Whether you love or hate actual candy corn, this Candy Corn Cake is a delicious way to celebrate Halloween! Happy baking!
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According to recent surveys, 49% of us think that candy corn is tasty while 23% of us think it is gross. Taking that one step further, a different study found that 12% of us listed candy corn as their favorite Halloween candy. (To be fair, that study is seriously flawed as the top vote receiver was ‘chocolate.’ If you combine all chocolate candy into one huge category, it’s almost always going to overpower a survey! But I digress…)
One more fun candy corn fact before we move on to today’s recipe – only 58% of us eat candy corn whole. The rest of us choose to bite off the different colors individually. What the what!? We always buy 1-2 bags of candy corn during the Halloween season and put ’em in a bowl on the table. Then I just fill my hoodie pocket with candy corn and proceed through my day popping candy corn in my mouth whenever the urge strikes. (I get that habit from my Mom!)
Candy Corn Cake
As much as I enjoy walking around the house with candy corn in my pocket, I think a slice of this Candy Corn Cake would be a much better choice! Of course, shoving a slice of this cake in my pocket would not be the smartest thing I’ve ever done. Nah, we’ll just save this cake for dessert during the Halloween season instead.
In truth, this Candy Corn Cake is just a vanilla cake decorated in the iconic yellow-orange-white layers that we associate with candy corn. There is no candy corn in the cake. Funny story – I once tried to melt candy corn and use the mixture as a “frosting” on top of cinnamon buns. It failed miserably. And I made the mistake of taking a batch over to our neighbors before I tasted one. Oops. (Sorry, Judy!)
After the fact, I realized I could’ve incorporated some honey into the frosting to match the flavor of candy corn, but truthfully I just didn’t think about it. Instead, I went with a classic vanilla cake topped with a classic vanilla buttercream. I split the cake batter and frosting into 3 bowls and added a bit of orange and yellow food coloring gel to achieve the colors I was looking for.
However, one unique thing about this cake is the pudding. I stumbled onto the pudding trick back when I made this Lemon Pistachio Cake, and I’m now a huge fan of using pudding in both the cake as well as the frosting. The cake stays extremely moist and the frosting turns super creamy. In short, pudding mix in cake and frosting is a favorite new trick!
So whether or not you like actual candy corn, I highly recommend celebrating Halloween with this Candy Corn Cake! Happy baking!
Did you make this Candy Corn Cake at home? Leave a comment, or better yet snap a photo and tag me on Instagram (@Spicedblog)!
Candy Corn Cake
For the Cake
For the Cake
- Grease and flour (3) 9” round cake pans. Line bottoms of pans with parchment paper; set pans aside.
- Preheat oven to 325°F.
- Using the bowl of a countertop mixer, sift together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and pudding mix; set aside.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the milk, vegetable oil, eggs and vanilla extract.
- Pour liquid mixture into the bowl with dry ingredients; mix on low speed until well combined.
- Add hot water; continue mixing on low speed until well combined.
- Divide the batter evenly into 3 medium bowls. Add 1½ tsp yellow food coloring (or several drops of yellow food gel) to one bowl; stir until well combined. Add 1½ tsp orange food coloring (or several drops of orange food gel) to another bowl; stir until well combined. Leave last bowl uncolored.
- Transfer batter into the 3 prepared cake pans.
- Bake at 350°F for 28-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
- Let cakes cool completely before frosting.
For the Buttercream Frosting
- Using a countertop mixer, beat butter until light and fluffy (~3-4 minutes on medium speed).
- Add pudding mix, vanilla extract and powdered sugar (1 cup at a time); mix well after each addition.
- Add milk 1 Tbsp at a time, mixing well after each addition, until frosting reaches desired consistency.
- Beat on medium-high speed for 3-4 minutes, or until fluffy.
- Divide the frosting into 3 medium bowls. Add 1 tsp of yellow food coloring (or several drops of yellow food gel) to one bowl; stir until well combined. Add 1 tsp orange food coloring (or several drops of orange food gel) to another bowl; stir until well combined. Leave last bowl white.
- Place yellow cake layer on a large platter. Spread yellow frosting on top and sides of this layer.
- Place orange cake layer on top. Spread orange frosting on top and sides of this layer.
- Finally, place white cake layer on top. Spread white frosting on top and sides of this layer.
- Before serving, garnish top of cake with candy corn.
Looking for more tasty Halloween dessert recipes? Check out these other favorites, too: