Posts Tagged ‘celebration cake’

Rainbow Cake in a Jar

Friday, March 16th, 2012

Rainbow Cake in a Jar

There are certain things that automatically bring a smile to your face…puppies and their sweet puppy breath…babies and their itty-bitty baby toes…and these colorful creations – the Rainbow Cake in a Jar. I discovered this creative cake concept on my new favorite site (and everyone else’s)…Pinterest. I must give credit, where credit is due – Thanks Brooke Mclay for posting this unique treat.

Not only are these jarred cakes adorable, they last longer than a typical cake.  Sealed and refrigerated, these cakes will stay moist and delicious for at least 5 days. The jar and metal lid are the perfect vessel for shipping.  The old school Mason jar makes for a great presentation, and allows for numerous ways to dress them up.  You can add a pretty ribbon, or a personal label or perhaps a piece of twine with a little card attached.  The possibilities are endless.

It is the perfect recipe for a child’s birthday…I tested it out for my sons 10th birthday…and he loved them. The best part of this project was the fact my son was super excited to help!

Here’s how you start…

First, gather all of your ingredients and supplies – this includes the jars you will use. My local grocer carried a variety of mason jars.  I chose the Ball wide mouth pint sized jars. Any sized jar will work, simply adjust amount of batter and cooking time.

I used 2 boxes of cake mix for these simply because I knew “cake mix” was a sure thing

Make the cake according to directions.

Divide the cake mix up and color.  I divided all the batter into 6 bowls.  I then used Wilton Gel food coloring to tint each bowl to the desired shade. Gel food coloring is a MUST for this project. You will not achieve the desired saturation needed to make the colors pop if using standard food coloring.  Once you have all your colors it’s time to assemble the jars for baking.

I used 2 cake mixes and 12 wide mouth pint sized jars.  Be sure to generously spray each jar with cooking spray. To keep your colors in the right place, use disposable pastry bags. You could even use Ziploc bags to easily distribute each color into the jar.  You want even, mess-free, layers.

Cake in a jar

Keep in mind – the cake will rise. Do not overfill the jars! This means filling no more than half the jar. Once you have all the colors layered into your jar, they are ready to go in the oven. I followed the temperature directions on the cake mix box.  Keep a close eye on them; you don’t want to over bake them. I would say anywhere between 30-40 minutes is the norm.  Be sure to space jars equally to allow even baking.  Once baking is complete, let cool completely.  Then you can top them with your favorite frosting and sprinkles….YUM!

We decorated ours with felt stickers and colorful ribbons.  They turned out really cute, and they tasted even better.  My son was so proud of what he helped create – as he should be.  Since discovering these rainbow cakes I have come across other cake in jar recipes…looks like I better get busy baking.  Let us know your versions of Cake in a Jar.

Halloween Cupcakes…oh so creepy!

Monday, October 24th, 2011

Halloween is one of my favorite holidays.  For one, I am a candy junkie.  So anything that gives me a reason to have 5 pound bags of candy in the house is alright in my book.  Hey, it’s for the kids, right?   Second, I love thinking up creative ways to gross people out.   And my favorite way to do this is by crafting some gross goodies.  Click here for a few of my favorites that I created for a Halloween party a few years back.    

To honor Halloween’s finest gross out goodies – I have decided to give you a list of my favs from around the internet.  These are in no particular order, they are all equally disturbing. 

1.) Brain Cupcakes 

Halloween Brain Cupcakes

Ooeey, Gooey Brain Cupcakes


Brain Cupcakes are taken from Xsomnis’ PhotoStream on Flickr.  Please view more of her cakes and cupcakes here.  Check out her Zombie Food Guide.  She gives you complete instructions on how to make the Brain Cupcakes as well as were to buy the molds. Nice, thanks Xsomnis! 

