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Golden Twinkle Snack Cakes

Do you remember coming home from elementary school and reaching for one of those cellophane-wrapped, cream-filled vanilla sponge cakes and a cold glass of milk? Unfortunately, too often, the things we loved as kids fall short when we reach for them as adults. These after-school favorites are so yummy and nostalgic that your inner child will be over the moon with this homemade version of Twinkies. The batter for these moist snack cakes comes together in no time and bakes up just as quickly. And with a sweet, creamy, vanilla filling, these cakes are sure to bring a smile to your face.

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Test Kitchen Tip

You may not be able to wait to eat these tasty cakes, but they taste best when the filling has a chance to meld with the cakes overnight.


Preheat oven to 350°. Coat a mini cake pan (aka cream canoe pan) with nonstick spray.

For the cakes, sift together flour, 1/2 cup sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

Whisk together egg yolks, half-and-half, oil, and vanilla in a separate bowl; add to dry ingredients and whisk until smooth.

Beat egg whites in another bowl with a hand mixer on medium speed until soft peaks form, 2 minutes; increase speed to medium-high. Gradually sprinkle in remaining 1/4 cup sugar and beat until whites are stiff and glossy, but not dry, 1 minute more.

Whisk one quarter of the whites into batter. Fold in remaining whites, in three additions, adding more when no streaks remain.

Fill wells of prepared pan two-thirds full with batter, then bake cakes until golden, about 10 minutes. Cool cakes in pan 5 minutes before turning out onto a rack to cool completely. Repeat procedures with remaining batter.

For the filling, beat powdered sugar, shortening, milk, vanilla, and salt until smooth. Transfer filling to a piping bag fitted with a round piping tip.

Pipe filling into cakes by inserting the tip of the piping bag into cake bottoms three times each, applying gentle pressure.


Folding beaten egg whites into the batter lightens the cakes — the air bubbles in the egg whites expand as the cakes bake.


Fill the wells of the pan no more than two-thirds full to avoid too much doming on the bottom of the finished cakes.


To avoid a blowout, apply gentle pressure to the piping bag as you fill the snack cakes. You’ll feel the cakes expand in your hand.

Nutritional Facts

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