DIY Fail: When your Cake Pops turn out like Vomit Blobs

Guest post by Ang

Seems to be that lately every single wedding has a DIY component. It's gotten to the point where you feel like you're doing something wrong if you don't sew/glue/tie/cut/bedazzle some aspect of decor/favors/invites/apparel.

There's a dark seedy price that you have to pay for all that charm. Dude, this crap is HARD, and don't let Martha Stewart or the billions of crafters on Etsy tell you any different.

Many are the brides who've had this realization while curled in the fetal position, glitter smeared on their faces, failed projects in disheveled disarray around them.

Yes, I have had these experiences.

Wanna hear about one?

Enter… The Cake Pops.

I'm sure you've seen them. I've been a fan of Bakerella from way back, you know, when she started in 2007 which is like 400 in online years & ADORE her. Her cake pops were adorable and SO easy! How hard could it be? [Insert Doom Song]

About 6 months pre wedding day
I sent my mom the website. We ooo'ed and aww'ed appropriately, bought all the supplies, and prepared for a day of bonding.

Here are the cake making supplies, in case you didn't realize what they looked like.

Candy Melts, Molds, and USELESS PIECE OF SHIT BOTTLE.

After we got into the actual process of making said cake bites, the picture taking stopped. First the bowl was too small. So we got a bigger bowl. Then the frosting was sticking everywhere EXCEPT the cake dust, so I had to use my hands, which isn't THAT big of a deal, but Bakerella did not tell me how totally adhesive this crap is. I don't know HOW, but it ended up on the ceiling, inside the drawers, inside my cleavage, and in my hair. But I persevered, I was domestic gumption personified, and eventually I had a thoroughly mixed bowl of quasi viscous cake goo. (Not to be confused with quasi vicious cake goo, although at this point they both would apply)

I dimly remembered something about “don't handle the cake too much or your body heat will blah blah,” but the OCD in me must have perfectly round cake balls. No sooner did I victoriously set down a perfect sphere of moist delectable cake, then it'd crack in half. Sometimes they'd hold together for a whopping 10 seconds before they'd crumble from the stress of having another one placed next to it. They had become defiant little black sawdust balls of death.
Evil Black Cake Balls-Perverts

Keep in mind that you're supposed to get forty-five to fifty cake balls out of this. Between the kamikaze cake splooge and the ones that weren't structurally sound. I got this many.
Stage 3

You can count them if you want. There's thirty-eight. “That's not too bad” you might be thinking, but about six of them decided they couldn't handle life on the inside, and promptly disintegrated in the freezer.

Ignorant of this, I had moved on to the candy melts. The orange candy melts are day glo radioactive orange, not the rustic pumpkin inspired thing I was going for, I figured, “Hey, add some brown, get a nice earth toned orange.” Right?

No. It goes more like this:

  1. Put mostly orange and a little brown.
  2. Get radioactive orange.
  3. Add more brown.
  4. Get slightly less radioactive orange.
  5. Add half bag of brown, realize the bowl is too small, transfer melted chocolate and gooey partially melted chocolate to bigger bowl.
  6. Have light brown chocolate.
  7. Commence minor freak out.
  8. Add more orange.
  9. Wonder why clear liquid seems to be leaking out the top.
  10. Wish you paid attention in Chemistry.
  11. Wonder if this has anything to do with Chemistry.
  12. Notice bag says “Don't melt too much or candy melts will separate”.
  13. Attempt to throw out melted chocolate.
    Everyone was too traumatized to take a pic of me parking my ass in a puddle of chocolate with a giant red burn blister on my arm, so I illustrated it for you.
  14. Burn self and spill chocolate, making sure to cover all areas not already encrusted with dried cake splooge.
  15. Sit on floor (in puddle of chocolate) and cry.
  16. Try to fill useless candy bottle with brown chocolate by use of careful pouring.
  17. Make huge mess.
  18. Scrape spilled chocolate back into bowl because your stupid parents live in the middle of nowhere and you have no more candy melts.
  19. Fill bottle ½ inch.
  20. Use bottle to fill 1 ½ candy molds before bottle becomes blocked.
  21. Throw bottle away in fit of rage.
  22. Throw other innocent unused bottle away before it has the opportunity to insult you.
  23. Use spoons to fill rest of candy molds, making sure to drip everywhere so mold resembles solid mass of chocolate.