2.) Just a really GROSS cupcake 

Most of the time it is the way we decorate the cupcakes that makes them look unappealing – but the inside of the cupcake still looks delicious.  Well, this is a twist on making a gross cupcake…it really is just that, a gross looking cupcake inside and out.  Sugar Plum Pastries created this one, and yes, it is entirely made of sugar.  I really don’t think I could eat this one.  Could you? 


Ewwww...gross. This really is a gross cupcake.


3.) Human Heart Cupcakes 

Some of the most realstic, anatomically correct cakes and cupcakes are created in the Evil Cake Shop.  If you have a second, and a strong stomach, take a look through their website.  But beware, they have several NSFW body parts as well.  Sick. 

Cupcakes that look like human hearts

Eat your "heart" out


4.) Human Jaw Cupcakes 

Another winner by the Evil Cake Shop, take a bite out of these toothy cupcakes at your next Halloween party. 

creepy mouth and teeth cupcake

Bite Me


5.) Monster Cupcakes 

Chef Lynn of Yummy Cakes by Lynn created these cool monster cupcakes by first crafting an eye out of fondant, then working around that.  I love the bright colors in these kooky creatures!  So fun. 

Cool Monster Cupcakes

I've got my EYE on you


6.) Broken Glass Cupcakes

Oh Martha, you always have the best ideas!  Thanks to Martha Stewart for these Broken Glass Cupcakes which use shards of sugar “glass” and a red fruit sauce for blood.   These really are the perfect Halloween Cupcake.

Broken Glass Cupcakes

Careful with these ones.


7.) Kitty Litter Cupcakes

You’ve probably seen it before – Heck, I made a Kitty Litter Cake a few years ago – but have you ever seen Kitty Litter Cupcakes?  Cupcakeables took the famously nasty Kitty Litter Cake and modified into a cupcake version.

Kitty Litter Cupcakes


I will have many more creepy Halloween Cupcakes in the days to come…keep checking back.  Happy Halloween!

Farm Animal Baby Shower Cake

Wednesday, August 4th, 2010
Farm Animal Baby Shower Cake

Farm Animal Baby Shower Cake for Miss Dawn

Let me start off by saying I love this goofy little cake!   It has been a while since I was truly excited about a cake.   Many of the cakes I have done recently have been repeats of ones prior…not much of a challenge.  This time I was given free rein in design and decorating…I love when that happens.  

Two things were for sure…the cake needed to be two tiers and needed to incorporate farm animals.  I got to work the same way I always do by heading to the internet!   Yes I have ideas of my own, but the internet is an invaluable tool when putting together my vision.   I can find new techniques and borrow bits and pieces from others to come up with my master plan. 

This time around I planned to stay away from decorating with fondant; instead I would try my hand at decorating with buttercream.  Don’t get me wrong, I love how smooth and flawless fondant makes a cake appear, but there is something whimsical and scrumptious about buttercream.   Buttercream makes you want to dive in and devour that cake. 

I needed some technique other than decorating with buttercream, something to make it a bit more fun.   Sweetopia not only is one of the cutest websites online, they make the most beautiful cookies.   Aside from showcasing their work, they offer informative tutorials on decorating with Royal Icing.   Did you know…aside from piping royal icing on cakes and cookies you can pipe designs onto parchment paper, let dry and then apply directly to a cake?  Here is the article on how to do it… Royal Icing Flood Work or Runouts.

Royal Icing Sheep for Baby Shower Cake

My Royal Icing Sheep

I decided to break-up the tiers of this cake.  The bottom tier would be the ground…pastures with fence and cute farm animals.  The top tier would be sky with a few clouds and a couple of birds. 

Top Tier of Farm Animal Baby Shower Cake

Top Tier of Cake

I tried the royal icing technique on the farm animals.  Pigs and Sheep seemed an easy way to start. I drew out a few designs and placed parchment paper over the top of the design. I then piped royal icing over the lines.  Seems easy enough, doesn’t it?   After all the animals were complete, I placed them on cookie sheets to dry overnight.  I removed them by simply sliding an offset spatula underneath to release them.   They were attached directly to the cake with a couple dabs of royal icing…voila!  Those little sheep and piggies just made me smile…perfect!

