3D Penguin Birthday Cake

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Picture of 3D Penguin Birthday Cake
For all those penguin lovers out there that want a cake that you can make at home, I'm here to help. Using the Wilton 3D bear pan, and a little imagination, you can have a penguin in an hour (plus baking time).

Wilton 3D Cuddly Bear pan with instructions
Frosting tool with star shaped tip
2 cake mixes (following pan instructions for selection)
Black & orange food coloring
2 toothpicks
1 set doll eyes
1 birthday hat candle
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Step 1: Bake The Cake

Picture of Bake The Cake
Using the Wilton 3D Cuddly Bear pan, bake your cake following the instructions included with your pan. This pan is currently retired, but you can pick one up on eBay and download the pan instructions for free from

Step 2: Transform the bear into a penguin

Picture of Transform the bear into a penguin
After the cake cools, remove the feet and the ears. You can discard the feet but set the ears aside for later.

Step 3: Add black frosting

Picture of Add black frosting
Use food dye to create a large quantity of black frosting. You can mix standard food coloring to get something close to black, but for a true color splurge on specialty black food coloring (found at any store selling cake decorating supplies). Use a star tip with your favorite frosting tool. I find it easier to break the cake off into grids and start in the center and work your way out. It's really up to you.

Leave a triangle in the face to fill in with orange later for the beak. Also leave a large oval shape area in the front to fill in with white for the stomach. Use the arms as a guide. The arms should be frosted black as flippers. Leave space between the arms to let the white of the stomach to peak out.

Finally, add doll eyes (not edible) to the face of the penguin. Just push into the frosting.

Step 4: Add stomach

Picture of Add stomach
You'll only need a small amount of white frosting. Use the star tip to fill in the stomach.
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sharlzz2 years ago
i love this!!
so creative.
hsmith83 years ago
I made this cake last week for my sisters birthday firstly I would say great tutorial but it is a MUST to leave the cake core inside the penguin at all times! Even if you follow the instructions from Wilton and plug the gap, the cake isn't strong enough once you cut the feet off. I decorated the cake and the head sunk into the body. Luckily I managed to save it by re-inserting the core.
scraplette3 years ago
That is sooo adorable! I wouldn't want to eat this because it looks so cuddly! lol.
cjarke3 years ago
Great cake! I would like to try this one!
nicnacnoo3 years ago
I want one of these... !
jingo693 years ago
Very creative!!! 5*
jimopertrat4 years ago
We made a cake just like this one and this is were we got the idea!!! thank you so much!!
super cute! Now if I were only good a baking...
jatoha4 years ago
Thank you for this great idea! I have this mold and am so glad to have another reason to use it, my kids are too old for teddy bears, but they think penguins are still cool!
Comp1015 years ago
What if I ate the doll eyes?
You woulg get em back (painfully) a couple of hours later...XD
skyshadow285 years ago
very hard to make as i'm rubbish at stuff like this but now i cant eat him! he's too cute :)
wyattkinson6 years ago
ahh this penguin is adoriible i loved making this cake and it turned out brill ! ! ! x x x x
Glow Gal6 years ago
Amazing!!!! Just wondering, how long did the decorating take? +1 rating +1 voting
alexorson (author)  Glow Gal6 years ago
It took a little over two hours. Completely exhausting, but the end result made it worth it!
Please help me with a recipe for this cake. Yours turned out so nicely. I'm even planning on making a smaller version of this so that my son can have his own little penguin cake, while the adults eat the big one. I bought both molds so that I could make your cake! Need help and it is appreciated!
alexorson (author)  Christeena1236 years ago
Did you buy your pans new? The instructions for the pan I believe contain instructions for the cake batter. It's been a while but it might have suggestions to modify the recipe to make the best end product. If you don't have the instructions, you can download them from the Wilton site.
Thank you so much for replying back. I bought the molds new off of ebay. They contain the instructions, but no recipe. They suggest a heavier type of cake, such as a pound cake. I don't really have a recipe to start from. I tried the "basic yellow cake" recipe off of Wilton's site and a pound cake recipe from Food Network, but they didn't work. The yellow cake was mostly still liquid after an hour and a half. The pound cake was a little soggy in the middle and crumbled. I'm thinking of leaving the heating core out the next time I try a recipe. I've been thinking about how to do this cake for a long time now and really want it to work. I appreciate any suggestions.
alexorson (author)  Christeena1236 years ago
The heating core is a must! I used regular yellow cake mix but I suggest not using the type with "pudding in the mix". Good luck!
I am trying ot make this exact cake. I am having trouble finding a soy-free recipe (basically a recipe from scratch) that works in this mold. Anyone have any suggestions. The cake sticks to the sides of the mold and doesn't completely bake after 1 hour and 30 min. It's still runny. I only have a few weeks until my son's birthday, so I need lots of time to practice. Please help!
super cute!
Kana6 years ago
Cute~! If I had any patience, I would totally make it x3
Badgergirl6 years ago
Penguins have to be one of my favorite animals in the entire world!!!!!!! Icant wait to try this cake!
stinkymum6 years ago
Hurray for the penguin. Glad you got a prize (my favourite)
DainiusGB6 years ago
cool! but just wondering if i didnt have the time or money to get novelty cake molds how would i bake this cake?
alexorson (author)  DainiusGB6 years ago
You could use a traditional cake pan and cut and stack layers into a rough pyramid shape. Then use a knife to carve into a penguin. That's not really my strong suit, so I've never tried it. I did make a similar shaped frog with rice krispie treats by rolling into giant balls like making a snowman. Sorry I couldn't be more help!
Wisegalhere6 years ago
Wonderful looking cake. You've given me the nerve to try one for my son's b'day next weekend. He really loves penguins. THanks for the great instructable
Now that is cute!
Ok, I never comment, not from lack of altruism, but lack of time. I had to sign in and just say that this is one of the most fantastic things I have ever seen! My boyfriend's birthday is in 2 months, so I'm going to have to do a "dry-run" soon to make sure it comes out ok. This was a very well written instructable with great detailed photos!!!
stinkymum6 years ago
can you make a loon cake?
stinkymum6 years ago
I can never resist a penguin! But it looks too good to eat!
How cool! I really love it, it looks delicious too. +1 rating. +1 vote. (added to favorites)
LinuxH4x0r6 years ago
hedgiehog6 years ago
THAT IS AWESOME (runs to make cake)
xtank56 years ago
Yum. You're making me hungry!! By discard the feet, you meant eat them right?
alexorson (author)  xtank56 years ago
Yes I ate them after I covered them with a extra frosting. The cook has to test the food, right?
Doctor What6 years ago
It's soo cute! Might need to find a different set of eyes, like mentos or something.
PKM6 years ago
Just the thing for a linux geek's birthday party... one question though- how on earth are you meant to slice this thing?
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