What better way to top a Southern Living white cake than with these festive cake balls. These charming (and edible) ornaments can be colored however you wish with melted candy coating disks. You'll need about 1 1/2 pounds of disks to cover 20 cake balls. Add Luster Dust in the ornaments' colors for a sparkly finish, if desired. Top this year's Snowy Vanilla Cake with these ornaments we can't guarantee they will make it to dessert.


Credit: Photo: Greg DuPree; Prop Styling: Claire Spollen; Food Styling: Torie Cox

Recipe Summary

1 hr 55 mins
8 hrs 25 mins
Makes 20 cake balls


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Make ornament caps by forming 20 pea-size balls from fondant. Lightly press each ball into the shape of a drum. Score sides vertically with a sharp knife; set aside to dry.

  • Form 20 pearl-size balls from fondant. Using a wooden skewer, poke a hole into middle of each ball, and gently shape into a slightly larger doughnut-shaped circle. Let fondant pieces dry completely, about 1 hour.

  • Place powdered sugar, meringue powder, and 1 tablespoon of the water in a small bowl; beat with an electric mixer on low speed until combined. Increase speed to high; beat until white and fluffy, adding up to 1 tablespoon water, 1 teaspoon at a time (if needed), until smooth and thick. Transfer icing to a piping bag with a No. 2 decorating tip.

  • Attach edge of 1 doughnut-shaped fondant piece to the flat side of each drum-shaped piece with a small dot of icing; cover with bronze edible luster spray. Let ornament caps dry completely, about 30 minutes.

  • Prepare cake mix according to package directions for 2 (8-inch) round pans; let cool completely on a wire rack. Crumble cake with fingers into fine crumbs in a large bowl. Add cream cheese frosting; stir until mixture is the consistency of cookie dough. Shape mixture into 20 (1-inch) balls; and place on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. (Leftover cake mixture can be used to make mini [1/2-inch] balls, if desired.) Cover and chill until firm, about 2 hours or up to 2 days.

  • Place candy coating in a medium-size microwavable bowl (or 4-cup glass measuring cup), and microwave until melted, about 1 minute and 30 seconds, stirring at 30-second intervals.

  • Dip 1⁄2 inch of blunt end of 1 skewer in melted candy coating; insert dipped end of skewer about three-quarters through 1 chilled cake ball. (Do not insert all the way through.) Place on parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Repeat with remaining skewers and cake balls. Chill 30 minutes.

  • If needed, reheat candy coating in microwave 30 seconds. Dip chilled cake balls in melted candy coating, twirling and lightly tapping skewers on lip of bowl to create a smooth coating around cake balls. Stick skewers upright in the plastic foam; let cake balls stand at room temperature until hardened, about 20 minutes. Decorate with edible luster spray and edible Luster Dust. Let dry completely, about 30 minutes.

  • Pipe icing on cake balls in decorative patterns. Attach an ornament cap to the top of each colored cake ball with a small dot of icing. Add nonpareils, if desired. Let dry 1 hour. Carefully remove skewers from cake balls, if desired. Attach Cake Ball Ornaments to top and sides of cake, securing with icing or wooden picks.