With these 5 minute cake decorating techniques and designs, decorate 5 cakes in 5 minutes or less!
#1 Tray Bake Cakes
Tray bakes are a great option for quick but eye-catching cakes. Bake your cake in any ovenproof dish like a casserole dish or pie dish. Skip the assembly step by decorating it right there, in the dish!
Use a few different piping tips and a variety of colours of frosting to create different textures. You can even make shapes for designs like this heart.
I used my 4 Minute Buttercream but you can do this with ganache, whipped cream or meringue buttercream, too! This is my Very Vanilla Cake but you can even do this with brownies or chocolate chip cookie dough. Tray bakes are one of my favourite 5 minute cake decorating techniques because as well as being easy to make and decorate, they're also easy to transport and serve!
#2 Fresh Flowers
Fresh flowers will turn even a very simple cake like a semi-naked cake into a stunning beauty! You’ll need some straws, ideally boba straws because they're wider than normal straws. Wash and dry your flowers and cut them so that the stems are about 2 inches long. They need to be just long enough to secure the flowers in the cake.
Pull off any leaves from the stems so that you can fit as many stems as possible into each straw. Then pinch together little bouquets of flowers, combining different flowers and adding greenery. Wrap the stems in plastic wrap to catch any liquid that comes out of the stems so it doesn’t get into your cake. Then push the wrapped stems into a straw.
Cut the straw just below where the stems end. Make as many of these flower arrangements as you like.
Then push each one into the cake. Use your fingers first but then push them in the last little bit using scissor blades. Scissors will let you push deeper into the cake without poking it with your fingers and damaging the frosting.
This next 5 minute cake decorating technique is perfect if the frosting on your cake isn’t completely smooth. Chill your cake to set the frosting and then brush it with a bit of water to make it sticky.
Non-pareils (or hundreds and thousands) work best for this because you won’t bite into big crunchy chunks of sprinkles!
Pour your sprinkles into a bowl and scoop up a handful, pressing the sprinkles into the frosting. Since the frosting is cold and firm, as you push against it you won’t cause indents or bulges. Also, the sprinkles won’t sink into the frosting so you won’t bury them!
By placing the cake on a baking sheet or tray before doing this, you’ll catch any falling sprinkles so they won’t bounce away and make a mess all over the kitchen.
Not only are sprinkled cakes quick and easy to decorate, they’re also colourful and fun!
#4 Textured Frosting
Use a spoon to create gorgeous texture with this 5 minute cake decorating technique! Bonus: this design doesn’t require perfectly smooth frosting. Cover your cake with buttercream or whatever frosting you're using and scrape around a few times with a cake comb. Don’t worry about little imperfections or getting the top edge perfectly straight.
Press the back of a spoon lightly into the frosting and pull it in a curve to make an arc. Continue in different directions and overlap the arcs to create this rustic effect.
Dip your spoon into hot water every minute or so and the hot metal will smooth the frosting as you pull it. This prevents tiny air bubbles in the frosting or if they’re already there, the hot spoon will make them disappear! This technique works on the sides of the cake and also on the top.
#5 Homemade Stencil Cakes
Create any design or pattern on your 5 minute cake by making a homemade stencil with parchment paper. Draw or trace your shape and cut it out, leaving the paper around the shape intact to create a stencil. Parchment paper is thin and flexible so it’s easy to cut into any design.
Place the stencil on a chilled cake and since the cake is cold, the stencil won’t damage the frosting. Spread frosting over the stencil and scrape over it until you have a thin, smooth layer. Peel the stencil off, leaving your design on the cake.
For extra decoration, press sprinkles into the stencil design. While the frosting design is still soft and sticky, the sprinkles will attach easily. You can use a small paintbrush or a toothpick to nudge any sprinkles onto the shape if they roll off.
You can add a quick border with any open star shaped piping tip but even with just the stencil design, the cake looks pretty and fancy!
Which of these 5 minute cake decorations if your favourite? Tell me in the comments! Visit my cake school for online courses to learn hundreds of cake decorating techniques and designs.