I made this homemade choo choo train birthday cake for my twin boys 5th Birthday, they are long time train lovers. I was going to have a cake made but after looking at this website I decided I should give making one a try.
The train itself is made from confetti cake in loaf pans. I then shaped the cars by cutting the loaf cakes. Some I sliced off to make flatbeds to hold candles, one I hollowed out for a coal car and two with rounded tops I left as passenger cars. Under each car are two supports of cake in the front and back to elevate the cars off the track.
The engine and caboose required three supports. For the engine I baked cake batter in a small can to make the rounded part and then pieced the rest together using two loaf cakes until I had a shape I could work with. The Caboose also took two loaf cakes. I stuck the pieces together using butter cream frosting and then froze them.
The base of the cake is three 9 X 13 cakes, 2 chocolate and 1 vanilla. I did not think that just the train would be enough cake for my party attendees. The homemade choo choo train birthday cake ended up being about 40“ long by 9” wide which allowed for a curving train track. To make it easier to transport and store I put it on two 20” boards.
The decorating was time consuming, about 8 hours or so. I first put on a white base layer and then used gray for stone and black for the track. Once my track was finished I began laying my train cars on. I tried to decorate any hard to reach areas before placing them on the cake. This was especially important as I began hooking the cars close together with toothpicks colored black. I had to frost the ends before laying them on the track.
I decided I did not want to use a star tip, but just used a basic writing tip to fill in all the areas. I then used a technique I recently learned where you put cornstarch on a finger and pat the frosting to take out the line detail. The cornstarch keeps it from sticking to your finger.
To finish off the homemade choo choo train birthday cake I made gray boulders and some grass. I then filled the coal tender with M&M’s the day of the party and placed gummy worms on the flatbed. It took about 16 hours to bake, shape and decorate but overall it was fun to make and my boys loved it. I almost hated to cut it! So much work and gone so quickly!