My son has been asking for a Lightning cake for months, so when his birthday started getting closer, I began looking online for some ideas. My first decision was to do the simple round cake and just put his little Lightning and Mater dinky cars on top. But I was feeling extra ambitious and decided to have a crack at a 3D cake for the first time.
I’m pretty impressed with the way this Lightning McQueen birthday cake turned out, and it was fairly (not totally) simple to do.
I started out with a 9X9 cake and then froze it. Once it was frozen, I cut about 4 inches away from the cake to make the body of Lightning and added another inch or so to the rear end. I used a portion I’d cut off for his “head” and then used some scraps to build up the rear and front a bit. And then I cut the body into a bit of an hourglass shape, the way that Lightning’s car body goes.
I used MMF, but this was super difficult. Because he’s so darn red, I had to use so much red food coloring, and the fondant ended up a little bit crumbly and dry. This is partially because I’m still ironing out exactly how to get MMF to the ideal consistency, and it doesn’t help when you have to add a half a gallon of red food coloring (I’m exaggerating. It wasn’t THAT much.)
I used a paper template for the lightning bolts on his sides and cut the numbers out with a template too. The wheels are just Rice Krispy treats that I molded into circles and covered with black fondant.