This fun cake was inspired by a nostalgic treat – the Hostess Snowball snack cake! Devil’s food cake holds a marshmallow center and the exterior is covered with a flurry of pink coconut.
If you are a regular visitor here, you may already be aware of my love for pink coconut confections. When I saw a giant Snowball cake on the Kraft Foods recipe site made with a box of cake mix, I knew I was surely destined to figure out a scratch-made version. It took a bit of trial and error, but I’ve worked out all the kinks. I hope you love this cake as much as I do!
This cake is baked in a bowl! A 1.5 to 2 quart stainless bowl is best. Because of its shape, the cake will need to bake longer than usual. Mine was completely set at 1 hour 15 minutes. It’s ready when a toothpick tester inserted in the center comes out clean.
The filling is nothing more than a jar of marshmallow cream, and wow. What a wonderful contrast to the deep chocolate notes of devil’s food.
Sweetened flake coconut is tinted pink with some grocery store food color (neon pink from Betty Crocker, here) and makes a convincing Hostess Snoball lookalike.
This is such a simple and tasty cake to make. As I stated previously, it takes the cake longer to bake in a bowl than it does in flat cake pans. Waiting for it to bake and cool is the hardest part! Make it for the Hostess Snowball fan in your life (or for the coconut enthusiast!).
Edit 2/21: This recipe has been updated from its original version from 2011. None of the cake ingredients have changed, but metric measurements have been added, and the frosting and filling recipes have been re-written for easier assembly.
Pink Snowball Cake
Devil’s Food Cake
- 6 tablespoons dark unsweet cocoa powder
- 6 tablespoons hot water
- 1 1/2 cups 180g all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup 170g unsalted butter
- 1 cup 200g granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 1/2 cup 4 oz. sour cream
Filling and frosting
- 1 cup 226g unsalted butter, softened
- 3 cups 340g confectioners’ sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Neon pink gel food color such as Betty Crocker brand
- 7 oz. jar marshmallow cream
- 7 oz. sweetened flaked coconut
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 2 quart heat-proof stainless steel bowl with shortening and lightly flour, or coat with flour-based baking spray (such as Baker’s Joy). Set aside.
- Whisk together cocoa and hot water. In a separate bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Melt butter with sugar in a saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring to combine. Remove from heat, and pour mixture into a mixing bowl. Beat with an electric hand mixer until mixture has cooled enough to add the eggs without scrambling them. Add eggs, vanilla, and then cocoa mixture. Beat until well combined.
- Reduce mixer speed and add flour mixture in two batches, alternating with the sour cream. Pour into greased bowl and bake for 1 hour 10 minutes, or until a toothpick tester comes out clean. Let cool slightly.
- Turn the cake out onto a cooling rack and let cool completely. When cool, cut the dome of the cake off about 1/3 of the way down from the top. Using a serrated knife, remove some of the interior of the cake dome by trimming it away. This will make room for the marshmallow filling.
Filling and frosting
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat butter until fluffy. Add the confectioners’ sugar and beat until combined. Add milk or cream a little at a time until the mixture comes to spreading consistency. Add vanilla extract and a small amount of pink food color. Mix well. Transfer to a piping bag with the end snipped.
- Pipe a ring of frosting around the inside of both cake pieces. Fill the hollowed center of the cake with the marshmallow cream. Sandwich the two cake pieces together, meeting the buttercream frosting at the edges. Cover the entire cake with the remaining frosting. Add extra frosting to the top of the cake and smooth into a dome shape.
- In a medium bowl, tint coconut with a generous squirt of pink gel food coloring. Mix well – you can use a fork but I found my fingers did a much better job (wear gloves, if possible). Coat frosted cake with pink coconut. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and store at room temperature until ready to serve.
Edit 2/19/21: The following excerpt is from this original 2011 blog post when I was nominated as finalist in Saveur’s Best Food Blog Awards. It was a wonderful honor, so I’m keeping it here for posterity.
I would like to share some good news today. Last Wednesday I received an email with the words “finalist” and “Saveur Magazine” and “Best Food Blog Awards”. After I figured out I wasn’t being punked and that they hadn’t confused me with someone else, I shouted “SHUT UP!” so loudly it sent my snoring pugs into a barking frenzy. I was surprised to say the least.
Then I got a second email. I’m a finalist twice? Pinch me!
So, if you find me worthy, I’d love to have your vote for Saveur Magazine’s Best Baking and Desserts Blog and/or Best Original Baking and Desserts Recipe.
To vote, click here or click the banner at the top right hand corner of my blog. You’ll need to register if you’re not already a Saveur online user.