I had SO MUCH FUN making the cake for Hudson's 4th birthday!!! I caught a glimpse of a rainbow explosion cake somewhere online and found a YouTube video showing how to make one. Hudson happened to also see said video and right away shouted, "I want a cake like that one!" So....I made one! I ended up using the Rainbow Explosion cake kit from Williams and Sonoma. Now that I've made one successfully, I know you don't really need a kit. You just need several 6" cake pans like these, a 2" biscuit or pastry cutter, a cake mix of your choice, food coloring in colors of your choice, lots of sprinkles and lots of butter, powdered sugar and cream cheese. The kit is supposed to come with everything you need, but unfortunately, my kit had no food coloring. After a way too long phone call with Williams & Sonoma....this situation resulted in my mom and I driving to another store to buy our own food coloring. Thankfully - all ended well. But I suggest opening your kit and making sure everything is there BEFORE starting to make the cake. If you ever use a kit that is. Oops.
This cake was much easier to make than it looks and the kids reaction is totally worth it.
Make your cake according to the recipe and separate it into 6 bowls, each with about 3/4 cup of batter. Choose the colors you want your cake to be...and mix in the corresponding food coloring into each bowl. Then pour each bowl into a separate cake pan and bake at 350 for 15 minutes.
When they're done, cool the pans for ten minutes...then remove the cakes and let set till completely cooled.
Next take your 2" biscuit cutter and cut a hole in the center of each layer EXCEPT FOR THE TOP!!!! <---that is very important!!!
Mix up about 3 1/2 cups of your favorite buttercream or cream cheese frosting. Use 1 cup of it to put your cake together, stacking the five layers with holes. Anchor the cake to your plate with a little frosting under the bottom layer and continue to build up. Fill the holes with a fun sprinkle mix of your choice, then place the 1 layer WITHOUT a hole on top. Using 1 more cup of frosting, frost a crumb coat on your cake...which is just a very thin layer of frosting all over. Then place the cake in the fridge for about 20 minutes. This step is important and will make finishing the construction of your cake much easier!
Remove the cake from the fridge and apply the remaining frosting all over your cake. Place your cake plate on a cookie sheet with a lip. Pour the sprinkles of your choice into a bowl. Scoop up an handful of sprinkles and apply them to the cake in a sweeping upward motion. The sprinkles that don't stick to the cake, can just be swept back into the bowl and used again! This step was scary to me but it works quite well and is pretty easy! Once you have the entire cake covered in sprinkles, it can go back in the fridge until an hour before serving. When you cut into the cake to serve it...the candy and sprinkles pouring out is such a fun effect. This is the only cake I've ever made where every single bite of it was eaten and I was left with an empty cake plate!!
Hudson's party was so fun.
The cake was a small part of the safari-themed...backyard water games fun!! The kids enjoyed playing in the wading pool and sprinkler, throwing water balloons, whacking a piñata and eating yummy rainbow cake!
The other proud accomplishment at the party, besides my sweet 4-year old are the fun balloon banners I made thanks to the help of my family blowing up LOTS of balloons....and Amazon.
These were pretty simple thanks to some balloon tape and different sizes of latex balloons. No helium needed! Just start sliding the balloon knots into the tape and you get a pretty awesome looking banner pretty easily!!
What fun ideas do you have for birthday parties that look harder than they really are?! Please share - I'll need more ideas come our next birthday party!!