Today is National Pancake Day. Who knew? I didn't until I logged onto Facebook this morning and saw pancakes on every other post 😉 So, in a rare moment of being "on time" with a blog post, I'm going to share How to Make a Pancake Cake!
It's not a full-blown tutorial, but I did shoot a few pictures while I was working on this cake and I think you'll get a really good idea of how to put it together 🙂 It's not nearly as hard as you might imagine!
Oh and let me tell you this little tidbit... this cake was for Adele who was turning 2! I did her first birthday the year before and it was one of my most popular cakes... the Pink Owl Cake with Ombre Ruffles... go have a look!!
For this particular cake, I started with three (3) 8" round cakes stacked up, filled and frosted with vanilla buttercream. I crumb coated it but I didn't cover the whole thing with fondant because of the technique I planned to use to do the pancakes.
The cake was confetti cake. I've never posted a "recipe" for confetti cake, but I usually do one of two things. I either follow the same recipe as my vanilla cake recipe - substituting Pillsbury Funfetti Cake mix for white cake mix OR I make the exact vanilla cake recipe and add in rainbow jimmies.
To start making it look like pancakes, I made homemade marshmallow fondant and used a tiny drop of brown gel coloring to give it an off-white color. Then I rolled it into long ropes to wrap around the cake. Not what you expected, huh?
It would've been way too long to do the whole cake with one rope of fondant, so I rolled out pieces as long as I could, usually about 4 foot at time and wrapped it, then did more. The ropes were irregular (just like pancakes) but I did try to keep the ends all on one side (the back).
I kept going and going until all of the sides were covered (sorry - no pics).
Then I took a ball of fondant and flattened it out. I didn't want any harsh cut sides on top, so I just smooshed down a ball until it was close to 8" in diameter and smoothed it out and laid it on top. I manipulated it until it "fit" the top of the cake.
For the pancake coloring, I mixed some gold and yellow gel colors, a tiny bit of brown and red (or maroon) with some vodka. Then I put the cake on a turntable (I love my Ateco #613 turntable) and used a small flat paintbrush to paint the top side of each "pancake", spinning it around and around, from bottom to top.
It may sound tedious but the beauty of it is that it doesn't need to be perfect - pancakes are irregular and vary in color and shape.... so it's easy to get it "right".
For the top of the pancakes, I used a larger flat brush and painted it in circles. Again - no need to be perfect! Oh how I wish I had taken pictures while doing this and I promise I will if I ever do it again!
The butter was just yellow homemade marshmallow fondant rolled out flat and I used a small square cutter to cut it into pats. When it was all finished, I made some piping gel, used a similar combination of gel colors to get the "syrup" color, then used a squirt bottle to put it on the cake!
I hand-cut the banner on the side, then used Tappit Block Cutters and Tappit Funky Alphabet Cutters to do the "Happy Birthday Adele". If you haven't used these cutters before or have had trouble using them, be sure to check out my tutorial here: How to Use Tappit Letter Cutters!
Oh and as you can see... I added sprinkles - because sprinkles make everything better, right? 🙂
That's it! Do you have any questions about making a pancake cake? If so, please leave me a comment - I love to hear from readers and help out when I can!
So that's how you make a "pancake" cake! LOL You make it look SO easy! Thanks for sharing! I don't know if I will ever make one, but at least I now know how!
It was so much easier than I originally thought once I got it figured out!
Where can I get your recipe for Piping Gel?
Oooh, I wish I remember where I got it. It's very similar to this one: http://www.cakecentral.com/recipe/6998/piping-gel-that-works
I love the idea of the pancake cake, you are very creative Rose.
Thank you Madison!
I just love this cake! Thanks for sharing how you did it! I might need to do one for my father-in-law who loves pancakes!
Thanks Susan! I bet it would be a huge hit with him!
Well I had pancakes twice today, but neither kind looked as good as your cake!! I hope I get the chance to try this sometime...it looks like it would be fun!
It really was fun! And I'm jealous... I didn't have *any* pancakes yesterday!
That is very sad!! My Dad made us crepe-like pancakes at lunch and then I made more traditional pancakes and bacon for my family for dinner (so not healthy, but hey, it's only Pancake Tuesday once a year)! Lol!!
Keep doing your fantastic blog and cakes!! You're an inspiration to home bakers everywhere!!
That looks really yummi and great. You make it sound as easy as tying mm shoes 🙂 thank you for sharing.
