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Coolest Pirate Birthday Cakes and How-To Tips

My sister made this cake. She used fondant and took her time to weave the wood on the ship. My son gave her the idea of pirate cakes for his sixth birthday.

More Pirate Birthday Cakes

Pirate birthday cake by Tabitha McM., Indianapolis, IN

Treasure Island Pirate Birthday Cake

This pirate birthday cake is a simple sheet cake with crumbled graham crackers and brown sugar sand buttercream frosting .Details and plastic coins around the edges for my twins’ birthday party.

Pirate birthday cake by Jenna G., Greensboro, NC

Treasure Island Pirate Birthday Cake

I got some GREAT ideas from this site and tweaked a few things to make our pirate birthday work! I used a basic butter cake recipe baked in a 9×13 pan tinted cream cheese icing (my son’s favorite!) blue for the ocean and crushed graham crackers and brown sugar over the plain icing for the sand.

I covered a pizza pan with tin foil and continued the frosting “scene” onto the pan. The treasure chest was made from graham crackers and inside was M&M’s and colored sprinkles (or jewels)! And I purchased a small pirate from Play mobile to stand on top of the cake along with a palm tree that my son had from another set.

This was my first attempt at decorating a cake and I was very happy with the results ~ so was the Pirate birthday boy and the guests!

Pirate birthday cake by Criss M., Hanau, Germany

Treasure Island Pirate Birthday Cake

The pirate birthday island cake came from ideas from your site. A big thanks to Cami F. and her pirate birthday island cake for inspiring me. I used crushed graham crackers for the sand instead of brown sugar and just used a few pirates, coins and some sharks to decorate. I made the trees using small pretzel sticks and construction paper.

Pirate birthday cake by Danielle B., Bountiful, UT

Treasure Island Pirate Birthday Cake

I got my idea for this Pirate birthday cake, here, on this website, but since I have twins, I always make a cake for each of them, as well as one for the guests, so I decided to make them each a “treasure island” cake (this was my own idea), to go along with the pirate birthday theme.

To make the pirate birthday cake, I used 2 round cakes baked, cooled, and cut in half (I used 8-inch round pans). The four halves were then “glued” together with frosting, then wrapped in plastic, and placed in the freezer for an hour. Once firm, I took it out the freezer, unwrapped it, and inserted two straws into the four layers, to give it more stability.

Trim the remaining part of the straws, so that they are hidden in the cake. Then, I cut a small slice off the bottom of the frozen cake, to make “the boat” sit flat. I frosted the whole ship with chocolate frosting. I used a butter knife to make it look like boards on the sides. I used grated Hershey bar shavings to give the sides of the ship more of a board like texture.

I used a Skor bar for the “plank”, Pepperidge Farm, Pirouette cookies for the “rails”, glued together with frosting. I used Whoppers for cannonballs, to sit on the deck. I used foil wrapped Rolos for gold on the deck, and unwrapped Rolos as cannons sticking out of the side of the ship. Then I stuck the candles into the Rolos, and applied them to the side of the ship.

The sails, I drew freehand, and used bamboo skewers to mount them on the “mast”. I decorated the sails with pirate stickers; I got them from Oriental Trading Company. The pirate characters, on all 3 cakes, are “Pirate Toob toys”, that I got at Store 4 knowledge online.

The treasure island cakes were baked, using a glass Pyrex dish I had at home, to get the correct cake shape for an island. The coconut trees, number candles, plastic sea creatures, the blue cellophane wrapping paper (used for the water, that I placed around the cakes), and gold coins, for the treasure chests, I got at Zurcher’s Party supplies online.

The clear plastic and gold-hinged treasure chests, and green, blue, red, and purple plastic jewels to go inside, I bought online. I used the chest, set on top of the cake, to measure the size of hole to cut, to fit the chest in. Then, I pulled out the piece of cake that I cut, and inserted the treasure chests; to give the effect of buried treasure.

I also filled the treasure chests with Jewel Rings, and pewter looking Skull Rings, that I also got at the Oriental Trading Company. Next I used Butter Cream Frosting, to frost the cake green on top, and I used some left over chocolate frosting for the bottom-frosting layer.

I used crushed graham crackers for sand, on and around the cake. I used more bamboo skewers, with hand drawn flags, and more of the pirate stickers, to make the pirate flags, and then hand wrote their names on each of them. They were a huge hit at the party, the boys just loved them, and I had a blast making them!

