Wednesday, October 27, 2010

{Alligator Cake} Tutorial

With it being Breast Cancer Awareness month and all I thought that it would be a great time to share my how to for making an AMAZING {Pink} alligator cake. I created this for Averee's first birthday because every little girl deserves a pink gator for her birthday!

Since a first birthday is essentially the last of a babies first (what you think I'm being dramatic?!?) I wanted needed something fantastic...something incredible...I mean my little girl was turning 1! This was my baby's right of passage into toddlerhood! We already knew that the theme was anything and everything Pink...which I really dont' think you can go wrong with. But I was stumped on what to do for her cake. Finally it hit me....her most favorite thing in the whole world is her stuffed alligator so it made sense that she needed an alligator cake and well the pink part was just an obvious. I went to about 1000000 bakeries to ask them to design this for me. They either laughed or said it would be at least $75. Yikes! So I figured what the heck...I'll give it a shot and worst case is it turns out least Av wouldn't remember it!

To start you will need:
Mix boxes of cake as directed. I did this is 3 separate bowls so that I could precisely measure. Place one mix in bundt baking pan, one in 9 x 13 baking pan and use last one to make a batch of cupcakes. Bake and then let cool.

Once cake has cooled you can begin forming your alligator. Starting with the bundt cake cut it into 3rds. These 3 pieces will form the body of your cake. Place them together on the center of your board (I covered by board in aluminum foil first) to form a spiral (see photo below). Next take your 9 x 13 sheet cake. This is going to become your alligators head and tail. Cut cake into a triangle with a flat top (for the nose). Place remaining pieces aside. Place alligator "head" (the flat triangle) onto board. Use remaining pieces to form tail. I just kept cutting them down to create smaller pieces to finish the tail. I also used two small rectangle pieces to place on top of the alligator head to create a 3D effect for the eyes. Next take 6 cupcakes. Use 4 to create the legs and use 2 as the eyes. For the eyes use toothpicks to hold in place. Here is what your cake should look like once assembled (this is without the cupcake eyes).

Now comes the fun part! Take your decorators icing and coloring gel and mix your icing to desired color (our goal was bright pink!). Be sure to save some in plain white to create the eyes of your alligator. Now transfer pink icing into decorators bag with star tip. Begin icing! If you are like me I had never used a decorators bag before so I practiced on a plate first. It is honestly super easy!

After the entire alligator was iced I took my mini marshmallows and cut them on a diagonal. This makes the pieces pointy. I simply placed these around the alligators mouth, feet and face to create teeth, claws and nostrils.

Last, I look gummy fish and cut them down to make the alligators eye balls.

Here is the finished product in all her pink glory! Pretty awesome right!

And here's the birthday girl....I think it is safe to say that she LOVED her pink alligator! :)

(Photo courtesy of Lindsay F.)

I had so much fun creating this alligator for my daughter's first birthday and I am super excited about coming up with more cake baking ideas for her future birthdays! It was a little time consuming but a lot of fun (plus if you make your own cake you get to lick the bowl....and the icing! Yum!)

Here are a few tips:

When sure not to wear white. Or maybe actually I would recommend it...I was completely covered from head to toe in pink....including my white shorts...but I guess that's what bleach is for.

Freeze your cake prior to cutting or icing. This was the first time I tried this and let me tell you everyone LOVED it and couldn't get over how moist the cake was. The party was Saturday so I baked the cakes Thursday night, wrapped them in saran wrap and then foil and placed in the freezer over night. Friday afternoon I pulled them out and immediately got to work. It made the cutting process super easy because the cake did not crumble. And like I said....the cake was delicious!

If you have a large board available it will make transferring your alligator easier. The alligator was presented on the cake boards but I made the cake at my home and needed to get it to my parents home (where the party was at). My husband happened to have a large board in the garage that we slid the alligator/cake board onto and placed into the car. It made it so that we didn't need to worry about the cake board bending from the weight of the gator.
Have fun! If you haven't learned by now I find beauty in the "imperfect." I think that when something has a few flaws it is what gives that item it's character. So go ahead and try something out....if it doesn't work out oh least you can say you tried!

I would love to know any ideas you have for creative baking!

This alligator can of course be made in any color you choose. I wish there were more photos but this was before I decided to start blogging my ideas. If you would like more tips or have any questions please feel free to contact me at Michelle _thereallifemom(at) Thanks for stopping by!


  1. That's AWESOME! Reminds me of Steele Magnolias! Love it!
    Thanks for linking up to Making It With Allie! I can't wait to see what you have for next week!

  2. That is one adorable cake (AND BABY!!!)
    Thanks for sharing!!

  3. Thanks ladies (and Jami...I think the baby is pretty adorable too!)

    Allie that is sooo funny! I never thought about Steele Magnolias when I made this cake but you are totally right! I love it..esp since that is one of my all time favorite movies! Thanks for stopping by!


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