Skittles Cake

feel a little pathetic admitting to this....

...but this cake was actually my FIRST time making my own confetti cake! :/  I’ve used boxed mixes for it plenty of times before, but never made my own. And hey, I figured – if I’m going to make it from scratch, let’s one-up the standard confetti cake recipe and do something more – add candy! TBH, it made the bottoms of the cake layers a little sticky, so it makes the cake layers a little harder to work with, but just on principle I never argue with more candy in my cakes. 

I miiiiight do this one over sometime and add more colors to the outside – I felt like the drip and/or frosting decorations could’ve done with some green and purple in addition to the red/orange/yellow that I used. Oh well – another day. 

Recipes below!

Confetti/Skittles Cake Layers:

Note - this is a slightly-simplified layer cake recipe from ChelSweets.com - I highly recommend checking out her site if you haven't before; it's amazing!!

3 1/4 c.  all purpose flour
3 c.  granulated sugar
2 1/2 t. baking powder
1 t.  salt
1 cup unsalted butter (or 2 sticks) room temperature
2 t. vanilla extract
5 eggs
1 1/2 cups buttermilk, room temperature
1/8 cup (28 grams) vegetable oil
¼ c sprinkles (colors of your choice, I used rainbow sprinkles)
2-3 T Skittles candy

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line four 7 inch pans (for taller layers) or 8 inch round pans with parchment rounds, and grease with non-stick cooking spray.
Mix together all dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, sugar, and salt) in a stand mixer with a paddle until fully combined.
Mix chunks of room-temperature butter slowly into the dry mix, on a low speed. Continue to mix until no large chunks of butter remain, and the mixture becomes crumbly.

Pour in egg whites, and mix on low until just incorporated.  Mix in the buttermilk in two installments, on a low speed. Add in vanilla and oil, and mix at a low speed until fully incorporated. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula, then beat on medium speed for about 30 seconds. Gently stir in the sprinkles.

Divide batter evenly between the prepared cake pans (I find a kitchen scale helpful for this part). This guarantees your layers will bake to be the same height. Sprinkle the skittles over the top and swirl them in with a small knife or offset spatula.
Bake for 35-37 minutes if using 8 inch pans, or 37-38 minutes for 7 inch cake pans (or until a skewer comes out clean). Allow to cool for 10 minutes, then run an offset spatula around perimeter of the pan to separate the cake from the pan. Place cake layers into the freezer for 45 minutes, to accelerate the cooling process.
Once the layers have fully cooled, the caramelized bits can be trimmed from the sides / top of the cake using a serrated knife if desired. Be sure the layers are completely cooled or chilled before trimming. If you try to trim the layers while they’re still warm, they will crumble apart.

Cream Cheese Buttercream Frosting:
8 oz (one package) cream cheese, softened
16 Tablespoons (two sticks) butter, softened
6-7 c powdered sugar
2-4 Tablespoons milk
1 T clear vanilla extract
1/4 t. salt
Reserve and add later – 1-2 drops orange gel food coloring

Beat together softened cream cheese and butter; slowly add in powdered sugar alternating with milk until frosting reaches desired consistency. Add vanilla and salt and beat until well combined. Reserve about ½ c of frosting in a small bowl, and stir in orange food coloring.

Additional Supplies/Equipment:
- 1 8- or 9-inch cardboard cake circle
- small / large piping bag & small / large tips
- 1 large bag + 1 box of Skittles – save the box!
- wood skewer (or cake dowel or straw)
- Cake leveler, cake turntable, offset spatula, and bench scraper - not all 100% necessary but incredibly helpful!

Once your cakes are cool, level them (if needed/desired). This can be done with a cake leveler (my preference) or a large serrated knife and a ruler. Place a smear of frosting on your cake circle (to keep the cake from sliding while you decorate it) and center your first cake layer in the center of the circle. Spread the layer with frosting. Repeat the process with your remaining cake layers.

Now you're ready to crumb-coat . If you're unfamiliar with crumb-coating, it's just what it sounds like – spreading a thin layer of frosting over the entire outside of the cake to keep crumbs out of your final layer 😉
Once your crumb coat has set (this takes about 5-10 minutes in the fridge), add your final layer of frosting and smooth. I like to use an offset spatula and bench scraper for this part. Once your cake is covered, place it into the fridge or freezer to set the frosting.

Colored Ganache drip:
I used a white chocolate ganache for this cake – I found my favorite white chocolate ganache recipe so far on ChelSweets.com.

- 1/3 cup heavy cream (77 grams)
- 1 cup white chocolate chips (175 grams)
- 1 squirt yellow and orange gel food coloring (optional)

Place heavy cream and white chocolate chips in a microwave-safe bowl, and microwave on 50% power in 30-second intervals until smooth, stirring in between. Divide into 2 small bowls and stir in gel food coloring. I used small zip-lock bags to pipe this drip since my drip bottles were full of chocolate ganache and caramel. I’ve used drip bottles before though, and I find them to be the easiest to work with. 
When your ganache has cooled to a moderate temperature – it should feel slightly warm and still be fairly liquid – transfer it to a squeeze bottle or piping bag. A spoon will work if you don’t have either of those, I've  just found spoons to be a little bit more difficult to work with.
Slowly drizzle ganache around the upper edge of your cake, pausing every inch or so to let more ganache fall in a drip down the side of the cake. Return cake to the fridge or freezer to set the drips.

Pipe orange frosting around the upper edge of your cake – this forms a rim to hold the pile of candy in place! Open the box of Skittles and empty it, and then place your skewer into the open end of your Skittles box and close it – I cut a little of the edge of the box away to make room for the skewer. Push the skewer down into the cake, leaving the box on top of the cake at an angle. Add Skittles around the box to cover the top of the cake – and you’re done! 

Make this recipe? Let me know  how it went - or find me on Instagram and tag @IntensiveCakeUnit in your photo! 🙂

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