Cake tips and tricks

Cakes are an essential part of any party or celebration, often acting as the centrepiece of the dessert table. And thanks to social media, extravagant cakes are becoming more and more popular. But how can you get the professional look without the huge price tag (or hours of slaving away in the kitchen)?
Sometimes, you just have to look inside your pantry! We’ve found 6 kitchen staples that work amazingly as cake decorations and will make sure your creation looks as good as it tastes. For everything from chocolate and sponge to red velvet and mud, your cake will be a true masterpiece!

1. Roll-Ups
Take the roll-ups from the lunchbox to the cake stand and you have a guaranteed winner on your hands – these elastic jelly fruit snacks can easily be turned into all sorts of shapes with a little bit of manipulation. Try cutting them up and twisting them around into little bow ties to create perfect cupcake toppers, or roll up a bunch of them to form a ribbon as seen here.

2. Marshmallows
Cut a marshmallow in half, cover the sticky insides with sprinkles or coloured sugar, and you’ve got an instant flower petal! It’s easy to arrange these into beautiful flowers, so don’t be afraid to experiment with shapes and arrangements. Finish by adding a smartie in the middle for a bright pop of colour!

3. Jelly
Blue jelly works really well on top of a cake if you’re having a nautical-themed party or pool party. After letting it set completely, simply pile it messily on top of a cake to create a beach or swimming pool scene like this one. You might need to rim the cake with tall biscuits to stop the jelly from spilling out. Make it even cuter by adding some LEGO people ‘swimming’ in the water.

4. Cookie Cutters
This technique is a quick way to make a cake look fantastic – cookie cutters are an easy (and neat) way to make stylish shapes with sprinkles. This is a great way to neatly draw out numbers, stars, love hearts and almost anything else!

5. Fruit Loops
Just for breakfast? We don’t think so! Brightly-coloured fruit loops look fantastic on white buttercream icing, as you can see here. Try using them to make a polka dot pattern for an adorable result.

6. Strawberries
Strawberries have always been a popular accompaniment to Victorian sponge cakes, but they can also be used to create funky patterns if you cut them in half. Slide a cut strawberry onto a toothpick and use the other end to secure the fruit to your cake, then arrange them in a radiating pattern for a vibrant effect. 
If you need a great cake recipe, make sure to try out our scrumptious seasonal strawberry sponge cake. With these easy techniques, you’ll be decorating your cakes like a pro in no time!