How to make an Easy 3D Car Cake

Easy 3D car cake? How easy can a 3D cake be to make? Either I am a pro at sculpting cakes or there is a trick involved here?

Perhaps the second one is a closer guess!

The trick is to use a 3D cake pan off course!

And that is how I made this super easy 3D car cake.

There is a little story behind this cake pan. I initially bought the pan to make a car cake for my eldest boy who was turning 4. I thought a 3D car would surely excite him.

But you know what, one look at the cake pan, and he said, “Ma, that looks like an old car! I want a sports car cake!”

OK (totally dumbfounded!!)

So there was a massive change in plan and I ended up not using the cake pan for his birthday.

But my second boy was turning 2 the following year, and guess what? He was absolutely thrilled with this car cake!

I was happy, at least my investment in the cake pan did not go to waste!

Here is how I made and decorated this 3D car cake:

These are the things I used for this car cake:

  • Wilton 3D car cake pan
  • My butter pound cake recipe – since the cake tin is not the standard round or square shape, I had to recalculate the recipe so that I had enough batter to fill the cake pan. Here is how I estimate cake batter for odd shaped cake tins.
  • Butter icing – this is a stiffer version of buttercream, the consistency is stiff enough to allow me to shape it with my hands! I had this icing tinted in red, dark grey and black.
  • Buttercream in green (for the grass) and some in black for the windscreen outline, the car wipers, car’s eyes and smiling mouth.
  • Fondant in blue (for the wordings on the cake)
  • Wilton tip #3  for outline icing on the cake
  • Wilton grass tip #233  for the grass on the cake board.


And here is how I put this cake together:

  • Since the cake was baked in a shaped pan, there was no need for any sculpting work. I started off with body of the car and covered it in red icing. I smoothened the butter icing on the body of cake, leaving out the car wind shield, windows and the wheels.
  • Next, I covered the windshields and side windows. I used untinted butter icing for these. The buttericing had a natural ivory hue to it because of the butter and so I left the color as such.
  • For the wheels, I used black butter icing and dark gray icing.
  • Once that was done, I then added the lights, both at the front and back of the car and bumpers I turned the lights at the front of the car into the car’s eyes by piping a tiny dot of black buttercream in the centre. The lights themselves were ivory buttericing shaped into oval balls and flattened (the icing was stiff like I mentioned earlier, so I actually worked on this with my hands, like I would with fondant). And finally, using black buttercream, I piped a smiling mouth for the car, borders for the windshield and windows and a set of wipers.
  •  To finish decorating the car, I outlined the windows with black icing using Wilton nozzle no. 3.
  • As for the wordings, I used the Wilton ready-made fondant in blue and used the Wilton alphabet cutters to cut out the ‘happy birthday’ letters. I simply placed the cut letters on the cake and they stuck well to the butter icing without having to dampen the back with water.
  • Once the car was done, I piped green colored buttercream icing for the grass all around the cake.

 And that was it. The cake was done. Overall, this car was fairly easy to make, the only thing that took me some time was working with the butter icing as it requires a fair bit of smoothing which I did with my icing spatula.

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial as much as my little boy enjoyed his cake!

Happy decorating!

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