Celebrations, Parties, Recipes, Sweet

Cakes: Machine’s and Monkey’s for Max


This weekend we celebrated my nephew’s 2nd birthday.  My sister and her husband just bought their first home so they have been very busy these past weeks moving in and working on home improvement projects.  She is also 7 months pregnant so I can only imagine how exhausted she is between chasing a 2 year old and unpacking.  Because of all this, and because I enjoy doing it, I offered to bake and decorate the cake for my nephew’s birthday party.

My sister has mentioned Max is into tractors and construction vehicles lately so I knew it would make a good theme for his cake.  I started with a 5 pack of small CAT toys I found at Target for $6 and decided to build a chocolately construction zone for them.  My cake decorating skills can still use some improving, so I loved that the mud and dirt on this cake didn’t require perfectly smooth icing to look good.


Finishing details included green icing grass and small chocolate rocks.  The “dirt” was Oreo cookie crumbs.  For the final touches, I printed out some construction style signs with the birthday boy’s name and age  to stick into the cake with the “2” candle.

I am not sure the birthday boy ate much of his cake, but he sure did enjoy playing with the tractors and trucks on it so I would call that a success.


The actual cake was from a mix and the icing was just a basic chocolate buttercream.  Inside was a delicious Oreo cheesecake filling.  I didn’t get a picture to show it in it’s full glory, but trust me it was tasty and definitely worth trying on your next cake.  I *may* have even eaten the leftover filling on it’s own by the spoonful.

Oreo Cheesecake Filling

  • 1 Package of cream cheese (8 oz)
  • 1 tub of Cool Whip
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 row of Oreo Cookies, crushed

To make filling, blend room temperature cream cheese.  Add in defrosted Cool Whip and vanilla extract, then mix until smooth.  Gently fold in crushed Oreo’s.


Max’s First Birthday Monkey Cake

I also had the priviledge of making the cake for Max’s first birthday last year.  I went with a monkey theme and ended up doing a large cake for the party guests and a small monkey just for the birthday boy.  To get the round cake shape, I baked the cake in my Pampered Chef batter bowl.  The cake was also baked from a mix and I used the same chocolate buttercream as the construction cake, with some banana flavored icing for the mouth and ears and melted chocolate for the mouth, hair and eye details.


I do enjoy cake decorating and love that this gives me a chance to both practice my skills and give my nephew something special for his birthday.  I am afraid I may have started a trend and will now be asked to make the cakes for all upcoming birthdays, but I think I am okay with that!



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