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

It's In There

Sometimes you readers ask, "Yes, but don't they TASTE good?"

Honestly? No idea. And with this blog being about purely visual gags, I'm sure most of you - like me - don't really care what the wrecks taste like.

However, a few of our readers have discovered that, sometimes, the true Wreck can be found on the inside:

There's more than one way to level a cake.
(Pass the icing, Beth D.)

Still - and here's a little foreshadowing for you - at least everything there is edible.

Heheh. Aheh. Heh.

Oh, yes.


Not to be cutting, but finding scissors in your birthday cake is shear madness!

Poor Amy L.; the store accused her of planting these in the cake herself. And really, you can see why; just look at all the fame and fortune she's acquired since!

(That was sarcasm, y'all; she didn't get anything.)

Here's a tip from Bella, the good sport:

Even a cake this yummalicious...


...can be wrecked when you forget to remove the parchment paper.

Well, we all need more fiber in our diets, right, Bella?

And really, it could have been worse. It could have been someone's wedding cake...

..and the paper could have been so thick that the caterers couldn't cut through it, resulting in messy globs of red velvet cake which they had to scoop onto plates to serve. And it could have cost $500.

Yep, that would definitely have been worse. Right, Stacey F.?

(Sorry I don't have a pic of the inside - but then, the outside's not so great either, is it?)

So, my dear Wreckies, the next time you're in the market for a cake, remember: looks aren't everything. Oh, and if you're in need of some craft supplies, you might just get lucky. (Fingers crossed!)

- Related Wreckage: Wrecks on Display

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Reader Comments (94)

Re: The "scissors surprise"...

The store accusing her of putting those scissors into the cake is to me the moral equivalent of the surgeon accusing his patient of putting those forceps in there...

Criminey... People make mistakes. Just step up and fess up.

February 24, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBADKarma!

I guess I would ask where in the cake the scissors are. It looks like there was some sort of filling in the bottom and maybe that's where it was? If it was in the top layer I can see why the bakery might thing they came in after it left the store. I used to work in a bakery and we didn't even have scissors in the area for most of my stint there. If you wanted to open something you used a knife. Maybe that's what happened to them.

Also @Dan ; late in the evening is no excuse. I worked night shift at a bakery and my very first night the trainer pulled out a piece of parchment paper and a bag of icing and had me writing things out (including proper spellings!). Our decorator also only printed on any cake going for general display so we could personalize it without to obvious a change in handwriting. Now my sister works at that store and I've told her if they ever have a problem like that call me and I will drive up there.

February 24, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAngela

Ah, America, where cakes are wrecks inside and out!

At least the scissors were big enough to be noticed once the cake was cut. Someone at the bakery must reeeaallly hate little kids.

February 24, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Aww that's sad. Wreck on the outside is funny, wreck on the inside is sad.

February 24, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCarolyn

Oh Jen, I love your writing style. I come for the cake but stay for the jokes.

February 24, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLeigh

Scissors in the cake? That's akin to a surgeon accidentally leaving a scalpel inside a patient! I can't believe they accused her of planting them there.

That first cake may not look pretty, but I personally LOVE the frosting to cake ration on the left side! Mmmmmm!

February 24, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

the wedding cake wreck reminded me of one that happened when i worked in a bakery (bread slicer and putting the rolls in the bags).

the bridezilla wanted a wedding cake. no problem, pick out a design. oh no, she wanted a full assemble-on-site cake...with pound cake.

you cant do a cake with the pretty little columns with POUND cake, its too heavy, it will collapse. no, it must be lemon pound cake, its the brides favorite. perhaps a small decorated one on the side? no, she DEMANDED in LOUD words that it must be pound cake.

the store manager (yay kroger) insisted that the bakery sell her what she wanted. the bakery manager insisted that the bridezilla sign a waver saying in VERY clear language that the bakery took no responsibility WHEN the cake collapsed, as this was advised against by the staff. bridezilla signed it smugly, saying that they were WRONG.

the cake was made, and frosted. the mother of the bride picked it up and was shown how to assemble the cake on site.

the day after the wedding, the bride brought a box of...smashed cake into the bakery, and polaroids of the collapsed cake and demanded DEMANDED that she be refunded her money PLUS damages.

the store manager was all for the refund till he heard that she had signed a waiver. and that the bakery refused to take the hit in the sales for that day, because they were following HIS orders.

bye bye bride. no moneys for you. and maybe next time you LISTEN when someone tells you "that wont work".

February 24, 2010 | Unregistered Commentermiss kitten

My mom tried to call in a birthday cake order last weekend at our local Giant. She only got as far as saying "yellow cake". The nitwit in the bakery dept said she only had white icing, but if mom wanted yellow she could try to spray it. Mom hung up the phone. I would have said OK, just to see what I'd actually get.

February 24, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLulubelle B

So that covers paper and scissors - any cakes with rocks in 'em? (Ugh, I hope not.)

February 24, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterabi

Wow. I can't imagine finding scissors in a cake. I'm almost germaphobic too, so I'm imagining all the germs on the scissors that got absorbed into the cake, and everyone ate it!

