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modern shark party cake

This homemade shark birthday cake is sure to liven up your little one’s shark party!

Remember, you don’t have to be a pro baker or have a crazy budget to bring a cute party cake to life. A paper cake topper + clever garnishes like gummy sharks & brown sugar “sand” are here to save the day. 🥳

I 💙 Shortcuts

In order to minimize the workload, this tutorial uses boxed cake mix (which you can of course swap out with any fav recipe) + simple cake decorating ideas.

Even with these shortcuts, though, keep in mind that this is a 4-layer cake, and it will still take a few hours of your time to complete. Your cake will be super short/flat if you only use 2 layers… trust me, it’s worth the extra time here!

homemade shark party cake ideas

HOWEVER, if you’re in a rush or simply want to make life even EASIER 😅, you can always skip the baking part and order a pre-made cake with these colors, then add the DIY topper yourself.

If that’s the case, go ahead and skip on down to the Cake Topper Tutorial portion of this post. Here’s a sneak peek:

Shark Party Birthday Cake (4-Layer)

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You’ll Need:

  • 2 boxes of white cake mix (+ ingredients called for on the box)
  • food coloring: blue & orange
  • 4 tubs of white frosting
  • sprinkles
  • gummy sharks
  • brown sugar
  • cake board
  • round cake pans (I used 8″)
  • frosting spatula
  • spoon
  • large Ziploc or piping bag/tool

Instructions:

1. Tint one of the cake batters orange and leave the other one white (using egg whites only). Bake each cake in two round cake pans.

2. When cool, use a serrated knife to level the top of each cake layer if necessary, so they’ll stack evenly.

3. Tint 3-1/2 tubs of the frosting blue. Leave the remaining frosting white & set it aside.

4. Using the blue frosting, frost between the cake layers, stacking them as you go. Then, frost around the outside of the cake to create a smooth base layer (or “crumb coat”). Refrigerate for an hour. Note: You’ll need approximately 2 tubs of frosting for this step.

5. Next, apply a generous top layer of frosting. Use the back of a spoon to create “wavy peaks” in the frosting on top of the cake. Garnish with sprinkles.

6. Optional Accent Stripe: Using a Ziploc or piping bag/tool, pipe a thick band of white frosting all the way around the bottom of the cake. Then, use a spatula to flatten the band into a thick white stripe by holding the spatula in place and turning the cake as you go.

7. Decorate the cake plate with brown sugar “sand” and garnish the top of the cake with gummy sharks. (I recommend adding the gummy sharks after you’ve added the cake topper.)

P.S. Wanna make this EVEN EASIER? Order a pre-made cake from your grocery store bakery (or another favorite spot) and just add the cake topper & gummy sharks yourself! ⚡️


shark party cake topper

Shark Birthday Cake Topper

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Materials:

DIY shark cake topper materials

Instructions:

1. Personalize & download the cake topper. It’s available in my full Shark Party Collection or a la carte.

2. Print your downloaded file and cut out the pieces. (You can print at home or at Staples, FedEx Office, etc.)

shark topper tutorial - part 1

3. If using party straws, slip the wooden dowels into the straws. Hot glue the shark and surfboard pieces to the dowel rods/party straws, and glue the fish to the wooden skewers.

4. Insert the shark+surfboard piece into the cake, then add the fish around it. Garnish the cake with gummy sharks.

shark topper tutorial - part 2

Done! 🙌

Here’s a closer look at the finished topper. I glued the shark close to the surfboard so that it looks like he’s “holding it” with one fin. 😉

shark party cake topper

Enjoy! 😋

Shark Birthday Party Printables

My Shark Birthday printables are available in our store. They make it so EASY to add pro designer style & personalization to your event. It’s like instant branding for your party! 🙌 Click here to shop now.

Shark Party Printables