Nothing says New Year’s Eve like something bite size and explosive. And so, drum roll please, we are pleased to introduce an elementary school dream, Pop Rocks Cake & Brownie Pops!
If you haven’t made cake pops before, this is an awesome recipe to start with, and getting a little bit messy is always a good time. Fair warning, these are pretty straightforward and simple to prepare, but do involve quite a bit of waiting time between steps so they’re a good thing to do when you’re in the mood to work on something else as well. We recommend serving these sweet treats with a little bit of bubbly!
- yellow cake mix (+ eggs, oil, milk)
- brownie mix (+ eggs, oil)
- whipped white frosting
- whipped chocolate frosting
- milk chocolate chips
- dark chocolate chips
- white chocolate chips
- pop rocks!
Follow the directions on the box to mix and bake the cake. You’ll be crumbling the cake mix for cake pops, so the pan you use doesn’t matter. Just be sure to keep it in the middle of the oven so the bottom and top don’t get too crisped. Do the same with the brownie mix.
The cake should take about 30 minutes to bake, and the brownies should take 15-20 minutes. For both, you can use a toothpick to test. Once both are baked, take out and let cool for 20 minutes. You might want to poke holes with a fork or knife to allow more heat to escape.
We’ll start with the cake. Once your cake has cooled, crumble it in a mixing bowl so it’s totally broken up. If there are firm pieces (the bottom of the pan, for example) take those out (and snack on them!). For one box of cake mix, add about 1 can of frosting (equivalent to a little more than three quarters of a cup).
Mix together with your hands until you have a good consistency for creating cake balls. Simply ball in your palm, and then place on a cutting board, plate or platter (something that will fit in the fridge). Repeat until you’re done with your mix. One box will make 35 pops. Place in the fridge for about an hour.
Once your pops have cooled, it’s time to get your chocolate on! To melt chocolate, we employed a double boil technique. If you have a double boiler, use that. If not, do what we did and improvise. We placed a small rack on the bottom of a pot. We then filled the pot a quarter full with water, and placed a small mixing bowl inside (so it rests on the rack). We used metal tongs to hold the bowl in place.
In the mixing bowl, heat up about 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil, add chocolate chips (or baking chocolate), and boil water. The boil of the water will melt the chocolate without burning it.
Once you have a nice bowl of melted chocolate, get your cake pops ready. For the sticks, we used multicolored craft popsicle sticks, but lollipop sticks or dowels also work.
First, dip the tip of the stick in the melted chocolate, then stick that end into the cake ball. Then dip the whole pop into the melted chocolate (use a spoon to drip chocolate over the top if your bowl isn’t quite deep enough).
Let all the excess chocolate drip off, sprinkle your pop rocks onto the chocolate and place on parchment paper. Repeat until you’ve made all your pops. Let cool and harden.
An important note about pop rocks: they react to moisture but only minimally pop when sprinkled onto melted chocolate, honey, or frosting.
Repeat the same process with the brownie mix, but use about one third of a frosting can and add extra as needed based on consistency. One box of brownie mix will yield about 25 pops.
And voila! You have a delicious batch of sweet explosive treats to ring in the New Year.
What are your favorite New Year’s Eve treats? Send recipes to firstname.lastname@example.org!