Surprise piñata football cake

Surprise piñata football cake

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(7 ratings)

Prep: 2 hrs Cook: 1 hr, 30 mins


Serves 16 - 24

Slice into this sensational mint chocolate celebration cake and let the hidden sweets pour out for your party guests to enjoy

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freeze sponges only

Nutrition: Per serving (24)

  • kcal564
  • fat24.9g
  • saturates14.9g
  • carbs82g
  • sugars71g
  • fibre1.1g
  • protein5.4g
  • salt0.3g
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    For the chocolate cake

    • 200g unsalted butter
    • 200g soft light brown sugar
    • 4 large eggs
    • 150g self-raising flour
    • 50g cocoa powder, sieved
    • 1 tbsp milk



      One of the most widely used ingredients, milk is often referred to as a 'complete' food…

    For the mint cake

    • 200g unsalted butter
    • 200g caster sugar
    • 4 large eggs
    • 200g self-raising flour
    • ½ tsp peppermint extract
    • about ½ to 1 tsp green food colouring paste

    For icing and decoration

    • 150g unsalted butter, softened
    • 300g icing sugar, sieved
    • 300g chocolate balls or foil-covered chocolate footballs (available online)

      Chocolate ganache


      Chocolate ganache is a combination of chocolate and double cream. It's simple to…

    • 4 tbsp sieved apricot jam, warmed
    • 500g green ready-to-roll icing
    • 350g white ready-to-roll icing
    • 100g black ready-to-roll icing
    • a little food colouring paste, choose team colours
    • novelty candles, optional


    1. Heat the oven to180C/160C fan/gas 4. Grease and base line a 20cm round cake tin with baking parchment. To make the chocolate cake, put the butter into a bowl and beat until soft. Add all the remaining ingredients and beat well until light and creamy. Spoon into the tin and spread level. Bake in the oven for about 45 mins or until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean. Cool. When cold, slice the top off the cake to make it level.

    2. To make the mint cake, grease and base line your 20cm cake tin with baking parchment. Put the butter into a bowl and beat until soft. Add the remaining ingredients and beat well until light and creamy. Spoon into the tin and spread level. Bake in the oven for about 45 mins or until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean. Cool. Do not slice the top level as it needs to be rounded.

    3. To make the butter icing, put the butter into a bowl and beat until soft. Gradually beat in the icing sugar. Slice the chocolate and mint cakes in half horizontally so you have four layers. Using an 8cm round cutter, stamp a circle from the centre of each layer. Place the bottom layer of chocolate cake on a 25cm cake board. Spread with a little butter icing. Place the bottom green layer on top. Spread with butter icing and place the other chocolate layer on top. Spread with more icing and place the rounded green sponge on top.

    4. Fill the centre hole with sweets, almost to the top. Take one of the 8cm green sponge pieces and slice in half horizontally. Place one piece on the cake to cover the hole containing the sweets. Spread the top with the remaining butter icing. Roll out about 300g of the white fondant icing to a 20cm circle and place on top of the cake.

    5. Brush the sides of the cake with apricot jam. Measure the circumference of the cake and the depth. Add 2.5cm to the depth measurement. Using these measurements roll out the green fondant to a long strip. (You may find it easier to do two shorter strips). Attach the strip around the cake. Use scissors snip around the top edge to represent grass.

    6. Make a cardboard template of a pentagon (5 sides). Roll out the black icing and cut out six pentagons. Place them on the cake as for a football. If you wish to stick them in place use a little icing sugar mixed with water.

    7. With the remaining white icing trimmings make a scarf and paint with food colouring in your team colours. Drape the scarf over the edge of the cake. Add candles as desired.

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    Comments, questions and tips

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    Elaine Holmes's picture
    Elaine Holmes
    14th Oct, 2018
    Made this cake for my 8 year old grandson. Sponge was easy to make and top icing was good but found green icing difficult as used Betty Crocker . Very soft it stuck to work surface . Quite pleased with result . Can't find how to send pic .Will make again it tasted fab .
    Joanna Vasey's picture
    Joanna Vasey
    2nd Mar, 2018
    Ok, so I am a complete novice to baking cakes but am quite good at building stuff and following instructions. Trying a challenging recipe like that wouldn't have even crossed my mind in the past but when a few local cake makers came back to me with quotes of up to £65 for a much more ordinary looking ones, I decided to look into making this. I followed the recipe precisely. Had to make the sponges first and hide them in the freezer, saving the decorating for a few days before the event. A couple of tips. 1. Use Sugarflair food paste because the cheaper liquid ones just do not work (I still have a yellow looking sponge in the freezer, despite the fact that I poured about half a bottle of Tesco's green colouring in). 2. Get a plastic template for those pentagons - I found them the trickiest part as they would lose their shape as soon as I tried to place them on the cake (shaping with a sharp knife afterwards helped). Also, I didn't like spreading the surface where I rolled my icing with icing sugar - this worked ok for the white part but not so well for the other colours. I greased the surface instead and this worked well. A friend recommended an edible pen decorating tool which was just £3 from amazon and made adding the finishing touches easy - I managed to get some very small writing on the football scarf. I knew the cake looked good but was really worried about the taste, especially as it was my first effort and had been through being hid in the spare room wardrobe, frozen and then secretly defrosted. Actually, it tasted great and I am very proud of it so I'd say, give it a go and have fun!
    9th Nov, 2014
    I made this for my son's birthday and it was quite easy to do. The mint cake was surprisingly delicious. I made the cakes the day before icing them. You will need at least 60 chocolate footballs to fill the middle which is more than the 300g recommended. I ended up using a mixture of chocolate footballs and maltesers. The cake has to be assembled on a cake board because of the hole down the middle. This means that when you are brushing apricot jam in the sponge it goes all over the board. I got round this by putting strips of greaseproof paper under the edges if the cake and removing them at the end. Cake is huge and tasted delicious.
    10th Oct, 2017
    Hi, this cake looks great. How deep is the cake? I'm buying edible ribbon instead of the icing. It's 70mm. Will this suffice? Thanks
    goodfoodteam's picture
    11th Oct, 2017
    Thanks for your question. The depth of the cake will be nearer double that but it's hard for us to be precise on individual results. It might be worth by ribbon 18cm in diameter as you'll need to create the grass effect with scissors at the top too. You can then trim the ribbon at the top to the desired height.
    14th Jan, 2017
    My sponge didn't turn green after adding the food colouring...!! I have followed the receipe. Any tips welcome! Thanks.
    goodfoodteam's picture
    16th Jan, 2017
    Sorry to hear that. The food colouring paste - which is available online or from cake decorating shops - tends to be stronger than the liquid form found in supermarkets. If the mixture doesn't turn green, we'd suggest adding a bit more or buying the paste from a shop like Squires. Hope that helps.
    10th Jul, 2014
    Hello, please could you tell me how deep the cake tin should be for this recipe. Many thanks, Tracey
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