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King Bundt Cake

King Bundt Cake is a twist on the traditional Mardi Gras pastry. This moist bundt cake has swirls of cinnamon and fun sugared frosting.

An overhead view of a slice of King Bundt Cake on a plate with the remaining cake on a serving stand nearby

Happy Mardi Gras! Laissez les bon temps roulez! (French for "Let the good times roll!")

Mardi Gras has never been a huge, must-celebrate day in my life. However, I will never pass up the chance to indulge in some beignets, Creole shrimp, or King Cake.

An unfrosted King Bundt Cake

Now, traditional King cake isn't actually a cake. It's an enriched yeast pastry, sort of like Danish pastries. I know working with yeast seems intimidating to a lot of home bakers, so I've turned a bundt cake into a King cake.

A traditional King cake is a braided ring of dough with spirals of cinnamon. After baking, a small prize is hidden inside (some use a plastic baby figurine, some use an almond or other small piece of food), and whoever gets the slice with the prize "wins," and provides the King cake at the following year's Mardi Gras celebration.

Frosting being piped onto a King Bundt Cake

This bundt cake is baked in a specific kind of bundt pan called a Heritage pan. The batter is layered with swirls of cinnamon sugar and baked (and thanks to a full cup of sour cream, the cake stays so moist).

After the cake has cooled, the spirals are filled with a thickened drizzle icing, then finished with sugar sprinkles in the traditional Mardi Gras colors of purple, gold and green.

A frosted King Bundt Cake with alternating rows of purple, gold and green sugar sprinkles

I know it doesn't look like enough icing, but I'm not exaggerating when I say that this cake is moist enough that it hardly even needs icing! But the sugar sprinkles need something to stick to, so ...

You want the icing to be easy to stir, but not so thin that it runs right off the cake. You can fill a piping bag and just cut about a quarter-inch off the tip, or you can try using a very sturdy plastic zip-top bag (though I've never had much luck using those).

You can find piping bags and the sugar sprinkles in the cake decorating aisle of your local craft store, or order online.

King Bundt Cake on a serving stand

King Bundt Cake

Yield: 12 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes

King Bundt Cake is a twist on the traditional Mardi Gras pastry. This moist bundt cake has swirls of cinnamon and fun sugared frosting.

Ingredients

Cinnamon Sugar Layer

  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cinnamon

Bundt Cake

  • 16 tbsp unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 5 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp kosher salt
  • 1 cup sour cream

Frosting

  • 1 ⅓ cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tbsp heavy cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • Purple, yellow, and green sugar sprinkles

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray every nook and cranny of a bundt pan with nonstick spray, then dust with flour. Set aside.
  2. In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
  3. Add the eggs one at a time, beating and scraping down the sides of the bowl after each addition. Beat in the vanilla.
  4. In a small bowl, stir together the flour, cornstarch, baking powder and salt.
  5. Add one third of the dry ingredients and stir until just barely combined. Add in half of the sour cream, and stir until combined.
  6. Repeat with another third of the dry ingredients, the remaining half of the sour cream, and finally the last third of the dry ingredients.
  7. In another small bowl, stir together the sugar and cinnamon.
  8. Pour a third of the cake batter into the prepared pan. Sprinkle half of the cinnamon sugar over the cake batter. Layer on another third of the cake batter (try not to blend it with the layer of cinnamon sugar), then sprinkle on the remaining half of the cinnamon sugar, and finally, spread on the last third of the cake batter.
  9. Bake for 60 to 70 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
  10. Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes, then invert the cake pan to remove the cake, and let it cool on the wire rack completely.
  11. Transfer the cooled cake to a serving plate.
  12. In a medium bowl, combine the powdered sugar, cream and vanilla. Stir until the frosting is smooth. It should be thick; stirrable, but not runny. Scrape into a piping bag. Snip a quarter-inch opening at the tip. Pipe the icing into the spirals of the cake.
  13. Sprinkle purple, yellow-gold, and green sprinkles on alternating rows.

Notes

Adapted from Bake at 350

Recommended Products

As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn a small percentage from qualifying purchases.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 12 servings Serving Size: 1 slice
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 527Total Fat: 22gSaturated Fat: 13gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 132mgSodium: 177mgCarbohydrates: 77gFiber: 1gSugar: 55gProtein: 6g

I am not a certified nutritionist. This nutrition information is automatically calculated by third party software and is meant as a guideline only.

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A slice of King Bundt Cake with the remaining cake on a serving stand in the background

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Nettie Moore

Monday 4th of March 2019

Thank you for contributing! https://parade.com/857991/nettiemoore/celebrate-with-the-best-mardi-gras-recipes/

Cindy

Tuesday 26th of February 2019

This cake is gorgeous! The spiral effect is amazing. I love that you added sour cream. I do too. So good!

Erin

Tuesday 26th of February 2019

This looks awesome! A upscale version of king cake. What did you stuff inside of it for the prize? I've not seen anything but a plastic baby before.

Wendy

Tuesday 26th of February 2019

I would love a piece of that bundt with the cinnamon swirl. Love the Mardi Gras colors used.

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