Piñata Cake


The pinata cake concept takes the traditional idea of a piñata, a vibrant, festive box filled with sweet surprises.

It combines it with the deliciousness of cake, bringing a fun twist to dessert mouth celebrating. 

This creative dessert is a feast for the taste buds and the eyes, promising an explosion of color and flavor as you enjoy it.

Perfect for birthdays, anniversaries, or any celebration looking for a surprise, piñata cakes enhance the fun of sharing sweets. 

Change your taste with this creative cake, so what are you waiting for?

Apply the recipe below immediately.

Ingredients In Pinata Cake

Before coming to a pinata cake recipe, we need to find out the origin or meaning of that cake.

A pinata cake is a delightful and inventive dessert that reinvents the joyous tradition of a piñata into an edible form.

This cake is designed to emulate the surprise and excitement of breaking open a piñata.

Instead of paper and cardboard filled with candies, this cake integrates a hollow center, concealed within layers of flavorful cake and frosting, teeming with a copious mix of small treats.

When sliced open, it unveils a cascade of sweets, such as chocolates, candies, or fruits.

Hearing the name excites anyone’s appetite and makes them eager to indulge.

To craft your delightful pinata cake, you’ll need to gather the following ingredients and prepare them as specified.

This will ensure your cake and frosting have the perfect consistency and taste.

Cake Ingredients Specifics

1. All-purpose Flour: 2 cups, sifted to ensure your cake has a light and fluffy texture.

2. Baking Soda: 1 teaspoon to ensure the cake rises evenly and has a uniform texture.

3. Baking Powder: 1 tablespoon, acting as your cake’s rising agent for that perfect sponge.

4. Eggs: 2 large, room temperature, to bind the ingredients together and give the cake structure.

5. Sugar: 1 1/4 granulated cups to sweeten your cake without overpowering the flavors.

6. Greek Yogurt: 1 cup to add moisture and a slight tang to your cake, making it exceptionally tender.

7. Milk: 1 cup, preferably whole milk, for that rich, creamy taste that enhances the cake’s moisture.

Frosting Ingredients Specifics

1. Cream Cheese: 12 tablespoons, room temperature, to give your frosting a smooth, creamy base.

2. Butter: 12 tablespoons, room temperature, to add richness and a melt-in-your-mouth quality to your frosting.

3. Powdered Sugar: 5 cups, sifted, allowing you to create a smooth, sweet frosting that’s easy to spread or pipe.

4. Heavy Cream: 2-3 tablespoons to thin the frosting to the perfect consistency for spreading.

5. M&M’sthat’s Mini Milk Chocolate Baking Bits: 3/4 cup to mix into your frosting for added color and a chocolatey surprise with every bite.

These specific quantities and preparations of ingredients are the foundation of a perfect pinata cake.

Ensure your ingredients are measured accurately and prepared as described for the best results.

How To Make a Pinata Cake?

Creating a pinata cake is a delightful culinary adventure combining baking with the thrill of crafting a surprise-filled center.

Follow these meticulously detailed steps to bring your pinata cake to life and ensure a successful, enchanting dessert highlighting any celebration.

Step 1: Preparing The Cake Batter

Start by preheating your oven to 350°F (177°C) and ready four 6-inch cake pans with non-stick spray and parchment paper circles.

In a stand mixer equipped with a paddle attachment, blend sugar, butter, and oil on a low speed for about 1 minute.

Incorporate eggs and vanilla at a medium/low speed until thoroughly mixed.

Mix the sifted all-purpose flour, salt, and baking powder on a low setting to avoid overmixing.

Gradually pour in the buttermilk, mixing until everything is combined for a lump-free, smooth batter.

Distribute the batter evenly among the prepared pans and bake them for 25 to 30 minutes.

Once baked, transfer the cakes to a cooling rack.

Step 2: Crafting The Buttercream Frosting

While the cakes are cooling, start on the buttercream. Using a stand mixer with a whisk attachment, beat the room-temperature butter until smooth.

Slowly add powdered sugar, vanilla extract, milk, and a pinch of salt, and whisk until the frosting becomes light and fluffy.

Divide 120g of this frosting into four separate bowls to color them differently for a more vibrant look.

Keep a good amount of the plain frosting aside for the filling and the crumb coat.

Step 3: Assembling The Cake

Begin assembly by leveling the tops off each cake layer with a serrated knife.

Place the first layer on a cake plate, then center a 4-inch cookie cutter on it and apply frosting around the outer circle.

For the second and third layers, use the cookie cutter to remove a centerpiece from each layer before placing them on top of the first, spreading frosting between each layer.

Pack your choice of candies into the hollow center, ensuring it’s filled to the brim.

Place the final cake layer (bottom side up) on top, then envelop the entire assembly in a thin crumb coat of frosting.

Chill the cake in the fridge for at least 30 minutes to solidify.

Step 4: Decorating The Cake

Once the cake is set, fill a piping bag fitted with a ribbon tip with your colored frosting.

