A Sweet Start to NYC Cooking Camp

Our week wouldn’t be complete without a little something sweet, and in the Mini Melanie kitchen, that’s exactly what we got!

In addition to her signature cake truffles, wedding cakes, and croquembouche towers, Chef Melanie is known for the classic Mini Melanie Cakes. These come in flavors like Chocolate Truffle, Rainbow, and Lemon Berry, but NYC campers got a chance to make the most popular flavor of all: Funfetti.

First on the list of kitchen activities was mixing the cake batter. Campers worked together to make and mix the cake batter, adding in just the right amount of sprinkles for a festive and colorful cake. Next, we got our baking sheets in the oven and moved on to decorations!

Each culinary camper decorated a piece of fondant to add as decoration to their individual cakes. We used Luster Dust, which is the go-to decorating tool for all professional pastry kitchens; this is a colorful and edible powder that, when mixed with lemon extract, creates a paint that campers used to bring beautiful shades of blue, gold, and purple to their pieces of fondant. We got creative by adding different colors, designs, and writing to decorations — no two Mini Funfetti Cakes are alike!

The best part of the day was finding out that so many campers are eager to start their own restaurants. Luckily for them, Chef Melanie’s company is the perfect example of what a sweet, successful culinary startup looks like. Chef Melanie shared with us her tips and tricks for following your passion in the kitchen and finding a market for the foods you love to cook the most.

It was inspiring to hear how Chef Melanie spent years experimenting with different truffle and cake recipes before deciding on the perfect flavors to launch her business. After a day in her kitchen, we got a super sweet taste of what goes into making Brooklyn’s most beautiful desserts. Trust us, they taste just as good as they look!


Whether you’re having a birthday celebration, anniversary, or just spending another day experimenting in the kitchen, Mini Melanie’s Funfetti Cakes and Cookies are the perfect treat to sweeten up your day. To try your hand at Chef Melanie’s dessert recipes below and enjoy and share with a friends to make for an extra delicious day.

Funfetti Cakes


  • 3 cups cake or all-purpose flour
  • 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 4 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup canola oil, or melted and cooled unsalted butter
  • 1 cup milk or milk alternative
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup rainbow sprinkles


Heat the oven and prepare the baking pans: Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat to 350°F. Line the bottoms of 2 (9-inch) round cake pans with parchment paper rounds; no need to line with parchment. Coat with cooking spray and set aside.

Whisk the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt together in a large bowl. Add the eggs, oil, milk, and vanilla extract and mix with an electric hand mixer on medium speed until mostly smooth, about 1 minute. If mixing by hand, beat for about 3 minutes until smooth. Fold in the sprinkles!

Divide the batter between the 2 round pans or pour all of it into the 9×13-inch pan. Bake until lightly browned and the top of the cake springs back when tapped gingerly, about 25 to 30 minutes for the 2 round cakes, or 40 to 50 minutes for the 9×13-inch pan.

Cool the cakes on a wire rack for 15 minutes. Remove from the round cake pans. (No need to remove the 9×13-inch cake from the pan.) Cool completely before frosting.

Sugar Cookies


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar


In large bowl, whisk flour, baking powder, and salt. With an electric mixer, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in egg and vanilla. With mixer on low, gradually add flour mixture; beat until combined. Divide dough in half; flatten into disks and wrap each in plastic; freeze until firm, at least 20 minutes.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit and line baking sheets with parchment. Remove one dough disk; let stand 5 to 10 minutes. Roll out 1/8 inch thick between two sheets of floured parchment, dusting dough with flour as needed. Cut shapes with cookie cutters. Using a spatula, transfer to prepared baking sheets. Reroll scraps; cut shapes. Repeat with remaining dough.

Bake, rotating halfway through, until edges are golden, 10 to 18 minutes. Cool completely on wire racks. To ice cookies, spread on the frosting with the back of a spoon. Let the icing harden, about 20 minutes. Decorate as desired.