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3D Animal Cell Cakes

Updated on August 24, 2015

How to Make an Edible Animal Cell Model

3D cell modelsespecially edible ones! — are a fun, easy way to learn about animal cells.

Not sure where to begin with your edible animal cell project? This guide has you covered from mitochondria to lysosomes!

Here you'll find step-by-step instructions for baking a delicious, scientifically accurate animal cell cake, as well as a variety of creative animal cell cake pictures and how-to videos to help you out along the way.


Step 1: Gather Your Supplies

What materials will you use to make your animal cell model?

To make this animal cell cake, you will need a handful of affordable edible and non-edible supplies. These are the materials I used to create the cake pictured here but feel free to switch up the candy to fit your budget.

Round Cake Pan
Cooking Spray
Mike & Ikes
Mixing Bowls
Candy Belts
Circular Sprinkles
Oven Mitts
Candy Fruit Slices
Funfetti Cake Mix
Vegetable Oil
Food Coloring
MONEY-SAVING TIP: 99% of these materials -- including the cake mix, frosting, food coloring, vegetable oil and candy -- can be bought at most dollar stores.

What about the nucleus?

To create an edible nucleus without having to buy extra candy, simply set aside a spoonful of cake batter and use it to bake a small cupcake. The cupcake will fit perfectly atop your animal cell cake!

Step 2: Bake Your Animal Cell Cake

Following these instructions will ensure an A+ animal cell project

If you're baking with Pillsbury's Funfetti cake mix like I did, you'll need to blend the cake mix with three eggs, 1/3 cup of vegetable oil and one cup of water.

Once your cake batter is smooth, add a few drops of food coloring to mimic the pink color of many animal cells' cytoplasm. When your cake batter is an even color, pour it into your square cake pan and place the pan in the oven. Bake for approximately 30 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean when stuck into the middle of your cake.

Famemaster 4D-Science Animal Cell Anatomy Model
Famemaster 4D-Science Animal Cell Anatomy Model

This six-inch animal cell model comes with 26 detachable parts that make reviewing cell structure easy. The plastic model also comes with an illustrated assembly guide.


Step 3: Frost Your Cake

To ensure that your animal cell cake is scientifically accurate, you'll need to dye your frosting two different colors. One color will be used to create the cytoplasm, represented by the TOP of your cake. The second color will be used to create the cell membrane, represented by the SIDES of your cake.

Don't forget! If you chose to bake a nucleus cupcake, you'll also need to prepare a small amount of frosting that is dyed a third color.

Lots of supplies can be used to frost your animal cell cake but if you want to give your project a smooth, professional look, I recommend using an actual frosting palette knife. They typically cost about $6 and are incredibly useful in the kitchen. Not interested in purchasing a frosting knife? Try using the smooth edge of a butter knife, the back of a large spoon or a small spatula.

Cross-Section Animal Cell Model
Cross-Section Animal Cell Model

Learning the parts of the cell has never been easier than with this cross-section animal cell model. One half of the model is labeled with each organelle's name while the other half is labeled only with letters.


Step 4: Add Your Organelles

Organelles are the "mini organs" found inside every animal cell. Each organelle has a different function and physical appearance, and together they work to keep the cell alive. Here's a breakdown of the specific organelles found in animal cells and the edible materials I used to represent them:

Animal Cell Organelles:

  1. Cell Membrane - purple frosting
  2. Cytoplasm - pink frosting
  3. Nucleus - green-frosted cupcake (the purple Mike & Ike adds authenticity by representing the nucleolus)
  4. Golgi Apparatus - green sugar-coated candy belts
  5. Endoplasmic Reticulum - pink sugar-coated candy belts attached to the nucleus
  6. Ribosomes - circular sprinkles
  7. Mitochondria - purple candy fruit slices
  8. Vacuoles - green Dots
  9. Lysosomes - blue Mike & Ikes

Have You Baked a Delicious Animal Cell Cake?

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    • profile image

      SandyPeaks 5 years ago

      I think this is the most unusual cake I've ever seen! Blessed by a SquidAngel.

    • wildsimplicity profile image

      wildsimplicity 5 years ago from Atlanta, GA

      @SandyPeaks: Thanks, SandyPeaks! It was a blast to bake. :)

    • profile image

      anilsaini 5 years ago

      nice lens

    • LaurenIM profile image

      LaurenIM 5 years ago

      This is so awesome! I have to try this cake!

    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      great project, earned a 'thumbs up' for the creativeness that it brought.

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