Treasure Island Pirate Birthday Cake
Treasure Island Pirate Birthday Cake

Pirate birthday cake by Cristina W., Magna, UT

Treasure Island Pirate Birthday Cake

I filled a glass baking dish with blue Jell-O and gummy sharks. I baked a dome shaped cake and frosted it with chocolate icing. I sprinkled graham cracker crumbs over the top to look like sand. The dashes and X are black gel icing. I decorated it with a pirate toy and treasure chest filled with chocolate gold coins.

Before placing the cake island afloat on the Jell-O Ocean, I scooped out a little dent in the Jell-O to give it more stability.

I also placed more gummy sharks in the middle where the island was going to be so that the Jell-O would be firmer in that spot.

Treasure Island Pirate Birthday Cake

This was one of the simplest Pirate birthday cakes I’ve ever made but it was a nightmare to transport. Because it was floating on top of Jell-O, every time we turned a corner or stopped the cake kept going. It bounced around a lot too. I would recommend making this cake on-site.

Pirate birthday cake by Michelle F., Mullins, SC

Treasure Island Pirate Birthday Cake

Read Michelle’s “Party-Tale”: The story behind the cake…

Pirate birthday cake by Kim S., Kamloops, British Columbia

Treasure Island Pirate Birthday Cake

This is one of those pirate birthday cakes that was fun and easy and perfect for my 4 year old as he doesn’t like cake but loved all the candies on top!

I started with a 10″ round cake (use your favorite recipe, white or chocolate) and I also used a 6″ stainless bowl to get the shape for the ‘island’. The ‘treasure chests’ are made from graham wafers and ‘glued’ together with icing. I also used graham crumbs for ‘sand’.

The trees are rolled up construction paper with candied ‘leaves’. To fill the chests, any candies will do & the more creative the better.

Pirate birthday cake by John and Toni F., Allons, Tennessee

Treasure Island Pirate Birthday Cake

We made this Pirate birthday cake by using a square cake pan and icing most of the cake top with a yellow icing. We then covered the yellow icing with granulated brown sugar for sand.

We used a store-bought ship that my husband painted to look like a pirate ship. He placed it on blue icing and took some thin white icing with a small writing tip to make waves and water. We also dug a small hole out of the cake and made a pile of the brown sugar for the place the treasure chest had been found.

Treasure Island Pirate Birthday Cake

For an added look we put on some plants (store bought and icing made). This was a really fun Pirate birthday cake to make.

Pirate birthday cake by Donna T., Ozark, AL

Treasure Island Pirate Birthday Cake

Ever since my son’s second Birthday, he stopped wanting “ordinary” Birthday kid cakes. Each of his kid cakes has to be cool and unique. This year for his 9th, we did the Pirate theme.

I baked a Shipwreck Island cake complete with a spooky island and waterfall and even a wrecked ship with pirates looking for the gold. I used a large sheet cake pan for the base and then baked two cakes in loaf pans which I used to make the raised portions of the island. I sculpted out the waterfall and used canned icings and piping gels for the water.

For the ship, I used a chocolate cake mix which I baked in 2-layer round pans. I filled and iced the cake with chocolate icing and then carved it into a boat shape and stood the slices on end and placed it wrecking into the island.

You can complete your creation by adding plastic pirate figures, trees, gold-wrapped Rolo candy booty, Pepperidge Farm Pirouette cookies for cannons, and gold-wrapped pirate chocolate coins. Even the sails on the ship are edible rice paper. And don’t forget the skeleton! No self-respecting Pirate’s Island is complete without one.

Here are the detailed instructions:

You’ll need:

  • 1 baked 11 x 15-inch sheet cake
  • 1 loaf cake
  • 1 mini-loaf cake
  • 6 cups pure white or decorator icing
  • Yellow and green decorator spray
  • Blue piping gel
  • Edible blue glitter
  • Plastic pirates, trees, skeletons, boats (optional)
  • Rolo gold wrapped candy

First of all, I started with an 11 x 15-inch sheet cake for the base of the island. A smaller sheet could be used for a smaller party. I then placed a loaf cake on top to make the raised/hilly portion of the island and a smaller loaf cake on the right side.

I cut through the top of the larger loaf forming a trench down to the bottom of the sheet cake to make a waterfall effect. Round off the right corner of the loaf and trim off the top layer of the bottom-right corner of the cake where the waterfall joins, forming a pool. Ice the cake with decorator or pure white icing.

