Saturday, June 12, 2021

Firecracker Cake

This firecracker cake is the star of any 4th of July celebration. Make the batter with 5 ingredients, then decorate with icing and sprinkles!

A simple, delicious treat gets a holiday twist with this red white and blue cake. It’s so tender and moist that no one will know it was made with a box mix!

Instant pudding adds plenty of flavor, while fresh egg whites and a can of Sprite creates an irresistibly fluffy texture.

Want to create a stunning display of desserts? Place this 4th of July cake in the center of your table along with a big bowl of cheesecake fruit salad and these gorgeous homemade berry popsicles.

Triple Berry Parfaits are a great option for guests who want something healthier, and you could even add a tray of Stars and Stripes layered shots for the adults to indulge in.

4th of July Cake with a bite taken

Firecracker Cake - Helpful Tips and Tricks

  • Pick your flavor. Any brand of instant pudding will work, but it needs to be vanilla, white chocolate, or cheesecake flavor.
  • Use the right soda. You’ll want a clear lemon-lime variety like Sprite, 7-Up, or Sierra Mist. Avoid Mountain Dew - it’s the wrong flavor and has added color. 
  • Skip the yolks. Again, anything that isn’t clear or white will affect the color of the batter, making it impossible to get a red white and blue cake.
  • Tip for coloring batter: Mix in a small amount and let it rest for 10-15 minutes before deciding if you need to add more. Gels will deepen over time, so aim for a shade or two lighter than you want the finished product to be.
  • Let it cool. If the bundt is too hot when decorating, it will simply absorb the icing altogether. It should be slightly warmer than room temperature for best results.

firecracker cake ingredients

What You’ll Need For This 4th of July Cake
  • Bundt Pan - This is one of my favorite brands because the special nonstick coating means you don’t have to spray or flour your pan first!
  • Stand mixer or large mixing bowl with hand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment
  • Mixing Bowls - I like to have a variety of sizes on hand, and this set has them all.
  • Gel Food Coloring creates vibrant hues without affecting the consistency of the batter. The Wilton Color Performance line is another great option and may be available in stores.
  • Cookie Scoops - These make it easier to alternate the different colors and cause fewer drips than using a spoon.

3 bowls of colored cake batter

FAQ - Common Recipe Questions

Can I change the colors in firecracker cake?

You sure can! What’s great about this recipe is that it can be adapted for any holiday celebration.

Having one bowl of batter remain white adds a nice contrast, but feel free to color all three bowls with whichever combination matches your theme.

firecracker cake in a bundt pan

My cans of soda are only 7.5-ounces. Is that okay?

Yes, that will still be plenty for this recipe just use water to make up the difference. Any smaller and you will need to open two cans to measure out the appropriate amount.

Can I do solid red white and blue cake layers instead?

While I haven’t tried it myself, I don’t see why not!

Because the base of the pan is wider than the top, you may want to use a little less batter for whichever color you will be pouring in first. Otherwise, the layers may be different heights once baked.


With love from our simple kitchen to yours. 

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red white and blue cake with a bite taken

Yield: 12
Author: Donna Elick
Firecracker Cake

Firecracker Cake

This firecracker cake is the star of any 4th of July celebration. Make the batter with 5 ingredients, then decorate with icing and sprinkles!
Prep time: 20 MinCook time: 50 MinInactive time: 1 HourTotal time: 2 H & 10 M


  • 1 (15-ounce) box white cake mix
  • 1 (3.4-ounce) box instant pudding mix, (vanilla, white chocolate, or cheesecake flavor)
  • 4 large egg whites
  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup (8-ounces) Sprite
  • Red food coloring
  • Blue food coloring
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 4 tablespoons Sprite
  • Red, white, and blue sprinkles


  1. Preheat the oven to 325°F.
  2. In a large bowl or stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, mix together the cake mix, pudding, and egg whites.
  3. Beat in the vegetable oil until combined.
  4. Gently mix in the soda on low speed until smooth.
  5. Divide the batter into three separate bowls and color one them with red food coloring and one with blue and leave one plain.
  6. Grease a 10-cup bundt pan (I used this one) and use small or medium cookie scoops or tablespoons or portion out the dough in the pan, alternating to try to put the different colors next to each other.
  7. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes or until a cake tester comes clean from the thick part of the cake.
  8. Remove from the oven and allow the cake to cool in the pan for 20 minutes before flipping onto a cooling rack or plate to cool completely, about another 40 minutes before icing.
  9. To make the icing, simply whisk together the sugar and soda until the desired consistency is reached. Then pour over the top of the cooled cake and top with sprinkles.

Firecracker Cake

Originally published June 2021

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  1. Love this cake recipe! Cannot wait to try it for July 4th this year! Thank you Slow Roasted Italian for offering such terrific recipes and your expert advice on making them. I truly love your newsletters and Social Media posts!!

  2. Oh, MERCY! This cake looks delicious & an eye catcher as well! Thank you soooo much! God bless! :)

  3. It looks so colorful and festive.


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