If you think about it, Pop Rocks and Fourth of July go hand in hand. They're both nostalgic, fun and involve explosions. Sure, Pop Rocks' explosions are tiny little crackling sensations on your tongue and Fourth of July is all about huge displays of fireworks — but that's neither here nor there.

That said, this red, white and blue cake pop DIY couldn't be more perfect. The pops are shaped like firecrackers and filled with Pop Rocks for a huge Fourth of July payoff. So get cracking!

Image: Sandra Denneler/SheKnows

Firecracker cakelettes recipe

Yields 10 – 14

Ingredients:

  • 1 box white cake mix
  • 4 egg whites
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • Red and blue food coloring
  • 3 packages Pop Rocks candy
  • Black licorice ropes
  • White frosting (less than 1/4 cup)

Directions:

Step 1

Mix the white cake mix, egg whites, oil, water and sour cream for 3 – 4 minutes on medium speed. Divide the cake batter into 3 equal amounts, and add red and blue food coloring to 2 of the portions. Coat 3 (4 x 9-inch) bread pans with cooking spray, and lightly flour the bottoms. Add the three batters to the pans, and bake at 350 degrees F for 18 – 23 minutes. Allow them to cool, and then remove them from the pans.

Image: Sandra Denneler/SheKnows

More: 3 Perfect Cocktails for the 4th of July: One Red, One White & One Blue

Step 2

Using a 1-1/2-inch round cookie cutter, cut circles from each baked cake. (I got 10 out of each cake, but you might be able to get more if you try.)

Image: Sandra Denneler/SheKnows

Image: Sandra Denneler/SheKnows

Step 3

Using a serrated knife, carefully trim off the browned, baked bottom of each cake circle.

Image: Sandra Denneler/SheKnows

Step 4

Using a jumbo straw or plastic tube (1/2 or 3/4 inch in diameter), remove the centers of the cake circles. Be sure to save the red and blue centers to use as plugs for later.

Image: Sandra Denneler/SheKnows

Next up: Step 5

Updated by Sarah Long on 6/19/17.

Step 5

Put a portion of the red cake plugs back into the bottoms of the red cake circles. Pipe a line of frosting around the centers of the red and white cake circles. Stack the white cakes on top of the red cakes, and the blue cakes on top of the white cakes.

Image: Sandra Denneler/SheKnows

Step 6

Add Pop Rocks down the hollow centers of the stacked cakes. Put a portion of the blue cake plugs back into the tops, covering the center filled with Pop Rocks.

Image: Sandra Denneler/SheKnows

More: 10 Affordable Destinations That Are Perfect for 4th of July

Step 7

Cut licorice rope pieces approximately 1-1/2 inches long, and insert them into the centers of the blue cakes.

Image: Sandra Denneler/SheKnows

Note: For maximum popping potential, pour the Pop Rocks into the cake centers no earlier than one hour before serving. The moisture in the cakes will cause the Pop Rocks to slightly snap and crackle on their own. In fact, they make a great sizzling sound on the plate. But after about four hours, the Pop Rocks lose most of their popping power, so plan accordingly.

Image: Sandra Denneler/SheKnows

More photos!

Click here for more step-by-step photos of firecracker cakelettes.

Image: Regina Ferrara/Sheknows