The ultimate fall treat, pumpkin spice cake balls made with a spice cake mix are perfect for Halloween or Thanksgiving. Simply bake the spice cake mix, crumble the cake, mix in cream cheese frosting, roll into cake balls, and dip each in white melting wafers for a decadent semi-homemade dessert.
To say that these pumpkin spice cake balls are addictive is an understatement. Cake balls are easy to make, yet they look like they came from your favorite bakery. With just a few simple ingredients, this delicious fall dessert is a fantastic addition to dessert platters, or place a few in a cellophane bag tied with a fall-colored bow for a fun gift or party favor.
Pumpkin Balls with Spice Cake Mix
Spice Cake Box Mix – Using a cake box means that the prep time to make these pumpkin cake balls is cut down dramatically. A cake mix gives you all the dry ingredients you need in one package. No measuring, etc!
Pumpkin Puree – This is where that undeniable pumpkin flavor comes into play. Make sure it is 100% pumpkin and not pumpkin pie filling.
Egg – I use large eggs when baking.
Water – To help add moisture so that the cake balls aren’t dry and crumbly.
Vegetable oil – Butter also works if you don’t have vegetable oil.
Canned cream cheese frosting – Any type of frosting will work, but the cream cheese flavor paired with the pumpkin cake balls from a spice cake mix makes the perfect combination.
White melting chips – Used to coat the cake mix balls once they’re formed. You could use vanilla almond bark if you don’t have white melting chips/wafers. You could also use chocolate-flavored almond bark.
Pumpkin pie spice – This seasoning is an aromatic combination of cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves. Sprinkled on top of pumpkin balls, they add an extra depth of flavor.
How to make Pumpkin Spice Cake Balls
Scroll to the bottom of the post for the full recipe instructions and a complete list of ingredients. This is intended as a summary of the recipe with step-by-step images.
Step 1: Combine the ingredients from the spice cake mix and mix in a large bowl.
Step 2: Put the pan in the oven and bake. Once the cake has cooled, use a fork and crumble it up into fine crumbs.
Step 3: Add the cream cheese frosting into the crumbled cake once the cooked cake has cooled down.
Step 4: Use your hands (wash them first!) and mix the frosting and crumbled spice cake together until a dough-like texture forms.
Step 5: Use a cookie scoop to scoop out the cake, and then roll it into your hands. Place the rolled cake balls on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or wax paper.
Step 6: The baking pan needs to go to the fridge to chill before the next few steps.
How big should each cake ball be?
I use a small cookie dough scooper to get uniform-sized cake balls. For this recipe, they were about 1.5 inches in diameter, making them the perfect size to enjoy.
Step 7: After the cake balls have chilled, it’s time to dip them into the melted candy coating. You can use a fork or a spoon to dip.
Dip them one by one and then put them back onto the parchment paper for the coating to set.
Step 8: After the pumpkin spice cake balls have se, sprinkle some pumpkin pie spice on top.
What kind of chocolate should you use to coat these?
Despite what most people think, almond bark and melting wafers aren’t chocolate but flavored confectionery. They are made with vegetable oil and sugar instead of cocoa butter. White melting wafers or vanilla almond bark are the best options for the candy coating on these pumpkin spice cake balls. This is because they’re easy to melt, coat evenly, and dry quickly as well.
Pay attention when you’re melting them, as you don’t want to burn the almond bark or wafers. The entire batch must be thrown out if you burn them because you can’t get rid of that burnt flavor.
How to melt the wafers:
- Microwave – Melting the chocolate in the microwave is a simple process. All you have to do is add the wafers or chips and follow the directions on the package. You’ll usually stop and stir every 30-seconds until they have completely melted and are smooth.
- Double Boiler – Using a double broiler is a great way to keep your eyes on the chocolate all the time. You need to fill a saucepan with an approx 2 inches of water and bring it to a boil. You then place a heat-safe bowl of the melting wafers on top of the pan and slowly let the saucepan’s steam melt the candy.
- In a Pan – You can also directly melt the candy wafers in a saucepan over low heat. For this method, it’s important to pay close attention so that the melting wafers don’t scorch.
How to Dip Cake Balls
- The easiest way to dip the pumpkin cake balls is to balance them on a fork, and then dip the ball into the melted white candy coating.
