This Christmas Lights Snack Cake is an incredibly easy and really fun festive way to celebrate the holidays! I use organic Giggles and activated charcoal to make a naturally colored holiday cake!
I am so excited to share this Christmas Lights Snack Cake with you guys today! This cake is so damn cute! I can’t even with it, because it is just too cute. And this is a Christmas Lights Cake with no artificial colors, so it’s one you can all get behind.
I made this simple Christmas Lights Snack Cake using one of our favorite candies – Giggles. And if you don’t know what Giggles are, they are basically organic Skittles. But they taste a million times better than Skittles – and the green one is not lime, it’s green apple!
Why You'll Love This Recipe
In this naturally colored Christmas cake, I use Giggles turned on their sides to mimic Christmas lights. You’ve probably seen people make these before with M&M’s or mini M&M’s. I’ve seen cakes, cupcakes, cookies and more all over Pinterest. But this is a Christmas Lights Cake with no artificial colors!
Giggles are naturally colored with plant based dyes and they are organic! So, this naturally colored Christmas cake is a win all around. And the best part about this Christmas Lights Snack Cake is that it is a delicious gingerbread cake with a cream cheese icing!
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Can I use something else besides activated charcoal?
Yes, if you don’t have food grade activated charcoal, you can use cocoa to color the Christmas lights string. It will just be a brown instead of black.
Can I make this cake in a 9 x 13-inch pan?
If you want a larger cake, such as a 9 x 13-inch pan you can double this cake recipe and then bake it in a 9 x 13-inch pan. You’ll have to bake it longer, about 35 to 40 minutes at sea level and 30 to 35 minutes at high altitude.
Does this cake need to be refrigerated?
Yes, because this has a cream cheese icing this cake should be stored in the fridge.
Can I make this cake ahead of time?
Yes! You can make this cake ahead of time. This cake can be made a day in advance if you are making it for a holiday party or dinner. You can bake, frost, and decorate this cake the day before. Just be sure to store it in the fridge until you’re ready to serve it. I would also recommend taking it out of the fridge for 20 to 30 minutes prior to serving so it comes to room temperature.
Ingredients for Christmas Lights Snack Cake
Why use organic ingredients in this recipe? You all know I’m a huge organic advocate, and I bet you may be thinking sometimes, Why would I even bother to use organic ingredients in something that is so sweet and indulgent? But, that is the exact reason why you should use organic ingredients! Sweet things need to have flavor in order to be good, otherwise they are just sweet and they don’t taste like much else. Organic ingredients are more pure than conventional ones, therefore they actually have more flavor than the non organic options. Say it with me, organic means more flavor! And not just more flavor but a more true and pure flavor. And organic ingredients are much healthier for you to eat in general as they do not contain GMOs or anything artificial. Plus, you are being environmentally friendly when you choose organic ingredients!
So, I highly recommend that you buy the best organic ingredients for this recipe! You can also shop my Amazon Storefront for all my favorite organic ingredients here. Tip – hover over each ingredient to see the name. And if you want to learn more about organic foods and the difference, read my post here on Food Labels and What They Mean.
Christmas Lights Snack CakeDifficulty: Easy
This simple Christmas Lights Snack Cake is the perfect naturally colored Christmas cake. This Christmas lights cake with no artificial colors is just what you're looking for this holiday season.
1/2 cup (113 grams) organic salted butter, softened
113 grams (1/2 cup) packed organic light brown sugar
57 grams (1/4 cup) organic cane sugar
85 grams (1/4 cup) organic blackstrap molasses
1 teaspoon organic vanilla extract
2 large organic eggs, room temperature
212 grams (1 1/2 cups) organic cake flour
1 teaspoon organic cinnamon
1 teaspoon organic cloves
1 teaspoon organic ginger
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/2 cup organic heavy whipping cream, room temperature
1/4 cup (57 grams) organic salted butter, softened
57 grams (1/4 cup) organic cream cheese
1/4 cup organic heavy whipping cream
284 grams (2 cups) organic powdered sugar, sifted
1 teaspoon organic vanilla extract
2 teaspoons organic food grade activated charcoal
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a 9 x 9-inch baking pan with parchment paper.
- To make the batter: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add the butter, brown sugar, cane sugar, molasses, and vanilla extract. Mix on low until combined and the butter is light and fluffy.
- Add the eggs, cake flour, cinnamon, cloves, ginger, baking powder, and sea salt in that order. Mix on low until combined. With the mixer on still mixing, slowly add in the heavy whipping cream. Continue to mix until you have a smooth cake batter.
- Transfer the batter to the prepared pan. Bake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow to cool completely in the cake pan.
- To make the icing: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add the butter, cream cheese, heavy whipping cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract. Mix on low until combined and then speed mixer up to high and mix for 1 minute, or until light and fluffy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and paddle and mix again until light and fluffy.
- Reserve 2 tablespoons of icing in a separate bowl and add the activated charcoal to it. Mix together to combine until you have a black icing. Transfer to a piping bag with Ateco tip #6 (or you can use a piping bag or zip bag with no tip at all, just cut a very small hole).
- Frost the cake with the white icing and spread evenly.
- To decorate: Pipe a string of swirls and loops (get creative and freeform!) on the entire cake.
- Using the Giggles, place Giggles into the cake on the black lights string. Place the Gigles on their sides so they look like lights, do not place them flat as then they will look too round and they won’t look like lights.
- Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days in the fridge.
- Gluten Free – Replace the cake flour with 212 grams (1 1/3 cups) organic gluten free flour blend.
- High Altitude – Bake at 350°F for 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
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