Starting at the base, pipe around the cake, layering up in rings and alternating colors as you ascend.

For the top, switch directions so the larger side of the ribbon tip faces outward and alternate colors until you reach the center.

Finish with a custom DIY cake topper for an added personal touch.

Follow these steps with attention to detail, and your pinata cake will be a feast for the eyes and a memorable centerpiece for any occasion.

Enjoy the process, and anticipate the joy and surprise your cake will bring to the table.

Comprehensive Tips For Crafting a Pinata Cake

Besides the above recipe, you should also refer to some tips from the experts below to help your pinata cake taste better.

1. Selecting The Filling

Opting for a colorful and varied assortment of candies and sprinkles adds a fun, surprise element and caters to different taste preferences. 

M&Ms, M&M Minis, Skittles, Freckles, and Nerds offer a delightful mix of textures and flavors that complement the cake and frosting.

Feel free to get creative and tailor the filling to the occasion or personal preferences.

2. Ensuring Alignment Of Layers

To achieve a seamless design, particularly for the hollow center filled with candies, it’s crucial to precisely align the holes of the middle layers.

A practical trick is to stack the two cakes momentarily to cut through them simultaneously with the cookie cutter.

This ensures that the holes align perfectly, creating a neat and professional look once the cake is assembled.

3. Tailoring To Taste Preferences

While the suggested candy mix is a tried-and-true favorite, a pinata cake’s versatility lies in its beauty.

Feel free to substitute or omit candies based on dietary restrictions, allergies, or simple preference. 

The key is to maintain the element of surprise and ensure the candies are small enough to pour quickly into the cake’s center.

4. Timing Of Assembly and Decoration

For the best results, assemble and decorate the pinata cake on the day it’s meant to be served.

This minimizes the risk of the cake drying or the candies losing their crunch.

Freshly assembled, the cake maintains its moisture, and the candies retain their texture, ensuring each slice is as delightful as it is surprising. 

Following these tips closely will help create a visually stunning and deliciously filled pinata cake that will surely be the talking point of any celebration.


The pinata cake embodies the essence of celebration, merging culinary creativity with the joy of discovery.

Its vibrant layers and hidden treasure of candies represent a delightful surprise, making each slice a unique adventure. 

Perfect for birthdays, anniversaries, or any festive occasion, the pinata cake transcends the ordinary dessert experience.

Crafting it requires attention to detail and a dash of creativity, rewarding bakers and guests with its visual appeal and enticing flavors. 

So, a pinata cake is more than just a dessert; it’s a centerpiece that invites laughter, joy, and shared moments of wonder.

pinata cake

Piñata Cake

Prep Time 4 hours 30 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 5 hours
Servings 16


For The Cake:

  • 2 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 1 3/4 cups of granulated sugar
  • ¾ cup of unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup of buttermilk
  • ½ cup of vegetable oil
  • 1 cup of boiling water

For the Buttercream Frosting:

  • 1 cup of unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 6 cups of powdered sugar, sifted
  • 2 tablespoons of vanilla extract
  • 2-4 tablespoons of milk
  • A pinch of salt
  • Food coloring (optional for decoration)

For the Filling and Decoration:

  • A mix of candies such as M&Ms, M&M Minis, Skittles, Freckles, and Nerds
  • Additional sprinkles for topping


  • Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Prepare four 6-inch round cake pans by greasing them and lining the bottoms with parchment paper.
  • Whisk together the flour,  salt, granulated sugar, baking powder, cocoa powder, and baking soda in a large bowl.
  • Add the vanilla extract, eggs, buttermilk, and vegetable oil to the dry ingredients. Mix until just combined. Then, carefully stir in the boiling water until the batter is smooth and liquid.
  • Divide the batter evenly between the prepared pans. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes clean. Allow the cakes to cool in the pans for 15 minutes, then transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely.
  • While the cakes are cooling, beat the butter until creamy. Gradually add the powdered sugar, 1 cup at a time, beating on low until combined. Incorporate the vanilla extract and a pinch of salt. Adjust the consistency with milk, adding a tablespoon until the desired thickness. Add food coloring if using.
  • Place one cake layer on a plate once cooled. Use a cookie cutter to remove a centerpiece from the top two cake layers before stacking them, spreading frosting between each layer. Fill the hollow center with candies.
  • Apply a thin crumb coat of frosting to the cake and chill for at least 30 minutes. Use a piping bag fitted with a ribbon tip to decorate the cake with the buttercream frosting, alternating colors if desired. Top the cake with additional candies and sprinkles.
Keyword pinata cake


Chef Chip Roman is one of the most exciting and talented chefs in Philadelphia. He has his own catering business, Charles Roman Catering, as well as Roman Restaurant Group which includes Blackfish, Mica, and Ela. He graduated from Drexel University in 2002 with a degree in business and culinary arts. Chip Roman is a classically trained chef who has worked in some of the most prestigious kitchens and chefs in Philadelphia, including Le Bec Fin’s George Perrier and Marc Vetri’s Vetri.

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