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

Golden Arch Enemies

Did you hear that San Francisco recently passed a law saying McDonald's can't give out toys in their Happy Meals? Yep. Apparently they don't think we should entice children to eat food that is bad for them by offering little toys as rewards.

And really, they have an excellent point: you *shouldn't* reward kids for eating junk with little toys.

You should reward kids for eating junk with really, really BIG toys!!



No, seriously, let's consider the slippery slope here, shall we? First you start with an innocent pair of sunglasses:

Or, as the label calls them, a "tiara."

Next you up the ante with two or three action figures...

...or nine or ten.

Then you start adding custom carrying cases for the action figures...

And big dollhouses for them to live in...

Until finally, the toy is so large, so complex, that it's impossible to tell where the Happy Meal ends and the toy begins!

And we can't have that, now, can we?

(Yes, there's cake in there. Really.)

Lauren W., Tracy C., Jennifer D., Nicole B., Brianna R., Veronica L., & Rachel A., I'm holding out for the Star Trek: The Original Series phaser and tricorder cupcake pack. That's gonna be AWESOME.

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Reader Comments (82)

That last one?

The cake is a lie.

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterFluffy Cow

Where is the cake on that castle one? I only see a couple of frosting flowers. WHERE IS THE CAKE?

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterPeg

Uff da!

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterConnie Moreno

Okay, I THINK I found the cake in the last picture, but I can't be sure. I'm completely distracted by the amount of toy in/on/attached to that poor defenseless baked good.

Dear God, people, when will the madness end?

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAmy

Someone needs to enforce a plastic to cake ratio on these Wreckerators. Cakes should not be more the 50% plastic and still be allowed to be called "cake". Though if I had my way no plastic would ever touch cake, except a plastic fork. :P

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSamantha

Cakes can now contain an entire birthday present...instead of frosting. :)

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMary Connealy

is that the cake behind cinderella?
OR did I just fall for a joke? where is the cake?!

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterRachael

Okay, on the last one, it looks like a white brick of a cake with the plastic stuck in front and all around???
Oh, and who puts a fuzzy stuffed animal next to icing? I don't care if there is a little plastic tray. Yuk!

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSheri

I actually kind of like the cat and yarn cake, though I'm fairly sure I don't want to eat either the yarn balls (if they're solid icing), or any fluff that might come off the cat.

Though yeah, too many toys on the cakes. I always feel like I'm cheating when I put a toy on instead of trying to recreate the design, and I'm not even close to a professional decorator.

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMuria

Funny cakes aside, the government is getting way out of control. It's up to parents to decide what their children should be eating, not the government. It's a slippery slope.

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKatie

Those "faithful friends" on the next-to-last cake are pooing sprinkles!

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

As if they weren't creepy enough in the first place...why do the teletubbies have freaky mouse heads!?

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I'd like to see free cake included with every purchase of sunglasses...

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSuBee

Problem: Cake is bad for kids to eat and toys are bad for kids to play with.

Solution: Eat the toys. Mmm....fiber.

(Who said Wreckerators can't problem-solve??)

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLeftWingLock

The Teletubbies all look like Ross Perot. I mean, more than they usually do.

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKelly

Clearly I'm a bad person because all I thought was "Hey I could get my daughters b-day cake and her gift all at once score!"

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterDani

AND the tiara sunglasses cake is a *ptooey* CCC!

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKami

Ok, confession time. The castle cake at the bottom? I've made that one. By request from a 5 year old. I could NOT tell her no. She's effin adorable.

That being said, when the cake is assembled, there's a full sheet cake (cut into 4 sections, then assembled and heavily frosted) under all that plastic crap.

Still too much plastic. ;)

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterWifeOfSeth

The Happy Meal toys are the only thing that entices me to get a reasonably sized kid's meal instead of the ridiculously large adult meals. Adults like toys, too!

On that last one, pretty sure the cake is a lie.

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJenna

Aw, I actually like the one with the dollhouse and the dogs out front. :)

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBecky

The second to last cake reminds me of cakes when I was a kid in the Philippines. I still see some like that on display at a Filipino bakery in San Diego, so I assume that means they can still make them that way.

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterGabby

Luckily for SF kids Mayor Newsom vetoed the proposed law.

I confess: I once bought my DD a birthday cake because of the toys on top.

