3d Dinosaur Birthday Cake

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Introduction: 3d Dinosaur Birthday Cake

Two nine-inch round cakes, frosting, decorations, and an unquenchable thirst for adventure are all you need.

Step 1: The Raw Materials

  • Two nine-inch round cakes. Cakes made from scratch will be denser and stronger than a cake mix, but you love the Duncan Hines don't you -- just be forewarned that the time you save using a mix will be spent cursing during the frosting crumb coat.
  • Two batches of frosting. We did a butter cream with 50/50 butter/vegetable shortening. Die one batch green. Keep 1/2 of the second batch white and die 1/2 blue.
  • Rolled fondant. We don't know what this stuff is, but we were darn sure we weren't going to make it. Found some multi-colored fondant at Michael's, a big box craft store. Buy the non-stick mini rolling pin while you are at it.
  • Decorations: cinnamon red hot candies for the eyes, candy corn for the tail spikes, chocolate chips for toenails, and toasted coconut for the prehistoric grass.
  • One cardboard cake board, half-sheet size.
  • Frosting pipe tips and bags. Use a star tip. Yes, this makes a difference, so don't skimp here. Really.
  • A partner. Not required, but could speed things up during frosting or at least help pass the time.

Step 2: The Body

  • Bake the cakes and cool completely.
  • Take out of pan, and find the center of one cake.
  • Cut the cake in half with a bread knife.
  • Put the two halves together with cuts edges aligned, and place on a work surface as pictured.

Step 3: The Appendages

Ever heard the advice "measure twice, cut once?" Unless you are a blackbelt paleolithic pastry chef who can think in three dimensions of cake, you will probably want to make a paper template to design the head, legs, and tail. I drew the template below, and you generally want to cut the paper in the same shapes I used. Mouse over the shapes for a description.

  • Cut a 9-inch circle of paper and lay it on top of the second cake. Draw the tail and head in one half, the legs in the other.
  • Cut out the paper pieces and arrange them on your body segment to see how they look. Tweak and repeat as necessary.
  • When you are feeling lucky, carve 'em and stack 'em. Oh, and you may want to fix the head to the body with some toothpicks. Just in case the birthday party gets a little rowdy.
  • Move all pieces to the cake board.
  • Use white frosting to join the body halves together, then join the appendages to the body.
  • Trim the corners and square edges off the feet and shoulders if you like.

Step 4: The Skin

  • Roll the fondant out 1/8 inch thick. Hand cut the fondant with a small knife some diamond shapes for the plates on the dinosaur's back. Detail the plates with a toothpick to give them a ribbed texture.
  • Spread a thin layer of green frosting over the cake. This is called the crumb coat -- and for good reason, as much of the crumbs pull away and get mixed up in the frosting. Use a very light hand on the cut surfaces of cake. Did you use a cake mix instead of making one from scratch? Are you cursing now?
  • Tip: crumb coat one half. Have a partner start piping with the star tip while you finish crumb coating the other half.
  • Use a star tip to pipe on green frosting, then blend in blue for an accent.
  • Stick fondant diamond plates into back. If the frosting does not hold the plates well, stick a toothpick into the plate then stick it into the cake.

Step 5: The Final Touches

  • Spread a layer of white frosting on your cake board and toss some toasted coconut around for grass.
  • Add any other finishing touches you like. Candy corn for spikes on the tail, cinnamon candies for the eyes, and chocolate chips for the toes. We made palm trees using tube cookies with fronds of parsley -- this was the first thing every kid wanted so make a small forest if you do it.

Grab the camera and enjoy!

18 People Made This Project!

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199 Discussions

0
canida
canida

12 years ago on Introduction

Huge thanks to stwbrry for sharing her templates!
Click here and here to access them directly for download.

dino temp 2.jpgdino temp 3.jpg
0
linjim830
linjim830

Reply 12 years ago on Introduction

Can someone tell me where to get the brown shredded coconut? Also how to you hold the body parts together. Thanks so much!

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msimon3
msimon3

Reply 12 years ago on Introduction

- toast the shredded coconut on a sheet pan in the oven at 275F until brown - toothpicks!

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slugafc
slugafc

Reply 12 years ago on Introduction

Can anyone offer advice on the neck/head?? The head on my "practice" cake crumbled (I made a white cake that was near pound cake density from scratch). What is the extra head piece in the template used for? Also how far in advance should I make the fondant spikes? I want them to be hard enough to use. My son's first birthday party is next weekend!! Thanks!

0
msimon3
msimon3

Reply 12 years ago on Introduction

Frost the joints of the head pieces to make them sticky, insert a few toothpicks into the top of the neck, and place the head on top. The fondant spikes can made and left out in the air the day before to make them firm. If you live in a hot or humid climate, you may want to dry the fondant on a sheet pan in the oven at a low temp. like 125-150F.

0
stwbrry
stwbrry

13 years ago on Introduction

YAY we did it!!! I KEPT MY TEMPLATE. It only took 2 tries to get it right, not too hard, but I can get a copy out to anyone who might want. kimwinchell@gmail.com GREAT INSTRUCTABLE, THANKS!!!!

0
Kimbolaydee
Kimbolaydee

Reply 2 months ago

Hi,
Don’t know if you’re still active on here or if you still have this template. If so could you please send me a copy, I’ve tried and tried to get it right but not having much luck unfortunately. My email address is:
victoria.harbottle@hotmail.co.uk

Thanks

0
kimgreco
kimgreco

Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

Hi would you please send me the template. I am attempting a trail run on this cake wednesday. Thank you

email to service@titlecotitle.com

Kim

0
linder1364
linder1364

Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

could you send me the template? I tried to download the one here and it is very small.
Thanks

0
greystone5051
greystone5051

Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

Could I have a copy of the template:greystone5051@gmail.com

0
aspin92
aspin92

Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

Hi

I am going to try and make this cake for my sons 4th birthday. Please can you send me the templates. sandyb@activ8.net.au cheers

0
cwisener-james
cwisener-james

Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

I would like a copy of the dinosaur cake template please email gajames@windstream.net,, thanks so much

0
monitoro
monitoro

Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

could you please send me a copy of the 3d dinosaur template
thank u thanku

0
SnackFairy
SnackFairy

Reply 9 years ago on Introduction

I tried to download your template but it keeps printing too large for my 8.5 x 11 paper no matter which size I down load.....I aint going to email you for the template I hope you don't mind.

0
julesdaniel
julesdaniel

Reply 12 years ago on Introduction

i was wondering if you could send me a copy of the dinosaur template, the cake looks amazing. My email is jules_daniel@hotmail.com

0
peggysue415
peggysue415

Reply 12 years ago on Introduction

If you still have a copy of the template I would like a copy. Also, if you made the cake did you have any problems with the head staying attached? Thanks twocwolf@cox.net

0
msimon3
msimon3

Reply 12 years ago on Introduction

Some have mentioned a broken or droopy head, but I think it depends on the cake you use. We reinforced the head just to be sure it would not come apart during transport. To reinforce the head, try sticking 2-3 toothpicks from the top of the head down into the neck, then carefully remove the toothpicks as you serve the cake.

0
Nancita
Nancita

Reply 12 years ago on Introduction

Hi, My little boy will be 3 years old this saturday, could you please share with me your template, i'll apreciate it!!! Nancy my email nsoa@hotmail.com