02 Oct Fruity Pebbles Funfetti Cake
Today is my 27th birthday!
The never-dramatic interwebs tells me that today marks the death of my youth. That this day is a funeral of sorts. That it’s all hangovers and support hose from here on out. Seriously. Google it. Twenty-seven billion articles about how 27 is the real 55 will slap you on your fine-lined, omg-you-better-start-a-moisture-regimen-ASAP, never-getting-carded-again face.
My personal favorite is this one, where the author tells me that because I am of a certain still-in-my-twenties age, I can no longer eat bagels, take vacations “just because”, attend themed parties or listen boy bands. Seriously, WHO IS THIS HATER OF FUN?! BAGELS, people!
And just to stick it to this anonymous writer of internet LIES, I spent $150 at Forever 21 last weekend (that’s a whole new wardrobe!), I’m attending a themed party at the end of the month (so what if it’s Halloween?), and I’m going to eat three sesame seed bagels schmeared with full-fat cream cheese (#pumpkin) for breakfast while jamming to One Direction on my vintage 2002 iPod Nano. TAKE THAT!!!
[insert steel gaze & karate chop hand motions]
I’d even take a vacation just because…if I could just win the lottery already.
So let’s try this again. TODAY IS MY 27TH BIRTHDAY!!!!!!! WeeeeeeeeeeEEeeeee!!! *does the Macarena in Juicy emblazoned-on-the-bum sweatpants*
What, not cool anymore?
Maybe I’ve begun to move past my nights of fuzzily-recalling shutting down the bar and scarfing down Ropollo’s pizza at 3AM. For the most part, all that means to me is no more 6th Street bar feet (they’re a thing) and much less Saturday morning afternoon guilt. Fewer Whataburger trips and more Farmer’s Market time. Less sugar-laden bottom shelf vodka shots and more classy-lady (pinkies up!) bottles of wine shared with friends. This getting older thing, it’s not so bad.
Especially because at twenty-seven, I’m still straddling the line between real adult and just fake-it-til-ya-make-it adult. (Or so I tell myself.) I can use the F-word all I want, but still call my boyfriend a butthead whenever I feel like it. I can pretend to catch up on CNN.com’s latest while actually streaming Pretty Little Liars on Amazon Prime. I can shop at H&M and Nordstrom. And, perhaps most importantly, I can eat cake any time of day that I freakin’ please.
And because I’m feeling a little nostalgic, this year’s birthday cake is a Fruity Pebbles Funfetti Cake. The quintessential cake and cereal of my 90’s childhood, half-growed up because it’s not made from a box (though you could totally do that) but it still representative of my tinier years because Fruity Pebbles.
My heart (and my palate) still holds a special place for the artificial fruitiness of kiddy cereals. Fruit Loops, Trix, Fruity Pebbles – they sucked me in with their hidden prizes (those color-changing plastic spoons!) and after one too many early morning blood sugar spikes, I was left a miniature addict of the sugar variety. Always the fruity cereals, never the chocolate ones. Because chocolate isn’t for breakfast, said my mom. Sound logic.
For this beauty, I slightly adapted Molly Yeh’s recipe for Food52 because homegirl did alllll the research so why would I go an try to reinvent the wheel? And when Molly says this cake is light and flavorful, she speaks the truth. It’s perfectly fluffy, yet moist and dense enough to support evenly distributed funfetti Fruity Pebbles. At first bite, you’ll be transported back to Saturday mornings, sitting in front of your ‘television set’ (you know, the non-flat kind) watching Nick Jr. and stuffing your face with Fruity Pebbles. Only it will be CAKE!
In fact, my birthday wish is for you to go make this cake and eat it for breakfast because you’re all grown up and you can do that. And birthday wishes always come true, right?
A Few Notes About This Recipe
There are no special instructions on this one, but I wanted to note that if you’re short on time, you can make this cake by using a white box cake mix and adding the Fruit Pebbles to the batter. I’m sure it would turn out just as beautifully!
I recommend decorating the cake on the same day as serving so the Fruity Pebbles are still crunchy. I kept this cake for about 3 days and the cereal never became soggy, though it does become a little chewy on Day 2.
Enjoy! XO, Katie
- 1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 2 1/4 cups sugar
- 6 large egg whites, at room temperature
- 2 tablespoons clear imitation vanilla
- 6 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 3 3/4 cups cake flour (see headnote)
- 3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 cups whole milk, at room temperature
- 3 cups Fruity Pebbles cereal
- 2 cups (4 sticks) butter, at room temperature
- 1 tablespoon clear imitation vanilla
- 3 tablespoons milk or cream
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- Preheat your oven to 350F and grease and line 3 8-inch cake pans with parchment paper.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together butter and sugar until fluffy. Add the egg whites one at a time, mixing well between each addition. Add the oil and vanilla and mix until well combined.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. With your mixer on low, add the dry ingredients in thirds, alternating with the milk (you should start and end with the dry ingredients). Mix until batter is just combined and smooth - don't over mix.
- Fold in the Fruity Pebbles cereal then divide the batter between the three greased cake pans.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Remove from the oven and cool in the pan for about 10 minutes, then turn out into a cooling rack to cool completely before frosting.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, whip butter on medium-high for about 1 minute. Add the powdered sugar, mix on low until incorporated, then turn the mixer up to high and beat for about 2 minutes.
- Add the milk and vanilla, mix on low again until incorporated, then turn mixer to high and beat for 4-5 minutes or until frosting is very fluffy.
- If desired, level your cakes to remove domed tops and create a more even, professional-looking cake.
- Place one layer of cake on a cardboard round or flat serving surface and top with about 1/2 cup of buttercream. Top with another layer off cake then add another layer of frosting. Top off with the last layer of cake.
- Once all your layers are stacked, frost the cake with a very thin crumb coat layer of icing (this will help achieve a smooth finish) and refrigerate until icing is set (about 10 minutes).
- Use the remaining icing to frost the outside of the cake. To coat the sides with Fruity Pebbles, take a handful of cereal and gently press into the side of the cake. Repeat until completely covered. Note that this is a messy process, but the end result sure is pretty!