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7 incredibly easy cake decorating ideas for kids’ birthday parties

Making the cake for your child’s next birthday can be the icing on, well, the cake. Sometimes a homemade cake is the perfect touch whether you’re hosting the party at home or at a venue. Baking and icing the cake is the simple part. All you have to do is follow the recipe and put it in the oven.

Decorating the cake is another thing, especially if you’re lacking some inner Martha Stewart. Don’t let that scare you off from making a special birthday cake for your child’s party. There are plenty of easy cake decorating ideas for kids that are delightfully delicious and look inviting. So, let’s dig in!

Simple birthday cake for kids
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Cake decorating ideas for kids

1. Go retro

Kids aren’t fussy, especially when it comes to their birthday cake. For a quick and simple decorating idea, ice the cake with the icing of choice before topping it off with chocolate or rainbow sprinkles. You can apply the sprinkles randomly. For a sprinkle number, use a piece of parchment paper to make a template. Place it on top of the cake and fill the cutout with sprinkles. Take it away and you have a sprinkle number signifying your child’s age. You can also use this neat hack to make other sprinkle designs for a birthday cake. Cut out a design from parchment paper and use it to create a fun sprinkle accent for the cake top.

2. Cookie Monster

Cake and cookies are two favorites of the kiddos, and that means a cookie cake a perfect pick for a birthday party. Cookie Monster ice cream is a hit with kids and so is a Cookie Monster cake. Make a bowl of blue frosting by using vanilla icing and blue food coloring. If you prefer pre-made, blue icing is easy to find online or in your favorite supermarket. Ice the cake. Then crush up a bunch of the birthday kid’s favorite cookies by hand or use a masher. Sprinkle a thick coating of crushed cookie bits all along the top of the cake. Allow the cake time to harden in the refrigerator before serving.

3. M&M’S cake

For a yummy and low-stress cake decorating idea, ice the cake with your child’s favorite icing. Use M&M’S to form a colorful and tasty border around the edge of the cake. Use a masher to crumble a bunch of M&M’S. Sprinkle the crushed M&M’S all along the top of the cake inside the border. Add some to the sides if desired. Allow the candies to set in the refrigerator before singing “Happy Birthday.” If nut allergies aren’t an issue, you can substitute Reese’s Pieces for M&M’S.

4. Hershey’s Kisses cake

Another quick and delicious cake decorating idea is a Hershey’s Kisses cake. After you ice the birthday cake, create an inviting border around the top edge using Hershey’s Kisses. Then write a birthday greeting on the cake using sparkle gel. Sparkle gel is readily available online or in most grocery stores on the baking aisle. Be sure to let the cake sit in the refrigerator for a bit before serving, to allow the Hershey’s Kisses to adhere.

5. Sixlet cake

If you’re not sure what a sixlet is, you’re not alone. Of course, you’ve probably seen sixlets and even eaten a few of the colorful chocolate-covered candies at weddings and showers. The round candy comes in all different colors and is a super easy way to glam up a cake. Sixlets are available in stores and online. Use the sixlets to decorate a cake by placing them around the edges. Create a pattern matching the party’s color theme or go eclectic. You can even use the sixlets to create the birthday number.

5. Sunflower cake

For a simple cake decorating idea on the sunny side, ice the cake using vanilla icing. Make a circle in the center using chocolate chips. Next, edge the outside of the circle using yellow sixlets. Finally, create sunflower petals using lemon fruit slice candy. For an added touch, take green fruit roll-ups and cut out leaves to garnish the cake plate.

6. Gummy bear delight

Gummy bears are another kid favorite and a cake decorating idea that’s quite bearable. Ice the cake from top to bottom and place gummy bears all over the sides and top of the cake.

Decorating cake with sprinkles
New Africa/Shutterstock

Other easy cake decorating ideas for kids

  • Cereal cake – Top the cake with Fruity Pebbles, Trix, or any other sugary cereal the birthday child loves and parents avoid buying.
  • Candy cane cake – Crush peppermint candies or candy canes to sprinkle on the sides and top of the birthday cake.
  • Jelly bean cake – Jelly beans aren’t just for Easter. Make a colorful pattern with the jelly beans or press the candy into the frosting to make a border or all over the top of the cake.
  • Cookie cake – Crumble up the cookies of choice and sprinkle all over the sides and top of the cake.

Final thoughts

Not everyone can decorate a cake like the contestants on the “Great British Bake Off,” and that’s OK. It does take a special creative talent to make cakes that look too gorgeous to eat, but that doesn’t mean you can’t decorate a rockin’ cake for your child’s next birthday. These easy cake decorating ideas for kids’ birthday cakes are quick, simple, and delicious. When it comes to kids, birthday party cakes don’t need to be fancy, just yummy.

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Dawn Miller
Dawn Miller began her professional life as an elementary school teacher before returning to her first love, writing. In…
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