Wednesday, February 16, 2011

The butcher, the baker...the cake decorator?

I spoke at a MOPS meeting once about cake decorating, and it was a real hit, so I decided to share some tips with my readers too! I know I post a lot of my baking on this blog, but I haven't gone into detail on some of the cakes I have done, and things you can do to make your next cake special! Here are some of my fav cakes I've made:

This cake, was super easy to make! Using Hostess sno-balls, and a suzy-q, I was able to make 3 dimensional balls for the top of the cake. I also learned 2 valuable lessons on this cake:
1) Don't dye whipped cream frosting and use it on the runs...bad
2) Nobody gives a rip about the frosting running if the cake tastes AWESOME!

This cake was a total labor of love. It was not complicated by any means but was very time consuming. This cake is one where, if you have the right equipment, you can make any cake look amazing. For this one, I used Wilton's ball pans to make balls of yarn for a knitting fanatic friend :)

The lesson with this cake is LOOK ONLINE for ideas!!!!!! I got the idea for this one from the forums. I knew I wanted to make a Rubik cube cake, but I realllllllllly didn't want to make 8 different colors of icing and pipe it all on there! So, when I saw the suggestion for black licorice and m&ms, I was alllllllllllll over it!

For this one, I just made a simple sheet cake. Then, using some small glass bowls from the dollar store, I baked small cakes for the body. This worked out PERFECTLY because it was a 1st birthday cake, so rather than make her an individual cake to eat, we were able to give her the head to chow down on :)

These are just plain fun! These are devils food cupcakes dipped in chocolate ganache. When the ganache cooled, I used white/red/black frosting to pipe on the face. Then I used toothpicks to attach the oreo ears. As I'm sure you can imagine, these were a real hit!!!!

So if I had to give you 5 tips to making a great cake they would be:

1) Don't be afraid to try!!!!!!!!! You'll be amazed at what you can accomplish, especially if you have the right tools! And if you aren't confident enough, check into a class! Most craft stores offer classes at a fairly inexpensive rate, and you'll be amazed how much you learn! I've always had a passion for baking, but I learned SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO much in the classes I took!

2) Get creative!!! Use candies, cookies, etc to embellish your cakes. And if you are making a children's cake and you don't want to tackle anything too technical, make a simple sheet cake and use toys on the top to create your theme. That's all most bakeries do anyway!!!!

3) Don't be too hard on yourself!!!!! You will always be your own worst critic, but as I said about my first one cares as much about the looks as they do the taste. So even if it isn't the most beautiful cake, once people eat it, they will remember how it tasted!!!

4) Get on line!!!!! There are so many places you can gather ideas from! I mentioned Wilton's forums, they are a great place to ask questions and get ideas for cakes. Also, use google! If you need ideas for a Barney cake, google "barney cake" and see what you find, you just might surprise yourself!

5) Most important, make sure you have the equipment you need, really plan it out! You don't want to get half way into a cake and realize you don't have the tip you need for the border, or you didn't make enough frosting, etc.

As I mentioned before, I know I usually combine the crafting/baking on this blog, but I have considered starting a separate blog for the baking. Do you like having them combined or would you prefer them to be separate? I need my reader's opinions!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And, if this post inspires you to try your hand at cake decorating, PLEASE email me a link, I would LOVE to see what you come up with!!!!!

Well, now I'm hungry for cake...lucky for me I made an Almond Joy cake yesterday so I'll be diving face first into that faster than I can click Publish ;)


  1. You decorate cakes? I do too! I have been doing it for several years now! I took cake classes at Michaels way back in the day and have been doing them ever since. I get alot of my cake ideas and I also post my cakes on a website called "Cake Central". It is an awesome website where they have forums, cake galleries, recipes and more! You should check it out!


  2. I did the caterpillar for SB's first birthday. I got a Wilton mold that looks like a dome (it has 4 domes in the pan) and made two batches for 8 caterpillar links. We gave her the end piece as her dig-in cake.
    Great job! I love the yarn one!

  3. my best friend is a wilton cake decorator instructor at Michaels, I have seen a lot of cakes over the years and you have made some really nice cakes.

    Thanks for showing them

  4. AMAZING!!! Those are so great. I can't even decide which one I want to eat first. Wow. I'm inspired. And hungry... jules

  5. The yarn cake looks amazing! I did a double take on that one. I'm a new follower from the blog hop.

  6. good job little girl, I am glad you shared!

  7. That yarn cake was the BEST. CAKE. EVER.!!!

    Not only was it amazing to look at, now I can boast that I've eaten "half a skein of cake"! You are so amazing!

  8. Hey Nikki! The cakes have my mouth watering!! I have never had any luck decorating a cake! Thanks for letting us link up again this week!