How to make a dinosaur birthday cake


Most little boys, and lots of little girls, go through a dinosaur phase... when everything revolves around T-Rex and his prehistoric pals. If you're having a dino-party, celebrate with an Edible Rex developed by professional baker and cookbook author Liv Hansen for the Betty Crocker Kitchens.

How to make a dinosaur birthday cake Assembling the dinosaur cake
  1. On the first cake layer, cut a slice off of one side. Then in the middle of the flat side of the cake layer, cut a U-shaped piece out to create the dinosaur’s belly and legs. Place the layer on a serving platter.
  2. Using paper templates, cut a head and tail out of the second cake layer (cut the ‘dome’ off the top first so it’s flat). Place head and tail on the serving platter, joining the pieces to the dinosaur’s body. Glue the cake to the platter by placing some frosting underneath each piece of cake. Crumb coat the entire cake with a thin layer of green frosting.
  3. Freeze the cake for 30 minutes.


Decorate the dinosaur cake

  1. Frost the entire cake with another layer of green frosting. Smooth frosting on sides of cake using an offset spatula. Smooth the top of the cake, working from the outside to the middle. Have hot water on hand to clean the spatula as you are smoothing frosting. Dry spatula each time you clean it before continuing to frost the cake.
  2. Place flat chocolate disks on the cake to make spots on the dinosaur.
  3. Use smaller chocolate candies for eyes and toes.
  4. Use pointy candies across the top to create spikes along the dinosaur’s head, back and tail.
  5. Using white frosting in a pastry bag, make white dots in the center of each chocolate eye.
  6. Using white frosting in a pastry bag, draw on a smile. Or, for a scary dino, make teeth by holding the pastry bag in place, squeezing to form a dot and then pulling upto create a point.

For more about the Dinosaur Cake, visit




Transcript <!--StartFragment-->

LAURIE: Hi, I’m Laurie Gelman for Kids love dinosaurs, and they’re going to love this digging for dinosaurs party. And look what we’ve unearthed for the birthday cake! This dinosaur cake is adorable, and I can’t wait to learn how to make it! Liv Hansen from the Betty Crocker Kitchens is going to show us how. Hey Liv, how are you?

LIV: Hi, Laurie.

LAURIE: Now I know that kids love dinos, so this must be a huge hit at parties.

LIV: It is.

LAURIE: Is it easy to make?

LIV: It is. I’ll show you how.

LAURIE: Let’s do it.

LIV: Okay. We’re going to start with two nine inch cakes, but you can actually use eight inch if you’re serving fewer people. I’m going to cut a slice off the bottom, and then, in the middle I’m going to cut a “U” shape out. That’ll sort of be like the legs and the belly. And I’m going to place it on our serving platter.


LIV: Right in the middle.


LIV: Now this one, I’ve already trimmed the dome off the top, and I’m going to start cutting out the tail and the head. Now I’ve already made templates so you do have to go straight in and cut. This’ll give you a little guideline. And you can make your own.

LAURIE: There you go.

LIV: Okay. So now I have the tail, which I’ll then place here, and the head. So now we’re going to move into a crumb coat.

LAURIE: And a crumb coat is?

LIV: A crumb coat is basically just a thin layer of icing that helps seal in all the crumbs.

LAURIE: Oh, okay.

LIV: Another trick is that you can freeze your cake for about thirty minutes before cutting it, and that’ll also reduce the crumbs.

LAURIE: Oh, great. Okay.

LIV: Okay. So we have some green frosting.

LAURIE: Oh, nice color!

LIV: Yeah. We actually used some neon green food coloring. So I’m also going to use this frosting as glue. I’m going to stick that underneath. And now those are glued down, I’m just going to start crumbing the cake. Just try to cover the entire surface. The sides and the top.


LIV: Once you have it all crumbed, you have to freeze it for another half an hour.

LAURIE: Just to seal it all in?

LIV: Just to seal it all in. It’ll set the icing so that your final coat is nice and clean.

LAURIE: Okay. So should I –

LIV: And I actually have one ready.

LAURIE: Great.

LIV: Okay, there we go. So I’m going to go right in and starting doing the final coat of frosting.


LIV: Scoop a bunch on.

LAURIE: How much frosting do you put on? Is it a thick layer?

LIV: It’s pretty thin. It’s probably about a quarter inch.

LAURIE: You can go heavier, though, if you want.

LIV: You can go a little heavier. I mean, it really depends how much you like icing.

LAURIE: Now I’m going to go around and frost all the sides so that they’re nice and smooth. Now I’m just going to take my spatula and I’m kind of going to carve that off, or slice it off and pull it in and towards the center of the cake. So basically I’m holding the offset spatula flush with the cake. And I kind of come in from the outside and scrape across. I describe it as an airplane landing, and then taking off again.

LIV: It’s always a good idea to have hot water on hand. You can clean your spatula off in it. Just make sure you dry it off, and that’ll make it easier to make the icing smooth.

LAURIE: Very smooth.

LIV: So to decorate the dinosaur, I have an assortment of chocolates.

LAURIE: Oh, okay.

LIV: We’ll use them for the spots and the spikes. And I also have a pastry cone filled with vanilla frosting. What I’m going to do first, is just do some spots, some various sized spots all over him. I’m going to put two up here, for little googly eyes. And maybe some for –


LIV: Their toes. So now –

LAURIE: Want me to turn it?

LIV: Yeah, let me move this a little bit so I can get the drops around the back.

LAURIE: Cute is the word.

LIV: Just a couple more. Okay. So now the last step is to do the teeth, and maybe just a little dot for the eye to make it really bounce.


LIV: So I’m going to do two little dots.

LAURIE: So you’ve got your pastry cone.

LIV: My pastry cone. And if you want, it can be a happy dinosaur, you can just make a smile. But I like to have the teeth.

LAURIE: Scary dinosaur?

LIV: Scary dinosaur. So I’m just squeezing, holding in place, and then pulling up a little bit, and you get a point. And there you have your dinosaur!

LAURIE: That looks fantastic. Oh, you know what else we found?

LIV: What?

LAURIE: This is so great. We found these little party favors. Its an egg, and you open it up. Oh!

LIV: That’s great!

LAURIE: There’s a little dino in there! You can use them as a great party favor, or to decorate you can hide them around the house. Lot’s of fun to have a dino party, let me tell you. I’m Laurie Gelman for

meet theexpert
  • Liv Hansen

    Liv Hansen Professional Baker and Author Liv Hansen is the author of three books, has appeared on the Today Show, Top 5 (Food Network), The View and Roker on the Road, and was a finalist on the Food Network Challenge: Haunted Gingerbread. more about this expert »