Guys, can I be honest with you for a second? These cake balls started out as cupcakes. Gorgeous, moist, fluffy chocolate cupcakes that I decided to top with a strawberry cream cheese frosting that had just a smidge too much strawberry puree in it and ended up dripping and oozing all over the plate (and my dining table). Oh, and for some reason I decided that chocolate ganache would help the ooze-factor, so I spooned that on top of everything. But guys? It didn’t help. At all. I have never seen less appealing cupcakes in my life.
But, being the thrifty optimist that I am, I decided to make lemonade out of my cupcake lemons and turn the whole sticky, drippy mess into something more appealing. After all, it looked terrible, but having sampled all the components, I knew that everything actually tasted really good. Hence, cake balls. The perfect solution for shitty looking cupcakes – just mash it all up, roll it into bite-sized balls, and coat it all in candy! And they turned out pretty well, don’t you think? Visually appealing, and they actually do taste a lot like chocolate covered strawberries. It’s a Valentine’s Day miracle!
Speaking of Valentine’s Day, this is going to be the first time ever (in 8 years together) that Dan and I have big fancy plans to celebrate. We booked a hotel room in the city for the weekend, and have dinner reservations at a nice place down the street from the hotel tomorrow night. Saturday will be spent cuddling, wandering the snowy streets of DC, and getting tipsy on many many glasses of wine. So. Pumped! Mainly for the food and wine – the menu looks awesome. But also excited for the weekend in general. Sure, when you’re married to your soul mate, every day is supposed to be like Valentine’s Day, blah blah blah – but hey, doing something extra special every once in a while can be pretty nice too 😀
And oh hey – speaking of special…my 4 year blogiversary was last week. I cannot believe that (1) I have been blogging for four years already, and (2) that you guys are still reading! Thanks, y’all. I love you too! So much, in fact, that I’m gonna give two of you something great: the Best Ever Cupcake Icing Kit from Bake It Pretty! This is, without a doubt, my best baking purchase ever. If you’ve always wanted your cupcakes to have those fat, thick swirls of frosting like the ones you see on pro bakery cupcakes, this is the kit for you. The super huge piping tips are perfect for achieving that effect. See? These were all piped with tips from the kit:
** This giveaway is sponsored by me, Just Putzing Around the Kitchen!
BAKE IT PRETTY GIVEAWAY!
If you want to take your cupcake frosting to whole new heights, see entry details below! Two winners will be selected randomly, and will receive (1) one Best Ever Cupcake Icing Kit and (2) one set of Bake It Pretty cupcake liners in the design of your choice.
- To enter the giveaway, leave me a comment telling me what kind of cupcakes you’d make with your giveaway winnings.
- To earn up to SIX bonus entries, do one (or all!) of the following and then come back and leave me separate comments below telling me what you did:
(1) Subscribe to my blog using the RSS feed icon in the sidebar (if you are already subscribed, leave a comment saying that!).
(2) Like Just Putzing Around the Kitchen on Facebook.
(3) Follow Just Putzing Around the Kitchen on Twitter.
(4) Follow Just Putzing Around the Kitchen on Pinterest
(5) Pin any image from this post onto Pinterest
(6) Follow Just Putzing Around the Kitchen on Tumblr
- Giveaway is open to US residents only until Friday, February 21st at 5:00pm EST. Winners will be selected using random.org, and will be notified via email. Winners will have 48 hours to respond or other winners will be selected.
** Congratulations to Amber F. and Angel, winners of the giveaway!
Chocolate Covered Strawberry Cake Balls
- 1 box chocolate cake mix (or, you can be a hot mess like me and make 2 dozen chocolate cupcakes from scratch)
- 8 oz cream cheese
- 1 stick butter, softened
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 1/2 cup pureed strawberries
- 1 bag Wilton Dark Candy Cocoa Melts
- 1 bag Wilton White Candy Melts
- 1 bag Wilton Pink Candy Melts
- Bake cake according to box instructions. Set aside to cool.
- In a large bowl, cream together softened butter and cream cheese until smooth. Add powdered sugar and strawberry puree, mixing until mixture is uniformly pink and smooth.
- Crumble cooled cake into your frosting bowl and mix until you don’t see any more frosting streaks.
** I like to get in there with my hands and mash everything up. Very therapeutic.
- Stick your bowl in the fridge and chill for 30 minutes.
- Using a small cookie scoop or melon baller, scoop out mounds of cake-frosting mixture.
- Using your hands, roll them into smooth balls. Placed rolled out cake balls onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Place baking sheet in the fridge to chill your cake balls while you melt your candy melts.
- In a microwave-safe drinking mug (or anything else that’s narrow-ish with high sides), heat your candy melts per bag instructions and stir until smooth.
** Don’t do all the candy melts at once – I suggest tackling the white, pink and brown melts one at a time, making white cake balls then pink balls, etc.
- Pull cake balls out of the fridge and dip them one by one in your candy melt mug, gently shaking off excess as you take them out.
** You can use a spoon/fork to roll your balls around and lift them out. Or, you can use a lollipop stick or bamboo skewer to pierce your cake balls and dip them in that way – that’s what I did this time. I allowed them to dry that way – shoved into a styrofoam board to keep them upright. After the candy shell hardened, I gently pulled the balls off the sticks.
- Allow candy coating to harden.
- Repeat until you have used up all your candy melts.