Hummingbird Cake…my version

Thursday, January 28th, 2010
My Version of Hummingbird Cake

My Version of Hummingbird Cake

Baking is a science. Unlike cooking which allows you to add a pinch of this and a tad of that to taste, baking recipes need to be followed to a tee.  Otherwise, the result can be disastrous.

I, like many great bakers, borrow recipes and ideas from the pros.  There are always certain things you can do to put your signature on a recipe and make it your own.  Let’s take Hummingbird Cake for example…there are so many variations of this cake out there for you to try.  My personal favorite is Paula Dean’s version of Hummingbird Cake. Her version is delicious as is, but I wanted to make this recipe my own and give it a personal twist.

As a guideline, I never mess with the amount or type of flour used in a recipe.  The leavening agents are also something I stay spot on with.  When it comes to sugar you can probably get away with adding a bit less, but I wouldn’t recommend changing the actual “type” of sugar. Brown sugar has more moisture than granulated sugar and some sweeteners such as Splenda or Equal don’t translate the same as granulated sugar.  I must not forget to mention that calorie-free sweeteners can leave an unpleasant aftertaste in your baked goods as well as cause them not to rise up. 

Changes should be subtle…adding a different kind of nut, chip or spice.  Making a recipe your own can even be as simple as adding slightly more of one ingredient.

Anyone who knows me knows that I am a cuckoo for coconut – it is one of my favorite ingredients to work with.  Simply adding a ½ cup of sweetened flake coconut to this Hummingbird Cake created a whole new layer of flavor and a bit more texture.

The next twist I made on this Hummingbird Cake recipe was replacing the finely chopped pecans with more roughly chopped toasted pecans.

***Chefs Note on Toasting Pecans***

To toast pecans simply place them in a dry pan over medium heat.  Be sure to keep an eye on them and stir often.  Pecans have oil in them that left unattended can burn. And no one wants burnt nuts in their cake.  You will know when they are done when they smell aromatic and are slightly browned


The last change I made to this Hummingbird Cake recipe was to kick up the cinnamon.  To bump up the warmth cinnamon can add, I increased the amount of cinnamon to 1 ½ teaspoons. 

I finished the cake with cream cheese icing, toasted coconut and whole toasted pecans. 

I am still learning about the science behind cake baking.  For more information on this topic check out these sites: – Baking Ingredient Science

WilliePrejean’s Baking and Baking Science

Hummingbird Cake

Serves 12


  • Nonstick vegetable spray
  •  All-purpose flour, for pans
  •  3 cups self-rising flour
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  •  3/4 cup vegetable oil
  •  1/2 cup finely chopped pecans
  •  2 very ripe large bananas, mashed
  • 1 (8-ounce) crushed pineapple, with juice
  •  1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 4 large eggs, beaten


  • 1 pound (1 box) confectioners’ sugar, (for the frosting)
  • 1 (8-ounces) cream cheese, room temperature (for the frosting)
  • 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, softened (for the frosting)
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract, (for the frosting)
  • 1 tablespoon milk, or more if needed (for the frosting)
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped pecans, (for the frosting)

****(My changes to this recipe include…adding ½ cup sweetened flake coconut, larger toasted pecans and ½ teaspoon more cinnamon)


1.   Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Spray and flour three 8-by-2-inch round cake pans, tapping out excess flour; set aside.

2.   Prepare the cake; in a large bowl, stir to combine self-rising flour, sugar, oil, pecans, bananas, pineapple, vanilla, cinnamon, and eggs.

3.   Divide batter evenly between prepared pans, smoothing with an offset spatula. Bake, rotating pans halfway through, until the tops spring back when gently pressed with your fingertips, 26 to 28 minutes.

4.   Transfer pans to a wire rack to cool 10 minutes. Invert cakes onto wire rack. Re-invert cakes and let them cool completely, top sides up.

