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Mardi Gras' King Cake

  • Before I forget, this 2023 King Cake for the World Cup Mardi Gras Party was done following this recipe:

    and the tips in the comment (half the dough - the recipe is for two cakes - and 100% the filling).

    I was very happy with the results, and as a reminder for next time, do the glaze with lemon juice instead of water.

    The party was a blast and time flew! We need more parties like this! Thank Rice & husband for having us again! It was nice to see again familiar faces and of course Splinter and his wife!

    2023 Mardi Gras King Cake (with metric conversion and adjusted for 1 cake)

    King cake is a New Orleans tradition that involves a pastry, a tiny plastic baby, and a party! The cake is baked with a tiny plastic baby hidden inside; whoever gets the slice with the baby in it has to host the next party. Make sure to buy a new tiny plastic baby so you can get the full effect from this cake! Sprinkle with purple, green, and gold sugar, or decorate with whole pecans and candied cherries.

    Recipe by Jo
    Updated on February 2, 2023

    Prep Time:
    45 mins

    Cook Time:
    30 mins

    Additional Time:
    3 hrs

    Total Time:
    4 hrs 15 mins



    • 120 g milk
    • 30 g butter
    • 80 g warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
    • 50 g white sugar, divided
    • 1 packages active dry yeast -OR- 14 g fresh yeast
    • 1 egg + 1 for brushing the outside
    • ⅔  teaspoons salt
    • ¼  teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
    • 370 g all-purpose flour


    • 200 g packed brown sugar (I used a mix of azucar mascabo + azucar rubia)
    • 85 g chopped pecans (I replaced it with 55 g of walnuts and 30 g of peanuts)
    • 63 g all-purpose flour
    • 75 g raisins
    • ½  tablespoon ground cinnamon
    • 57 g melted butter


    • 100g confectioners' sugar
    • ½ tablespoon water (next time replace it with lemon juice)
    • 1 plastic baby doll


    1. Make pastry: Scald milk over medium heat. Remove from heat and stir in butter. Allow mixture to cool to room temperature.
    2. Stir together warm water, 1 tablespoon white sugar, and yeast in a large bowl. Let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes.
    3. Add cooled milk mixture to yeast mixture and whisk in egg. Stir in remaining white sugar, salt, and nutmeg. Beat flour, 1 cup at a time, into milk/egg mixture. Once dough comes together, turn it onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, 8 to 10 minutes. (I used my mixer: whisk, K-attachment, kneading hook)
    4. Place dough in a lightly oiled bowl; turn to coat. Cover with a damp cloth or plastic wrap; let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 2 hours. When risen, punch down.
    5. Preheat the oven to 320 degrees F (160 degrees C). Grease 1 cookie sheets or line with parchment paper.
    6. Make filling: Combine brown sugar, pecans, flour, raisins, and cinnamon in a bowl. Pour melted butter on top and mix until crumbly.
    7. Roll the dough into a 10x16-inch rectangle. Sprinkle filling evenly over dough and roll up tightly like a jelly roll, beginning at a wide side. Bring the ends of the roll together to form an oval-shaped ring.
    8. Place the ring on a prepared cookie sheet (it is easier to roll the roll onto the baking sheet instead of having to lift the ring, roll first, create ring later). With scissors, make cuts 1/3 of the way through the rings at 1-inch intervals. Let rise in a warm spot until doubled in size, about 45 minutes. Brush the outside with a beaten egg for shine.
    9. Bake in the preheated oven until an inserted toothpick comes out clean, about 30 minutes. Check often for doneness so the ring doesn't overbake.
    10. Make glaze: Stir together confectioners' sugar and water (lemon juice) in a bowl until smooth.
    11. Push doll into bottom of the warm cake. Drizzle glaze over warm cake.


    Be sure to tell everyone to inspect their piece of cake before they begin eating it. To be extra careful, use a plastic toy baby that is too large to swallow, or hide an orange wedge or 3 to 4 pecan halves inside the cake (avoiding items that may hurt someone's teeth), and then place the honorable toy baby on top of the cake for all to see and adore!

    Nutrition Facts

    total fat 13g 
    saturated fat 6g 
    cholesterol 47mg 
    sodium 301mg 
    total carbohydrate 69g 
    dietary fiber 2g 
    total sugars 31g 
    protein 7g 
    vitamin c 0mg 
    calcium 53mg 
    iron 3mg 
    potassium 175mg