Cheerful Sunflower Cakes

Flowers in a Basket

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Sunflower cakes make wonderful birthday cakes. My husband’s friend wanted a 40th birthday cake for his wife. The only instructions were to make a delicious cake with sunflower decorations. There were many cake designs I could have made with those broad guidelines, but I thought a cake that looked like a basket with flowers inside would be amazing.

I used the basket weave cake decorating design to achieve the basket look. As I made the royal icing sunflowers I came to the conclusion that additional royal icing flowers would add dimension and character to the cake. Real sunflower bouquets often have other flower varieties in them so I thought my sunflower cake would have a few other flowers as well.

Several days before baking the cake, make the royal icing flowers. Make big and smaller sunflowers, daisies and primroses. Make 5 large sunflowers and 5 smaller sunflowers. Make 5 primroses. Make 2 large white daisies, 3 small white daisies and 2 small yellow daisies. I recommend making several additional flowers in case of breakage. Allow the flowers to dry completely.

Begin your sunflower cake by baking two 8-inch round cakes, plus another cake in a oven-safe glass mixing bowl. Use 1 1/2 cake recipes to ensure you have enough batter. Always generously grease and flour (or use baking nonstick spray) all pans. This will help prevent your cakes from sticking to the pan.

After the cakes are completely cool, level and torte the 8-inch cakes and place them on your cake plate. Place in the freezer for at least 15 minutes. Next, level the cake dome made in the glass mixing bowl. This cake will be placed on top of the 8-inch cakes to give dimension to your flower basket. Freeze cake for at least 15 minutes.

Before frosting, place the cake dome on top of the 8-inch cakes to ensure it is a height you are satisfied with. If not, cut more off the bottom.

When you are satisfied with the height of the dome, frost it green and place in the freezer. The frosting job doesn’t have to be completely smooth since flowers will cover a good portion of the top.

Crumb coat the 8-inch cake and let the cake sit for 15 minutes until the frosting crusts over a little bit.

Pipe a small amount of frosting in the middle of the 8-inch cake and center the cake dome on top of it. The dome should be smaller than the diameter of the cake.

Frost the top of the cake completely, smoothing as you go. Once again, the cake doesn’t have to be completely smooth unless you want it to be. I think a little texture in a flower basket adds character.

When the top of the cake is frosted you are ready for your basket weave cake decorating. When the basket weave is finished, add your top and bottom border. The rope border is my favorite with a basket weave cake.

The cake is now ready for your flowers. Start with the large flowers first. Pipe a small amount of icing on the dome center for each sunflower. Arrange three large sunflowers in a circle on the top.

Next, cascade the sunflowers down and over the edge of the basket.

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Arrange the daisies on the back, always beginning with the largest flowers and filling in with the smaller flowers. Pipe a small mound of frosting before placing each flower on the cake. Adding the mound of frosting helps the flowers “pop out” a bit. Royal icing flowers do not bend, so they need a little help if you don’t want them to lay flat. Add the primroses. Keep in mind that any flaws on the cake or on the basket weave can be hidden with flowers.

Finally, use icing with Wilton tip 352 to pipe green leaves surrounding the flowers.

This casual sunflower cake is great for birthdays, Mothers’ Day, teacher appreciation and more. Change the basket weave color or flower variety for a different look. You could also use Wilton tip 233 to pipe grass on the basket top. There are endless variations to this sunflower cake.

Have You Made
An Awesome Flower Cake?

Brag a little! Our cake decorating community wants to hear all about the flower cake you made.

What techniques did you use? Did you using fondant, gum paste or royal icing?

What tips do you have that helped you in creating this cake?

What fabulous pictures did you take? Please share them with us.

Looking For a Different Flower Cake?

Check out these fun flower cake ideas. Click on photos for more details and instructions.

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girl birthday cake

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