pinata cake; how to make a piñata cake

I’ve been dying to make a piñata cake ever since I saw the festive confection on A Subtle Revelry. My niece’s 7th birthday yesterday seemed like the perfect opportunity, as she loves surprise balls, piñatas and all things surprise!

Here’s how we made a piñata cake & how you can make a piñata cake of your own…

pinata cakepinata cakepinata cake; how to make a pinata cakepiñata cake

We followed the directions on A Subtle Revelry, but made a few small tweaks. After making a pinata cake of our own, we have a few tips too which may be helpful that are noted below.



What You’ll Need:

– Two boxes of cake mix (we used Confetti Cake and Devil’s Food Cake mixes)

– Two containers of frosting (we used Whipped Vanilla)

– Eggs (number depends on how many your cake mix calls for)

– Vegetable oil

– Water

– Assorted small candies (we used unwrapped Peanut Butter M&Ms and Whoppers, plus a few wrapped candies such as bubble gum and hard candy that were leftover from the piñata from my niece’s pool party with her friends a few days before). Note: I wouldn’t recommend using many wrapped candies, as it can make it hard to cut through the cake.

– 1.5 quart oven-safe bowl like this one (greased and floured) to bake the cakes in

– Spatula to ice the cake

– Sprinkles to decorate the cake (we used small hearts)

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– Preheat oven to 350 degrees

– Make cake mix according to box directions (we only had one 1.5 quart bowl, so we made one cake at a time, letting the bowl cool completely in between) and bake for 45-50 minutes each. Cakes are done when you insert a toothpick in the center of the cake and it comes out clean.

– Remove cake(s) from oven and let sit for 10 minutes; then carefully turn cake over to cool completely on a wire rack (you may need to run a knife around the rim of the cake to get it to loosen and tap on the bottom of the bowl).

– Once completely cool (we made the cakes the night before and then did the next steps below the following day), put a plate over the cake and flip over so the cracked side is facing up (smooth side should be on the bottom). Repeat with other cake.

– Use a sharp knife (we used a serrated bread knife), remove the dome by slicing off the top of the cake. Repeat with other cake.

– Lay a cake with the exposed side up onto a cake plate or stand (the side in which the dome has been removed). Place a few pieces of parchment or wax paper around the bottom to cover the cake stand and to catch crumbs and icing.

– Using a knife, make an outline of a smaller circle within the cake, leaving about 2-3 inches from the edges. Gently scoop out the inside with a spoon (we used an ice cream scoop), going down a few inches and being careful not to puncture the cake on the sides or bottom. (Set the scooped out pieces aside and eat as a reward for your hard work. 😉 Repeat with other cake (simply set on a plate).

– Apply frosting to the lip of the cake sitting on the cake stand (this will allow the other cake to adhere when placed on top).

– Fill the hole with candies. Then carefully place the second cake on top of the candy-filled cake, lining up the edges.

– Apply a crumb coat of frosting to the cake and then place cake in the refrigerator for 15 minutes to chill.

– Remove cake from fridge and apply second coat of frosting. Decorate the cake as desired (we used heart sprinkles).

– The first cut of cake will reveal the candy surprise inside! (After the initial piece is taken out, the rest of the cake must be cut or it will cave in.)

My niece was surprised, but she was more surprised at the globe-shaped cake than the candy inside. Kids! So unpredictable. However, my mom, Fred Baby and I had a blast making the surprise confection. We’re already brainstorming about making a pumpkin cake for Halloween and a snowball or snowman for Christmas. Hooray for piñata cakes!


If you’re rather buy a piñata cake, you can buy a pinata cake here.

And here’s a fun alternative called a BashCake!

[Photos by Fred Baby]

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