How to Make a Toilet Cake

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Decorating cakes is a fun hobby. The toilet cake has always been one of my favorites as it always receives laughs and plenty of smiles! The Baby Ruth bar in the middle of the toilet water is something that can be added or left out, depending on the reci

Baking and decorating cakes is a great hobby.  With all of the television shows surrounding the cake decorating theme, it has become somewhat of a fad in recent years.  This makes finding the items you need to decorate cakes the way you want them even easier.

Wilton, one of the world's largest cake decoration and cake pan suppliers, boasts new items that make decorating even easier.  Now a professional looking cake can be had by the first-time cake decorator.  

One of my favorite cakes is a toilet cake.  I have made these cakes through the years for various events. The toilet cake makes a funny birthday surprise for the unsuspecting recipient, especially when they see the latest year resting on a Baby Ruth bar in the middle of the toilet, getting swirled into oblivion. Creating a toilet cake is fun and can be used for many different events.  The latest toilet cake making adventure came about when my son-in-law graduated from his plumbing school classes.  After four years of hard labor on his part, I felt the best way to accommodate the achievement and truly match the celebration, was the making of a toilet cake, complete with a gloved-hand coming up from the water, grasping the diploma tightly.

Toilet Cake Base

To begin the project, I first had to create a base for the cake to rest on and to represent the tank of the toilet.  My daughter located a box that could fit a shoebox lid snuggly on top.  This would represent the tank and the toilet tank lid.  I wrapped the two cardboard pieces in shelving paper.  I chose white for this project, however, I have used a marbled shelving paper in the past.

Smoothing out the sticky paper, I covered both the shoebox lid and the box. Every toilet needs a flushing handle, so I went to the local hardware store and found a cheaper handle.  I poked a small hole into the upper left hand corner where a regular toilet handle would fit.  I poked the rod and base of the handle inside the box.  Making a small hole is the best for this piece to fit securely and not fall back out.  

A small piece of plywood is used to make a hard surface to carry the cake and is a nice surface to glue down the faux tank and lid.  I have glued the tank down on one cake, stapled it down before placing the tank lid on another cake and have simply carried the tank along and placed it when I set up the cake for another event.  All have worked well.

Baking the Cake

When I make my cakes, I follow the recipe strictly.  The recipe calls for a period of 30 seconds to mix on low before adjusting to a middle speed.  I follow the time exactly.  It is important to bake the cake properly and not get into a rush.  The timed period for mixing is a vital key to how moist the cake comes out and just how fluffy it turns out as well.  

After mixing for the right amount of time, pour the cake mix into a horseshoe-shaped pan.  The pans are available in most craft stores and are made by Wilton.  

The cake doesn't stick to the pan if it is sprayed with a cooking spray first.  The old-school grease and flour in the pan to prevent sticking is just that - old school.  Wilton pans are crafted to work well with the cooking spray type of grease and the cake will slide right out after baking.

Once the cake mix is poured, pick up the pan and let it drop from a couple of inches in height above the counter.  Slam the pan down several times on the countertop to remove any air bubbles from the mix. Bake at the usual 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  

When the cake is done, allow it to cool for the exact amount of time it states on the back of the box.  If left to cool too long, the cake will become ridden with moisture on the bottom from the steam.  This prevents the cake from slipping right out of the pan.  Some pieces of the cake may stick.  If this happens, don't fret!  Simply finish removing the cake in as large of pieces as you can.  Frosting fixes everything, including pieces of cake that have fallen apart.  It would surprise most people to find out how many bakeries have pieced together cakes that they charge a fortune for!

Decorating the Toilet Cake

After baking two layers of the horseshoe design, allow both cakes to cool on the counter.  As the cakes are cooling, even out the tops of both layers up by slicing across the tops with a sharp knife.  Even the out as well as you can so they will sit properly.

Flip one layer so the cut top is facing up and the flat side is down.  Spread butter cream frosting over the top of the cake.  Flip the other layer so the cut top is facing down and place it onto the first layer.  If you have cut the layers evenly, the two should fit together well.  

The first layer of frosting you will put on the cake is a process called "dirty frosting."  Dirty frosting is sealing the cake to avoid crumb infestation on the top layer of frosting.  This keeps the cake looking "clean."  Place your cake in the freezer for a while harden the frosting.

Finish frosting the cake with more of the icing.  Once the cake is frosted, you can decorate the outer bottom layer with any type of design you wish.  Stars or shell borders make a nice design.

The ends of the horseshoe cake should fit up against the tank.  If this isn't the case, cut off the ends until they fit together.  This will hold in the gel that will be poured into the center for the toilet water.

To create the water for the toilet, you will need flavoring of any type, some water, corn starch and coloring.  In a saucepan over medium heat, heat up about 2 cups of water.  As the water is heating, mix water and corn starch into a bowl.  Whisk until all of the lumps are gone.  Pour the mixture into the pan of water.

As the corn starch heats, it will thicken.  You need a gel that is fairly thick.  It won't be eaten directly, but will touch the sides of the cake, so add some flavoring.  Once the gel is ready, add blue food coloring.  The gel paste food coloring is the best when working with cakes.  Gel paste colorings can be found in places like craft stores and even Wal-Mart carries them now.

Once the blue gel is thick, slowly pour it into the center of the toilet.  Avoid splashing it onto the sides of the toilet tank or on the sides of the cake.  Pour a small amount, enough to cover the candy bar about half way.  Allow the gel to set for a while.  The gel should eventually become fairly Jello-like and remain in the area you have placed it.

I have done several things to my toilet cakes over the years.  I have left the water in the toilet and served it like that.  I have added a Baby Ruth bar into the center of the gel and have even written the passing year on the bar.  For instance, I served it to a cousin who was turning 28.  I wrote 27 on the candy bar.  Across the top of the toilet seat, I wrote, "Another year flushed down the John," since his name was John.  I have also written, "Another year flushed down the toilet," for those who were not named John.

The decorating is up to you!  Add items you think will add to the cake or leave the cake simple.  The toilet theme in itself will make people smile.  

Add a roll of toilet paper on the top of the tank.  I have done this to several toilet cakes and everyone seemed to get a kick out of that as well.

Toilet Cake Surprise

The toilet cake can be a real funny piece for most people.  Be careful who you give it to, so it doesn't offend the recipient.  Adding the candy bars in the middle may offend some people.  Know the person you are giving it to!

The toilet cake I made for my son-in-law had a gloved hand coming from the toilet water.  The hand held a diploma, as he was graduating from plumbing school.  Your graduate may enjoy a toilet cake, hand extending and holding a diploma with the words, "Graduated!  Didn't flush all those years down the toilet" or something to that effect.  Have fun with it and be creative!


Vicki Perry
Posted on Sep 3, 2012
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Vicki Perry
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Jerry Walch
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