Sprinkle Spill Cake

Halloween Sprinkle Spill Cake

Short story time.
Featuring a clumsy baker.

Story behind this Halloween Sprinkle Spill cake. I was working on a cake for an Instagram collab project - with an open bottle of sprinkles on the counter. In hindsight, I should've known better. But I digress. 

I was part-way through the decorating process working on said cake...when I caught the bottle of sprinkles with my elbow. The bottle tipped over and half the sprinkles went sprawling across the counter! UGH. 

But I was able to salvage enough to finish the cake. Small wins. And the scattering of sprinkles strewn across my counter actually looked kinda cool – and there was my next cake idea!  

One of the easier Halloween cakes I’ve done, and, and I LOVED the look of the sprinkles against the black frosting! Recipe and links to everything I used are below! 



“Do I have to make the cake / frosting from scratch?”
  • Absolutely not if you don't want to! You can substitute 2 of your favorite cake mixes plus the ingredients the mix calls for; keep the baking pans the same! The cake layers will just be a little less rich. Substituting butter for oil, buttermilk for water, and adding an extra egg will help!

  • Store bought frosting is usually a little thinner than scratch recipes. I'd recommend adding 1/4 cup of black cocoa powder at a time until you reach a consistency that spreads and stays in place on the cake well. Add black gel color and mix until combined. 

“What if I've never added a drip to a cake before?”
  • Don't stress! It's easier than you probably think it is! 🙂 

  • My biggest tips - make sure you measure your chocolate and heavy cream accurately. Too much/little of either may affect your drip consistency. 

  • Make sure you try a test drip first! Don't pour the ganache over your whole cake until you're confident in the consistency of your ganache. You can adjust the consistency by warming or cooling slightly (warmer = thinner). If that’s not enough you can adjust more by adding 1 teaspoon of whipping cream (thinner) or 1 Tablespoon of chocolate chips (thicker) at a time, stirring until smooth.

  • I loved this YouTube tutorial by Sugar&Sparrow when I was new to cake drips! 

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Halloween Sprinkle Spill Cake

Even clumsy bakers can make beautiful things! ;) This Halloween Sprinkle Spill cake is a fun way to show off your favorite sprinkle mixes!
Prep Time30 minutes
Cook Time35 minutes
Decorating time1 hour
Total Time2 hours 5 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Halloween Cake, Halloween cake recipe, Halloween Sprinkle Cake
Servings: 16 servings
Calories: 778kcal


Cake layers

  • 2 ¼ cups all purpose flour (350g)
  • 2 ¼ cups granulated sugar (450g)
  • 1 ¼ cup cocoa powder (100g)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks/250g; softened)
  • 4 large eggs (at room temperature)
  • 1 ½ cups buttermilk (350mL)
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Black Cocoa frosting

Black Chocolate Ganache drip


  • 1 sprinkle mix/bottle of your choice! (I used the 4-oz ‘Witchful Thinking’ from Sweetapolita; you could use whatever seasonal mix you’d like!)
  • 1-2 teaspoons Crisco / vegetable shortening


Cake layers

  • Preheat an oven to 350℉ (180℃). Grease 3 8-inch cake pans with baker's floured spray and/or line pans with parchment rounds.
  • Mix together dry ingredients (flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt) in the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle (or hand mixer or whisk) until well combined. Add in bits of softened butter, mixing until no lumps of butter are visible and the mixture looks crumbly.
  • Whisk together eggs, buttermilk, and vanilla. Add to dry ingredients and mix until no dry ingredients are visible. Scrape down the bowl and beat for another 20 seconds.
  • Fill the three pans evenly - I find a kitchen scale helpful for this part, and each of mine weighed out to about 550g. Bake for 30-35 min or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Allow cake layers to cool for 10-15 minutes on a wire cooling rack before removing from pans, and cool completely before frosting. Set in the fridge or freezer to accelerate the cooling process if desired.

Black Cocoa frosting

  • Beat together softened cream cheese and butter; slowly add in powdered sugar alternating with cocoa powder and milk until frosting reaches a spreadable consistency. Add vanilla, food color, and salt if needed and beat until well combined.


  • Once your cakes are cool, level them (if needed/desired). This can be done with a cake leveler 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. (I added a few sprinkles in between the cake layers, but this is optional; they didn't show as much as I'd have liked when the cake was cut.)
  • Add your next cake layer on top, and 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 (so the ganache drips set more quickly).

Black Chocolate Ganache drip

  • Place chocolate chips in a heat-proof bowl. Add whipping cream and microwave on half power in 30-second intervals, stirring in between until fully melted and smooth. Add gel food color and stir until fully combined.
  • Allow to cool to a moderate temperature - it should still be liquid but feel only slightly warm - and transfer to a squeeze bottle or piping bag. (A spoon will work; you'll just have a bit less control over the drips.)
  • 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.
  • Cover the top of the cake with ganache – I textured mine a bit with a small offset spatula before it was set. Return cake to the fridge or freezer to set the drips.

Now the fun part - decorating!

  • Coat a finger or two with a bit of shortening, and add sprinkles to about 3-4” of your drips down the side of the cake. (The shortening helps the sprinkles stick to your finger well enough to transfer to the cake, but will come off once you touch the drip!) Sprinkle more in a v-shaped pattern away from the drips, and set your open bottle of sprinkles at the base of the ‘V’!
  • And you’re done! Cut in and enjoy!



Serving: 1serving | Calories: 778kcal | Carbohydrates: 100g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 38g

Did you make this Halloween Sprinkle Spill Cake?

Send me an email and let me know how it went – or make my day and find me on Pinterest or on Instagram and tag @IntensiveCakeUnit in your photo!

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