Popular holiday coffee drinks inspired these treats made from leftover cake, frosting, and ganache. These holiday cake bites are scrumptious little packages of peppermint mocha and creme brûlée.
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Okay, so cake bites are really just cake balls. I just think bites sounds better. Plus I live in a house full of boys. You try saying “Hey kids, I have a treat for you! Cake Balls!” to three boys ages 5 through 16 and see what kind of response you get. Where my boy moms at?
Back to the cake… I whipped these babies up using leftover cake. If I make a little bit too much or carve up a cake for a specific shape, I put the leftovers in a freezer bag and store it in the freezer. Then when I need a quick treat to share or want a little bite of cake, I can make these. If you don’t have any leftover cake, check out these recipes or make your favorite box mix.
How to Make Cake Bites:
I know there are a lot of cake ball/bite tutorials out there by now but just in case you haven’t made any before here is how I make mine:
1. First, crumble up the cake by hand with a whisk or using a stand mixer with the paddle attachment.
2. Then to get the cake to come together, we need to add some moisture such as frosting or ganache. Add just enough to get the cake to come together but not so much that it’s soupy. Depending on your cake about a cup to a cup and a half per layer of cake. Stir them together really well.
3. Next, using a small ice cream scoop or a tablespoon measuring spoon to scoop out the cake mixture in a uniform size. Place the scoops on wax paper on a cookie sheet and put them in the freezer or fridge for 30 minutes to an hour.
4. When the cake bites are really cold, use clean hands to roll them around to make a smooth ball. Pop them back in the freezer or fridge for another hour.
5. After the cake has chilled, melt some chocolate candy melts in the microwave 30 seconds at a time until the chocolate is liquid and smooth.
6. Lastly, dip the chilled cake bites into the melted candy using a fork or a candy dipping tool. Place the coated cake bite on wax paper, decorate with sprinkles, more chocolate, or crushed candy and allow to dry. If your cake balls are really cold this should happen pretty quickly.
Once you have this method down, you can come up with your own flavor combos.
Peppermint Mocha Cake Bites
For these holiday cake bites, I only used the equivalent of about one 8” layer of cake about 3 cups crumbled for each flavor. This made about 24 cake bites of each flavor.
For the peppermint mocha cake bites, I used chocolate cake for the base. For the moisture, I stirred together about a cup of chocolate buttercream and 1/2 a cup of ganache made from 1/4 cup of heavy cream and 1/2 cup chocolate chips flavored with 1 teaspoon of instant coffee and 1 teaspoon of peppermint extract. This gives it that peppermint mocha flavor. Then I added this to the cake crumbles and stirred really well.
After scooping out the bites and chilling them, I dipped them in melted milk chocolate candy melts and sprinkled the tops with crushed peppermint candy.
For more on how to make ganache see my post, Chocolate Ganache Plus 5 Easy Uses. I love ganache and if you’ve ready any of my posts I use it a lot. Probably too much.
Creme Brûlée Cake Bites
For the creme brûlée cake bites, I used vanilla cake for the base. For the moisture, I stirred together a cup of caramel buttercream and ganache made from 1/4 cup heavy cream and 1/2 cup butterscotch chips flavored with 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract and 1/2 teaspoon of caramel extract. I added this to the crumbled cake and stirred really well.
After the bites were scooped and chilled, I dipped them in melted white chocolate candy melts and topped them with caramelized sugar pieces. To make the sugar pieces, I spread some granulated sugar in a thick layer onto parchment paper, then toasted it with my kitchen torch until it turned that pretty caramelized color. If you don’t have a kitchen torch, you can put the sugar under the broiler but watch it. It will burn fast. Or just use some pretty holiday sprinkles.
These holiday cake bites are a sweet little treat to make this time of year. They are perfect to take all the upcoming holiday gatherings. Now go get your cake bite on!