I LOVE your blog and especially this cake! 🙂 ( Well, all of your cakes really) but I just thought i would let you know when I clicked on the link to the turntable, It took me to the americolor gels! I found the turntable by just searching for it in the box, but just thought I would let you know! 🙂 Did I mention I was one of the few that DIDN'T have pancakes yesterday? :\
Hi Katie! I didn't have any either.. ha! I think I have the links fixed now - thank you so much for letting me know! Hugs!
Great tutorial! I never would have thought you'd wrapped ropes of fondant for the individual pancake look. The cake looks amazing!
It's great, isn't it? When I first saw these cakes I assumed it was some crazy-hard technique to get the pancakes look but then I asked around and found out this tip! Thank you so much!
Looks delicious! Thanks for posting the tutorial. I have to make this one.
for the first time I recive the email , I said oh my gosh , how people make a pancake instead of cake !
I amazed when I knew that is cake, its so creative !!!
I like your blog and I am always here " I have subscription" but this is my first time I write a comment
I just finish wilton course 1 and can't wait to do the other courses .
I have question about Ameri colors , is it better than Wilton?
I face problrm with wilton that is coloring light, I could not have the real color. also its tasty
I prefer Americolor over Wilton, but I've used both over the years with great success!
Sarah @ Miss Candiquik
This looks awesome!! Sharing 🙂
I'm so making this cake! My sons birthday is coming up and he's getting pancakes! Thanks for sharing!
The Naked Cupcake
Hi Rose, I love this cake, my grand daughter would eat pancakes all day if they would let her. I have the Funky Tappit cutters and I can not get them to come out. What is the trick with those. I got both the upper and lower case from sugar craft.
Here you go - I did a tutorial: https://rosebakes.com/how-to-use-tappit-letter-cutters/
Thank you so much Rose! You are a sweetheart to share this "how to". I love that you provide the link for the letters. I am making this cake for my granddaughters pancake and pajama party this Saturday. Thank you and God, I have Amazon Prime shipping available to me.
Yay! I'm also adding a link for how to use the letters just in case you missed it: https://rosebakes.com/how-to-use-tappit-letter-cutters/
I'm planning on making this cake this weekend for my daughter's 2nd birthday, we're having a pancake themed party. Do you know how much fondant you needed? I want to be sure i make enough ahead of time. Thanks!
I don't remember exactly, but I'm pretty sure a double batch of my recipe would be plenty!
This is so great! Glad i found this....Going to make this cake next week...when you say double batch I am just confirming, you need two pounds of marshmallows? thank you so much and i will let you know how it goes!
Great tutorial! I can't wait to make this for my son's birthday.
My daughter wants everyone to wear pajamas to her birthday party, so I'm scrambling to find ways to fit this theme...pancakes & pajamas...and this cake is perfect! Wish me luck...I'm going to need a stack of it!
"For the pancake coloring, I mixed some gold and yellow gel colors, a tiny bit of brown and red (or maroon) with some vodka."
Why vodka? Is there a different way to do this without the alcohol? 🙂 This looks awesome by the way!
The alcohol thins the gel colors enough for it to paint smoothly, then it evaporates away and leaves only the color. You could substitute lemon extract if you want or even mix it with some water, BUT water will leave the fondant sticky.
Rose, can you tell me the measurements or close to
For this? How much vodka?
For painting the color on? I have no idea but it wasn't much. Maybe 1/4 cup?
How far before the event can I make this cake? Once it's made do I refrigerate? My son turns 1 Saturday and we are having a Pancakes and Pajama party 🙂 so excited! Thank you!
You can make it a day or two ahead. I do not refrigerate fondant cakes but if you'd like to, you should put it in a taped up box in the frig, then let it come to room temperature BEFORE opening the box so that any condensation gathers on the outside of the box and not on the cake!
Thank you! I am making the MMF today! Wishing I would have used Lemon yellow instead of Golden yellow for the butter but I believe I will survive 🙂
How od you make piping gel for the syrup?
I like to use this recipe: http://www.misshomemade.com/cakepipinggelrecipe.html
Going to attemp this for my daughters Pancakes and Pajamas party! Do you remember if you used 2" or 3" cake pans? If 2" (or 3") did you double or triple the cake recipe? Thanks so much! Also, you've convinced me to make my own fondant;)
I only have 2" pans so that was an easy one 😉 For 8" pans, you'd need to probably double the recipe to do 3 layers but you'd have a little leftover batter - maybe for cupcakes?!
