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Graduation Cake Ideas

Updated on May 12, 2015

Celebrate Commencement Time With a Cake

It's that time again! Commencement season is upon us. Whether it's High School or College, this achievement deserves the ultimate shindig! If you are stumped as far as a cake design, look no further. Here's my suggestions on creating a unique one of a kind graduation cake.

Graduation Cake Pictures

This Graduation Cap Cake is so easy to make!
This Graduation Cap Cake is so easy to make! | Source

How To Make A Graduation Cap Cake

Making a Graduation Cap Cake is so easy with the help of a Giant Cupcake Pan! When I was initially asked to make the Graduation Cake above, I spent a lot of time brainstorming. I wanted to find the best way to make a cake with clean lines and actually looked like a Graduation Cap. I stumbled upon a You Tube video by CupCake Addiction. (I absolutely love her You Tube Videos! You must check them out!) So, I followed her directions and added a few embellishments of my own. This cake was a hit! If you are looking for a simple cake design that will have a big punch, this is the one. Here are my tips!

  • I chose to decorate the bottom tier of my cake with dots. This is an easy way to achieve clean lines. Warning! The dot making process is boring and repetitive. With help from my little sous chef, I finished in a couple of hours. It may not take you that long, I tend to work slow. Hate dots? A chevron print is whimsical and stripes are classic. I have found onlays and cutters make the job so much easier!
  • Wilton makes black candy melts. This is the easiest way to get a true black cap. If you prefer the taste of chocolate, just add black food coloring to the melted chocolate. Candy melts are actually quite tasty, so I went this route.
  • Make two tassels for your cap. I prefer to make the tassels a few days earlier and allow them to dry, propped up. My first tassel cracked and eventually broke in two. I was relieved that I had an extra tassel in reserve. Always make an extra topper!
  • Number and letter cutters are a must have in any cake decorators inventory! FMM makes a great tappit set to make fondant letters and numbers. I use it all the time and it is the set I used in the picture above to make the "2014".
  • Finally, I can't say enough about the Giant Silicone Cupcake Mold. I use this pan all of the time. I usually use it to make smash cakes, so I was so excited to find another way to use it. This Graduation Cap Cake only uses the bottom portion of the mold, which is a plus. The candy wrapper can be made in any color, so you can personalize it to your theme. This is a must have!!

Graduation Cap Cake Video

Graduation Silhouette Cake

I stumbled upon this silhouette cake on Pinterest via Cake Central. This is a unique graduation cake idea!
I stumbled upon this silhouette cake on Pinterest via Cake Central. This is a unique graduation cake idea! | Source

Graduation Silhouette Cake

Silhouettes have been popular since around the mid-18th century. Reminiscent of traditional cameos, this classic theme is perfect for a Graduation cake. The Barbie inspired silhouette above may have been hand cut or made by a die cut machine and edible paper. Here are a few ways you can achieve a similar cake design.

  • Edible Paper Art is an easy way to create an image on a cake. Edible paper can be die cut into different designs or can have designs printed on them. Once applied to icing, the images meld into the surface and become seamless. Check out the options below.
  • Silhouettes can also be achieved by using a cookie cutter and fondant or modelling chocolate. Jb Cookie Cutter is a great online store that carries amazing cookie cutters.


Found this picture on Pinterest.  Awesome example of a mascot graduation cake.  Genius!!!
Found this picture on Pinterest. Awesome example of a mascot graduation cake. Genius!!! | Source

Mascot Graduation Cake

A mascot cake would be a great option for a high school graduation. There are many ways to achieve this design theme. If you are skilled in carving, a 3-D replica like the one above would be an awesome option. However, if you are like me, you're skill set is limited and you may not have enough free time to commit to such a time consuming cake design. If that's you a buttercream transfer of a mascot would be perfect. Buttercream Frozen transfer is a process that allows you to put an image on top of a buttercream cake. After finding an image you basically trace and "color" it in with icing on top of wax paper. After freezing, the image is flipped onto the cake where it will meld with the frosting. Check out the video below for a tutorial.

Buttercream Frozen Transfer Video

Stack of Books Graduation Cake Pictures

Beautiful Graduation Book Cake
Beautiful Graduation Book Cake | Source
Graduation Book Cake example
Graduation Book Cake example | Source

Stack of Books Graduation Cakes

The Book Cake has always been one of my favorite cakes. This cake design is an elegant option for a graduation cake. It lends itself well to post college commencement celebrations. There are many ways to take this cake theme over the top. Here are my suggestions.

  • A fondant covered board is a great way to add detail to this theme. This is the perfect opportunity to choose a wood grain or marble effect. This simple addition adds so much flair to the cake design.
  • Fondant flowers and/or wafer paper flowers would be a dainty addition. They are so easy to make and add curves to an otherwise hard lined design.
  • Pay attention to little details. Take consideration to the graduates personality and add details he/ she would appreciate. Name the books according to the field of study of the graduate. A scroll with free hand script or a simple globe would great. Don't forget to add the graduation year with number cutters!
  • Pastry school graduate= add a rolling pin etc. Law school=add a gavel etc.
  • Here's a link to a stack of books cake by Peggy Does Cake.
  • Prefer an open book cake design? Here's a link to a tutorial by one of my favorite cake decorators, Jessica Harris.
  • Check out the video below. This cake artist combines many of the techniques and designs I mentioned.

Graduation Cake with Book and Silhouette

Whether you are having a Southern BBQ or an event at an elaborate venue, there is a graduation cake to fit the bill. Graduations are such momentous accomplishments and are the perfect opportunity to make a unique cake. Hopefully I have provided some useful information to make the job easier and enjoyable.

How do you celebrate graduation?

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    • indanila profile imageAUTHOR

      Inda Blackwell 

      3 years ago from Hampton Roads

      Hello Ms. Rachel! I made the very first cake with the cap and dots on it. Cake decorating is one of my hobbies. Thanks for voting up!!

    • Rachel L Alba profile image

      Rachel L Alba 

      3 years ago from Every Day Cooking and Baking

      Amazing cakes. Did you make them? If you did, you should go on those cake contests on the Food Network show. Love you hub, I voted up.

      Blessings to you.

    • LadyFiddler profile image

      Joanna Chandler 

      3 years ago from On planet Earth

      WAW!!! This was totally stunning I love all the cake ideas, my grandmother and her brother are good cake makers and decorators.

      Your hub just brought back memories too bad my granny don't really have pictures of her work, I guessed she never studied to do so back in her days. She is 82yrs old now going on 83yrs God spear her life.

      I remember once she made one for my Primary School Graduation and the teachers did not want to cut it because it looked so beautiful :) they had to though it was for the children in my class.

      Thanks for sharing I pushed all your buttons and I will be sharing .

      GOD Bless U

    • Sunshine625 profile image

      Linda Bilyeu 

      3 years ago from Orlando, FL

      It is nearing graduation time in Orlando...great time to share this hub! :)

    • indanila profile imageAUTHOR

      Inda Blackwell 

      3 years ago from Hampton Roads

      Well thank you for stopping by MsDora!!! I love your hubs! They are such a blessing!!!

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 

      3 years ago from The Caribbean

      Oh My Goodness! These cakes will become the talk of the town. Hard to choose between the Graduation Cap and the Graduation Books! Thanks for sharing. Voted Up!

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