5.   Prepare the frosting; in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine sugar, cream cheese, butter, vanilla, and 1 tablespoon milk on medium speed until frosting is smooth. If needed, add more milk, 1 teaspoon at a time, to achieve the proper spreading consistency.

6.   Using a serrated knife, trim tops of cakes to make level. Place four strips of parchment paper around perimeter of a serving plate or lazy Susan. Place the first layer on the cake plate. Spread the top of the first layer with 1/4 of the frosting. Place the second layer on top and repeat process with another 1/4 of the frosting. Place the remaining layer on top of the second layer bottom side up. Spread entire cake with remaining frosting. Sprinkle the top with pecans. Remove parchment paper strips; refrigerate until ready to serve.

Deep Dish Pizza Cake

Wednesday, September 23rd, 2009
It's, it's a Pizza Cake!

It's, it's a Pizza Cake!

A hot trend in cake decorating right now is creating a cake that mimics something from everyday life.  Food shaped cakes are some of the most popular. 

My brother-in-law, Joe, just celebrated a birthday… and what better excuse to bake a cake than for a birthday!  Joe, like everyone else in my family, has a love for great food.  He and my sister have traveled and ate their way around the globe.  However when it comes down to the basics, pizza is his go to food.  With that information in hand, I decided a pizza cake was the best bet for him.  This was a fun cake to make simply because…who doesn’t like pizza? 

I started with size and shape.  I knew the cake would be round, but how just how big of a round?  I opted for a 12” round not because there were going to be a ton of guests, but because I thought it would be the most realistic size for a pizza shaped cake. 

Cake baked, cooled, and sliced; I needed to get busy with my plan for decorating the cake to look like a pizza. It had to look realistic. So I started with the obvious…crust first.  In order to give the cake a great crust, I piped a very thick wavy line of buttercream all around the edge of the cake.  After the buttercream was piped, I placed it into the fridge to set up while I worked on the fondant.

A thick, wavy piping of buttercream helped form the "crust"

A thick, wavy piping of buttercream helped form the "crust"

I have been making my own marshmallow fondant for some time now and find that it works well for me. Plus, the cost of making your own fondant compared to purchasing fondant is like night and day.  Not to mention, marshmallow fondant tastes much better than “regular” fondant – which is normally inedible. 

Once the fondant was rolled, I brought the cake out and went to work covering it.  The crust of a pizza is a multitude of colors and shades. To give my pizza cake this illusion, I watered down some brown gel food coloring and started sponging it on with a crumpled paper towel.  The crust ended up turning out great; it looked just like a Papa John’s pizza crust.

Sauce was my next task.  I chose strawberry preserves to which I added a dash of red food coloring.  I spread the “pizza sauce” edge to edge. 

The pizza "sauce" is strawberry preserves.

The pizza "sauce" is strawberry preserves.

On to the cheese – most people’s favorite part!  I have seen cheese done several different ways, my way was to melt white chocolate and drizzle it in a caddywampous pattern over the top. Then, it was back to the fridge to set up.

Now on to the toppings!  So many to choose from, where do I start?  Of course I chose pepperoni, the classic pizza accompaniment.  Since Joe is a meat lover, chunks of sausage made sense.  I added black olives for their round shape and unique color.  And finally, green pepper, to add a hint of green which rounded out the overall look. 

Anyone order a pepperoni, sausage, black olive and green pepper?

Anyone order a pepperoni, sausage, black olive and green pepper?

All toppings where made out of marshmallow fondant and then hand painted with gel food coloring. A more random arrangement worked best when it came to the toppings.  The end result was a super realistic pizza cake which everyone adored.


Beer Bottle Cap Cake

Tuesday, September 15th, 2009


My good friend Sherry decided to host a surprise 40th birthday for her husband Scott.  The party was to be a casual gathering amongst close friends.  I, being the girl who bakes, was in charge of all things CAKE related.  I got busy thinking about the cake…size, flavor, and of course, the shape. 