By the time the cake balls came out of the freezer, I had gotten to the numbness point. The last stage before drooling, cackling wildly, running up and down the street naked, then being driven away in a soft comfy van driven by large friendly men who would give me a pretty jacket.

The final stage was the candy molds I had gotten were way too shallow. If I possessed a dipping spoon things might have been different, but I didn't, so there was a lot of fingers being dipped in chocolate, half assembled cake bites being dropped in chocolate, and hardened chocolate bases melting from being held too tightly. We only had twenty-four survivors, and they weren't pretty.
Poor Buggers

In a last ditch effort to save them, I dipped a spoon in chocolate and flung half hearted decorative swirls all over the countertop, incidentally hitting a few of the cake bites.
Half Hearted Swirls

End result? Epic DIY fail.

One day I might attempt them again, but even if I don't, I'm still awesome, and my wedding was awesome. So even if your 1,000 origami cranes look like a pile of sweaty colorful spit wads, or your felt bouquet resembles the home-ec project of a well-intentioned color-blind ungulate, YOU ARE STILL FUCKING AWESOME.

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Comments on DIY Fail: When your Cake Pops turn out like Vomit Blobs

  1. Ahhhhh – this made me laugh! I have totally had this experience, with the cake balls AND of course, other projects too. (DIY is awesome, and all of us are awesome too, but sometimes there is a REASON to give yourself a break and pay a pro…) Thanks for sharing!

  2. Oh, Ang… I wanted desperately to commiserate and feel your pain, but you just made me laugh. And for that, I love you.

  3. Ang,
    Just looking at Cake Pops makes me think “That is way too hard to do.”
    I can’t help but wonder if you tasted your end result and if they tasted good?

    • I did not. Matt did. He said they were amazing and that I should make them “all the time.” I’m being one hundred percent up front and not funny at all when I tell you that was the first time I ever had a facial tic, and I still have it.

      • Dear Lord what a traumatic experience dear!
        Well at least if you learned anything from this, you learned he likes Duncan Hines cake with chocolate frosting.

      • My neighbors and dogs must think I’ve gone round the bend, I’m laughing so hard at this comment.

      • They are pretty tasty if you try them. I mean chocolate, cake and frosting all in one little bite.

  4. I’ve tried the damn cake balls and trust me, yours are picture-effing-perfect next to the piles of dog crap I ended up with!!

  5. I have FINALLY figured out how to make cake balls taste amazingly good. (Hint: Dark chocolate cake mix, caramel frosting, and milk chocolate for the top.) However, I still have no clue on how to make them pretty. And I have made them quite a few times now in my quest for pretty cake balls. I am so glad to know that someone’s first (and only?) time was even worse than mine. Did they at least taste good?

  6. Incidentally, I’ll never be a good baker since I consider anything tasty a success, no matter how hideous. And they’re always hideous.

    • My friend asked me if I was making cupcakes for the reception, hell no I said, she pointed out I make them for every big party which is why I told her I dont want to do them, I make OK cupcakes but even walmart makes better cake than I am NO STRESS… I intend to be done with everyone one week before our Handfasting on april 30th or it just plain is not being included.

    • This, totally. I’m a good cook; I once made cornbread that a gen-u-ine Texan said was the best he’d ever tasted. But do not ask me for pretty! My sister Erin can do delicious *and* pretty (she and my brother’s wife made my other sister’s wedding cake, which was amazing); I can’t. Any DIY at my hypothetical future wedding won’t be mine, though I’ll gladly assist if someone wants to DIY for me.

  7. Oh Ang, I love you.

    This just makes me think of Craftfail.org. DIY frequently goes wrong, and most definitely when it comes to weddings. I anticipate some of my own.

  8. Oh my lulz. I laughed like a crazy person while reading that, but thankfully I was at home and only startled the cats.

    Favorite sentence:

    “Throw other innocent unused bottle away before it has the opportunity to insult you.”

    I kind of want you to write a book filled with little essays like this because I would buy it and laugh like a crazy person and scare my cats and I think I love you the end.

    • P.S. Drawing of sad, crying/burnt Ang in a puddle of chocolate while her brain-self stabs the cake pops? WIN.

    • YES! YES! Write the book, Ang! I like to read funny books while walking my dog, cracking up to the point of hysterical tears and flying snot in front of my neighbors who think I’m weird anyway.

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