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What's a Wreck?

A Cake Wreck is any cake that is unintentionally sad, silly, creepy, inappropriate - you name it. A Wreck is not necessarily a poorly-made cake; it's simply one I find funny, for any of a number of reasons. Anyone who has ever smeared frosting on a baked good has made a Wreck at one time or another, so I'm not here to vilify decorators: Cake Wrecks is just about finding the funny in unexpected, sugar-filled places.

Now, don't you have a photo you want to send me? ;)

- Jen

Militarized Pool Noodles

Some folks ordered a cake shaped like the Pentagon, and to be safe, even brought in a picture:


They got this:

(The misspelling is what I call "adding insult to a headdesk-induced injury.")


Next Jas ordered this bright and beautiful design:


But instead, she got liquefied pool noodles:

Mmm. Now there's a texture to get your mouth watering!

(Srsly, what do you have to do to icing to make it look like that? Do I even want to know? Because if it involves someone's toothbrush, I'm pretty sure I don't want to.)


And finally, I'm going to end with something that's not cake, but trust me, it's worth it.

See, the group "Sisters By Grace" sent flowers to one of their members a while back, and the card turned up looking like this:

The Sister's Bike Race. Ha!

Ah, but wait, it get better.

Naturally, the Sisters reacted to the goof by doing what any sensible group would do:

They turned it into the group's official t-shirts.

They even included the "love & prayer's" line. :D

See? Told ya it was worth it.


Thanks to Sheri, Jas C., & Julie P. for giving non-baking wreckerators a little race.


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Reader Comments (29)

My guess on the pool noodles cake: too much shortening, not enough confectioner's sugar, and too warm of a prep area. She broke all the rules LOL. I believe that cake could have been done nicely in buttercream if the decorator knew what she was doing.

November 28, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterJacki

Bike Race, huh? With superfluous apostrophes, no less. Crikey! I LOVE IT!

And to get icing that texture, you need to add so much liquid food colouring that you have to add more sugar - or a bit of sifted flour, to fix it. (I've done that; can you tell?)

November 28, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterLady Anne

In defense of the florist who made the Sister's Bike Race error, I work at a flower shop and it is quite easy to misunderstand what the customer is saying if she is using a cell phone. They are usually not as crisp and clear as the land lines used to be. That said, that is a very funny mistake and the Sisters must be a wonderful group of women to find the humor in it.

November 28, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterMikki

In the "Pentagon" baker's defense, if those people ordered a cupcake cake, what did they expect to happen to the Pentagon shape?

November 28, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterAnna

I've had a similar texture once with an Italian meringue buttercream, but who knows? IRL, it is more "pearlescent" than the picture here makes it.

November 28, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterAlienor

Considering the number of building shaped cakes I've made, I could have pulled off a Pentagon cake and it would have been awesome. I do note that of course the monstrosity is a CCC!

That cake is like a passage over the event horizon of cake awfulness and it has a little of everything. Baby blue color: check, CCC that makes it look nothing like a solid figure: check, actually a hexagon(sort of CCC again): check, misspelling: check, unnecessary sprinkles: Checkoruny! It has everything but plastic flotsam!

November 28, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterIsolder74

for the icing question: Once I was making buttercream on a warm day and as I was in a hurry, I didn't chill my bowls. When I added the (way too warm) softened butter to the meringue it never fully incorporated which resulted in the same slightly curdled appearance as the one in the photo. I threw it out and started over, resolving to paint "Haste Makes Waste" on my mixer so that I wouldn't make THAT mistake again.

November 28, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterKathryn

So did they actually order a CCC (patooie!) or did the wreckerator just add even more insult by thinking "oh YEAH, we could totally get a pentagon shape with round things..." ( infinity and beyond)

November 28, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterVaBeach alemaP

The Pentagon CCC has 5 sides-what did they buyer expect from a CCC? The spelling-that's another issue!

November 28, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterKaren


That's brilliant and I approve of the Sisters' sense of humor. :D

November 28, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterKai Lowell

My sister sent me flowers via FTD years ago after I had made her a quilt; the card was supposed to read "MagnaQuilt arrived intact." What I received was "Manna guilt arrives in tack". It took me a while to figure that one out.

Of course the pentagon cake was wrong! What else can be expected from a CCC (ptui!)? But if the baker had made any attempt at all to decorate it to resemble the photo (some straight lines indicating the desired shape, perhaps?) it would still be bad, but not so in-your-face "I ignored your request, get over it" insulting.

