King's Cake

Happy Mardi Gras!  To celebrate this crazy holiday, I thought I'd make a traditional King's Cake.  King's Cakes are very common in the south.  My husband and I would buy them when we lived in Dallas.  Between the two of us we'd eat every crumb.  It doesn't seem the same celebrating Mardi Gras in the west without a King Cake.  Traditionally it's made during carnival and is decorated in the colors of Mardi Gras — purple (to represent justice), green (faith) and gold (power). A  trinket, which is usually a plastic baby symbolizing the infant Jesus, is hidden inside. Whoever finds the baby may be crowned king or queen of the party; more important, that person is responsible for bringing the cake to the next gathering.
This year I'm making my King's Cake with Almond filling.  De-lish.

 This recipe makes two cakes so you'll need two cans of Almond Cake & Pastry filling (found in the baking aisle near pie filling in your supermarket)
 Lots of yellow, green and purple colored sprinkles,
And two little babies.
 Once you mix the ingredients, knead it and place it in a greased bowl.  
Cover with a dishtowel and let rise. 
 Roll dough to a 16x10 inch rectangle.
Spread almond filling to about 1/2 inch of the edges.
Like doesn't have to be perfect.  Roll up jellyroll style starting with the long edge.  Form a circle and pinch ends together.
 Cut a slit in the rolled dough and tuck in the baby.  Pinch closed.  Let rise for about an hour. Cook on 375 for about 20-25 minutes.  Mmmmm the almond smell is intoxicating.
When cooked, cover with glaze and sprinkles. 
 Delicious.  Now we need to eat it all before we give up sugar for Lent.  *wink* 
Side note: My 5 year-old son got the baby.  I think I'll be making the King's Cake next year too.

Mardi Gras King Cake
Taste of Home


  • 1 package (1/4 ounce) active dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup warm water (110° to 115°)
  • 1/2 cup warm milk (110° to 115°)
  • 1/3 cup shortening
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg
  • 4 to 4-1/2 cups all-purpose flour (please note:  I used about 3 1/2 cups flour)
  • 2 cans (12-1/2 ounces each) almond cake and pastry filling
  • GLAZE:
  • 3 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons water
  • Purple, green and gold colored sugar


  • In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Add the milk, shortening, sugar, salt, egg and 2 cups flour. Beat on medium speed for 3 minutes. Beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough (dough will be sticky).
  • Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour.
  • Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface; divide in half. Roll one portion into a 16-in. x 10-in. rectangle. Spread almond filling to within 1/2 in. of edges. Roll up jelly-roll style, starting with a long side; pinch seam to seal. Place seam side down on a greased baking sheet; pinch ends together to form a ring. Repeat with remaining dough and filling. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 1 hour.
  • Bake at 375° for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on a wire rack. For glaze, combine the confectioners' sugar, vanilla and enough water to achieve desired consistency. Spread over cooled cakes. Immediately sprinkle with colored sugars. Yield: 2 cakes (12 servings each).



1 Comment

1 Response to "King's Cake"

  1. Janette says:

    Can you come and be the mom of my house?  It's good to have traditions.  Thanks for sharing Miss Jodi.

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