- You’ll then lift the fork up out of the chocolate, and then the excess chocolate drip and drain off the cake ball and back into the bowl.
- You can also use a spoon as well.
- Not only does this save on not creating a mess, but it also saves the excess chocolate so that you can use it again.
Some tips for creating the perfect cake balls:
The first important tip is that the pumpkin balls aren’t going to be perfect.
Using a cookie scoop is helpful to get them as similar in size as possible.
Once you scoop out the batter, roll them into balls as this binds the cake balls together and smooths out any lumps in the mixture.
When melting the wafers, ensure the bowl is completely dry and that no water gets in the bowl, making it clumpy.
The chilling process is KEY to creating cake balls that stick together and don’t fall apart.
Variations to this recipe:
Change up the cake mix – Even though this recipe for pumpkin cake balls is pumpkin flavored, that doesn’t mean that you can’t use a vanilla cake mix or even a chocolate cake mix.
Use a different frosting – Vanilla frosting or even buttercream frosting would be great as well.
Vary the Toppings – Instead of the pumpkin pie spice; you can add fall (or Halloween) sprinkles, cinnamon/sugar combinations, or crushed pecans.
Turn them into cake pops – Add lollipop sticks to the bottom of the cake balls and make them into cake pops!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Can you freeze pumpkin cake balls?
Yes, you can. These are great for freezing, making them a good option for holiday party prep. Just be sure that you add them to a freezer-safe airtight container. They can be frozen for up to one month. For best results, I prefer to freeze undipped cake balls. They can be thawed in the fridge overnight and then dipped in the candy coating when they have completely thawed.
Can they be made ahead of time?
They can. For the freshest pumpkin spice cake balls, you can prep the cake balls 1-2 days in advance. Then, dip them the day you plan to enjoy them.
Do Pumpkin Spice cake balls need to be refrigerated?
Yes, any cake made with cream cheese icing needs to be refrigerated.
How long can cake balls sit out?
Cake balls without cream cheese icing can sit out at room temperature. However, since these pumpkin cake balls are made with cream cheese, they should be refrigerated.
How to store Pumpkin Pie Balls:
The key to keeping any remaining cake balls fresh is to store them in an airtight container. Find one that locks down so that no air can get into it.
More Dessert Recipes:
- Monster Halloween Pretzel Rods
- Easy Turkey Donuts
- Oreo Balls with Peppermint
- Grandma’s Mississippi Mud Cake
Easy Pumpkin Spice Cake Balls made with Cake Mix
- Spice Cake Box Mix
- 1 cup of canned Pumpkin Puree
- 1 egg at room temperature
- ½ of water
- ¼ cup of oil
- ½ cup of cream cheese canned frosting
- 6 ounce of white melting chips
- Pumpkin Pie Spice (for garnishing)
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
- Grease a 9 X 11 baking pan
- Add the spice cake box mix, pumpkin puree, egg, water, and oil to a mixing bowl.
- Using a whisk or hand mixer, blend the mix until the consistency is smooth.
- Pour the batter into the baking pan
- Bake in the oven for 33 minutes or until a toothpick stuck into the cake comes out clean.
- Let the cake cool for 10 minutes once removed from the oven.
- Using a fork, rake the pumpkin spice cake into small crumbs.
- Let cool for 15 more minutes.
- Add the cream cheese frosting and mix together in a clumping motion with clean hands until the cake has become a thick dough-like ball.
- Prep a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Use the small ice cream scoop to create 1.5-inch balls, rolling until circular in your hands.
- Place the pumpkin spice balls on a parchment-covered baking sheet and refrigerate them for 10 minutes.
- While the pumpkin balls are in the fridge, melt the white chocolate melting chips in the microwave at 30-second intervals. Add a teaspoon of oil if necessary to thin out the candy coating.
- Remove the pumpkin spice cake balls from the fridge and use a spoon to dunk each one into the melted white wafers and coat thoroughly.
- Place back onto the parchment paper and garnish with extra pumpkin spice on top.
- Let dry at room temperature for 15 minutes or in the refrigerator for 5 minutes.
- Enjoy immediately or place in an airtight container for later.
- Mixing Bowl
- Hand Mixer/Whisk
- 9x11 inch baking pan
- Small cookie scoop
- Parchment Paper
- Baking Sheet