Shark Birthday Cake Design

by Karen Tack

Shark Birthday Cake Design

Sweet! How to make a shark birthday cake with mini-marshmallows with an easy, step-by-step recipe, diagrams and pictures

Download the template for this cake now!


  • 1 pound cake baked in a 9 by 5-inch loaf pan
  • 1 large (5-inch round) sugar cookie, from bakery
  • 1 large gumdrop, any flavor
  • Black food coloring
  • 1 can (16 oz) vanilla frosting
  • 1 roll red fruit leather (Fruit Roll-Ups)
  • ¼ cup mini-marshmallows
  • 2 Junior Mints
  • 1 tube black decorating icing
  • Blue food coloring

What you'll need:

  • A bread knife
  • A serving platter
  • A serrated knife
  • Kitchen shears or scissors
  • A resealable sandwich-size plastic bag (Ziploc)

Trimming the cake:

  1. Place the cake loaf on its side on a clean work surface. Using the bread knife, make a 3-inch, wedge-shaped diagonal cut from one short end of the pound cake (see template).
  2. Arrange the cut cake, diagonal cut side down, on a serving platter to create the appearance of the shark coming out of the water. Wedge the trimmed piece of cake under the front of the shark's body for support.

For the fin:

  1. Use a serrated knife to cut a 1 ½-inch piece from one side of the cookie.
  2. Make a vertical slit in the base of the back side of the cake and insert cookie, cut side down, into the opening as the fin. Place the gumdrop under the cookie fin for support.

For the gray frosting:

  1. Using a tiny amount of black food coloring, tint 1 cup of the vanilla frosting a light gray. Spread the gray frosting over the cake and cookie fin and make smooth.

For the shark's mouth:

  1. Cut the shark's mouth out of the red fruit leather. Press the fruit-leather mouth onto the front end of the cake and press lightly to secure.
  2. Using kitchen shears or clean scissors, cut the mini-marshmallows in half on the diagonal. Press the cut side of mini-marshmallows onto the edge of the fruit leather to make the shark's teeth.

For the eyes and gills:

  1. Press the Junior Mints into the sides of the cake for the shark's eyes.
  2. Pipe 3 gills under each eye using the black decorating icing.

For the waves:

  1. To make the swirly blue frosting, add a little blue food coloring to the remaining vanilla frosting, but don't mix completely. Spoon the swirly blue frosting into a resealable plastic bag.
  2. Snip a ¼-inch corner from the bag with the blue frosting. Pipe waves and swirls to cover the base of the cake and some of the shark. Dab with the back of a small spoon to make swirls in the frosting.