were a success. I really don’t know anyone who has ever tried a cake pop and didn’t want another! It is a time-consuming treat to make but it is really simple to put together. Seriously, the hardest part is finding the time to make them.
To make cake pops, you need just 4 ingredients/supplies: one box of cake mix (your choice in flavor, chocolate always goes over well but I happen to favor the golden yellow), one tub of frosting (use white colored icing unless you are making chocolate cake pops, then use chocolate frosting), one and a half bags of Wilton candy melts and colored sugar sprinkles. You could omit the sugar crystals but I like to decorate with them. You could use a different colors of candy melts and pipe on designs but sugar crystals are easy to incorporate. I’ve made cake pops before and posted them on my blog. You can find the Basketball Cake Pops HERE and Snowman Cake Pops HERE. I will go over the basic steps to make cake pops again in this post but will be using pictures that were used in those other posts. So ignore the orange and green colors, lol, I only used white Wilton candy melts to make these super cute Baseball Cake Pops! I also used popsicle sticks versus lollipop sticks because that is all I had at the time.
Bake up the cakes following the package directions in a 9×13 pan that was lightly covered in non-stick cooking spray. So I guess technically you will need a few more ingredients which typically are water, oil and eggs per the directions found on a cake box.
Once it is totally cooled, crumble the cake into pieces. I put on some disposable gloves and just break it up. Then dollop 1/2 a tub of store bought frosting on top.
Then mush the crumbs together with the frosting. You just have to keep smashing it and smashing it and eventually you will be able to create a mound of crushed cake and icing.
To ensure my cake pops are universal in size, I use my one-inch cookie scoop to scoop out the dough.
Then I roll it into tight balls. I place them on a cookie sheet lined with wax paper or parchment paper. Once all the balls are tightly rolled, I put the entire cookie sheet in the fridge to firm the balls up.
While the cake balls are firming up in the fridge, I use my beloved Wilton Chocolate Melter Deluxe to melt down my candy melts into smooth chocolate. I find that often with white candy melts, it is thick once melted. To combat this, I will add a teaspoon of shortening directly into the melted chocolate. It will thin it out without altering the flavor.
After the candy melts are melted into a smooth puddle (turn your Wilton candy melter down), I dip the popsicle or lollipop sticks about a fourth of an inch into the melted candy and then shove it in the cake pop on the flat side (the bottom of the cake pop) more than half way through the cake pop. You want to shove it in that flattened area so that the top will be rounded. After I have inserted all the sticks, I put the cookie sheet back in the fridge so that the cake pops will firm up again while adding more candy melts into the melter. You want the melted candy to be deep enough to dip the ball of cake into it upside down and up to the stick.
Once the balls have firmed up again, one by one, dip the cake pop upside down and straight into the melted candy. Insert it deep enough that it covers the entire cake pop up to the stick. I usually will hold it upside down and give it a few gentle circular motions to allow the excess melted candy to drip off. Sometimes it also helps to gently tap the lollipop stick on the side of the candy melter while rotating the lollipop stick. This of course wouldn’t work if you are using popsicle sticks.
When I add colored sugar crystals, I first dump a good amount in a wide, shallow bowl. Once I’ve knocked off the excess melted candy, I immediately spoon the sugar crystals over the wet candy melts. Spoon the sugar crystals directly over the bowl of sugar crystals so that any excess just falls right back into the bowl. Then I stick the lollipop sticks into my styrofoam block. I bought circles this last time because there were cheaper at Walmart. I keep the plastic on the styrofoam and prior to even starting cake pops, I take a lollipop stick and poke it through the foam about 1.5 inches apart. This way, the cake pops easily slide into the styrofoam. If not using sugar crystals, you would want to immediately place the cake pop into the styrofoam. Allow the melted candy to completely set up before handling the cake pops.
For the Baseball Cake Pops, I used white candy melts. I used red colored sugars to completely coat about half of the cake pops and the other half, I used the red colored sugars to create the seams of a baseball. To do this, take a fully hardened white cake pop and pipe on melted white candy melts following the pattern of a baseball seam. I found it easiest to pipe on a large U on one side of the cake pop and then on the complete opposite side of the cake pop, pipe on another large U. Then from the top I connected the U’s creating a rounded hourglass shape. I hope that makes sense. I probably should have taken pictures of this step but since I used white on white candy melts, it would have been hard to see it anyways. You can use a squeeze bottle (Wilton makes those too), use a Ziploc baggy filled with melted white candy melts that has one of the corners cut off (very tiny cut) or just use a toothpick to dab on the baseball’s seam lines. I used the toothpick dabbing method. I imagine it took a little longer than if I had used a squeeze bottle. It doesn’t have to be perfect. Mine certainly weren’t but folks still found them to be adorable. Immediately after piping on the baseball seam in melted white candy, spoon red colored sugars over the cake pop. The sugar crystals will only stick to the wet, melted candy parts. Put the Baseball Cake Pop back into the styrofoam block until the baseball’s seams are fully hardened. They turned out really cute!