How to Make a Homemade King Cake Recipe

I first attempted a King Cake in 2012, this is my much-improved version in 2017! So happy to see that I can have luck with yeast recipes especially for special holiday treats like making a Homemade King Cake Recipe for Mardi Gras or my special Italian Easter Bread.

When I saw this recipe in Family Fun for King Cake in 2012, I could not resist trying it. The ones at the grocery are over $8 and how much could yeast and flour cost!!

Also, my husband sent me a link for a cake that was sent to his office by the parents of one of his co-workers from New Orleans and it was over $30 a cake. 

I found the little babies at the craft store near the Baby/wedding shower supplies. I did not make this recipe this time just in case it was the reason for my lack of success. 

  Mardi Gras Recipe: Homemade King Cake Recipe

 Making a Homemade King Cake Recipe

Whenever making a recipe that calls for yeast, be sure that you check the date and it is still fresh as bad yeast means not so good result! Since this King Cake Recipe requires yeast, plan on starting the recipe several hours before serving.
It can be made and served the same day without a problem if you give yourself time, remember there is at least 3 hours of the dough rising.

Mardi Gras Recipe: Homemade King Cake Recipe

If you have a  Kitchen Aid Machine and dough hook or a bread maker, making the dough is a cinch. 

  Mardi Gras Recipe: Homemade King Cake Recipe

Love watching a successful rising of the dough. There is a sense of satisfaction you made it this far, don’t you think? 

Mardi Gras Recipe: Homemade King Cake Recipe


The recipe I used called for raisins and nuts, but I never recall eating a King Cake that had those ingredients so I skipped them and stuck with cinnamon and brown sugar.

Mardi Gras Recipe: Homemade King Cake Recipe

Making sure your King Cake is even was my biggest challenge and you can tell by the result the ends were much thinner and did not have many fillings. 
It is not time to allow the dough to rise again. Make sure you make your slits just a 1/3 of the way through the dough.
You can even put a ramekin in the middle in case you have some robust dough that wants to rise a lot. 
  Mardi Gras Recipe: Homemade King Cake Recipe
Bake this King Cake Recipe for 25 -30 minutes, checking often so it does not burn.
Traditionally, a small plastic or porcelain baby is hidden in the king cake. Originally, the baby was placed in the cake to symbolize baby Jesus. Today, the baby symbolizes luck and prosperity to whoever finds it in their slice of cake.
Add the Plastic baby AFTER it comes out of the oven!
Mardi Gras Recipe: Homemade King Cake Recipe
 I think mine got a little too brown but nothing a little glaze and sprinkles can’t hide!
Mardi Gras Recipe: Homemade King Cake Recipe
Allow the cake to cool completely or just to slightly warm b/f trying to move it as it is a little fragile due to the shape. 
Mardi Gras Recipe: Homemade King Cake Recipe


Slice the king cake for Mardi Gras Recipe and enjoy it for dessert or for breakfast anytime from the Ephiphany, January 6th, and  Fat Tuesday. 
Mardi Gras Recipe: Homemade King Cake Recipe
I was thrilled with the result and ease of making my second attempt at King Cake Recipe. 
What plans do you have for Mardi Gras? Maybe you want to make some Jambalaya? 
Be sure to check out this post, if you are looking for meatless recipes for Lent.  

Be sure to pin this King Cake Recipe for your next Mardi Gras Party or meal? 

 Mardi Gras Recipe: Homemade King Cake Recipe

King Cake Recipe

Mardi Gras Recipe: Homemade King Cake Recipe

King Cake Recipe

Yield: 10 servings
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes

King Cake Recipe is a classic New Orleans Fat Tuesday Mardi gras recipe


  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 1 .25 ounce packages active dry yeast
  • 1/3 cup warm water, 110 degrees F/45 degrees C
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 egg beaten
  • 1 teaspoons salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour or bread flour
  • 1/ w cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons melted butter
  • 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 1/2 - 1 tablespoon water
  • Colored Sprinkles


  1. Scald milk, remove from heat and stir in 2 tablespoons of butter until it melts. Allow mixture to cool to room temperature.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, dissolve yeast in the warm water with 1 tablespoon of the white sugar. Let stand until bubbly, about 10 minutes. Add the cooled milk mixture to the yeast in the kitchen aid bowl with dough hook. Add the egg.
  3. Stir in the remaining white sugar, salt and nutmeg. Beat the flour into the milk/egg mixture 1 cup at a time. When the dough has pulled together, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 8 to 10 minutes or beat in kitchen aid for 5 minutes.
  4. Lightly oil a large bowl, place the dough in the bowl and turn to coat with oil. Cover with a damp cloth or plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 2 hours. When risen, punch down and make the filling.
  5. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  6. To Make Filling: Combine the brown sugar, ground cinnamon, 1/4 cup flour. Pour 3 tablespoons of melted butter over the cinnamon mixture and mix until crumbly.
  7. Roll dough out into a large rectangle (approximately 10x16 inches or so). Sprinkle the filling evenly over the dough and roll up tightly like a jelly roll, beginning at the wide side. See picture above. Bring the ends of each roll together to form an oval shaped ring.
  8. Place ring on a prepared cookie sheet. With scissors or knife make cuts 1/3 of the way through the rings at 1 inch intervals. You can put a ramekin in the middle of the ring if you wish.
  9. Cover and Let rise in a warm spot until doubled in size, about 45 minutes.
  10. Bake in preheated oven for 30 minutes. When cooled slightly . Push the doll into the bottom of the cake.
  11. Frost while warm with the confectioners' sugar blended with 1 tablespoons of water.


Scalding milk is making it warm but not boiling

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Nutrition Information
Yield 10 Serving Size 1
Amount Per Serving Calories 385Total Fat 7gSaturated Fat 4gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 3gCholesterol 35mgSodium 279mgCarbohydrates 72gFiber 3gSugar 28gProtein 8g

All information and tools presented and written within this site are intended for informational purposes only. I am not a certified nutritionist and any nutritional information on should only be used as a general guideline.

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