Basic Cake Pop Recipes – UK version

basic recipe This website gets most of its traffic from the USA, where I currently live, so a lot of the references understandably refer to what you can get over this side of the pond.

However, I am originally from England and want everyone to be able to share in the wonderful world of cake pop recipes… so here is the Basic Cake Pop Recipes post with UK comments & changes in bold italics and links to Amazon UK.


Many of these blog posts are going to relate to my trial and error methods for each stage of cake pop recipes and the cake pop making process. However, we have to have a starting point to tinker with, so all my posts will be based off the same basic cake pop recipe, i.e. cake pops, covered in candy coating and topped with sprinkles. So here’s how we do that…..

This basic cake pop recipe represents 48 pops which can be a lot especially with the time taken to decorate, so feel free to make a smaller batch by using smaller proportionate portions.

What you need:

*  18.25oz box of cake mix and necessary extras (such as eggs, oil etc) - you can, of course, just use your own recipe for the cake.

*  9 x 13 cake tin

*  Up to 12oz of frosting (pre-made or make your own) - I don’t think the pre-made kind is available in UK supermarkets, so you can substitute this for your own recipe buttercream icing or use something of a similar consistency.  For example, for a chocolate cake, you can use Nutella or Chocolate Spread.  For other flavours, perhaps marshmallow whip, lemon curd or honey.

*  Lollipop sticks – you can order these off Amazon at Lollipop Sticks 50/Pkg-4″basic recipe

* Polystyrene block

*  Candy melts (roughly 3 lbs for 48 pops) - you can order this off Amazon in a number of colours from my UK Amazon Store.  The ones I use most frequently are the Wilton White Candy Melts, for Cake Pops, Cupcakes, Chocolate & Sugarcraftbasic recipe

*  Microwave-proof bowl

*  Sprinkles (aka hundred & thousands)

*  Large tray

*  Wax paper

*  Wire cake rack


Pre-heat your oven to the temperature on your cake mix box or for your cake recipe. Get your tray and line it with a sheet of wax paper.

Clear a space in your fridge or freezer big enough for your tray.

Get a polystyrene block.  Cover it with cling film or foil. Punch holes in it with a lollipop stick at least 2 inches apart with enough holes for the number or cake pops you are making.

What you need to do:

Bake your cake according to the cake mix instructions or your cake recipe. Turn your cake out of the pan once it’s cool enough and then leave to cool completely on a wire cake rack.

Once thoroughly cooled, break your cake up and turn it into crumbs. You can use your fingers or a mixer.

At this stage, if you want to make fewer than 48 cake pops, you can weigh your cake crumbs and split them out into 2, 3 or 4 equal portions (to make batch of 24, 18 or 12 respectively). You can freeze the other portions for later use.

Next add a complementary flavoured icing (or icing-substitute) as a “binder” to your cake crumbs. How much you use will depend on how moist your cake crumbs are to begin with. If they already stick together to form a dough consistency then you’ll only need to use a small amount of your binder. If they appear to be more like bread crumbs, you might need to add as much as 12oz of whatever binder you’re using.

The resulting dough should be moist enough to remain stuck together, but not sticky so that your hands feel tacky. If it is still crumbly and falling apart, then add a little more of your binder.

So here is your dough ready for shaping. To get consistently sized cake pops, it really helps to use some form of measure like a melon baller or tablespoon measure. I use a small sized cookie scoop like Kuhn Rikon Small Baking and Ice Cream Scoop, 1 Tablespoon, Redbasic recipe

Your ideal cake pop should be about 1.5 inches in diameter. There are lots of different shapes you can mold your cake pop into, but for this basic recipe, we’ll stick to the traditional ball shape.

basic recipe Roll your a piece of dough between your palms to make a ball shape. Then place on a sheet tray lined with wax paper.

Once you’ve rolled all of your cake balls, pop them in the fridge for at least an hour or two or the freezer for 15 minutes to set. You just want to chill them through, not freeze them.

Remove your cake balls from the fridge and melt your candy melts at 30 second intervals in your microwave, stirring after each zap until they all melt together. It depends on which candy melts you use as to how thick the mixture will be once melted. I’m going to try out a few different brands and methods so check out the blog posts on melting and dipping tips for more relevant advice, but if as a general rule, if you feel it’s too thick for dipping, please don’t add water or continue trying to microwave your melts. They are oil-based and this will ruin them. Your best bet is to add a small amount of vegetable shortening to the melted candy melts, bit by bit, until you reach the desired consistency.  Vegetable shortening is a hydrogenated vegetable oil – a bit like vegetable lard.  You can use a flavourless vegetable oil instead.

Once ready, dip the end of a lollipop stick into the melted candy coating and then push into your cake pop to about half way in. Do this for each cake pop, placing the cake pops back onto the tray with the stick facing directly upwards and pop back in the fridge to set for a few minutes. If your coating begins to solidify, you can pop it back in the microwave for short bursts, but no longer than 30 seconds. Whilst there is no limit to the number of times you can re-melt candy melts, it is possible to burn them, so please be careful.

basic recipe

Once you have attached the sticks to all your pops and they have set in place in the fridge, you are ready to start the dipping process!

