One of my favorite traditions each year is to make a King Cake to celebrate Mardi Gras. The King Cake tradition came originally from medieval France and Spain. Later, it was celebrated in Louisiana, where Creoles celebrated the king’s ball with a fancy cake in which a bean had been placed randomly inside. According to the tradition, whoever found the bean in his or her piece of cake became the royalty of the next ball. Pretty fun tradition, if you ask me.
Everyone agrees that this colorful, celebratory, delicious cake tastes much better than its store-bought counterpart, plus you can whip it up in minutes using reduced-fat crescent rolls. The luscious and rich cream cheese filling and generous amounts of cinnamon make this recipe a delicious and healthy choice any time of year! I simply keep the cake seasonal by switching up the icing colors to match whatever occasion we are celebrating.
I hope your family enjoys this New Orleans King Cake tradition as much as mine does! Laissez les bons temps rouler (let the good times roll)!
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- 16 oz reduced fat crescent rolls
- 4 ounces reduced fat cream cheese
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1/3 cup light brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
- 1 tablespoons skim milk (or more)
Preheat oven 350°F. Coat 10-inch round pizza pan with nonstick cooking spray. Separate crescent rolls at perforations, into 16 slices. Place slices around prepared pan with points in center. About halfway down from points, press seams together. In mixing bowl, beat cream cheese, confectioners’ sugar, and vanilla until creamy. Spread on dough in center where seams have been pressed together. In another small bowl, combine butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon with fork until crumbly. Sprinkle over cream cheese. Fold dough points over filling and then fold bottom of triangle over points forming a circular roll like a king cake. Bake 20-25 minutes or until golden brown. Cool slightly and drizzle with colored Mardi Gras Icing.
To make the frosting: In small bowl, combine all ingredients, except food color. Divide mixture into three bowls. In first bowl, add a few drops of yellow food coloring and in second bowl, add a few drops of green food coloring. In third bowl, add equal amounts of drops of red and blue food coloring (to create purple). Drizzle over baked cake.
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
The Nutritional Values provided are estimates only and may vary based on the preparation method.
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