“Homemade” KING CAKE WITH CREAM CHEESE FILLING

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Sometimes during Carnival Season, you just want a king cake. Sometimes you want a king cake when your favorite bakery is closed, or you don’t feel like driving across town to them.

Or you live elsewhere, and king cake really isn’t a thing, and you don’t want to pay the high cost of shipping one to you.

What’s a girl to do in these cases? Well, I have a solution for you, with this super easy “homemade” king cake recipe.

Easy Homemade King Cake 8
Would you like a slice of king cake?

What You Will Need To Make Your King Cake

Ingredients

  • 2 cans of Pillsbury Grands Cinnamon Rolls (5 qty)
  • 1 package of softened cream cheese
  • ¼ cup of powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp of pure vanilla extract
  • Approx 1 cup of granulated sugar
  • Wilton food color gel in Violet, Leaf Green & Lemon Yellow

Utensils

How to Make the Cake

Start by unrolling three of the cinnamon rolls. Lightly press them together at the top (see picture below.) Braid the three pieces together, just like you would someone’s hair. Repeat this step so that you have two braided sections.

Next, place braided sections in shape of circle on baking sheet or stone.

Finally, take the remaining four rolls and unroll. Twist them together two at a time. Use the two twists to make an inner circle for the cake creating one wide cake.

Easy Homemade King Cake 1
Braid the cinnamon rolls like you would hair.
Easy Homemade King Cake 2
It’s ready to be filled with cream cheese!

How To Make the Cream Cheese Filling

In a bowl, whisk together the softened cream cheese, powdered sugar, and pure vanilla extract. (You will want to use a sturdy, metal whisk to get all of the lumps out.)

Easy Homemade King Cake 3
It’s time to make the cream cheese filling!

Place a ziplock bag inside of a large cup. Use the spatula to fill the bag with the cream cheese filling. Remove the bag from cup—trim corner off of bag with scissors. Squeeze filling to the bottom of the bag.

Inject filling into openings of cake.

Easy Homemade King Cake 4
Ready to bake!

NOTE: Don’t like cream cheese? Any canned pie filling will do. This is also YUMMY plain, without any filling. 

How to Make Sugar Sprinkles

Put approximately 1/3 cup of granulated sugar into 3 separate ziplock  bags.

Using a small spoon, add a tiny amount of Wilton food color gel to each bag. One bag per color. (It’s better to start with a little and add more gel until the desired color is achieved.)

Seal the bag. Roll the sugar and gel food color around in the bag until completely mixed. This is a GREAT job for a kiddo or spouse while they are zoned out watching tv.

After sugar is dyed, generously sprinkle on top of unbaked cake. 

Or you can just use sprinkles that are in a jar!

Easy Homemade King Cake 5
Sprinkles! All the Sugar Sprinkles!

How to Make Your Cake and Finishing Touches

Bake cake at 350˚ for about 15 minutes.

Remove from oven and let cool.

Easy Homemade King Cake 6
Ready for icing!

Warm the icing that came with the cinnamon rolls in the microwave for about 30 sec – 1min (depending on the microwave strength.) You want it to still be white but thin enough to drizzle.

Drizzle icing over top of cake once the cake has cooled. 

Easy Homemade King Cake 7
OOOO YUMMY KING CAKE!

Mini King Cakes

Looking for a fun project with the kids? Give them their own cinnamon rolls and let them decorate them individually, and make mini king cakes! It’s a great project for scouts, youth groups, camps, and parties.

Mini King Cake 5
Mini King Cakes!

Easy Cream Cheese Filled King Cake

Easy Cream Cheese Filled King Cake

Easy "Homemade" King Cake with cream cheese filling made from cinnamon rolls.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Additional Time 10 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 cans of Pillsbury Grands Cinnamon Rolls (5 qty)
  • 1 package of softened cream cheese
  • ¼ cup of powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp of pure vanilla extract
  • Approx 1 cup of granulated sugar
  • Wilton food color gel in Violet, Leaf Green & Lemon Yellow

Instructions

Cake

  1. Start by unrolling three of the cinnamon rolls. Lightly press them together at the top (see picture below.) Braid the three pieces together, just like you would someone’s hair. Repeat this step so that you have two braided sections.
  2. Place braided sections in the shape of a circle on a baking sheet or stone.
  3. Take the remaining four rolls and unroll. Twist them together two at a time. Use the two twists to make an inner circle for the cake creating one wide cake.


Filling

  1. In a bowl, whisk together the softened cream cheese, powdered sugar, and pure vanilla extract. (You will want to use a sturdy, metal whisk to get all of the lumps out.)
  2. Place a ziplock bag inside of a large cup. Use the spatula to fill the bag with the cream cheese filling. Remove the bag from cup—trim corner off of bag with scissors. Squeeze filling to the bottom of the bag.
  3. Inject filling into openings of cake.


Sugar

  1. Put approximately 1/3 cup of granulated sugar into 3 separate ziplock bag.
  2. Using a small spoon, add a tiny amount of Wilton food color gel to each bag. One bag per color. (It’s better to start with a little and add more gel until the desired color is achieved.)
  3. Seal the bag. Roll the sugar and gel food color around in the bag until completely mixed.
  4. After the sugar is dyed, generously sprinkle on top of the unbaked cake. 


Baking and Finishing Touches

  1. Bake cake at 350˚ for about 15 minutes.
  2. Remove from the oven and let cool.
  3. Warm the icing that came with the cinnamon rolls in the microwave for about 30 sec – 1min (depending on the microwave strength.) You want it to still be white but thin enough to drizzle.
  4. Drizzle icing over the top of the cake once the cake has cooled. 

Notes

Don’t like cream cheese? Any canned pie filling will do. This is also YUMMY plain, without any filling. 

Avatar of Hope
About Hope 4 Articles
Hope is a fifth generation native New Orleanian. To answer the question we all start with when we meet someone new in NOLA: "What's the name of ya school?" Grace King! After graduating from the University of New Orleans, she spent 7 years working in local government. She left the traditional workforce when her son was born to live her lifelong dream of being a soccer mom. Hope happily lives in Gretna (which she never thought she would say, but now can't imagine living anywhere else. #Bestbank ) She loves supporting the local art scene, crafty crap, and spending time with with her two favorite guys - her volunteer firefighter hubby & adorable son.

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