Candy Corn Inspired Halloween Cake

We’ve reached mid-October. Seriously, why is this month going by so fast? I don’t even have my costume yet! Do you know what you’re being for Halloween? I plan to go as my gymnastics idol, the one and only Aly Raisman. But not just any Aly Raisman, the “I just killed this fricken floor routine and now I’m going to cry” Aly Raisman. 

credit to NESN for this image
credit to NESN for this image

First I cried while watching it live. Then I cried like 80 more times whenever I watched it on Youtube. And I may have cried just now too, since it’s been like 2 weeks since I’ve seen the video and it’s all new to me again. WTF ALY.

For any non-gymnastics fans out there, she was a little screwed over in the 2012 Olympics. Although she tied with Aliya Mustafina for bronze in the All-Around final, Aliya took home the medal when the judges dropped their lowest scores. Therefore, Aly’s tears at the 2016 All-Around symbolize perseverance, redemption, and a host of other good feelings that make me choke up.

Dammit! Is this how guys feel after watching Rudy? 😛

If you’re wondering, hell no I won’t be parading my leotard covered tush around. Wind pants for the win.

Anyway, how about some cake?!

cc cake close up

Everyone hates loves candy corn! This cake features a candy corn striped pattern on the outside, a wickedly black ganache drip, and some candy corn inspired flowers on the top. Here’s how you do it!

For this 3-layer, 6-inch cake you’ll need quite a bit of buttercream. I used 1 lb butter (4 sticks) and 2 lbs sugar (1 bag). From this batch you’ll need 4 colors: white, orange, yellow, and black. The first three colors are for the striped candy corn design on the outside of the cake, so you’ll obviously need a bit more orange than the other two. See the candy corn for reference:

candy corn buttercream

After stacking your cake and chilling it for 10 minutes so it doesn’t slip around everywhere, it’s time to add the stripes. Notice how I followed the candy corn pattern and did just a couple stripes of yellow, a buttload of orange, then a bit of white.

candy corn stripes

Now using your bench scraper you’ll want to smooth that out to the best of your ability, always remembering to clean off your scraper between each swipe.

smoothing candy corn cake

There will be some holes/gaps in the frosting. Just patch them up with more buttercream and smooth again. See that little lip of white frosting extending above the cake? You’ll need that for the next step.

patching candy corn cake

After filling in the top, hold your spatula at a 45 degree angle drag that lip of frosting toward the center. Also, see that ugly spatula line on the side of the cake? It all but disappears when you hold your bench scraper under some hot tap water to heat it up and then scrape the cake (slowly) one more time. This goes for basically any imperfection. After you’re finished, pop the cake in the fridge to set the buttercream.

icing top of candy corn cake

Meanwhile, it is time for the ganache! Dark chocolate ganache is essentially 2 parts chocolate to 1 part cream (by weight). I used 200 g chocolate to 100 g cream, then added a couple teaspoons of vegetable oil to thin it out a little more. The vegetable oil will also prevent the chocolate from seizing when you add your color.

fresh chocolate ganache

Which will be the wickedly evil black! Use your spoon to scoop up some ganache and let it fall back into the bowl. If it globs off, it’s too thick. If it’s like soup, it’s too thin. You want it somewhere in the middle, like this, where it won’t have any problem dripping but won’t run all the way down your cake either.

black ganache

Once you’ve got it down, put some in a piping bag and make your way around the cake adding drip after drip. The more pressure you apply the longer the drip will be, so play around with the size of your drips. The staggered look is super sexy.

adding black drips

Now fill in the middle (not too much or you’ll have drips over your drips) and use the back of a spoon to ease it toward the edges. Gravity will do the rest. When you’re done, pop the cake back into the fridge again.

center ganache

Now it’s time color some of the remaining buttercream black, which somehow  gets everywhere and takes a lot more black food coloring than you’d think! Good times.

adding black food color

Okay, this is more charcoal than black. I ain’t even mad tho.

blk buttercream

Here is that lovely 104 tip that I’m always talking about.  Fill the bag up with the black and let’s make some flowers!

104 tip for roses

Okay, so what I did was take a flower nail (cheat: meat thermometer) and attach on a little parchment square with some buttercream. Then pipe a flat circle (hold the tip sideways and flat against the paper) and place four candy corn right in the center in a sort of teepee pattern.

candy corn rose center

Make a whole bunch of ’em and throw them on a baking try. Then refrigerate them for 10 minutes or so to make the buttercream set.

black rose centers

Now, using the same piping bag and 104 tip with the fat part facing down, pipe little rainbows around the candy corn.

black rainbow petals

Keep going around and around until you reach the end of your flat buttercream circle. Look, a black rose! Do this to all of your flowers and place them back in the fridge.

completed black rose

I did something similar for these candy corn….mums? Using your remaining yellow and orange and another 104 tip, pipe another flat circle and arrange your candy corn in a circular cluster. MUM! Totally nailed it. Pop these in the fridge with the other flowers.

candy corn mum

Now, if you’d like, you can pipe some smaller flowers and buds and refrigerate those too. Were you looking for something to do with that whoopie pie pan you used one time? Flower holder, people. 😛 Also, if you’re wondering why these flowers are so bad ass it’s because I literally threw the remaining yellow and orange in a new piping bag and didn’t bother mixing them.

orange rosebuds

Okay! So the next step is to add a mound of buttercream to the areas you’ll be placing your flowers. Word of advice: Use your black buttercream for this. Don’t be dumb like me!

prepping flower placement

Get your flowers out of the fridge and begin placing them all over the top of the cake. The ridge of buttercream helps you to lay them in different angles instead of just flat.

placing orange and black flowers

But when you use orange buttercream you have to take drastic action to mask it, such as just stuffing candy corn into those spots and pretending you totally used the wrong color on purpose. Totally.

stuffing with candy corn

Think long and hard about your flower placement…because as I said before, the black gets everywhere. Moving the flowers around just isn’t even an option. 

black buttercream everywhere

But the good news is that once they are all on there, you’re done! I had some leftover flowers so I placed them around my oversized cake board for more decoration.

flowers on cake board

And there you have it! A totally gorgeous, yet not too spooky Halloween cake, inspired by everyone’s favorite candy the gorgeous colors of candy corn. 

cc cake top view

This cake will look gorgeous on any Halloween party sweet table, and everyone’s black teeth will more than make up for all the work you put into it!

head on shot

Here it is on a white background! For no reason other than I always take at least one pic on a white background.

cc cake white background

And here it is slanted slightly so you get a better view of the top. Check out that shiny ganache.

cake slightly slanted

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial! If you have any questions on how to complete this cake or simply want to discuss how awesome Aly is, feel free to leave me a comment! I’ll be sure to see it because literally no one ever comments. 😀 

Until next time <3

3 thoughts on “Candy Corn Inspired Halloween Cake

  1. I couldn’t do anything like this, definitely not techy like Uncle Marc. You are so talented. I did my wedding cake but nothing even close to the beautiful cakes you make. Very proud of you. Thank you for biting the bullet, I do care. Xo

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