Your kid is going to absolutely flip when they see this eye catching homemade paw patrol cake. With a few tools and ingredients you can knock this one together in an hour, and blow your kid’s mind for their next birthday.
Tools you’ll need
- Cake Layers: For this cake I’ve used this chocolate cake recipe. However any flavor will work. Look for a cake with a reasonably dense texture, as a light fluffy cake may sink under the weight of 3 layers of cake and buttercream.
- Buttercream: I’ve used Swiss Meringue Buttercream for this Paw Patrol Cake. It’s the same recipe used as the base in my Chocolate Cake Pizza frosting. However, if you prefer the taste of an alternative frosting, such as American Buttercream, Italian Meringue Buttercream, or Ermine Frosting, please go ahead and use this instead.
- Cake Turn Table
- Tall Cake Scraper
- Offset Spatula
- Tylose Powder: You will kneed this into your fondant so that it dries out very hard and is resistant to softening once the decorations have been applied to the cake. This ingredient is optional, but highly recommended – especially if you live in a humid climate.
- Piping Gel: You’ll use this to adhere your edible images onto the fondant.
- Food Color: Look for gel food color, as it is highly concentrated which will allow you to get these rich, bright primary colors.
- Cocoa Powder
- Balloons: I bought this Paw Patrol balloon garland for the party, and used 4 of the balloons for the cake.
- Glue Dots: The balloon garland kit included these. However if you purchase a different set of balloons that does not come with glue dots you could use double sided sticky tape or purchase glue dots like these.
- 1 x Straw
- Piping Bag
- Rolling Pin
- Corn Flour
- X-acto Knife
- Edible Paw Patrol Printed Images: See instructions below for how to achieve this look.
How to find/make the edible images
The paw patrol characters and the text on this cake have been printed onto an edible sheet, and adhered to a layer of fondant. To make similar characters yourself.
- Source Images: I found these paw patrol images on google. Find your own by looking for images that are “PNG” files or have a “transparent background”. You can also make simple edits to the images (like removing a background), using a design program – like Canva. There is a free version with basic features, but for more advanced tools (like background remover), you’ll need to upgrade to the paid version (although they often offer a free trial).
- Personalized Paw Patrol Shield: I made this using “Archie turns 4” sign in Canva. First, I found a suitable image of a shield on google (search for) “Paw Patrol Shield”. Then I added the text using Canva. The exact fonts I used were “Luckiest Guy” (for the “Archie”) and “Alfa Slab One” (for the “turns 4”).
- Print the images: Once you have all the images you need, arrange them onto a single A4 document and print them onto an A4 icing sheet. Many cake decorating stores offer this as a service, and will mail the edible images to you. I used Cakers Warehouse for this service.
How to make this easy Paw Patrol cake
Time needed: 2 hours
How to make a Paw Patrol Birthday Cake
- Prepare the edible images
Start by preparing your edible images. First remove the plastic backing. Then using a pair of scissors, carefully cut around each of the characters. Be careful to avoid touching the images with your fingers, so as to not accidently smudge the ink.
- Prepare the fondant.
Take a small amount of fondant and kneed it together to soften it. Next kneed in a little tylose powder (refer to the packet for instructions about how much to add). Once the tylose powder has been incorporated, use a rolling pin to roll the fondant out to be about 1/8 of an inch thick.
Top tip: putting a fine layer of corn flour on your rolling pin and surface will help stop the fondant from sticking to any surfaces as you roll it out.
- Stick the images to the fondant
Flip the edible images over so that the picture side is facing your bench, and use a food safe paint brush to apply a thin layer of piping gel to the reverse side of the image. Make sure to cover the whole side in piping gel (so the edges stick nicely). Then carefully flip the image back over and place it (sticky side down) on the fondant. Use an X-acto knife to cut the fondant around the image.
- Let the images dry
Place the fondant on a flat surface and allow it to air dry until it is completely hard. This may take a couple of hours, depending on the climate of where you live, and whether or not you used tylose powder.
- Prepare your balloon topper
Half fill the balloons with air, and use the glue dots to stick them together. Then use the glue dots to stick the bunch of balloons to your straw.
- Prepare your cake
This step is easiest if your cake has been chilled in the fridge, as cold cake is less likely to break during assembly then soft warm cake.
Start by placing your cake board on your turn table. Use a dollop of buttercream to stick your first layer of cake to the board. Then spread a layer of buttercream on top of the first layer of cake. Next place the second cake layer on top of the buttercream. Continue layering buttercream and cake until all the cake layers are stacked atop one another. Put the cake in the fridge or freezer to chill before doing the next step.
Once the cake has been chilled, cover it in a crumb coat. Apply a layer of buttercream over the entire cake and run your cake scraper over the sides of the cake and on top to make the sides smooth. Then place it in the fridge or freezer to set the buttercream.
Apply one final coat of buttercream, then chill the cake once more while you color your buttercream.
For a video of how to construct a layer cake check out this tutorial by British Girl Bakes
- Color the buttercream
Divide the remaining buttercream into 4 bowls and add food dye to each so that you have one batch of black, one blue, one yellow and one red.
Top tip: If you are struggling to get a deep color, heating your buttercream will cause the color to become more intense. Take some of the buttercream out of the bowl and heat it in the microwave, then stir this back into the remaining buttercream. The color should be considerably deeper.
It can be difficult to dye white buttercream black using food dye alone. To get a rich black color, start by adding cocoa powder to the buttercream so that it is brown, then add the black food color.
- Decorate the cake
Use your offset spatula to apply dollops of red, blue and yellow buttercream to the side of your cake. Put the black buttercream into a piping bag and pipe spots of buttercream onto your cake in the shape of paw prints.
Top tip: make sure to have a small sized hole at the end of your piping bag, so that you have good control of the amount and shape that the buttercream comes out in. This will make it easier to create the little paw prints.
- Add the edible images and balloon cake topper
I recommend adding these decorations to your cake as close as possible to it being served. The balloon topper is quite tall, so it may be difficult to store your cake in the fridge once it has been placed on your cake. Also the moisture in the icing may cause the fondant backing behind the characters to wilt. Placing these items on the cake just before the cake is about to be displayed means that it will look its best during it’s shining moment
I hope you love this Paw Patrol birthday cake idea. Hope the paw patrol fan in your life has an absolutely PAW-some party.
Happy Baking x
If you loved this Pup-tastic Paw Patrol birthday cake, check out some of my other cake tips and recipes.