Candy Corn Cake {cake decorating tutorial}

filed under: Surprise Inside Cakes on September 30, 2013


I have something very serious to talk with you about today.  There is a great travesty occurring in our nation. A great injustice!  And I cannot, no I WILL NOT sit idly by for one moment longer.

And please forgive my boldness as I callously divert from the true spirit of this blog.  I try so very hard to have fun here.  To keep things light.  But enough is enough.  This has to stop.

Candy Corn Cake & cake decorating tutorial! #cakedecorating #halloween #cake

I am taking a stand.

There is the little tiny candy that I hold near and dear to my heart.  I have loved it from the moment I tried it.

Candy Corn Cake! Full frosting tutorial! #halloween #candycorn #cake

Its candy corn. To be more specific Brach’s Candy Corn.  The REAL stuff.

There is only one real candy corn.


That stuff?  Over on the right?  IMPOSTOR.  I dislike them very much.  I dislike them on a crutch.  I dislike them on a spoon.  I dislike them under the moon.  I dislike them all the way to mars and back!  I would not eat them, not for all the money in a sack!

Why oh why are the grocery stores carrying them?  Why do companies even try to replicate the awesomeness that is Brach’s Candy Corn?  It must be stopped!!

(Brach’s has never heard of me, I am seriously just a big -weird- obsessed fan.)

So anyway.  While I dislike the fake version, I have intense adoration for the real stuff. Hence this cake.  Which I am pretty sure has been made a million times before.  Except this is kinda  new way to frost a cake. At least I haven’t seen much of it around, so I figured why not a tutorial?

(A word of warning, this post has numerous images.  Many more than I usually post, so I apologize for any slow loading times!)

CANDY CORN CAKE {cake decorating tutorial}

You will need: (please feel free to substitute a box mix here!)

3 white cake recipes

2 buttercream recipes

Yellow and orange gel food coloring (I use Ateco or Americolor)

9 inch cake pans

#32 tip, pastry bags, coupler set

Rotating Cake Stand (optional)

Prepare cake batter.  Tint one recipe cake batter yellow and place in a prepared 9-inch cake pan.  Prepare another white cake and tint orange; place in prepared 9 inch cake pan.  Make last white cake and place in prepared 9 inch cake pan.  Bake for approximately 10 minutes longer than the recipe directions call for.  When cakes are done baking remove from oven and allow to cool to room temperature in pan.  Carefully remove cake from pan and determine which is the shortest cake.  Level all the cakes to that level.

Next came frosting.  There are two full buttercream recipes here, which is a lot of frosting.  Divide one batch equally into two parts then tint one yellow and one orange, trying to match the shade of your cooked cake.  Leave remaining batch of buttercream white.  Cover with plastic wrap until ready to use.

Candy Corn Cake: Frosting Tutorial #halloween #cakedecorating #buttercream


Start by placing your yellow cake on the cake stand.  Cover in approximately 1/2 cup of yellow buttercream.  Carefully place orange cake on top.  Cover with approximately 1/2 cup of orange buttercream.  Place white cake on top.  Smooth out an excess frosting.

As you can see above, I chose not to do a crumb coat.  I wanted to be sure I had enough frosting!  With the two recipes of buttercream it turns out I did, so I would recommend covering your cake in a crumb coat of white buttercream.

Great trick for changing out frosting bags when decorating a cake! #cakedecorating #halloween

For the frosting.  My trick is this: (this is a life changer, seriously)

I place ALL my frosting into plastic disposable pastry bags.

I then get a new clean bag with the tip I am using, in this case a #32 tip, and coupler set.

Cut off about 2 inches from the tip of the bag with your first color and place the frosting into the bag with the couple set and #32 tip.

Pipe out decoration and then when the frosting runs out, remove empty frosting bag from bag with tip and coupler.

Grab new frosting bag, cut off tip and drop into bag with tip and coupler.  When you have a new color change out your frosting tip.

Candy Corn Cake Tutorial: the frosting #cakedecorating #halloween #buttercream #cake

Starting with the yellow frosting in the bag with the #32 tip; place your tip at the very base of the cake.  Apply pressure and then swoop UP.  If you are at all uncomfortable with the motion, practice on a piece of parchment paper until it feels right.

At this point you can determine how big you want each dab to be; just try to remain consistent around the entire cake.  Continue this motion around cake until you have completely covered the bottom of the cake.

Candy Corn Cake Tutorial: the frosting #cakedecorating #halloween #buttercream #cake

For the next row, place your frosting tip right in between the dabs from the bottom row.  Repeat the same motion as you did above and do this around the entire cake until you have two full rows of mini scallops.

You will be doing three full rows of yellow, so once you have completed the second row, go back in and do a third in the exact same way.

Remove yellow frosting from your bag with the coupler set.  Change out to a clean #32 tip and then add orange frosting.

Just a note: I pipe one handed and was able to turn my cake around with the other hand.  If you want to make the piping even easier, place cake on a rotating cake stand.

