My Other Blog

What's a Wreck?

A Cake Wreck is any cake that is unintentionally sad, silly, creepy, inappropriate - you name it. A Wreck is not necessarily a poorly-made cake; it's simply one I find funny, for any of a number of reasons. Anyone who has ever smeared frosting on a baked good has made a Wreck at one time or another, so I'm not here to vilify decorators: Cake Wrecks is just about finding the funny in unexpected, sugar-filled places.

Now, don't you have a photo you want to send me? ;)

- Jen

Oh, Bugger

When it comes to cakes, I'm usually a pretty tolerant person. (Mostly. Ok, sort of. Look, just humor me, Ok?)

However, there's a new "Deco Kit" running rampant through our nations bakeries that, quite frankly, must be stopped. In fact, it's not so much a kit as it is a creepy garnish. Let's see if you can spot it in this photo:

"Oh, look at the pretty caAAAEEEIIIII!!!!"

Yes, those are in fact giant, disturbingly life-like, (yet mercifully plastic) ants - or as bakers are calling them, "the new sprinkles."

Which might explain why they're popping up everywhere.

See, two ants are good...

Three are better...

But four equals "display only". Good to see there are limits.

For some reason watermelon cakes suffer the most from these pesky "antics":

Because, really, how else could you make this cake less appetizing?

It's always good to have insects on the brain while eating a cake covered in black specks.

And yes, please, let's put Old Glory on there to remind everyone that only we Americans could produce the double-whammy Wreckage of both a CCC (cupcake cake) AND the GAG (Giant Ant Garnishes). Wouldn't want some other country claiming this one, now, would we?

Christine T., Penny R., Sidney B., Dave K., Kathryn S., Erica H., & Kate B., you know why anteaters never get sick, right? No? Well, it's 'cuz they're so full of antibodies.

[bah dum bump!]

- Related Wreckage: Totally Cheating

« What's THAT Supposed to Mean? | Main | Sunday Sweets: More Threadcakes »

Reader Comments (173)

"A horror horde of crawl-and-crush giants clawing out of the earth from mile-deep catacombs!"

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJoshua

I think some of them are cute!

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSarah

I had a picture of an ant cake for almost two months on my camera that I kept meaning to send had Airbrushing, piles of "dirt" aka chocolate crumbs, and then the giant ants--and then my camera broke and the picture is gone FOREVER!!!! Too was AWESOME

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterKirsten and Sean

Dude, that's just wrong.

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterTerri

I'm sorry, but I love the idea. Just not the plastic.

Sugary/chocolatey bugs strategically placed would amuse me no end.

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSili

My sister had an ant bride and groom on top of her wedding cake.


I'm serious.

Actually it was pretty cute. They had a picnic theme going for the reception/open house (it was casual).

I am afraid I have to respectfully disagree about the first cake being a wreck. (it's not amazing, either.) It's not my thing, but I could see it appealing to the right kind of quirky picnic attendee. At least the icing in evenly colored and applied.

Those watermelons, though. Yeesh.

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterEric

And I had just taken a picture of a watermelon CCC I was going to send to Jen, thinking it couldn't get any worse than this. It just did.

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterChristina M.

Ants worked for me on a cake once, but only as a joke. And even then I wanted to scream at first.

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJunk Drawer Kathy

The CCC that is supposed to look like a slice of watermelon ... that's just sad.

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAmanda in Austin

pesky "antics"

You slay me!

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnna

You forgot to spit at the mention of the CCC! *patooie*

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

I like the first one, ants and all. But the fail is all over those other ones. Ants and picnics.. I get that. Ants and watermelon...not so much. Nothing you could put on top of those would save those watermelon cakes.

Marshall, Texas has a Fireant Festival coming up in October.

They would probably be interested in these 'new sprinkles'.

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSharon

Okay, I'll admit it...I actually think the ants are adorable. I love them! At least they weren't plastic cockroaches or maggots. o.O

I could do without the hideous CCC and melted watermelon cake though. Those were pretty unappetizing even without the giant insects. Blech.

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJenB

at least the one with the cupcake turned upside down like the ants were trying to haul it away was a little creative... at least they got something, right?!

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterLittleLovables

This just reminds me of both litterbox cake and dirt pudding (you know, cake crumbles with pudding and gummy worms in a ceramic pot? My husband used to make it when he was little). By comparison, I can't say I find it that gross. I think ants are cute, and definitely better than flies!

Of course, no amount of cute ants can save an ugly cake!

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterLori

You know it's a serious infestation when Jen comes up with an acronym for it. GAG indeed!

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterjackie31337

*stares at "watermelon" cakes* Maybe the ants were to help folks figure out what they're supposed to be? Not that it makes them any less ugly...

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterStephanie

I actually think it's kind of cute...In a disturbing, ruined-picnic sort of way. At least they're plastic?

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterElena

those ants are really scary. well, I just lost my appetite.

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered Commentermollymouse

I, for one, welcome our new insect overlords...

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterI'm Just a Girl


This may have been said but I'm at lunch and don't have time to read all the comments (sorry folks). I can FORGIVE the picnic one as being part of a theme, but the rest are just ... well ... YUCK!!!

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterKaren


August 3, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterjoanne wardle

I've seen these everywhere and wondered about taking a picture to send it in- looks like you've got enough. :) So odd.

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDani

dear god, that watermelon ccc is a special kind of awful.

