My husband sells John Deere Tractors. Since we had a boy after 5 girls, it was a no-brainer to make a tractor cake for our son's 1st b-day. I looked here at coolest b-day cakes to get ideas. This cake was a combination of ideas that I found.
I baked cake in 2 bread loaf pans. After it had cooled, I left one whole, for the base. The second one, I cut about 1/3 for the cab and that left about 2/3 for the trailer. I put a bit of frosting on the base to attach the cab. Then I angled the base in a bit for the tractor.
The first thing that I did was ice the windows and the yellow stripes on the tractor. I just piped on icing and then used a knife and my finger dipped in cornstarch to flatten it nicely. I decided the star tip would be the easiest way to decorate the rest of the tractor, since I wasn't sure on getting a smooth finish. I used a black pipe cleaner to attach the trailer to the tractor.
The wheels are chocolate covered donuts that I piped some yellow icing in. I just used butter cream to attach them to the tractor. The hay bales are coconut covered marshmallows. It was a hit at the party and of course my husband loved it.
My dad was a John Deere engineer for 30 years and my family has been delighted that my now two-year old son loves John Deere tractors. For my son's birthday, I did a John Deere tractor cake with a hay wagon behind it.
I used standard loaf cakes for the tractor and trailer, and stacked two thick slices of one loaf for the cab, which I secured using wooden skewers. For the wheels, I used large chocolate donuts for the back wheels and small "donettes" for the front and trailer, and filled the centers with yellow frosting.
I stacked Rice Krispie treats for the hay bales on the wagon. I think I used 4 bottles of green food coloring to achieve John Deere green! A trick to get the really black frosting: I dyed two batches of white frosting green, and when I had completed all of the green parts, I added black dye. It was an easy mix to start with the dark green and get up to a nice rich black color.
I tossed coconut in a Ziplock with yellow and red to get the dirt road, and in green in a separate bag for the grass. My son was very surprised to see a tractor in the fridge on the morning of his party!
I made this tractor cake for my son's second birthday. I looked at images from his tractor books, then drew a pattern on newsprint. This is not too hard - you can trace around appropriately sized cups or bowls to make the wheels, then the rest is mainly straight lines.
I baked 4 cake layers in my usual round pans, then placed the pattern pieces on top and cut with a serrated knife. I covered a board in aluminum to use as a base, then I assembled the pieces together.
I made 3 batches of buttercream frosting: one uncolored, one chocolate and the third colored with red food dye. (It takes a surprising amount to make it red rather than pink.) I roughed up the frosting on the wheels to suggest heavy tread, then added some black outlines with a frosting tube. I used black licorice candy for the exhaust pipe, the steering wheel and the number two.
I think the best part was the addition of my son's photo in the driver's seat. We just cut this image out of an existing photo. The cake says "Auguri" rather than "Happy Birthday" because we live in Italy!