Candy Corn Cake Tutorial: the frosting #cakedecorating #halloween #buttercream #cake

This is how the cake should look at this point. (Of course, yours will be neater since you did a beautiful crumb coat!)

Candy Corn Cake Tutorial: the frosting #cakedecorating #halloween #buttercream #cake

The orange dabs are done in the exact same way as the yellow.  Do one row, go back in and add another row, then finish with a third row.

Candy Corn Cake Tutorial: the frosting #cakedecorating #halloween #buttercream #cake

This is how the orange layer looks when done.  You can see it will overlap onto the white layer of cake and that is great.

Candy Corn Cake Tutorial: the frosting #cakedecorating #halloween #buttercream #cake

If you are anything like me you will want every single dabs to be perfectly uniform and placed just right.  Well, I got over that pretty quick!  In my humble opinion, imperfections are beautiful too.  If you have a dab you dont like, simply remove it carefully then go back in and pipe another one.  This cake is very forgiving!

Candy Corn Cake Tutorial: the frosting #cakedecorating #halloween #buttercream #cake

For the white layer, do the dabs exactly as you have done wit the yellow and orange.  I did two rows of white dabs around the cake.  Looking back at the finished cake I could have fit three in, but didnt.  Be sure to carefully look at your cake and see what will work best.

Candy Corn Cake Tutorial: the frosting #cakedecorating #halloween #buttercream #cake

The third row I started at the very edge of the cake then swooped IN, towards the center of the cake.  I went around the cake until I reached the center.

If you are a faithful iambaker reader you will recognize this technique from this Mini Heart Surprise Inside Cake I did!

Candy Corn Cake: frosting tutorial #halloween #cakedecorating #buttercream #cake

Keep going around and around the cake until you reach the center.

Candy Corn Cake: frosting tutorial #halloween #cakedecorating #buttercream #cake

When you get to the center just take extra cake to make your final dabs as uniform as you can.  Even if they are not its ok, the over effect is still quite lovely.

Candy Corn Cake: frosting tutorial #halloween #cakedecorating #buttercream #cake

And this is how the top looks all completed!  Can you see the reflection of the yellow and orange in the cake server?  I totally planned that. #totalydidnotplanthat

So lets re-cap.  All impostor candy corn is wretchedly bad.  Brach’s candy corn is the real, the best, and the only candy corn allowed in this house!

Candy Corn Cake! #halloween #cakedecorating #buttercream #cake

As you can see, I may have a small obsession with them.  It is my understanding that some people even add peanuts to theirs.  And M&M’s or some such nonsense.  I am afraid this is the dividing line between us.  Difference in political and religious beliefs?  I can handle that.  Nuts in my candy corn?  Get outta here.

No nuts!  No M&M’s!

Candy Corn inspired cake! #cakedecorating #halloween #cake #frostinglesson

Just candy corn.  Lots and lots and lots and lots of CANDY CORN!

And cake.  Always lots of cake.

Candy Corn inspired cake! #halloween #cakedecorating #cake #buttercream #beautifulcakes

My apologies for this longest and most picture heavy post I have ever had the pleasure of assembling.  Please do let me know if you have any questions.

And lets brainstorm for the next cake!  Should we tackle this one for Christmas?  Red, white and green?  Should we take on New Years and make it black, white and gold?  How about Fourth of July with red, white and blue?  How about a rainbow with all the beautiful colors??  The possibilities are endless!  Cant wait for the next one, which you are sure to see very soon!

Candy Corn Cake! #halloween #cakedecorating #buttercream #cake

For the record, I have enjoyed candy corn with salty peanuts before and they were ok.  I may have gotten a little intense up there.;)

Feel free to check out my other Candy Corn Cake!  Its based off of the Indian Candy Corn.

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  • Kelli @ The Corner Kitchen says:

    Best Halloween cake ever! This cake is stunning, Amanda. Great tutorial! Pinned!

  • Ann says:

    Nothing like the REAL Brach`s Candy Corn! The imposters taste like grainy cornstarch..ick! Such a cute cake. You always make decorating look so easy. I was a little confused too by the directions on the icing bags, but I think I got it now. 🙂 BTW, I have mixed Brach`s Candy Corn with salted peanuts and the combo tastes like Payday candy bars..yum.

  • Shanna@ pineapple and coconut says:

    I am SO WITH You. Brachs or none at all!! Love the cake!

  • Sue {munchkin munchies} says:

    Another stunner! Love the perfectly vivid candy corn colors! Yep, Brach’s is the best, and they remind me of my childhood:)

  • deana says:

    how do you get your cakes to be perfectly flat and come out of the pan perfectly?

    • Amanda says:

      I leveled these cakes Deana. 🙂

  • Kiran @ says:

    I hate impostor, anything. This cake looks too good to eat, Amanda!! THanks for the great tips on decorating 🙂

  • Kara says:

    I too am a candy corn lover, however, my dear husband introduced me to a candy corn that’s superior even to my beloved Brach’s. It’s by Buddy Squirrel. It is made with real honey, it is truly candy corn heaven! If you ever get the chance to try it, DO! But it’s sad because it’s a lot harder to get your hands on as it’s in a specialty shop, usually in a mall and it costs far more:( But totally worth it, to the extent that it’s the only candy corn I’ll buy, so I get it once a year!

