How to Make a Barbie Cake

Hooray! Hooray for birthdays and “princess cakes”! Elora-Belle requested a cake like this for her birthday, months before the event, and rather than pay half a hundred (doesn’t it sound so much more put that way?) for one from the grocery store, I made one myself. She loved it, I had fun in the process, and once again, a good time was had by all.

girls birthday cake I pieced together information from various sources online and came up with the following method, which you can use to make a Barbie cake of your own for the special little (or big!) girl in your life.

how to make a barbie cake

How to Make a Barbie Cake

baked barbie cake in bowl and panStep One: Bake Your Cake

Use two boxes of yellow cake mix. (This is one way I manage to do these types of things — I let some things go. In this case, I let go making the cake from scratch.)

Divide the cakes into an oven-safe bowl and a 9-inch round pan, both greased and dusted with flour. Bake until something inserted in the middle comes out mostly clean.

how to make a barbie cake cake cooling

Step Two: Cool Your Cake

Cool your cakes in their containers at first. Once they cool a bit, they will contract and will be easier to flip out onto wire racks. Be sure you allow enough time for cooling so that cutting and icing the cake doesn’t make a big crumby mess.

barbie cake how to even out the bottom

Step Three: Even out the Bottom

Slice off the rounded dome of the nine-inch round cake. I finally bought a cake turnerand it has changed my (cake-making) life! Love it. Be sure to place the cake on a cardboard round for transferring it later.

Also slice off the rounded part of the cake that was baked in the bowl and cut the bowl cake in half. SAVE THE PIECES YOU CUT OFF.

barbie cake how to filling

Step Four: Fill the Cake

I spread some delicious raspberry preserves on top of the bottom layer of cake.

Spreading on a completely cooled cake ensures that cake crumbs don’t mix in, even with something as thick as preserves.

how to make a barbie cake stack the cake

Step Five: Stack the Cake

Place the next layer of cake on top of the preserves and spread that layer with frosting. In my imagination, this would be a custard layer, but again, I had to let some things go, and using frosting was also really good.

how to make a barbie cake crumb coat and stabilize

Step Six: Crumb Coat and Stabilize

Stick three or four straws through the layers of cake in order to stabilize them. Then coat the entire thing with a layer of frosting. Cut the straws down to the height of the top of the cake.


barbie cake how to smooth crumb coatStep Seven: Smooth out Crumb Coat

The “crumb coat” keeps crumbs from the cake from peeking through the frosting. I used a bench scraper in conjunction with the cake turner to smooth out the crumb coat like so. It’s starting to look dress-like, right?


barbie doll in cake

Step Eight: Stick in the Doll and Adjust Skirt Height

I picked up this doll at the Dollar Tree for — you guessed it — just a dollar. So I didn’t feel bad (financially, ha) when I had to slice off her legs so she wouldn’t be too tall for her skirt. (I did feel strange licking the frosting off her body after the birthday party, but, ew, we’ll just stop the anthropomorphizing right there. Although, concede: It’s a little harder not to when the object is so human-looking. And may I add, sorry for her temporary lack of clothes, hahahaha!)

Anyway, this is where the pieces you cut off in step three come into play. Use them to adjust the height of her skirt and make the slope more gradual.

barbie cake how to crumb coat

Step Nine: Finish the Crumb Coat

Extend the crumb coat to cover the cake pieces from the step above. Since the doll didn’t have her legs, I used the cake pieces plus this frosting layer to stabilize her as best I could. It worked; she didn’t fall forward or backward onto her own skirt (our out of it completely, eeps!) at any point in the evening, whew!



Step Ten: Decorate!

decorated barbie cakeI got so caught up in designing the princess’s dress that I forgot to take pictures of the process. I found this video on how to decorate a Barbie doll/princess cake the most helpful. Obviously, I’m no professional, but this is what I ended up with.

A little note on the frosting: I used this buttercream frosting recipe, tripled (I ended up with some leftover), and modified it by adding about a tablespoon of meringue powder per recipe to make the frosting stiffer. It tasted “real,” had a good consistency for decorating, and held up very well.

girls birthday cake I love that Little D is such a cheerleader about everything. What a champ. =)

girls birthday party
Is it perfect? No. But this, this, is what it’s all about, right?? She loved it.

girls birthday cake

Disclosure: Compensated Affiliate



  1. Thanks for your humerous step by step guide, im no cook but this looks quite simple without having to buy a heap of stuff your never going to use again! thanks :)

    • Shifrah Combiths says:

      It’s really simple! If I can do it, you can do it. I did try to make it with supplies I had on hand — but I’m not sure I won’t make this cake again. I’ve consistently been getting requests for another one from my daughter for her next birthday. We’ll see! =)

  2. Shifrah, your post brought back memories that made me laugh!

    I also decided to make my daughter a Barbie cake (years ago) as a birthday surprise, and I bought a brand new Barbie that would go into it AND serve as a present. It happened to be a singing Princess and the Pauper Barbie. (Uh oh, right?)

    As usual, I was running a little late, and I was trying to shove–I mean, place Barbie in her cake dress as my husband kept my daughter busy and the guests arrived. Every time I touched Barbie, she started singing, “I’m just like you; you’re just like me.” There I was, shoving her in and muttering, “Shut up, Barbie!”

    Oh, good times. :)