Unicorn Rainbow Cake {& how I did it!}

Every birthday cake my children have asked me for – bar one – I have made & decorated myself. This cake making and decorating lark is no easy feat – so when Annabelle asked me for a Unicorn Rainbow cake I knew I had a challenge ahead of me.

So, I did what we all do when we’re in need some inspiration – I paid a visit to the trusted land of Pinterest. As expected, it was oozing with inspiration & ideas that I needed to make Annabelle’s cake a reality. First things first – I needed food colouring to achieve the colourful rainbow cake layers! For that, I bought the rainbow bundle of food gels from Wilton cakes – which cost around £9.99 {well worth the money!}. A little bit goes a long way so you will get loads of use out of each colour. 

Next up was how was I going to decorate it? I knew what the inside was going to look like {which, let’s face it, is the easy part!} but the outside had me stumped. First of all, I thought of going with a fondant rainbow and attempting to create a fondant Unicorn. But I didn’t have much faith in my fondant crafting skills! Even though the characters on my Finding Dory cake came out better than expected last year. I didn’t think I could pull off a unicorn! 

In the end, I decided to go with the infamous Unicorn face cake. Which meant the only fondant work I needed to do was the Unicorn horn & ears. I also decided against adding fondant as a layer on my cake too – even though it can keep the cake fresher for longer – it’s just so much extra work. So this year I stuck with a buttercream covering on my cake and the result was better than I thought. 

With 2 days to go before my daughters birthday {and party} I made the Unicorn horn & ears. Making them 48hrs prior, meant they had time to harden before adding them to the cake. 

Fondant unicorn horn

To make the horn I took a section of white fondant and rolled it into a long stripe. I made sure to give it a thick end, tapering it to be thinner towards the top. I took a cake dowel and wrapped the fondant, thick end first around the dowel and kept going until I made a horn. I then applied my edible gold glitter and left it to dry overnight. 

For the ears, I rolled out a section of fondant & cut out two teardrop shapes for the ears. I cut out two smaller pieces for the inside of the ears. I dusted the inner sections with edible glitter and applied to the larger sections with a little water. To get the curve of the ear I laid both ears on a rolling pin to dry overnight. Be sure to insert a cocktail stick to the bottom of each ear! 

The day before her birthday, I finally made a start on her cake. I made all of the cake batter I needed, in one go, weighed it and divided the overall weight by six. This would give me the exact amount of cake batter that I would need for each layer. 

Rainbow cake batter

Once all of your cakes are baked and fully cooled – now comes the fun part! Stacking them! Make a batch of buttercream {I have added all of the ingredients you’ll need below & also my method for creating this cake}. You then add a layer of buttercream to each cake, apply the next layer & repeat. 

Rainbow cake

The next thing I did was to give it a crumb coat. However, because I wanted buttercream frosting rather than fondant on this cake, I applied three layers of buttercream, leaving it to chill in the fridge for 30minutes in between each layer. Using a cake scraper to help level out the buttercream and make it look nice & neat is something you’ll need. I bought mine from Home Bargains {as a set of three – bargain!}. I clearly need more practice, but it was good fun to do for my first time. 

Rainbow cake being iced

After my buttercream layers had been applied and allowed to chill it was time to decorate. If I am honest, I had the whole Pinterest-look all mapped out in my head, but I somehow fell into the realm of completely winging it! Something I often do! And for a moment I thought I had messed up the entire thing because my piping leaves a lot to be desired! However, once I finished the piping and added the ears & the horn – I honestly could not believe how it looked. 

Unicorn Rainbow Cake

For the eyes, I made two sections of black fondant, with 4 smaller sections to act as the eyelashes. As for placing them, I just eyeballed it and then decided to dab a little gold edible glitter onto the eyelashes. I couldn’t help myself! 

Homemade unicorn cake

As a final touch, I added white chocolate stars {found in my baking cupboard} & sprinkled them over the cake {as well as edible gold glitter}. I think they gave it the final magical touch it needed! 

Homemade unicorn cake

Unicorn cake

And there you have it, my homemade Unicorn Rainbow cake – as requested by my little lady. She absolutely loved it and I have to say, I was rather proud of myself at how it came out. Also, as a bonus? It tasted, AMAZING! 