When baking a cake for a friend or family I always want to give it a personal meaning.  Scott, like many men I know, has an affection for sports and beer, Heineken Beer to be more specific.  What better way to celebrate such a milestone than with a beer inspired birthday cake? 

I set out to surf the Internet for ideas for this cake and I couldn’t believe how many I found!  There were bottles of beer cakes, ale flavored cakes, bottle cap cakes, beer can cakes and of course, cakes shaped like beer kegs.  I turned my attention to the bottle cap designs thinking this would be easier than some of the others to pull off. Sweet Retreat was an incredibly useful website, giving me clear step by step instructions on the process of building this cake.  Click here for their step by step Heineken Beer Cap Cake instructions.

Heineken Beer Cap Cake

Heineken Beer Cap Cake

I did choose to modify a few things in order to give it my personal stamp. Another difference, I don’t own an airbrush…yet.  I had to hand paint the cake which is nice for certain things but was not ideal for coloring this particular cake. 

I also decided to change up the lettering.  To do this, I looked for the Heineken Beer font online, downloaded it, installed it on my computer and then printed the letters in my desired font size.  From here I took the printed letters and covered them with sheets of wax paper, whipped up a batch of royal icing and began piping. 

When piping letters, be sure to pipe more than one of each letter as they will break every once in a while.   I let the letters dry overnight.  The next morning I lifted them off of the wax paper using an offset spatula and placed them directly onto the cake….great effect!  The cake was a hit and the party was too much fun.

Cakes of All Shapes

Wednesday, August 26th, 2009

Over the past year the world of cake decorating has gotten great exposure due to television – especially the Food Network.  I am like a moth to a flame when one of these shows are being aired.  Ace of Cakes, Cake Boss, Amazing Wedding Cakes, Food Network Challenge, the list goes on from here.  These programs have given people like me the tools and inspiration to try cake outside the box

This past month in cake has been fantastic!  Many fun and creative confections have come from my kitchen in the past couple weeks.  Here are a few of the highlights.

First on the list was a beach inspired birthday cake.  Nilla Waffers were the perfect ingredient for making sand, not to mention they taste great too.  The palm tree, beach ball, starfish, coconut, and shark fin were all crafted out of marshmallow fondant. When finished, I couldn’t help but smile. 

Beach Cake

Beach cake with Nilla Wafer "sand"

A 59th birthday cake was next on the list.  This one needed a bit of edge to it, something to laugh about.  I had made a few cakes for this couple before and knew my boundaries.  After much research, a decision was made – a toilet bowl.  What better way to say it, “Another Year Down the Shitter”. I was there for the grand unveiling of this masterpiece and you would have thought they won the lottery by their expressions. It was a sure fire hit! 

Lovely isn't it?  Yep, that is a toilet.

Lovely isn't it? Yep, that is a toilet.

The most recent cake to come out of my kitchen was for a dear friend’s surprise birthday party.  When baking a cake for a close friend I try and give it some personal meaning.  Immediately after hearing about the party, I knew what I was going to make.  Kristy, our birthday girl, hates the sight of bare feet.  What better way to say Happy Birthday than a gnarly foot!  The look on her face was priceless and I’m sure we’ll be talking about it for years to come!

Really, we don't want to gross you out.

Really, we don't want to gross you out.

Baking gets me in my happy place, it allows me to be creative and put a smile on someone elses face. I find with every new challenge I become more confident and comfortable with this craft. Keep’em coming –  I can’t wait for the next challenge!  If you are interested in ordering your next cake from Frosted, please email me at

Don’t want to bake? Place your orders today!

Wednesday, July 29th, 2009


Introducing …(drumroll please)
Frostedcakes, cupcakes & homemade treats!
  We are now accepting orders for the Akron-Canton area.
Email us at if you are interested in ordering up some of our scrum diddly umptious goodies!