Give yourself plenty of time for this stage as it can take quite a while! You might also want to pull up a chair, especially if you’re going for the full 48 cake pops! Take a few cake pops out of the fridge at a time.

You need to keep the others cool as you dip the first few. Reshape the end of your cake pop slightly if it’s gone flat on the tray. There are a number of different ways I have seen to do the dipping on the internet, but the only one I’ve tried in practice so far is the dunk method, when you submerge the whole pop in one motion.

So holding your stick carefully, point the cake pop straight down and make one smooth dunk into the coating mixture. Bring the pop back out, turn parallel to the bowl and rotate the stick to allow the extra coating to drop off. The thicker your coating is, the longer this will take.

Tapping the stick against a spoon or on the side of the dipping bowl can help get a smooth covering and allow the last excess drops to fall, but be sure to keep turning the stick between your fingers so the coating doesn’t clump in one area.

As soon as it stops dripping but before the coating dries, begin to coat with sprinkles, either by gently rolling your pop in a bed of your chosen topping or sprinkling them on from above. If you go for the sprinkle from above method, do it over the plate where you keep your sprinkles so you can reuse those that don’t stick to the pop.

Once loaded with sprinkles, transpose your freshly topped cake pop to a stand to dry. The easiest thing to use to hold your finished pops is a polystyrene block.

And voila! Here are your delicious cake pops! (The finished article made up the banner at the top of this page and my profile picture pop!)

basic recipe

Your cake pops will stay happily unrefrigerated for up to a week (assuming you / your children / spouse / pets / surprise guests don’t scoff them all!) or you can freeze them until you need them.

Storing them in the fridge can result in an odd type of condensation on the candy coating so I wouldn’t recommend that.

So those are the basics! Keep any eye for new blog posts where we can get into some of the detail to make our cake pops truly magical!

Happy popping!

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11 Responses to Basic Cake Pop Recipes – UK version

  1. Thx. It was well worth the read.

  2. Vicki Shettleroe says:

    can you freeze the undipped cake pops ?

  3. CP says:

    Yes you can – just transfer them to the fridge to defrost for a couple of hours before dipping. I actually find it easiest to freeze the pre-rolled cake balls before I add the sticks. I layer the cake balls in a tupperware container with wax paper separating each layer of cake balls (so they don’t freeze together). When I need some cake balls for dipping, I transfer them to the fridge to defrost them and then add the sticks. It saves room in the freezer as the sticks take up much more room!

  4. Kim says:

    Hi, I’m from Australia, and I’d just like to ask, are “candy” melts the same as “chocolate” melts? I’m new to the whole cake decorating scene and not too familiar with all the products available. Thank you

  5. CP says:

    Hi Kim, I’m not sure what they’re called in Australia but “candy melts” here are essentially compound chocolate. Compound chocolate is like chocolate but without cocoa butter. That means it doesn’t need to be “tempered” like normal chocolate. Tempering is a much trickier process of keeping chocolate liquid. For candy melts, you can just bung them in the microwave to keep them liquid enough for dipping, so it’s much easier to use candy melts when dipping your cake pops. So I would recommend checking the ingredients on your “chocolate melts”. If it says cocoa butter, it might be too tricky to use for dipping. If it refers to some other type of fats/lipids like vegetable fat, it should be fine to use. Hope that helps you! Thanks for your question.

  6. KL says:

    Hi CP

    Do the candy melts have to be melted in a microwave or can it be done via the bain marie method over a pan full of hot water?

  7. CP says:

    Hello KL, You can certainly melt candy melts using a bain marie method, or in one of the chocolate melting pot gizmos that are available. I only use the microwave for convenience as it is a little quicker.

  8. hayley timperley says:

    Hi can you add colors to candy melts so that i can customize my own cake pops ?

  9. CP says:

    Hi Hayley… you can absolutely customize your colors. You can either mix different color candy melts (just melt them together) or use special candy coloring. See our post on our experiments with coloring candy melts!

  10. Sandra King says:

    Hi, I have just bought the Cake Pop silicone mould and plan to make some for our Jubilee Summer Fayre next Friday. One thing though, my children are allergic to egg and therefore I was hoping to do my egg free cake mixture but am not sure if it will come out of the mould, do you know how I can make sure it does? Or is the three egg recipe the only option? Thanks. Sandra

  11. CP says:

    Hi Sandra. Thanks for your comment. I am also planning some Jubilee cake pops pretty soon. In answer to your question, although I haven’t baked an egg-free cake before, I think if you get your dough consistency right, pack the dough in tightly to the mould and, most importantly, ensure that you chill the pops in the mould for a while before trying to push them out there shouldn’t be a problem. If I am missing a specific egg-free recipe related issue, please let me know. I guess lining the mould with cling film or flouring the mould like you would a cake tin could be helpful too. Hope this helps.

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