I used a lot of icing because you want to spread it around and make it look like water and sand, and because it’s gooey good! Next, I sprayed the island with yellow and green decorator spray, leaving the waterfall and pool area white. I used blue piping gel which I let ooze down the waterfall and into the pool area. Then I sprinkled on some edible blue glitter to make it extra shiny.

Add trees, pirates and skeletons to your island and of course a treasure booty! I found the plastic pirates and trees and even the small boat online. The final touch is a green shell border around the base.

Now for the ship!

You’ll need:

  • 2 baked 9-inch round cake layers
  • 3 to 4 cups chocolate icing
  • Chocolate wafer sticks
  • 3hocolate wafer rolls
  • Three 10-inch wooden skewers
  • Malted mik balls
  • Rolo gold-wrapped candies
  • Root beer barrels
  • Peppermint sticks
  • Candles
  • Plastic pirates

I baked two 9-inch round chocolate cakes. After cooling them, you cut them in half and stand them on him so that you have the rounded sides all facing the same direction. Spread a thin layer of chocolate icing between them to keep them together. You will have 4 layers. You can use two drinking straws to pierce through the layers and hold them together if you wish but I didn’t do this.

Place the Pirate birthday cake on the right edge of the island in the pool, as if the ship is crashing into the island. Cover the cake with chocolate icing and use a butter knife to create planking lines. Use icing to anchor wafer sticks along the sides of the ship for gunwales along the edge of the deck. Use wafer rolls for cannons. I cut sails from edible rice paper which I purchased online, but you can also cut sails from regular paper. Slip them onto wooden skewers and set into place on the cake. Add malted milk ball candy, plenty of Rolo gold booty, and root beer barrels if you can find them. Place candles in the cannons. Use peppermint sticks around the deck if you like. Add your pirates and ARRGH!! You’re ready!!!

Pirate birthday cake by Cami F., Middleburg, FL

Treasure Island Pirate Birthday Cake

This Pirate birthday cake was for my son’s 5th birthday.

It’s an 11 X 14 pan. I use two cake mixes. The ships are built with Graham crackers and pretzels with paper sails attached with dots of icing.

The water is made with Wilton Piping Gel tinted blue – the land is covered with brown sugar for the sand effect. The palm trees are pretzels with Royal Icing tinted green for the leaves.

The Royal Icing is awesome!! The skull and cross bones are made with that as well.

Royal Icing Recipe:

  • 3 Tablespoons Wilton Mirangue Powder
  • 1 lb Powered sugar (4 cups)
  • 6 Tablespoons warm water

Beat all ingredients until icing forms peaks (7-10 minutes at low speed with heavy duty mixer, 10-12 minutes at high speed with hand held mixer) Recipe makes three cups

Wonderful stuff!

I used chocolate coins around the Pirate birthday cake for accents.

Pirate birthday cake by Dawn Y., Whitehall, PA

Treasure Island Pirate Birthday Cake

For this Pirate birthday cake, I first layered two 11″x14″ cakes with icing between.  Then I iced the whole cake with white icing.  The bakery in our local grocery store will sell their buttercream icing by the pound, so that is the kind of icing I use.  This cake took approximately three pounds of icing.  Now I was ready to begin decorating the cake.

First I added the rock islands.  I bought the candy rocks at a gourmet candy store in our mall.  They were candy covered chocolate balls in colors of pebbles and worked great for the appearance I wanted to achieve.  Then I started with the water.  For the water I used piping gel (found at my local cake and candy store) which I added blue food coloring to.  When you open the piping gel it is clear and you can color it whatever color you need to.  I used a knife to give the water a wavy appearance, and by swirling the knife in with the white icing, it gave the variations of the colors of water and waves.

Next I added the beach, for which I used granulated brown sugar.  You could also use graham cracker crumbs. For the grassy part of the island I dyed some of the white icing green and used an icing tip used for creating grass and left it long and wild looking.  The boat I found at a local craft store and I had to assemble and paint it, which worked great because I wrote “Happy Birthday XXXXX” on the side of it as the name of the boat.

On the bottom I signed the boat and dated it for my son to keep.  I also found the treasure box at the same craft store and had to paint that myself too.  I added chocolate coins inside the treasure chest and around the cake.  The palm trees were pretzel rods as trunks and I cut out the top of the trees from green construction paper and then wrapped the top around the pretzel trunk.