Unicorn everything is all the rage right now. All you have to do is have a peek at Pinterest or Instagram to see the rainbow hues and whimsical decorations on cakes, milkshakes, and even hairstyles! I became instantly enchanted with the colours and cuteness of unicorn treats. If you gotta eat cake it may as well be magically delicious.

My dilemma begins with the knowledge that I could potentially make a unicorn cake myself but I would be over estimating my decorating ability.  I know my limits and where they lie, cake decorating rests firmly outside those boundaries. Despite my  confidence in my baking skills I decided to do some research and look at DIY-ing vs BUYing and share the results with you.

Do you have what it takes to DIY?

I decided to give it shot. You know what I discovered, it takes TOOLS to DIY , plain and simple, well……..except you also need skill. No tool can give you the flair that it takes to create a beautiful buttercream rosette. If you are still game to give it a go plan to spend at least 6-8 hrs between baking, prepping, and decorating and at least $60- $80  on supplies.

A “simple” list of what you will need

  • 2-3 bags of icing sugar
  • 1 lb butter
  • shortening
  • 8 inch cake pans
  • cake mix
  • fondant
  • 4 colours of food colouring
  • gold dusting powder or sprinkles
  • icing bags
  • decorating tips
  • offset spatula
  • cake board

Full disclosure : I outsourced the decorating. I am fortunate enough to have a good friend that comes fully equipped with a literal tool box of decorating accessories, impressive selection of food colours and her own recipe for buttercream icing.

three views of icing the cake, mixing the colours and the finished unicorn cake

The process of making a magical unicorn cake – DIY

Click play on this short video documenting the rosette placement and my utter amazement with Karen Anne’s mad decorating skills.

 

Unicorn Cakes to Buy

You may want to consider buying a unicorn cake if you,

1. Have better things to do with your than wait for a cake to cool.

2. Are artistically challenged, like myself.

3. Enjoy and appreciate the talent of a professional baker to design a beautiful cake that will delight your guests.

I always like a word of mouth referral when it comes to food.  I put the question out to my facebook friends and I was bombarded with suggestions for local sources. Listed below are two bakers that are local to Durham Region, they have years of experience and many dedicated fans who will happily vouch for their sweet success.

BitterSweets

Marcy Harrison is the passionate baker behind Bitter Sweets. She bakes for the love of making great cakes that are peanut and tree nut free. Her customers rave about the fresh, hand made pastries and desserts. During the holiday season you can find her set up at local craft shows and bazaars featuring her gorgeous chocolate creations. The biggest sellers are Raspberry Lemon Mousse Cake and Strawberry White Chocolate Mousse Shortcake but she can customize a cake to suit your taste. Her unicorn cakes range in price and start at $75 for a 4 layer 8 inch cake. Contact her on her facebook page at MarcysBitterSweets

 

Sweet Couture Cakes 

Sweet Couture Cakes by Adele was the top recommended baker when I polled my friends. Adele loves to bake and decorate, which she started at a very young age learning by her grandmothers side. She is a Wilton certified instructor who enjoys teaching cake decorating classes. Adele specializes in creating elegant flowers and intricate cake details for wedding and special occasion cakes. The cakes are all custom made using the best and freshest ingredients with no artificial flavours. Her unicorn cake starts at $80 , she can also design a tablescape for you to include meringue kisses and other sweet treats. Visit her website http://www.sweetcouturecakes.net/

An internet search can lead you to a baker in your area that will be happy to make your unicorn cake  dreams come true. You could also try making mini versions by using a cup cake recipe and decorating with just the ears, horn and a few rosettes.

Thinking you need a trendy unicorn cake in your life to make your next party special?  All you need to do is decide if you should DIY or BUY it  for a magical sparkly soiree!