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJanet

Maybe they'll replace the toys with cake in happy meals?! Then you can reward kids for eating bad stuff with MORE bad stuff!

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBakingdom

The cat cake actually has a nice concept... It just would've been better without the stuffed cat and a fondant one or something.

And yes there's a cake in that castle. It's all the the white parts. You don't get much cake out of it, though, for it's ridiculous price.

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterGette

And what are those things in the glass jar below the cars?
I know what they LOOK like...


PS Love your posts- the whole team.

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

"Mom, there are little plastic dogs on my cake, pooping sprinkles."

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSarah

WV: "Frocroly" as in Frocroly krap, who would make a cake like that?!?

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

The last one... Seriously? There is cake there? I'm not seeing it!

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterRachael

Here's the conversation that took place at Khalif's house:

Mom: What decoration do you want on your cake Kahlif dear?

Khalif: Teletubbies!!

M: OK sweetie, I've ordered you a Teletubby cake!

K: NO NO NO! Want Thomas cake!

M: Oh, a Thomas cake? OK honey, I'll call the bakery and change it to Thomas. No problem sweetie!


M: Are you sure now sweetie? Mommy will call the bakery again but I want to be sure of what you want, ok?


M: All fixed lovey, you'll have a Mickey Mouse cake!



November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJulie

Keep the toys, lose the horribly unhealthy food. At least the toys cause children to play. (The current Hello Kitty watches could even be educational- my 3-year-old can't tell time yet, but keeps trying to on her Happy meal watch.)
My daughter wants the Strawberry Shortcake cake!

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

The best part of the cake with the insane number of cartoon character action figures...the background of the pic would indicate the theme for the party was "Cars." They couldn't find just ONE Lightening McQueen to shove on the cake?

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAmy

Although if a cake decorator is going to use a toy, they should at least make sure it's a full toy. I've heard horror stories about people using those Wilton "teen doll picks" and the little girl, enthralled by her princess cake, reaches for the barbie in the middle and then OH MY GOD WAAAHHHHH WHAT HAPPENED TO BARBIE'S LEGS WAHHHHHHHHH!

Some day I'm going to use the one that came with my Wilton pan to make a car accident cake with anatomically correct gumpaste entrails. Muahahahahaha.

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKimberly Chapman

Do I get my license to read here revoked if I admit that I actually bought that last one? The front is just a very thin sheet of plastic stuck onto the cake, My 5-year-old asked for that cake every time we passed it at the grocery store for a YEAR before her birthday (yes, she really does plan that far ahead). Also, that kit is no longer available from the store where I bought it; it has moved over to a different grocery chain.

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTonia

On the second to last one, is that a baby in a walker coming out the front door to see all the dogs?

WV: sednever
"I sednever will I allow my baby in his walker to go out amongst a pack of dogs."

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterNancy

Agreed, @Katie.

Why not just put the present on the table and wrap the cake? On second thought... "No, don't shake it!"

#1 I like how there is different-color icing in the treads on the 4x. Recycling is green, like that frosting. [urp]

#2 I'd like a slice without so much cat on it.

#4 The problem with a cake this heavily flotsamized: once all the non-edible bits are removed, what remains doesn't look edible, either. "Here's a slice with a few fragments of frosting on it -- doesn't that look appetizing!"

#5 See 4.

#6 "Cat 15 with regular filling." I don't really know what to do with that. Is that a message from the dentist?

#7 Sweet mother of pearl. It's one thing when the flotsam is kind of a stand-alone thing. Okay, maybe not when frosting has to be removed from synthetic (I hope) fur or hair, but when the deconstructed non-cake bits are only useful for decorating another cake...?

If my niece even suspected the castle cake existed, she would demand it. All day, every day. Think I'll email her that picture. Heh heh...

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCraig

Figures that it would be San Francisco that would pass a law taking the toy out of the happy. More proof that they have no clue. When will people figure out that it isn't the toy that is the problem? The toy isn't what the problem, the problem is the continued growing fast food culture that has replaced Americans making and cooking food for themselves. What we really need is the return of home cooked food and eating out to go back to being a special occasion instead of the rule. It makes good sense too. It will usually cost much less to make your own hamburger then it will to buy a fast food meal.

WV: unbon-->The distinct lack of Bon Bons in a box of chocolates.

