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Candy Piñata Cake

COOK TIME
1 hr
PREP TIME
1 hr
RATE THIS RECIPE
(7)
Alejandra Ramos' Candy Pinata Cake + Snickers Banoffee Pie
Alejandra Ramos' Candy Pinata Cake + Snickers Banoffee PieNathan Congleton / TODAY
COOK TIME
1 hr
PREP TIME
1 hr
RATE THIS RECIPE
(7)

Ingredients

Cake
  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 2 15.25-ounce boxes yellow cake (plus eggs, vegetable oil and water as directed on packaging for each cake)
  • Assembly
  • 2 cups assorted unwrapped candies (M&Ms, Skittles, mini caramels, Dove chocolates, etc.)
  • 1 cup wrapped mini candies (wrapped Starbursts, mini Milky Ways, mini Snickers, etc.)
  • 1/2 cup rainbow sprinkles and/or nonpareils
  • 6 cups vanilla buttercream or cream cheese frosting, homemade or store-bought
  • Regular or mini M&M candies
  • Chef notes

    Turn a couple of boxes of cake mix into a showstopper dessert that will delight both kids and grown-ups. The surprise comes from a few handfuls of candy hidden inside a scooped out hollow in the middle of the cake. When you cut into the first slice, the treats come tumbling out, just like with a party piñata!

    (Created by TODAY with our sponsor Mars)

    Technique tip: Add even more color to your cake by mixing sprinkles into the batter for a confetti style cake, or stir different food colors into each layer for a rainbow cake.

    Swap option: Feel free to swap in any other cake flavor you prefer.

    Preparation

    For the cake:

    1.

    Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease round baking pans and line the bottoms with parchment paper.

    2.

    Prepare 1 box of cake mix as directed on box and divide into cake pans. Bake as directed on box. Cool 10 minutes in pans, then transfer cakes to cooling racks. Clean baking pans, then repeat with second box of cake mix.

    3.

    Once the cake layers are fully cooled, prepare them for layering by trimming off any rounded tops.

    4.

    Set aside one of the cake layers. Use the round cutter to remove a circle from the center of the remaining 3 layers, working carefully to align the holes on the three layers as evenly as possible. Take the remaining complete layer and divide it lengthwise down the center to make 2 thinner layers.

    To assemble:

    1.

    Place one of the thin complete layers on your cake plate. Spread a ring of frosting around the outer top of the cake, leaving a 4-inch circle in the center unfrosted. Top with one of the cut layers of the cake. Frost the top, then repeat with the next two cut layers of the cake to create a well.

    2.

    Fill the center of the cake with the candies and sprinkles. Alternate wrapped and unwrapped candies, and use as many as you can to completely fill the well without overflowing. Press down slightly to assure the layer is even.

    3.

    Frost the top of the cake and cover with the final thin complete layer, and then frost the outside and top of the cake completely, decorate with M&M candies, as desired.