Traditional King Cake

READY IN: 2hrs 31mins
YIELD: 2 cakes




  • Cook the first 4 ingredients in a medium saucepan over low heat, stirring often, until butter melts; set aside and cool mixture to 100-110°.
  • Stir the yeast, ½ cup warm water, and 1 tablespoons sugar in a 1 cup glass measuring cup; let mixture stand 5 minutes.
  • Beat sour cream mixture, yeast mixture, eggs, and 2 cups flour at medium speed with a heavy-duty stand mixer until smooth.
  • Decrease speed to low, and gradually add enough remaining flour (4-4 ½ cups) until a soft dough forms.
  • Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic (about 10 minutes).
  • Place in a well-greased bowl, turning to grease the top.
  • Cover and let rise in a warm place (85°), free from drafts, 1 hour or until dough is doubled in bulk.
  • Punch down dough, and divide in half.
  • Roll each portion into a 22x12 inch rectangle.
  • Spread 1/3 cup softened butter evenly on each rectangle, leaving a 1-inch border.
  • Stir ½ cup sugar and cinnamon together; sprinkle evenly over butter on each rectangle.
  • Roll up each dough rectangle, jelly-roll fashion, starting at 1 long side.
  • Place 1 dough roll seam side down, on a lightly greased baking sheet; bring ends of roll together to form an oval ring, moistening and pinching edges together to seal.
  • Repeat with second dough roll.
  • Cover and let rise in a warm place free from drafts, 20-30 minutes or until doubled in bulk.
  • Bake in a 375° oven for 14-16 minutes or until golden.
  • Make glaze: stir together the first 4 glaze ingredients; stir in 2 tablespoons milk, adding more milk, 1 teaspoon at a time, until spreading consistency.
  • Slightly cool cakes on pans on wire racks (about 10 minutes).
  • Drizzle Creamy Glaze evenly over warm cakes, sprinkle with colored sugars, alternating colors and forming bands; let cool completely.