November 28, 2016 | Unregistered Commenterjoybeth

OMG that last one is hysterical XD as for the pentagon cake...if the customer ordered the CCC, it is their own fault, but if not the bakers should be fired...from a scud :P

November 28, 2016 | Unregistered Commentermindy1

The pentagon cake HAS five sides. What's everyone complaining about?

November 28, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterLatiffah

That icing texture can also be achieved if you let it sit for a while before using it. The components can separate and it looks, um, chunky and streaky. For the previous poster, you shouldn't have thrown it out! You can save it by melting it right down in the microwave, then whipping it back up again. I threw away a LOT of batches before I figured that out.

November 28, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterRozz

The Sisters Bike Race - do they pedal along visualising whirled peas?

And frankly, anybody who orders a CCC deserves everything they get *disdainful sniff*

November 28, 2016 | Unregistered Commenterdr handle

I think the baker on the Pentagon cake was going for the courtyard in the centre of the Pentagon. The 5 (inexplicably blue) squiggles imitate the paths more closely than they do anything else in that photo. Very wrecky, all the same.

November 28, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterRehtaeh

#1: If they ordered a CCC (ptooie), then yeah, they kinda deserve what they get, shape-wise. The "spellling" and baby-blue/white color scheme not withstanding.
#2: I'm surprised no one has started a "fondant v. buttercream" Epcot...but seriously, it kinda looks like multi-colored "poo" noodles. *shudder*
#3: These women ROCK! :)

November 28, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterZippy

Well its hard to bake cupcakes in Guantanamo, everyone knows that....

November 28, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterScoots

Liquified pool noodles looks like bagged whipped icing. Like what wm uses. You can't get the really bright in whipped. And the original is actually fondant with a little bit of buttercream details. Had the wreckarator used butterflies s/he probably could have gotten the same coloring and texture.

November 28, 2016 | Unregistered Commentershelly

Why would anyone order a Pentagon-shaped cupcake cake from Walmart and expect to get it?

(I actually think they pulled off the shape fairly well.)

November 28, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterSarah

Oh man I am dying of laughter. The Pentagon cupcakes oh man lol. I really hope the customer didn't but them. Scary how wreckerators turn a design into a catastrophe lol.

November 29, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterArlene Marie

Sheet cake, can of chocolate frosting, bag of Kit Kats and a sharp knife. Pentagon cake, easy as you please. Much better than a CCC (ptooie).

November 29, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterNobodee Home

#2 The cake was decorated in a bariatric chamber.* Sadly, the pressure was reduced too rapidly, causing gas bubbles in the frosting; a condition known as the 'bends'. Alternate theory: the assistant wreckerator decided to experiment by substituting seltzer when mixing the frosting.

*It's a theory, m'kay? I don't have to explain the 'why' of it, just how.

#3* This would be why I write my own notes in cards whenever possible. And I don't buy the cell phone theory for one minute of airtime. When you have a bad connection, you ask the other party to repeat and/or you read back what you think you heard, especially if it doesn't make any sense. "Love and prayers from your sister's bike race"? Oh well, they made a joke of it with t-shirts and everything, so it was worth it. And the writer even got the possessive apostrophe right. That's worth something, right there.

*Not a cake, but Theardare decided to let it slide. But don't think he's gone soft on wreck deniers.

November 29, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterCraig

It's kinda sweet that they managed to make the Pentagon fluffy. Now they just need to spray it pink to achieve 'whirled peas'. (Dr Handle, you rock!)

November 29, 2016 | Unregistered Commenterkismet

Those shirts are amazing. That is all.

November 29, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterNagzilla

As the recipient of the gorgeous flowers and humorous card shown above, thanks for sharing this. I'd had major surgery, this card gave me giggle fits for weeks. When they arrived, it did take me a minute to figure it out. I then texted the card to some of the other sisters. They then were losing it wherever they were. Best flowers ever.

November 29, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterJulieP

#3 - These are definitely my people!

November 29, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterBluebonnet

That shirt design belongs a cake now. Maybe more apostrophe's! Ye's!

December 2, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterRick

@ Kathryn -- I think that you nailed one cause for the failed emulsion (breaking of the buttercream). It's not until I read your post that I remembered from my Baking and Pastry curriculum that the meringue buttercream icings are emulsions.
@ Rozz suggested melting it all down in the microwave and re-whipping which had me scratching my head so I searched on tips for rescuing curdled SMBC or IMBC. The recommendation I found was nuking 1/4 of the frosting and drizzling it into the rest of it while the mixer is beating the rest. This made me think of the hollandaise I made last night (also an emulsion), so it made sense to me that it would work.

BTW. Rozz, I'm sure yours works fine, too (although it makes me want to break a batch to compare the two techniques).

February 24, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterMary Kay

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