The Very Hungry Caterpillar Cake

Ava turned 1 in February and I was blessed with the opportunity to bake for her party! Just a couple of years ago, I baked her parents’ wedding cake. It is crazy how fast time flies.

Parents Shane and Cassandra sent me pictures of some cakes for inspiration. Ava LOVES Eric Carle’s book, The Very Hungry Caterpillar so naturally that was our cake theme. I have done one other Hungry Caterpillar cake so I was excited to revisit this theme. Read about my first Hungry Caterpillar cake.

The inspiration cakes

Shane and Cassandra liked the interior of the left cake and then they liked the design of the cake on the right. Neither is a fan of fondant, so they asked that the cake be frosted in buttercream instead of having the fondant coat on top. 

Baking the cake

The first step was to bake a delicious vanilla cake and then tint the batter. I decided to go with 4 colors instead of the 6. I loved the way 6 looked, but also just didn’t want the cake to be really really tall or to have super thin layers. I selected red, yellow, blue and green for my 4. I baked one and a half cake recipes for my 9″ cake to make each layer thick enough to have a nice presence.

Then it was time to assemble and fill the cake. This was fun. I love how the bright colors look next to each other. I knew I’d have to ask them to send me a picture with it cut open to see the colors!

Time to decorate The Very Hungry Caterpillar cake

Now it was time to make Ava’s decorations. I used the cake they sent me for inspiration and just set up my iPad right next to my work station so I could see the image as inspiration. I worked on the caterpillar and the little circles for the sides first.

Next it was time for all the shapes on the sides. For this,  I looked up the book. I remember my own kids adoring this book when they were little, but I couldn’t remember all the foods that the caterpillar ate! Here is the list of foods from The Very Hungry Caterpillar book:

Monday through Friday he eats:

  • One apple
  • Two pears
  • Three plums
  • Four strawberries
  • Five oranges

Then on Saturday he enjoys one piece of chocolate cake, one ice-cream cone, one pickle, one slice of Swiss cheese, one slice of salami, one lollipop, one piece of cherry pie, one sausage, one cupcake, and one slice of watermelon.

The sides of the cake allowed for me to pick a few of these things so I selected a pair, a strawberry, an orange, a pickle, a lollipop and a cupcake. Cassandra was kind enough to send me a video of the cake spinning so you can see the sides.

Last but not least … the slice picture.

Seeing the inside of the cake is actually one thing I love about  wedding tastings. It is so satisfying to see the cake cut open. It is where I can see how the levels turned out, and what the balance of frosting is and all that. I rarely bake for my own family so it is unusual for us to sit down to a real slice of cake (don’t worry, everyone in my house eats way too many cake levels and way too much cookie batter so we’re definitely not deprived). I was grateful that Shane and Cassandra sent me a picture of the cake cut open. The colors were fun!!

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