Gingerbread Push PopsDecember 16, 2015 By Cathy — 2 Comments
Spiced, moist gingerbread cake layered with cream cheese icing in fun push pop containers.
I’ve baked treats for countless parties over the years and do you know what I’ve noticed? It’s not just the little ones nabbing those sprinkly, swirly sweets from the kid’s table, it’s often the grown-ups. Listen, I’m not pointing any fingers here. I’m just as guilty of swiping a pink princess cupcake at a birthday party instead of stabbing a hunk of pineapple off the fruit plate that’s offered to the parents. So today I offer you a compromise. Gingerbread push pops.
Here we have spiced gingerbread cake layered between swirls of cream cheese icing and presented in a push pop container that will make your inner child swoon. Equally at home on the kids table or served at your Christmas cocktail party, these push pops have grown up flavors served in a whimsical way.
This cake recipe (with minor tweaking) was a staple in my house growing up. We called it ‘spice cake’, baked it in a bundt pan and drizzled a confectioner sugar glaze over the top. It was a fast weeknight dessert and especially welcome in the winter months when the smell of cloves, nutmeg and cinnamon waft through the house while it bakes and wrap you in a virtual warm hug.
I’ve taken that same recipe, baked it on a half sheet tray and cut out 1 1/2 inch rounds with a cookie cutter. I love serving these cakes in push pop containers, but you can also skip the containers and serve them as layered mini cakes. The beauty of the push pop is that it’s portable, very easy to make ahead and pop in the frig to store until serving. The containers can also be washed and reused. Best part – no fork!
I just made these for the teachers’ holiday lunch at my kids’ school. After the steady stream of cupcakes ushered in and out for the classroom for the children’s celebrations, I thought it was time for the teachers to have a little fun too. Although if I had to spend the day in room full of 10 year olds, I think I’d need something a little stronger than cream cheese icing to get me through! Happy Holidays!
- Gingerbread Cake
- 8 oz unsalted butter, softened
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup molasses
- 3 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
- 2 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp cloves
- 1 tsp nutmeg
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp ginger
- 1 tsp salt
- 1½ cups boiling water
- Cream Cheese Icing
- 16 oz cream cheese, softened
- 8 oz unsalted butter, softened
- 2 pound confectioners sugar (2 boxes)
- 3 tsp vanilla extract
- *1½ inch round cookie cutter, piping bag (star tip optional)
- **push pop containers
- Gingerbread Cake: Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line a half sheet tray with parchment paper and spray with cooking spray.
- Cream butter and sugar on med/high speed with an electric mixer.
- Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each.
- Add molasses, mixing to combine.
- Combine flour, baking soda, salt and spices.
- With mixer on low speed, add flour mixture in three batches, alternating with boiling water.
- Pour batter into prepared pan (mixture will be runny).
- Bake for 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
- Cream Cheese Icing: Beat cream cheese and butter until fluffy, about 2 minutes on med/high speed with an electric mixer.
- Gradually add in confectioners sugar, mixing well to combine.
- Stir in vanilla extract until incorporated.
- Assemble Push Pops: Cut out rounds as close as possible from the cooled cake. If you don't have a 1½ inch round cookie cutter, you can use the push pop container to cut the rounds.
- Periodically rinse or wipe off the cookie cutter as you work to prevent the cake from sticking.
- Fill a pastry bag (optionally fitted with a star tip) with icing, careful not to overfill. (You'll need to refill the bag a couple times).
- Place one cake round in the base of each push pop container and pipe a swirl of icing on top and repeat.
- Push pops come with a plastic top that can be snapped on for easy storage.
- Push pops can be kept at room temperature for one day and can be stored in the frig for 2-3 days. Bring to room temperature before serving.