Basic Cupcake Baking Tips

Wednesday, July 8th, 2009
Jumbo Chocolate Cupcakes

Jumbo Chocolate Cupcakes

Our Basic Cupcake Making Tips

Downsize your favorite cake…

You can turn almost any cake recipe into cupcakes. I recently decided to turn a chocolate cake recipe that was a success into something even more spectacular – cupcakes.  King size cupcakes that is, which in turn equals about 2 ½ regular cupcakes.  Almost any cake recipe can become a cupcake – jumbo, regular, or mini.  Just be sure to keep watch over your oven; baking times vary.  The safest bet is to a keep your eye on them.

What to do after baking…

After baking I am quick to remove my cupcakes from the pan, maybe a bit too quick.  I fear by letting them sit in a hot pan they will “over-bake”.  Once they are out of the oven, I use my offset spatula to pop them right out.  Then I immediately place them on a cooling rack.

I must admit, I am a “last minute” kinda girl and have often been tempted to frost early…this is a no no!  Unless your recipe calls for it, do not try frosting before the cakes are completely cooled – it never ends well, trust me. 

The subject of frosting…

Once the cupcakes are completely cooled, you can frost. A generous amount of frosting is always good, but don’t go overboard.  Frosting tends to be extremely sweet, so a little goes a long way.  Try to create a balance of cake and frosting.

Directly after frosting, I get the cupcakes into the fridge. This helps set the frosting.  Buttercream, in my opinion, tastes best when it’s not too cold.  It can become hard and unappealing if it’s too cold – it is butter, after all.

It is best to keep your cupcakes chilled up until 15-30 minutes before serving.  Letting them come to room temperature will ensure that the frosting tastes its best.

Cupcake liners and wrappers…

Lastly, I need to mention cupcake liners and wrappers.  When baking a chocolate cupcake, plain wrappers work the best. The pretty printing on some wrappers just disappears with chocolate cake – so it can be a waste. It is best to use the fancy printed liners and wrappers with a lighter colored cupcake.


The cupcakes pictured are chocolate cake with a decadent chocolate Swiss meringue buttercream, topped with a chocolate covered strawberry, YUMMY!

Master Paul’s 14th Birthday Cake

Wednesday, July 1st, 2009
Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Swiss Meringue Buttercream

Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Swiss Meringue Buttercream

This past week the cake hotline rang with a request for a birthday cake.  This cake was for a young man with simple tastes who was turning 14.  I took a moment to figure out the cake plan. 

Chocolate and Strawberry are two flavors I knew he enjoys; this one was going to be a cinch!  A rich chocolaty layer cake filled with sliced strawberries and Swiss meringue buttercream, frosted with a sinful chocolate Swiss meringue buttercream and some homemade chocolate covered strawberries.  No frills, simple and classic, the kind of cake you might see in a coffee shop bakery cabinet.  It is the perfect cake for any occasion.

Sliced strawberries and whipped cream fill this chocolate cake...

Sliced strawberries and Swiss meringue buttercream fill this chocolate cake...

My sister presented me with a copy of Martha Stewart’s new cupcake cookbook…love it!  I made her classic Swiss meringue buttercream and then jazzed it up by folding in some melted, cooled chocolate.  This frosting is so good you could serve it all by itself!

Chocolate Swiss Meringue Buttercream

Makes about 6 cups


  • 1 pound (4 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 6 egg whites
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 6oz. melted and cooled semi sweet chocolate


1. Beat butter with electric mixer until fluffy and pale. Transfer to small bowl.

2. In double boiler over simmering water, whisk sugar and egg whites until warm and sugar is dissolved, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer to clean bowl of electric mixer; beat on high with whisk attachment until fluffy and cooled, about 10 minutes.

3. Reduce mixer to medium-low; add butter a scant 1/4 cup at a time, beating well after each addition. Mix in vanilla. Fold in the cooled melted chocolate.

4. Switch to paddle attachment; beat on lowest speed 3 to 5 minutes. Leave at room temperature if using same day. Or store airtight in refrigerator up to 3 days. Bring to room temperature; beat until smooth.


Happy Birthday Paul!