You don’t have to be made of magic to make a unicorn layer cake, but you do need a mountain of sprinkles and a flair for the dramatic to create this epic internet-inspired treat (which may just be the ultimate homemade birthday cake). My latest cookbook, “Unicorn Food: Magical Recipes for Sweets, Treats, and Eats,” is a celebration of unicorns, glitter, and rainbows and was inspired by this very Instagram-worthy trend.
Unicorn Food by Rachel Johnson, $8.98 on Amazon
Get even more magical recipes for other unicorn sweets, eats, and treats.
To make a Unicorn Layer Cake, start with baking the actual layers into the six colors of the rainbow: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple (scroll down for the recipe). Stack them high, ice the cake with plain white frosting, and allow to chill before decorating. To create the unicorn, you need an edible gold-gilded horn, fondant ears, frosting for the mane and eyes, and sprinkles, small cookies, and other extras to decorate to the max. Read more on how to create this magical masterpiece to impress your guests of any ages!
To create the horn, cover a standard ice cream cone with fondant or white chocolate and varnish it with gold luster dust. Alternatively, build a horn with fondant by spiraling one rope of fondant with a wooden skewer to hold it in place. If fondant isn’t your friend, you can cut out a unicorn horn–shaped cookie and glaze with gold luster dust.
Create fondant teardrop shapes for ears and for eyes by rolling out fondant to ¼-inch thick slabs and using a paring knife to create the desired shape (sort of a rounded triangle). Gently shape the fondant into ears and allow to dry out for a few hours before placing it onto the top of the cake to avoid drooping. Alternatively, use craft foam sheets to cut out ears—just be sure to remove them before digging in.
Unicorn Cake Topper with Eyelashes, $6.99 on Amazon
Another option: a reusable cake topper with shiny horn, ears, flowers, and eyelashes—just take them off before you slice.
For the Mane
For the mane, swirl colored frosting or place twirled sour candy belts to create beautiful locks around the horn and down along the sides of the cake as desired. Dusting with edible glitter is definitely advised.
Extras & Flair
Fill a pastry bag with black icing and use a thin piping tip to draw two half-moon lines on the side of the cake for eyes, complete with voluminous eyelashes (see photo for reference). For extra effects, decorate your cake to the max with store-bought macaroons and mini star cookies and go crazy with glitter, sprinkles, and edible star candies. Decorate the cake to your unicorn heart’s true desires! The most successful decor plays with a variety in shape, size, and texture to create dimension.