A child’s first birthday is a massive milestone for both baby and parent and what better way to celebrate than with a fun party and a fabulous 1st birthday cake.

None of us really remember our very first party or our 1st birthday cake but there are always photos to remind us. Most parents enjoy going to a bit of effort for their child’s first birthday – it really is the first time, since baby’s birth, that they can make a fuss over their little one.

If you’re inviting family and friends with little ones, then it’s the easiest to host your child’s first birthday party at home. Make sure you have plenty of food and drink for the grown-ups and some toys for the bubs.

Some parents feel the pressure to spend a fortune on ordering a professionally-made 1st birthday cake. By all means, do this if you wish but you can absolutely make your own cake at home that can be just an impressive, for far less cash. And remember that for most kids, the simpler the better.

A friend of mine spent the cost of a small house on the most elaborate 1st birthday cake. It was a masterpiece but the kids took off all the fondant icing and completely destroyed it before munching on what was left. A cake simply iced with sprinkles or lollies always goes down a treat.

You basically have three main options if you wish to make your own 1st birthday cake:

1) Make A 1st Birthday Cake From Scratch

Even if you’re not a baker, making a simple vanilla or chocolate birthday cake is not difficult. We love this very easy vanilla cake recipe which is the perfect (and yummy) base for a 1st birthday cake. There is also a delicious chocolate cake version here.

When you’re making your cake, always make sure you use a good quality vanilla extract (our favourite is Queen Natural Vanilla Extract) or for a more intense flavour, we love adding Queen Organic Vanilla Bean Paste.

2) Use A Box Cake

These days, the box cakes make great quality base cakes for a 1st birthday cake. There is so much variety when it comes to packaged cake boxes and these are perfect if you are a bit less confident when it comes to baking. Check out the baking aisle in your nearest supermarket and grab a box or two of your choice.

3) Buy A 1st Birthday Cake Base

Local supermarkets, like Woolworths and Coles, sell top quality cakes that make a brilliant base for a 1st birthday cake. There are entire facebook groups dedicated to hacks using pre-made cakes and the results are absolutely spectacular. If you’re short on time, you can simply buy one of the pre-iced cakes and add sprinkles or lollies and we promise the kids and grown-ups will eat it all up.

Once you’ve got your base cake, you can then shape the cake and decorate it as you wish.

1st Birthday Cake Ideas

Below are some ideas for some impressive 1st birthday cake ideas.

Sandcastle Cake

This is such a fun and easy-to-make 1st birthday cake. It’s topped with a heap of ‘sand’ made out of biscuit crumbs.

sandcastle birthday cake

Digger Cake Hack

This literally takes 10 minutes to put together but it looks like you’ve been working on it for hours.

digger cake hack

Ice Cream Cone Cake

This impressive cake looks like it is topped with an upside down ice-cream cone with melty ice-cream. It looks really tricky but we promise it’s super easy to put together and it’s absolutely WOW!

icecream cone birthday cake

Lollipop 1st Birthday Cake

We love tricky little ideas that will have our kids ooh and ah with glee but can be achieved with a minimum of fuss. This cake is one of them. It looks amazing and we take a few sneaky shortcuts to get this cake prepared in no time.

lollipop birthday cake

Easy Peasy Cheats Rainbow Swirl Cake

A rainbow cake is sure to have the whole party talking…and thinking you’re a baking goddess. But this recipe is super easy to make and the kids (and adults) will go crazy for it.

rainbow birthday cake

Farmyard 1st Birthday Cake

A Farmyard Birthday Cake is one of the cutest and most easy to make birthday cakes for kids! We will take you through a step-by-step tutorial on how to put this cake together.


Princess Birthday Cake

This is an exquisite pretty-in-pink birthday cake for an adorable one-year old princess. This cake uses fondant icing for maximum impact. But you could always just use pink-tinted regular butter frosting if you prefer.

princess birthday cake

Cupcake 1st Birthday Cake

Ditch the cake and give out cupcakes instead. Cupcakes are always a big hit at parties and a cupcake 1st birthday cake is fun and just something a little different.

We are besotted with these easy dinosaur cupcakes, topped with dino lollies.

dinosaurs cupcakes

Or you could charm your guests with these adorable teddy bear cupcakes.

teddy bear cup cakes

Other First Birthday Treats

Besides a fun 1st birthday cake, you may want to include some other fun party treats in your menu.

Our favourites are tea cup party treats, which always fly off the party table.


These tiny teddy racers are also super popular for all ages.

Little Teddies in Racing Cars made with mini Mars Bars, Tiny Teddies and Smarties stuck together

Photo by Mohammad Danish from Pexels

What 1st birthday cake have you made or are planning to make? Tell us in the comments below.



  • I’m so excited to make a smash cake! My mum made a race track for my sons 1st birthday a few years ago.


  • Noo not for me!! I am no good at this I’d rather buy one! I admire the people that can do them!


  • The lollipop birthday cake looks amazing!


  • Great ideas! I had a rainbow theme for my son as he’s a rainbow baby, and I just made a bunch of cupcakes and iced them in a rainbow icing. Looked great and easy for people to grab one as they were leaving


  • I love all of them.Sand castle one is my favourite.


  • I love all of these ideas. I made a Caterpillar and a Train for my boys birthdays. Wish I’d known some of these ideas at the time


  • I love making my kids birthday cakes. I’m slowly getting better and have even made some family members birthday cakes. The woolies mudcakes are great for hacking especially if you’re short on time


  • They are all good ideas


  • Love the lolly pop one. I just did a number 1 cake for my three


  • such beautiful cakes. loved them. we store bought the cake for my bub’s 1st bday.


  • I did a cake in a shape of a 1


  • They all look wonderful but the Digger one really caught my eye.


  • I’m not a cake maker or baker but these are inspiring.


  • Love love love this! I especially LOVE the digger! So creative!


  • I love the digger one. Ideal if that is what the Dad or somebody the child knows uses.
    The tea cup party treats have been around for about 5 or 6 years and will probably always be a favourite. One boy I know asked for one the shape of a racing car on a race track. I would never have thought about decorating cakes with dinosaur lollies


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