Rainbow cake

Unicorn Rainbow Cake
Unicorn Rainbow Cake
Print Recipe
My how-to recipe for making your own magical Unicorn Rainbow cake!
Servings Prep Time
6 individual 8" cakes 30 minutes
Cook Time
1 hour & 20 minutes
Servings Prep Time
6 individual 8" cakes 30 minutes
Cook Time
1 hour & 20 minutes
Unicorn Rainbow Cake
Unicorn Rainbow Cake
Print Recipe
My how-to recipe for making your own magical Unicorn Rainbow cake!
Servings Prep Time
6 individual 8" cakes 30 minutes
Cook Time
1 hour & 20 minutes
Servings Prep Time
6 individual 8" cakes 30 minutes
Cook Time
1 hour & 20 minutes
Ingredients
Servings: individual 8" cakes
Instructions
  1. Add your butter & caster sugar into your mixer and mix together at a medium setting until pale & fluffy. This should take around 6-7 minutes.
  2. Crack all 9 eggs into a bowl and lightly beat before adding to your mixer in stages. Mixing on a medium setting until well combined.
  3. Sift your flour & add to your mixer in one go & mix on a low setting for 1-2 minutes. Careful not to lose any of the air in your batter.
  4. Once everything is mixed. You need to weigh your mixturel and divide that by six. This will give you the weight each bowl of batter for each cake layer should be.
  5. Divide into six bowls and add your colouring to each one.
  6. Add parchment to your cake tins and pour your cake batter into your cakes tins.
  7. Bake each layer for 15-20mins at 180 degree C
Buttercream
  1. Add your butter to your mixer and beat on a high setting for 5 minutes.
  2. Add your sifted icing sugar to your mixer in two parts. Mix on a low setting for 1-2 minutes.
  3. Add your milk & vanilla extract - mix on a high speed for two minutes.
Recipe Notes

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16 Comments

  1. 12/02/2018 / 11:51 PM

    Oh wow that really is amazing!! As much as I loved this and followed each step with careful precision, I just know that my unicorn would NEVER look like that in a million years!!

  2. 13/02/2018 / 9:39 AM

    Oh wow, my little cousin will definitely love to have a unicorn cake. Glad I found the recipe! I hope I can successfully pull this off so I can give her the cake that she wishes.

  3. 13/02/2018 / 7:10 PM

    Absolutely beautiful. All of the swirls for the mane are amazing and I loooove the glitter. I really aspire to make one of these cakes!

  4. 13/02/2018 / 8:30 PM

    This is honestly one of the most beautiful cakes I’ve ever seen! It looks absolutely amazing!! I could never make such a pretty cake, you should be so proud of yourself! Haha

  5. 13/02/2018 / 9:45 PM

    I describe myself as a part time mermaid and unicorn at weekends so this unicorn rainbow cake is so impressive. I am most impressed by the gold sparkly horn and the rainbow cake layers. Anyone would be lucky to have you make them a cake!

    • 14/02/2018 / 10:32 AM

      How awesome that you are a part-time Unicorn & mermaid at the weekend – very cool! And thanks so much for your kind words on the cake.

  6. 14/02/2018 / 8:07 AM

    This is so so beautiful!! Honestly, I don’t think I could have justified with the food gels like you have done! Happy Birthday to your missy!! My son celebrated his birthday yesterday .. and sadly we both are down with viral… I’m absolutely gutted that we didn’t do anything nice on the D – day for the first time. Hopefully we could justify the celebration over the weekend.

    • 14/02/2018 / 10:32 AM

      Thanks so much for the kind words on the cake but a massive sad face that you’re both poorly! Feel better soon!

  7. 14/02/2018 / 11:18 AM

    That cake is AMAZING!!! I’ve tried Wilton cake colourings before, but never had those results with such bright, vivid colours! You make it sound pretty easy too, but I don’t reckon mine would look nearly as professional as yours LOL x

  8. kayleighrosee
    14/02/2018 / 8:15 PM

    I know so many people who would LOVE THIS! Sounds like a weekend experiment x

  9. 17/02/2018 / 9:13 PM

    Wow it sounds easier than you think! Well done!

    • 19/02/2018 / 7:37 AM

      Exactly! And I think just giving this cake the buttercream frosting rather than fondant made it so much easier. Thanks!

  10. 18/02/2018 / 7:30 PM

    Oh my goodness, I am MAJORLY impressed with your cake making skills. My daughter’s 4th birthday is coming up and I’ve started thinking about the cake. Not sure I’m brave enough to attempt this!

    • 19/02/2018 / 7:35 AM

      Aww, thank you! It was really quite simple and I am by FAR an expert! I just wung it and hoped for the best, lol.

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