I can’t believe my little guy is already 3 years old! We recently celebrated his birthday and I made him a Lion Cake. Last year I made him a construction cake, which was a huge hit. This year I was planning to make a train cake, but I just couldn’t come up with any ideas that I thought would be a) easy enough for my beginning cake decorating skills but still be b) cute.
As I was starting to get frustrated, I heard this conversation between my kids:
Miss Magoo: What do you want me to give you for your birthday?
Little Man: A lion.
Miss Magoo: Like a stuffed lion?
Little Man: No, a real lion.
Miss Magoo: That doesn’t seem like a good idea.
Little Man: I’ll make sure that he’s nice.
I couldn’t help laughing. And suddenly I had inspiration for a new cake- a Lion Cake! And as soon as I thought of a lion cake, I knew exactly how I was going to make it.
You can make this cake with one cake mix, or one batch of your favorite homemade cake, just making part of it into an 8-inch round, and the rest into cupcakes (you will need 15 cupcakes). I wasn’t sure if that would work (if I’d have enough, since I didn’t know how many cupcakes I would need), so I used two different cakes. I made a German Chocolate cake for the rounds and a yellow cake for the cupcakes.
I frosted the round cake with Coconut Pecan Frosting, and also frosted 2 cupcakes with the same frosting for the ears. Then I cut the tops off 2 more cupcakes and frosted those with Coconut Pecan Frosting as well, to use as the lions cheeks (or whatever you would call that).
Starting at the top of the lion, I added chocolate frosted cupcakes around the round cake, placing the two coconut-pecan frosted cupcakes in the area of the ears. I added a dab of chocolate frosting on the centers of the ears. Next I placed the “cheeks” in place, and pushed 3 pretzel sticks into each for whiskers.
I cut a marshmallow into 4 thin rounds. I used 2 thin rounds for the eyes. I cut a little chunk out of the eyes so that I could push brown M&Ms into that spot- I initially just tried using frosting to glue the M&Ms into place, but they looked funny and definitely looked better recessed.
I used another one of the marshmallow rounds for the nose by cutting a triangle out of it and frosting it with chocolate frosting.
The final marshmallow round I made into the tongue and put pink frosting on it (I had a pink gel frosting, so that’s what I used).
That’s it! It was pretty easy, and probably took me 30-45 minutes to decorate the cake, though that could have been faster if I wasn’t doing it by trial and error.
Little Man was so excited by the cake, and he insisted he get a piece with the eye on it. I tell you, that boy sure has a piece of my heart! Who knows what kind of cake I’ll be making next year!
Do you make or buy birthday cakes for your family? If you make them, what’s the coolest cake you’ve made?
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