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Halloween Surprise Cake with M&M's
Halloween Surprise Cake
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Halloween is all about tricks and treats ... and this creative cake has both! Hiding inside the colorful layers is a stash of candies just waiting to jump out.


  • Cake

    • One 15-ounce box white cake mix
    • 1 cup water
    • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
    • 3 large egg whites or 1/2 cup liquid egg whites
    • Green gel food coloring
    • Purple gel food coloring
    • Non-stick cooking spray
  • Frosting

    • 3 sticks (12 ounces) unsalted butter, softened
    • 1½ pounds (6 cups) powdered sugar
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 3 to 4 tablespoons whole milk
    • Orange gel food coloring
  • Candy filling

    • 1 cup M&M's
    • 1/4 cup silver dragées
  • Decorations

    • Candy corn
    • Candy pumpkins
    • Miniature candy bars, chopped into pieces
    • Extra M&M's
    • Silver dragées


(Created by TODAY with our sponsor Skittles.)

For the cake:

1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. 

2. With an electric hand mixer, blend the cake mix, water, oil and egg whites for 2 minutes on medium-low speed.

3. Divide the cake batter into 5 equal portions, about 1 cup, per color.

4. With purple and green food coloring gel, tint each portion of cake batter to make 5 separate color layers: dark purple, light purple, purple-green, light green and dark green for an ombre effect. 

5. Spritz each of the pans in the 5-layer cake pan set with non-stick baking spray, then pour the batter into each individual pan.

6. Bake for about 18-20 minutes, until the cakes start slightly separating from the edges of the pans and begin to lightly brown on the tops and edges. Rotate the pans halfway through to ensure an even rise.

7. Transfer the pans to cooling racks and cool completely before decorating. 

8. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.

9. Remove the cakes from the pans by gently running an offset spatula around the edges and very carefully flipping the cakes onto the baking sheet. Freeze overnight.

For the frosting:

1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the softened butter on low speed for 1 minute until combined.

2. Slowly add the powdered sugar in batches, beating until thick and fluffy.

3. Reduce the mixer speed to low. Stir in the vanilla extract.

4. Drizzle in the milk to your desired consistency (you may not need all 4 tablespoons).

5. Add orange food coloring until the frosting is tinted to your desired color.

To assemble:

1. With a 2 ½-inch round cookie cutter, cut a hole out of the center of every frozen cake layer except the top dark green layer.

2. Place the dark purple layer on a serving plate and frost the top. Repeat with the light purple, then purple-green, then light green layers, frosting each one as it is stacked.

3. Mix the M&M's and silver dragées in a bowl, then carefully pour the candy mix into the center of the cake layers.

4. Top the cake with the final dark green layer, then frost the top and sides completely.

5. Decorate with frosting rosettes and place a variety of candy corn, candy pumpkins, broken mini candy bars, additional M&M's and silver dragées on top of the cake.

6. Before you slice the cake, gather party guests to witness the big reveal. Slice it carefully as the candy will start to spill out. Serve it right away and enjoy!