The king cake is a traditional Mardi Gras food. It is usually a ring-shaped pastry, sometimes filled with cheese or jelly and sprinkled with the colors of Mardi Gras. It began as an Epiphany treat, celebrating the arrival of the Three Wise Men to the stable where Jesus was born. Oh, and it’s delicious.

The king cake tradition was brought to New Orleans by French and Spanish settlers who associated it with the Mardi Gras carnival. A dessert synonymous with celebrations definitely belonged with Mardi Gras and has been shared during the festive season ever since.

The secret of the king cake is that there is always a small trinket, often a plastic baby representing the Baby Jesus, baked inside that one lucky eater is bound to bite into. Of course, the lucky person who gets the baby in the cake gets special privileges, but is also usually responsible for bringing the next cake.

To get into the spirit of the impending Mardi Gras celebration, and to make your mouth water a bit, here are some delicious looking king cakes we found.

The Drizzled King Cake

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The Beaded King Cake

beaded Mardi Gras king cake
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The Discus King Cake

the disk Mardi Gras king cake
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The Mickey Mouse King Cake

Mickey Mouse Mardi Gras king cake
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The Go Big or Go Home King Cake

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The King Cupcake

the Mardi Gras king cupcake
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Double King Cake All the Way

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The Doing It Wrong King Cake

doing it wrong Mardi Gras king cake
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The Baby in the King Cake

the baby in the king cake
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The Eaten King Cake

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An Amazing Rap About King Cakes

Want to Make One? Here’s How