DIY: How to make a princess pull-apart cupcake birthday cake

princess cake

There are so many pictures of princess pull-apart cupcake cakes on the web but when it came to our little princess’ birthday I really struggled when it came to the actual making of the cake.  After using info from at least 10 articles I decided to put together a QUICK DIY for a princess pull-apart cupcake cake with tips included. So, here goes:


– ingredients for cupcakes or cupcake mix

– butter icing ingredients – butter and icing sugar

– marshmallows

– large covered cutting board or serving tray to use as base

– fondant icing (already coloured, the 250g packets available at Woolworths should be more than enough)

– cake decorating sugar balls


1. Bake the amount of cupcakes you need because the cupcakes need to cool down before you can start icing. See tips below for nr of cupcakes needed.

2. Let the cupcakes cool down and get a cutting board or serving tray to use as base for the cake.

3. When the cupcakes are cooled down, start arranging them on your base board. Add marshmallows if the holes between the cupcakes are too large. Also use the marshallows to shape the cuffs of the dress. At the bottom of the dress use marshmallows between each cupcake to create a “finer” scallop hemline. (In the end I left out the bottom row of marshmallows as the birthday girl helped herself to a couple of marshmallows and I didn’t have enough left 🙂 )

Here is the basic design of my cupcake cake to get you started. (Your rows can be shorter or longer depending on the nr of cupcakes you baked.)

Cupcake design


4. Mix your butter icing.

5. BEFORE you start icing the cake. Take a piece of paper and create a template for your fondant icing. Cut out a bodice and outer skirt for the princess dress. It is easiest to use two separate papers: one for the bodice and one for the skirt:

Cutting the shape for the fondant

5. Proceed to move the cupcakes onto your base board. Use a dot of butter icing at the bottom of the cupcakes and marshmallows to “glue” it onto the board. This makes moving (and driving with) the cake so much easier!

6. Now start icing your cake. Pipe icing each cupcake separately. Start in the centre of each cupcake and work your way to the edge. Once you’ve done each cupcake start filling the holes. Try to start where you ended the icing of an individual cupcake. THIS TIME work from the outside to the centre ending with a peak of icing in the middle (See final pic below to see what I mean).

7. Now cut your fondant icing using your templates. Remember to leave the sides LONGER where the fondant should fold over to cover the side of the cake. Place onto the cake, fold over the edges and cut excess off.

8. Lastly cut a strip of fondant to hide the seam where the bodice and skirt fondant come together. Use the back of a knife to add stripe detail to the strip.

9. Finally, to finish off the cake add cake decorating sugar balls at the centre of each cupcake and wherever else you’d like. Use the photo below to give you some ideas!

princess cake


1. You don’t have to be Martha Stewart!

Use cupcake mixes out of a box to save some time. I used Ina Paarman’s vanilla and red velvet cupcake mixes (blush).

2. Size & nr of cupcakes

The cake can be as big as you want it to be. I used the number of guests (mommies and children) to determine how many cupcakes I needed for my cake. I used 32 cupcakes for this specific cake.

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