I'll echo the sentiment that the first ant cake is pretty cute. It's a well done cake and the ants are put on in a realistic manner. The rest of the ant cakes are super gross, though.

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered Commenteralicia

Wow. Talk about giving someone the creepy-crawlies! (shiver) YUK!

~Amy B.

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAmy

I think the ants are adorable for a summer cake!

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJenDiggity

I haven't seen any of these yet at our local wreckery but if I did, I would totally buy one as a joke for my friend who when we went camping together was FREAKED out by the HUGE carpenter ants that were everywhere... (insert evil cackle) :-)

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered Commentercelestejohnson

Re the last one , everyone over this side of the puddle knows you lot are crazy...this just proves it!

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterdiddleymaz

Anony @ 9:36:
Two thumbs up for the somewhat obscure horror movie reference! :)

I'm Just A Girl:
Another double thumbs up for the nicely fitting Simpsons quote. :)

The plastic ants are pretty icky, and it's sad how many cakes have them... but I can imagine far worse critters to have swarming over your dessert plate... *shudder*

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

BETH! Don't give them any ideas!

Personly...EW! Of course I have a slight fear of ants, so there you go.

If I saw a cake like that at an event I would run away screaming, after throwing the cake in the air and smooching it.

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterLizzy Leigh

I love your site!

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterCr4zySAHMandArmywife

I kinda like the bugs!

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAllyson

Yuck! Like Julie, I have those ginormous carpenter ants too. And how about a great big WTF for the watermelon cakes. Even without the ants, they deserve a hearty WTF???

The first watermelon cake resembles one of those horrifying STD photos they show you in health class. The second watermelon cake has actually managed to capture the idea of "watermelon"- just one that was cut open while unripe. And the 3rd, the CCC (!!!) bears a vague, cartoonish resemblance to a squirt of Aquafresh toothpaste. With black specks and ants on it.

Today, giant plastic ants. Tomorrow, giant plastic roaches, or even rats. Gosh, what is the world of cake decorating coming to?
WV: "wasta"...Too easy. "The specimens on todays Cake Wrecks entry are nothin' but a wasta perfectly good cake!"

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterForest Basenji

so, is that second one supposed to be a red and white checkered table cloth? if so, the airbrushing is terrible! if not, then I don't have a clue what it is! and those watermelons? wow. eww. that melted one in particular. just eww.

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterLaura

Rose Levy Beranbaum has two different recipes that include edible bees as a garnish (one made from ganache, another from marzipan) in the Cake Bible and the Pie and Pastry Bible.

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterWarren Burstein

For my mother-in-law's birthday yesterday, we ate a very pretty watermelon ice cream cake... that was covered in the GAG. One of them was even sitting up perched on the edge of the cake. These were not plastic, but had been piped with butter cream. I ate them. Yum.

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterLisa

yup, the big fat plastic ants have made it to Wisconsin too! we saw some on a watermelon cake at the grocery store, and decided to pass on it!

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterGreenmare

For my mother-in-law's birthday yesterday, we ate a very pretty air brushed (it actually wasn't a bad job with the air brushing) watermelon ice cream cake... that was covered in the GAG. One of them was even sitting up perched on the edge of the cake. These were not plastic, but had been piped with butter cream. I ate them. Yum.

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterLisa

Yep, saw these at my local mega chain grocery store bakery yesterday. It's sorta a new concept for me - remembering to take a camera when I go grocery shopping - but just wait til I get my next mobile phone upgrade!

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSara

I needed something to stop me eating cake, thanks for this

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterFlower Design Jane

Holy hell, is that last CCC really supposed to be a watermelon?! REALLY!!??? Because what says watermelon like an amorphous-wonky-v-shaped line of cupcakes with ants on them? I'll tell you! An amorphous-wonky-v-shaped line of cupcakes with ants on them AND American flags! Yep, that really just ties the room together, does it not?

I have to say the GAG phenomenon was not something I had ANTicipated. Wreckerators never cease to amaze.

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterHolly

I'm sorry, I would have trouble eating a cake with ants on it. Fake or not.

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered Commentertheprovidentwoman

Why, in the name of all that is good & cakey, would ANYBODY do that to a cake? I mean, really! What did that cake ever do to them?

Why not just serve up the crushed roach cake from a while back & be done with it?

Cakes like these make the low carb diet pretty easy...

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAngie

No! Ewwwww! WTF!

Speaking of cake wrecks...the flower shaped candy molds that I use to make candy roses to put on my cakes? Well, like an idiot, I put them in the dishwasher, thinking the top rack would be safe.

NOT SAFE AT ALL. Melted! :(

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMiranda


August 3, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterchristagirl

can you eat the ants? not that i would... yeah i wouldn't go near those...

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterBrittany

Rachael said...
"Come on now. They may be cute for a picnic idea cake or halloween (maybe), but whoever came up with this idea should be taken out back and beaten."

LOL! This comment is hilarious.

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterNichole Loves Cake!

The first one is actually kinda well-made (the placement of the ants on the cake is actually cute -- they're going for toppings on the cake). The others aren't horrible... 'til you get to the watermelons.

And BTW, some ANTibodies can actually make you sick, but it's usually not with INSECTious disease.

(Sorry, after I read the anteater joke, I HAD to make that pun.)

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterpurplewowies

GAG is totally the right word for those ant cakes!!!

August 3, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAunt of 14

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>