February 24, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterFanboy Wife

@Terry Lee -

Your "lookin' like a fool" comment made me laugh so hard I cried.

Which is, as they say, icing on the....oh never mind.

February 24, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBekah

One time I had a dream where I ate the parchment paper and then I woke up and I realized that I ate the parchment and that it wasn't a dream...

The worst part was when I woke up and had no clue why my hair had frosting in it and where my cake cutting sword went.

Anyway, the point of this rambling is that you can never judge a book by the cake that's in it.

February 24, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterChris G

Who doesn't love a surprise inside their cake?! *shudder*

February 24, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterIrishBelle318

$500 for that cake?! Goodness! And scissor on a cake?! I can't imagine.

Jules" rel="nofollow">Soloden.Com" rel="nofollow">The Brown Mestizo

February 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJules

Anon wrote:
"I once found part of a rubber glove in my daughter's birthday cake."

Gulp! Let's hope for your sake that it was part of a rubber GLOVE.

I may never eat food again. Ever.

WV: Preen
What I feel like doing right now. I'll get my feathers all shiny and clean and never, ever look at a cake again.

February 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I can't believe someone would pay 500 bucks for a lopsided wedding cake. I would have gone bridezilla on that baker lol. And scissors in a birthday cake? What on earth are these people thinking? Did they not go "I wonder where my scissors are?" or just shrug and hope no one would notice.. man now I really think I should bake my own cake.

February 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMarie

With all the red gel stuff the scissors look bloody. EW

February 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Oh man..

My friend ordered me a birthday cake last July from a local bakery. It was actually quite pretty, if simple... Black and red icing roses and a large coffin. Why? My friend asked if they could make a Jigglypuff cake (yes, the Pokemon) but when he got the price quote for that he decided it wasn't worth it and so he opted for a funeral themed cake. Ah... My friends are amazing.

Anyway. After a lovely dinner we cut into it and.... Found we'd gotten a marble cake. Marbled with mold. Green and blue mold. All through it.

The worst part? The bakery was unapologetic and refused to admit they'd used something that was, frankly, not exactly fresh. They wouldn't even refund it. And this wasn't a shady place (well ok, it is now)... They're pretty well liked around here but I have not been back since.

February 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAi

As a former cake decorator, I will say that in my bakery we used scissors quite often for quite a few things, from cutting tip bags to placing roses on cakes and some other little things. They were only used for those specific purposes, and were cleaned everyday the same as all the other tools we used. It's totally unacceptable that it was in the cake, and so wrong on so many levels, but they are pretty common in some bakerys...

February 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

and THIS is why I make the cakes in my family for small occasions. lol They may not be the prettiest cakes out there but I know they are clean, scissor-free and yummy.


February 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

This reminds me of my own wedding cake. My husband's aunt made the cake and the bottom tier broke in transit from VA to NC. She iced and decorated a Styrofoam round and warned the caterers. I guess they didn't listen because half of our guests were served Styrofoam cake.

February 25, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterDara

I used to work for a large bakery in New Mexico and a customer returned a loaf of bread that had a mouse baked into it. We didn't acccuse her of planting the mouse, but very quickly refunded her money and prayed she wouldn't sue.

February 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterPixie

Wow. I've been jealous of all the cakes with frosting roses and pretty designs, but now I am really really glad I have to make all my own cake, because I always know what's inside it.

February 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Our office got a cake for a baby shower, and it was an enormous layered sheet cake. Imagine our surprise when the cake cutter's knife got stuck on what turned out to be a foot-long, wooden spatula/spoon. I believe our next shower cake was free :)

February 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMelanie

i am a cake decorator & worked at kmart's bakery. decorators use scissors to take the flowers off the flower nails & place on the cake. we used much smaller scissors than what was in that one cake though. that just blows my mind that they were in that cake. scissors do sit very close to a cake when being decorated but it is amazing that they were in the cake. our cake came pre made & frozen & we cut the 1/2 sheets down to whatever size we needed so scissors could never go any further than the icing which would have been very noticeable. most likely those scissors were used to open a bag of mix or something & probably fell into the cake batter or in the pan before it went into the oven. it would have sunk very fast in the batter.

on another note of the paper being left on. i was training a newbie & our cakes got flipped out of the box frozen onto the board & the paper needed to be peeled off the bottom which then became the top. it was very noticeable, well so we thought. the newbie was left to base ice cakes & the next day i came in to find a cake that was brought back. it was a church function & she apparently didnt peel the paper off the 1/4 sheet cake & it was iced & decorated. when they tried to cut into it, the entire surface of the cake's icing went down into the crack with the knife. they were given a refund fully & she got yelled at of course. she didnt last long.

if you sit & think of the horrors that could be happening to your food in the service industry, you would never eat again. from the factory making foods to the cooks & servers, anything could be happening to it!

pretty sickening

February 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

What's with the scissors? Someone breaking out of preschool?

February 26, 2010 | Unregistered Commentercheryl

Okay, scissors in a cake beat out the metal bolt I once found in my lasagna...they win!

(And I too want to know just HOW that accidentally happened...)

