Coolest 4th Birthday Pirate Ship Cake
For my son’s 4th Birthday he wanted a pirate party so decided to make him a pirate ship cake set on the ocean with an island/treasure chest. Since it was my other son’s 2nd birthday as well, I had to be aware of size when creating the cake and be sure not to make way too much.
My son wanted a blue cake. His dad’s birthday was the previous month and I made him a red velvet cake, so my 4 year old decided he wanted blue which pretty much limited flavor to white for the purist blue cake.
Steps for Making This Pirate Ship Cake
- I made the ocean in my biggest cookie sheet pan lined with parchment paper and greased. Since the cake was so big and thin, it was rather challenging to flip but I managed. I frosted it with homemade butter cream frosting also dyed blue and patted it with the back of a spoon to give the look of waves. Then I lightly sprayed with a blue frosting spray for extra depth.
- I baked a 9×13 blue cake and one in my straightest breadpan. After they cooled I cut each in half.
- I cut the top half of the 9×13 in half again to make a 3rd layer in the back and cut out a square from the top layer so the ship would have a rail.
- I stacked the 3 layers of the back together with frosting between each and then frosted the front to add the bread pan halves to make a V front.
- I trimmed all of the pieces to look more like a ship prior to frosting.
- I used the triangles I had cut off the front pieces for a third layer for the front.
- The middle of my ship was the only part without 3 layers. There I placed 2 thin scraps for side rails.
- I covered all the cake in a thin layer of frosting and let it sit in the fridge overnight.
- The next day I did another thin layer of frosting and then covered the ship in brown fondant (homemade) and I scraped the sides with a toothpick to look like wood.I then painted it brown to give more of an appearence of wood.
- I planned to use the round tops of the trimmed cakes for the island that you “always” get and my cakes baked perfectly flat for first time ever so I had no trimmings.
- I lucked out because I had made my other son’s cake the previous day and saved his scraps, so was able to use those for the island.
- I lightly frosted the island and then covered it in Graham cracker crumbs.
- I put pirouettes on the edges of the ship for a railing, used some of a Hershey bar for a plank which I attached sticking some toothpicks into the cake to help stabilize the plank while staying out of site.
- I used an Oreo cookie with a toothpick for the steering wheel and put the captain there.
- I stacked some Whoppers in a couple spots in the ship for cannon balls and used Rolos for cannons, four on each side because he’s 4.
- I put in a shish kabob stick with a paper sail attached and put a pirouette above the sail to help stabilize the lookout spot which I used a piece of an ice cream cone for.
- I put a tiny soldier tied in red fondant “rope” on the plank. It was the only toy I could find that was the right size.
- I made 4 (again since he turned 4) shark fins out of fondant circling where the soldier would fall after walking the plank.
- I put a pretzel stick sticking out of the front of the ship.
- For the palm tree I used a pretzel rod and green fondant. I made a rough circle and cut slices out of it. Then, the parts I left, I cut little cuts into and seperated slightly for palm tree branches and let it dry hanging over a glass overnight.
- I put the tree in the island with a few Whoppers next to it as coconuts.
- I placed four pirates around on the ship and island since 4 was the magic number.
- I made the treasure chest out of graham crackers and a scrap of cake in the middle to help fill the void and covered it in fondant.
- I decided to have the lid closed with treasure falling out the front which I made out of balls of different colored fondant for rubies diamonds etc.
- Lastly I put a crocodile in the water nearing land.
This was my second decorative cake and everyone raved about how awesome it was.
On the invites I did for the kids I wrote in pirate jargon and made it look old by baking in coffee and crinkling and burning the edges. I delivered them in bottles.
The kids all had eye patches, bandanas, and little treasure chests to fill with the “buried treasure” from the table.