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Dinosaur Party Cake

A smile can be happily "contagious"! When the CT home economists spotted Annie Lang's imaginative party set that leads off this section, they got busy baking a companion cake you can craft in your kitchen. All you need is a purchased cake mix and purchased frosting to get started (or follow your favorite recipe for either if you prefer from-scratch). After that, it's merely a matter of using patterns from Annie's project to shape and ice the dessert.
  • Total Time
    Prep: 25 min. Bake: 30 min. + cooling
  • Makes
    9 servings


  • 1 package chocolate cake mix (regular size)
  • 2 cans (16 ounces each) vanilla frosting
  • Green, yellow and black liquid or paste food coloring
  • 2 pastry bags or small heavy-duty resealable plastic bags
  • #3 and #5 round pastry tips
  • 2 wooden craft spoons (ice cream spoons)


  • Mix and bake cake according to package directions, using a greased and floured 15x10x1-in. baking pan. Cool in pan for 15 minutes. Remove from pan; cool completely on a wire rack.
  • Trace the patterns for the body, face, feet and arms onto waxed paper; cut out. Divide and cut the cake lengthwise into an 8x9-1/2-in. portion for base and 6-1/2x9-1/2-in. portion for the pattern pieces. Arrange the pattern pieces on the smaller portion, making sure to cut two arm pieces. Place the body on a diagonal on the base.
  • In a small bowl, combine 1 cup of vanilla frosting and green food coloring to make dark green color. Using a metal spatula, frost the body. Position the arms and feet on the body. Position the arms and feet on the body. Cut face piece in half widthwise to reduce height; position on the body.
  • In another bowl, combine 3/4 cup vanilla frosting and green and yellow food coloring to make a lighter shade of green. Cut a small hole in the corner of the plastic or pastry bag for pastry tip. Insert #5 tip into bag. Fill bag with lighter green frosting. Pipe frosting onto feet, arms and face; smooth with a small metal spatula or butter knife.
  • Cut two craft spoons according to the arms/scales patter. Lightly frost the spoons; let dry completely and insert into top of head for scales. Combine 3-4 tablespoons of vanilla frosting and black food coloring.
  • Prepare another plastic or pastry bag; insert #3 tip into bag. Fill with black frosting; set aside. Using remaining vanilla frosting to frost base and form eyes and teeth. Using black frosting, pipe an outline around body and arms. Follow the pattern, also pipe designs on face and feet.
Editor's Note: This is an approximate measurement due to natural but variable cake shrinkage.

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