  • Anne Marie says:

    Beautiful as ever – candy corn rules!!
    Question – do you put all of the cake batter into One 9 in cake pan? Or do you cook 2 and make 2 cakes?
    Beautiful photography too 🙂

    • Amanda says:

      One full cake recipe goes into one 9inch pan. THe entire bowl of batter will be baked in on pan. 🙂

      • Karen says:

        OK, so I am making this cake as we speak using 9″ layer cake pans and, unless I had put parchment collars on the pans, I would have batter all over the bottom of the oven!!! Do you use spring form pans?

        • Karen says:

          OOOPS, I take that back, it juuuuuust fits and comes to the top edge of the pan 🙂

  • Linda V @ Bubble and Sweet says:

    We don’t even get candy corn here in Australia, I did spy a teensy bag of jelly belly candy corn for $6 but now after reading your post and realising it’s an impostor I don’t think I will be picking it up. Thanks for the heads up. Great photo tutorial as well 🙂

  • Tamara Massie says:

    Well, why don’t ya tells us how you really feel. I’m with ya.

  • Serena | Serena Bakes Simply From Scratch says:

    What is this world coming too.. Some poor kids might not ever have a chance to even taste the Branches.. They might not even know the difference! Gorgeous cake as always btw!

  • Vicki H. says:

    You are 100% correct! Brach’s is and always will be the only candy corn for me, too. However, I am glad you stepped down from your soapbox to create this great homage!

  • Mimi @ Culinary Couture says:

    I LOVE that picture with all the candy corn around the slice of cake…it’s gorgeous! Pinning right now!

  • melineh says:

    your decoration ideas are inspiring , love them so much

    thank you for sharing them with us ,waiting to see new ones

  • JessB says:

    Like Linda, who commented above, I’m an Australian, and I have to ask – what the heck is candy corn? All the lovely American baking blogs I read are making candy corn inspired treats, and I don’t understand!

    Is it like a boiled lolly? Or is it chocolate inside? Take this opportunity to tell me all about what I’m missing!

    Many thanks, Amanda, and of course- beautiful cake!

  • Lorelie says:

    Great tutorial and idea. So colorful and fun. Thanks for sharingit.

  • Sommer @ ASpicyPerspective says:

    One of the most gorgeous cakes ever, Amanda!! I LOVE the shot of the cake slice with all of the candy corn around it!! Fantastic job! 🙂

    • Amanda says:

      Thanks so much Sommer!

  • Rowaida Flayhan says:

    Amanda this is so beautiful! You keep amazing me.
    Best wishes xx

    • Amanda says:

      You are such a wonderful friend Rowaida! Thank you!

  • Maggie @Maggiecooks says:

    This cake looks so pretty!! I want a slice of it right now!
    And about the “many” pictures I don’t mind I love your pictures! 🙂
    Greetings from Mexico!

  • Shelly says:

    I LOVE CANDY CORN TOO!!!! I am NOT alone, so nice to know. 🙂 Wonderful post, I am a new reader, amazing pics and how thoughtful to share your obsession with the public!!!

  • Cher says:

    Gorgeous cake! Love this.

  • Katy says:

    I LOVE candy corn and I LOVE cake! So this is perfect. 🙂 Your cakes are always beautiful and I have used several of your ideas in my own cakes, so thank you!

    A few questions about this one. First, you mentioned this about the baking part: “Bake for approximately 10 minutes longer than the recipe directions call for.” Why is this? Just curious, as I try to be careful not to overbake my cakes.

    Also, any ideas of how to incorporate candy corn flavor into the cake? Or incorporate actual candy corn into it?

    • Amanda says:

      Hi Katy- Since you are baking one entire recipe into one 9inch pan, it will need to bake longer. There is more batter, so needs a bit more time.

      Not sure how to incorporate more candy corn flavor into the cake… since its pretty hard to replicate. I would just throw a ton onto the piece and eat them together! 🙂

  • Kate M says:

    Hi Amanda,
    I’m from Australia so I have no idea what candy corn is, but your cake looks brilliant. Thanks for your white cake recipe it is reliable and tastes great. I have just started out decorating cakes for people after years of just decorating for my family and friends and this cake recipe is perfect.

  • Aya B. says:

    a piece of art…. lovely

  • Rachel @ The Pescetarian and the Pig says:

    Your cakes are so awesome. When I saw the pics at the top as you were putting the crumb coat on, all of the layers look the same and I thought “Aw, what a shame I wanted them to be candy corn colors… or have a surprise candy corn in the middle!” … and then I got scrolling and when I saw a cut piece of the cake with those SUPER bright colors I felt so warm and tingly 🙂 What a beautiful cake! And the patience you have with frosting it is amazing… I think I’d get 5 dollops into it and be like “Ah, screw it” and spatula the rest on. Haha.

    I’m a super candy corn lover, too… and I really love those candy corn flavored pumpkins. They’re adorable 🙂