Let me confess something to you. I have a major sweet tooth. Seriously, huge. Once in a while I like to really indulge myself and this Sweet Dreams Layer Poke Cake recipe is so fun, delicious, and perfect for small parties.
I participated in Mom Blog Tour Sweets & Snacks Expo (#MomBlogTourFF) on behalf of Wendy’s Bloggers. I received Celebration by Frey products to facilitate my post, but my opinion and creative content are my own.
Cake decorating is something I really love to do. Sometimes I do extravagant cakes and other times I do something simple with fun flavors. Celebration by Frey candy products make cake decorating simple, especially with their new MixLicious jars.
(Read until the end for a giveaway!)
Sweet Dreams Layer Poke Cake Recipe
To make this Sweet Dreams Layer Poke Cake recipe, you don’t need mad skills or color coordination. You’ll love the fruitiness with the sweetness and all the yummy texture of the soft cake and crunchy candies. It’s dreamy.
- 1 white cake split into two or three layers (use a box mix or a basic recipe)
- 1 small box orange gelatin
- 1 small box purple gelatin
- 1 small box blue gelatin
- 3 cups boiling water
- Black food dye (optional)
- Popping candy (1-3 packets depending on how much “pop” you want)
- White frosting (you’ll need several pounds worth to really cover the cake and layer it; dye it a darker color if you wish)
- Celebration by Frey MixLicious Party Jar
Bake the cake according to the instructions on your box mix or recipe, splitting the recipe into three small round pans. Let cool.
Prepare the gelatin by whisking in one cup of boiling water per packet (in separate bowls) for two minutes each. Let the mixtures cool a bit before moving on to the next step. If you wish, reserve some of the purple gelatin and mix in a little black food coloring.
Poke holes about two inches apart in the top of the cakes. Mine was honestly a bit more sporadic than this, just as long as the cuts/holes aren’t too close together or the cake will fall apart. Rather than poking holes with a large stick, I used an old baby medicine dropper that I’d cleaned up and it saved me an extra step.
DO NOT USE ALL THE GELATIN. Three packs of gelatin is a lot. To make the poke cake, you will not want to use more than one prepared pack of gelatin (I’d use even less so the cake remains fairly sturdy.). Use your judgment, but do not over-saturate the cake or use the full amount of gelatin that was prepared. Instead, combine or layer the extra gelatin or cool the colors separately and turn them into gelatin jigglers.
Place the cakes into the refrigerator and let chill at least four hours (overnight is even better) so the gelatin can fully set.
Once the cake and gelatin have set, remove it from the refrigerator and run a butter knife around the inside edges of the pan to loosen it. Invert the pan and remove the cake.
At this point you should really cut the top of the cakes so they are flat. I skipped this step and made up for it with frosting, but I highly recommend flattening the tops as you typically would for a layer cake, because it’s less likely to tip over and looks even cleaner.
The cake will be a bit sticky, so you shouldn’t need to add frosting to the plate you are serving on (to prevent it from moving) unless you want to.
Remove some frosting from the frosting containers–this will be used for the inside of the cake; make sure you will still have enough to complete the outside of the cake as well. (I actually pick up a few pounds of frosting from the grocery store bakery to save myself a step, but you can make homemade frosting from your favorite recipe).
Empty the popping candy packet(s) into the reserved frosting and fold it in up gently. You can add the coloring in at this step if you wish, as I did in the picture, but if you want the popping candy to stay more potent I would recommend coloring the frosting prior so you don’t have to over-mix the candy.
Spread half of this mixture onto the top of the bottom layer of cake.
Place another cake layer on top of the frosting and repeat the previous step with the remaining popping candy frosting. Place the final cake on the very top. I made the top one rounded to give the cake a unique look, but you can cut this one flat as well.
Clean off your frosting knife/spreader and start a “crumb layer” on the cake. Since we will not really see this crumb layer, we won’t need to do another layer over the top, so just start it out a little thick, enough that the candies will stick to it later.
Now for the candies! I used the Celebration by Frey MixLicious variety with blues, white, orange and yellow. It has round balls (Sixlets and gumballs) and star-shaped candy pearls.
I love these sets because they take the guesswork out of what shapes and colors you will put into your design. They have some other great sets that would go well with an All-Star sports cake or princess cupcakes.
While the frosting is still wet, get a small handful of MixLicious candies and press them up against the frosting. Do this all the way around the sides of the cake. If some spots are missing, don’t worry. Go back and fill those in later. For now you are just coating as much of the frosting as possible.
The larger container of MixLicious candies also has gumballs. This is the package I used. Line the outer top of the cake with gumballs then continue filling in the middle with the smaller candies.
If you are serving this cake to younger children, make sure the children and parents know that the cake has gumballs.
Let the cake chill in the refrigerator a little bit before serving (not too long–I would not recommend letting the full cake sit overnight) so everything can harden a bit and the cake is easier to cut through. Keep in mind that since this is a poke cake, it will be a little messier than other layer cakes (thus the extra chilling time).
This cake is perfect for special occasions like outer space birthday parties or various baby shower themes, like a nursery rhyme theme or an “it’s a boy!” theme. Since I kept this cake simple and focused more on the inside, you could make small banners or cake toppers with a moon and stars or perhaps a banner that says “Sweet Dreams.”
Celebration by Frey has so many great products for decorating sweets or filling into glass jars to make a candy bar. Their new MixLicious line is a perfect go-to for cake decorating and especially for a candy bar. They also have a new line with natural dyes which is going to be my go-to from now on since we usually don’t give the kids artificial food coloring.
You’ll find their products in bags and jars in various sizes so you can get everything you need for your creations.
One winner per household, email address, or home address. If you have won this prize on another blog you are ineligible to win again. Winner must have a U.S.-based address to receive the prize. Arts & Crackers is not responsible for any accidents that may be caused by use of this product and is not responsible for shipment of the prize. This giveaway is in no way sponsored/endorsed by Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, or Google. No purchase necessary to enter. Void where prohibited by law. All entries will be verified; invalid or incomplete entries will be discarded–Arts & Crackers is all about honesty. Please do not just “unlike” or “unfollow” pages after the giveaway. Giveaway open to legal residents of the USA and ends at 11:59 pm EST on 08/27/17. Winner will be chosen at random and have 48 hours from the point of notification to claim his/her prize.
What Celebration by Frey products are you most excited to try? Will you decorate a cake, set out a candy bar, or something else?