February 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKristina

I remember the horror on my 10th birthday, opening the cake box to find a bright shiny red Lee Press On Fingernail sitting on top of my cake like some nasty and obscene cake topper. When we made our way back to the store to return it, the girl claimed that we put it there ourselves. (even though she had a suspicious bandage on one of her fingers, and the other 9 were covered with long red lee press on claws.)

February 27, 2010 | Unregistered Commentersin

Ok in defense of bakers scissors are around bakeries a lot as you are constantly cutting parchment paper to line cake pans (of course many bakers are lucky enough to have slaves---er I mean prep staff to do that for them).

And if you use a lot of plastic flotsam you probably use scissors for that.

Also sometimes for doilies and other decorations one might normally have on or near a cake, or other desserts

Scissors are also used for opening huge bags of flour, sugar, etc. Anyway there were always scissors.

But that is NOT and excuse for dropping them into cake batter and not noticing!

February 27, 2010 | Unregistered Commentermystic_eye_cda

ahhh yes. The extra icing on a cake. It's how my grandmother would try and cover the fact that she had burned the cake because she had been yapping on the phone or with the neighbour too long to realize it was time to take it out. Slap on extra icing and no one will be the wiser? yeah...

February 27, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterRachel

I think that scissors cake was supposed to be sent to a prison....

February 27, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterKristen

Recovery Actor, what's wrong with Royal icing on a wedding cake? That's traditional over here. I do question what you'd have to do to the icing to make it uncuttable. I mean, you'd have to make it super viscous and layer it on very thickly. Had she put a layer of marzipan under the icing, or just tried to do it /all/ in icing? Had she added any lemon juice or glycerin?

I just don't see how this would happen. Unless American knives are generally very small and weak.

February 28, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Our wedding cake had cardboard right under the icing ...we went to cut the cake together and couldn't do it. Funniest part is that wedding coordinator (who did not order the cake) knew exactly what the problem was and what to do about it (she told us to cut under the cardboard) she had obviously seen this happen before!

Actually, that's not the funniest part. The funniest part is when, which trying to remove the top tier, the person who was moving it lost their balance. The top tier went flying and was caught deftly in mid air by our best man, to which my husband replied "The force is strong with this one" (their "bachelor party" was going to see Star Wars Episode I so that was perfect)

March 1, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterGale

I can't believe the store had the nerve to accuse the patron of planting the scissors herself!! (Tacky!!)

Being a cake decorator myself, as soon as I saw the picture I knew they belonged to whoever made the cake. I have a couple of pairs of those same "school scissors" and use them for taking icing roses off the nail and placing them onto the cake.

Never have I ever misplaced them in a cake though!!!!

March 1, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCleverGirlinSF

OMG, lol on the 'mouse-filled' cake Pixie

March 1, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

My husband and I had a military wedding and used his sword to cut the first piece of cake. I have a picture of me with a grimace on my face as we tried to cut the cake. We discovered that the baker put a hard plastic support on the layer and iced over it. We were trying to cut through a quarter inch piece of plastic! Ultimately we cut below the plastic and people got pieces of cake without icing on the top.

March 3, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSusan

Susan, that's actually the RIGHT way to make a layer cake: the plastic supports the next layer (or the cake topper if it's the uppermost layer), and small wooden dowels inside the cake itself support the plastic. (I do hope you're exaggerating about the quarter-inch, though; usually they're quite a bit thinner than that.)

The person who made the cake should have either told you this or not covered the plastic completely with frosting, though. (An exceptionally nice caterer, like my mom, would have given you an extra tub of frosting to touch up the cake after removing the plastic support).

March 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Wow! You gotta be pretty dang talented and creative to come up with and design the cakes that these folks have made or should I say "baked"

July 8, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterNick@ dog potty

I can't believe some decorators let cakes go out like these ones. I hope I never did... ;)

July 15, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterfran

perhaps the scissor cake was really meant to go to a prison...

July 16, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I feel bad now for all the times ive used icing to even out a cake thats gone a bit wonky.... Also for the times when my cupcakes are a tad burnt but the icing hides it.
At least i dont charge for my cakes. My friends and family get to enjoy my wonderful creations for free and theyre only a choking hazard to those with dairy allergies.
Katherine S

August 21, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Omg I know another bakery that left scissors in the cake and then one time when someone was ordering a cake they asked what type of filling they had, when told of the fillings they asked if they also had scissor filling.. haha

October 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Joining the party a bit late, but did the scissor baker get a job as a doctor?

About 15 years ago an Uncle of mine went in for some gastric surgery. About 3-4 months after the successful surgery he went back complaining of severe cramps. Well, lo and behold, yep you guessed it, they found a pair of surgical scissors inside him. They showed up like a bright Christmas tree on a dark night inside him. Needless to say, they were scrambling to have him not sue them. Lucky for them, he was a nice guy and did not sue but I've often wondered with so many people how that would even be possible. Now I know there are unemployed bakers becoming doctors. eeegaad!

December 4, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

The mysterious red stuff on the scissors doesn't make finding them in a cake any less scary O.O

December 5, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMB

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