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterIsolder74

Kimberly Chapman, you are one sick puppy. I love it! :-)

*sigh* I would have taken ANY of those cakes when I was a kid - I never had a birthday cake other than in the 9x13 pan it had been baked in with some icing spread on top.

That said -- just a little too much plastic for my taste - I prefer to use buttercream to decorate unless you're talking about having those ding-dang princesses faces!!

Am I the odd one that sees where the cake is?

As usual, much fun in this post!


wv - minomni -- I think cakes should use a mimomni of plastic... seriously.

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered Commentermladybright

There is cake in the last one I swear lol! I work at a bakery in Walmart and we do the princess cake, its two tiers of cake then we add lots of plastic crap. The white of the "building" part is the actual cake

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKristin

Oh, LORD. My sweet little niece, for her last two birthdays has had that EXACT SAME Disney Princess Castle Cake (and yes, the castle IS cake. It's just the turrets and other pink plastic bits makes it look like a toy). The last one tasted vile; it was like they spread Crisco all over the cake.

With no false modesty (and my other sister agreed), I could have made a MUCH better-tasting, nicer-looking one, not to cheaper, given my sister spent $40 on the offense to cakedom.

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I kept WAITING for the castle cake, for it's the very one that we made for our GrandDaughter this year. She picked it out of the cake-book, we ordered the "kit" and DD made it. After all the cake has the over-the-top Tammy Faye quality which appeals to the six-year-old market.

I'd thought the turrets pushed down through the cake, but they sorta unroll and set into the corners. And that's a low price for that cake---the kit cost 19.99 plus shipping.

The cake IS in there---enough for twenty and lots left over. The castle is way more than a foot high.

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterracheld

My friend actually works in a bakery and has shown me pictures of that exact same last cake. Yeah the white part is the only cake part and all the rest is plastic that attaches to it. It is pitiful that they can charge $35 for plastic cake.

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterChristi

That castle cake was our best seller at my bakery til Decopac discontinued it! The white part is all cake. And most of them were available for purchase using their food stamps! AAGGH!

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLinda

I'm a mom who actually bought the castle cake from my local grocery for my daughter's 3rd birthday. I bought it because I'm a sucker for my daughter telling me every week for 6 months that that was the cake she wanted. It's a big fat illusion. Seriously. The towers are thin pieces of plastic that simply wrap around the corners and are held in place by the cake and the plastic tower toppers. They're not even full circles or play-worthy. The door and princess topper are thin pieces of plastic. The cake itself is everything you see in white. The plants are just piped on. It's a ton of cake! But when you're done, the only thing left over that's useful are the princesses.

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterElizabeth S.

I like the fact that in the "Doggie" cake, the large black dog is wading through the brick paving... so surreal.

The baby is in trouble, though, She's obviously not scooping that delicious sprinkle-poo.

Is that where sprinkles come from?

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnneke (Mudhooks)

I believe that in that last one there is a little square cake behind cinderella. But who knows.

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMollie

I work in a grocery store bakery and I kind of hate the toy kit cakes. The ones we have aren't nearly as elaborate as the ones you posted, but I can't get over how worked up kids get over these things.

IN MY DAY *rattles walker* the only input I had on my cake was what color roses I wanted to put on it and if I wanted vanilla or chocolate cake.

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered Commenteranna

During my post-holiday travels yesterday, I had to stop for dinner on the road and a Happy Meal was the best/smallest option. It was my first fast food eaten in over a year - I thought "hey, at least I will get a fun toy I can give to someone" only to get some creep-tastic Madame Alexander mini doll of a girl dressed as a wolf (assuming it is a storybook reference?). Maybe now I should save it for a wreck-tastic cake decoration :)

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I pine for the good old days when the words "choking hazard" used to mean something. When I was a kid, all we had were lousy frosting roses on picks. They were dry and crunchy! And we were grateful for them, I tell ya!

(And by the way, why does the inscription on the cat cake look like one long HappyBirthday?)

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Kimberly Chapman, I would buy your cake!

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSuBee

I often think Charm City Cakes has to provide a diagram showing what is cake, what is wood, what is Rice Krispies, etc., just so people can cut some of their cakes. However, these are worse. If you have to get a bucket to hold all the "decorations" before you cut the cake, there are too many. Obviously these people have never heard the saying "less is more".

November 29, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTricia L

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