I just think this pancake is something else never thought it would be done this way amazing!!
I would like to make this did you use anything to hold the 3 tiers together?
This cake is amazing I would like to do this did you use anything to hold the 3 tiers? and did you 3" cake pans?
I only have 2" pans - so that's what I used for this cake. And yes, I doweled it down the center to hold it!
I doweled it down the center 🙂 Thanks for visiting!
Thanks for the great recipe, how much fondant is needed to this cake (single or double batch?)
Probably a single would be plenty!
This was an awesome tutorial! Thank you so much I have to make one in 2 weeks and had no idea where to start. Your web site is truly a blessing and you cake are all beautiful. Thank you so much.
You're very welcome Shannon - so glad to be able to help!
How do you get the banner to stay on?
Susan at RoseBakes.com
Hi Stacey - thanks for stopping by the blog. You can get the banner to stay on by using sugar glue https://rosebakes.com/make-fondant-sugar-glue/ (this method works with pre-made fondant, too!) or some shortening on the back of the banner.
I am no baker, but following your instructions, I made a totally passable pancake cake for my daughter's pancake/pajama party tomorrow - marshmallow fondant and all! Thank you so much for sharing. 🙂
OH Siara - that's SO awesome!! I'm so happy that you let me know - way to GO!! xx
I love this cake,, and I am going to attempt it for my son's pancakes and pajamas party this weekend. Can you tell me how many of the vanilla cake recipes you make to fill three 8 in rounds? Thanks in advance!
I would double it and then you'll probably have a little batter leftover that you could make into cupcakes.
Thanks so much for the quick response. I just love this cake and hope it turns out well this weekend! My first attempt at baking a cake like this, but this blog has given me the confidence to try it with all the details you've included!
Thank you for this wonderful recipe. I made the pancake cake with my son for his 5th grade Cake Walk. Your recipe was easy to follow. Thanks for sharing!
Great to hear - thank you!
Wow, that cake really looks great!
Thank you so much for 1)posting such an awesome tutorial and 2) responding to all of the questions in the comments section! Seriously, I am so excited to attempt this cake for my son's 3rd birthday at the end of the month. I don't think mine will look quite as good as yours but I feel confident it will be good enough thanks to all of your directions and tips!
You're very welcome - thank you so much for reading and coming back to comment!
Do you store the marshmallow fondant in the frig?
No! Always at room temp 🙂
Thanks. One more question I had the crumb coated cake in frig. Can I put the marsh fondant on cool cake and leave until tomorrow
Can you tell me how much vodka and how much of each color to get the right coloring for the paint? Thank You so much for the info. Oh, and where do you get the letter cutters?
I'm sorry - I didn't measure any of it. I just did a few drops of this and that until I was satisfied with the color.
It is gorgeous and it is easy to make! Pin it! Thank you for sharing at Sweet Inspiration Link Party 🙂
Hi! I just wanted to double check on how much fondant you use for this cake? I read the comments and one comment said one batch, another comment said two. Thank you!
Kat - I wish I could tell you for sure, but I made this cake more than 3 years ago and I just don't remember. I always err on the side of caution and make more than I need so I'd probably do a double batch to be sure.
trying to make this cake. what colors did you use to paint the pancakes that color? And what brand of colors-were they alcohol based or water based. thank you
Thank you!! Mine turned out amazing for our "pajamas and pancakes party!!" I used your single batch fondant recipe and it make a double layer 8 inch "stack." I had some left over, but maybe not enough for a 3rd layer. I also used just water and buttercup yellow and brown Wilton food coloring. It took some playing around to get the right color. I also melted white chocolate with brown food coloring for the syrup.
Everyone couldn't believe it wasn't a real stack of pancakes! So much easier than it appears to be!
Wish I could post a picture here!
Awww, I'm so happy to hear this Chelsea! That's just awesome. I'd love for you to email me a pic at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Hi- how many people will this cake serve?
I consider this 36 servings.
Can the pancake layers be piped with buttercream using a fat round tip instead of ropes of fondant, then painted as you did?
Possibly? The buttercream would need to crust before painting and I think it would be okay.
Great cake! Do I need to wait to paint the fondant or can I paint it as soon as it’s put on the cake?
And just confirming that I should store the cake at room temp? Not in the fridge?
I painted it immediately and stored in the fridge.