Birthday Party Ice Cream Cake + Tales of July

Birthday Party Ice Cream Cake via Sweetapolita

Hello my friends!

I’m happy to report that I lived to tell the story of July 2014.

Here are a few of the adventures that have been going on in my world during the past month:

1. I shot the cover of my book! This was a lot of pressure, in a way, but I think it’s super-fun and I hope you love it. Speaking of the book, let me tell you that this crazy book o’ sugary delights is officially called The Sweetapolita Bakebook. Hooray! And while I will be sharing many more detailed posts about the book, I can tell you that, even though it is still several months from release (April 7th, 2015), it is already available for pre-order in many online shops! You can find it for an amazing price on in the US: The Sweetapolita Bakebook, or if you are here in Canada with me, you can pre-order on or Indigo.

For my international friends, there are already many options for online pre-ordering, such as (UK), (Spain), and many more! You’ll notice that the cover has not yet been “revealed,” on these listings, but that is soon to come. I will also be sharing that here with a whole bunch of fun details about the book itself.

2. I turned 40. Oh right, that. But I’m okay! And because I’m all cake-backwards in life, I eat it all year long and get excited to eat some other form of dessert on my birthday. Last year was lemon meringue pie from Betty’s in Niagara Falls (and no, I didn’t buy a slice, I bought the entire pie). This year was the most decadent of apple caramel crumbles with vanilla bean ice cream. Now I’m back to cake. But you know, 40 isn’t so bad. Since the girls are a bit bigger now, I’m finding that I have more time to do the little things that being busy and in your thirties with babies doesn’t necessarily allow for–things like painting my nails (often), shopping (and not in the kids’ section at Target), organizing my life and closets, doing what I love to do in the kitchen, and more. I think it’s going to be a decade of strength, change, adventure and, well, more cake. Oh, and possibly more of these.


3. I had a super-fun photo shoot done for my author photo and such (above), by the talented Wendy & Michael Lewicki from Wendy Alana Photography near Toronto (you might also know Michael from his incredible blog, Verses from my Kitchen). I fell in love with Wendy’s style, and couldn’t wait to shoot with them. Just as I suspected, they are amazing people in “real life”–warm, talented, kind, and just the kind of people you want to be around. Even with dark skies, severe heat and humidity in the kitchen during shoot, and the impending storm outside during the shoot, they pulled off some serious magic. I can’t wait to work with them again!

4. My sister-in-law got married! And my cakelets were (the world’s cutest) flower girls. And I was a bridesmaid (are you still allowed to be called a “bridesmaid” when you’re 40?). Oh, and I made a trio of three-tiered vintage-inspired pastel ruffle wedding cakes for the occasion. It was a big, happy, stunningly beautiful, pastel-blue-and-green day! Congratulations, Mary & Ted! ♥

5. I was oven-less for 10 days. As in one-third of the month! It’s true. I officially baked the life right out of my other oven, which was only 2 years old. So this whole I-can’t-bake-a-cake thing was quite a test to my creativity. But alas, there are so many alternatives: candy-making, no-bake desserts, homemade popsicles, and, of course, ice cream cakes. So, as the serendipitous result of my not having an oven for 10 days, this birthday party ice cream cake was born:

Birthday Party Ice Cream Cake via Sweetapolita

Side note: I’m really fond of this photo–I love action shots, and yet I’m never in them since I usually shoot alone or with my cakelets. This time I was able to nab my husband to take this photo of me sprinkling the cake, and I think he did a pretty great job!

Oh yes, this cake! We should really talk about this cake. I don’t actually make enough ice cream cakes, I’ve decided. They are so easy to do, and can be as simple or as complex as you want them to be. Aside from the whipped cream frosting, every ingredient is store bought, so it’s truly just taking ice cream in one form and magically turning it into a cake using cake pans, and then using your imagination to add some elements of texture in between the layers. I probably could have gone crazy with adding fun elements inside this cake, but I think I still kept it simple. The whipped cream frosting is the perfect option for frosting an ice cream cake, because it has such light and airy texture, and isn’t very sweet. And since it takes colour so nicely and we can use it to pipe borders and such, it works like a dream.

Birthday Party Ice Cream Cake via Sweetapolita

So here’s the craziness that’s going on under that layer of pastel whipped cream frosting. When choosing the flavours for this cake, I turned to my childhood–always a magnificent place to look for inspiration. I thought about all of the treats I loved most, and how I could represent them in this cake. So starting from the bottom, we have an Oreo crumb crust, cotton candy ice cream, Oreos, birthday cake ice cream, bubble gum ice cream, ice cream sandwiches, and then neapolitan ice cream (don’t you just love opening those “bricks” of neapolitan ice cream–depending on when you were born, it can really be an instant throwback to childhood).

That’s a lot of fun in one cake–especially one for which there is only about 15 minutes active time. Because each layer has to be very well chilled before working with it and in between each step, the overall project does take quite a bit of inactive time, so you would want to plan ahead on this one. If you made it over the course of a day and then chilled the whole thing overnight for the next day, it would work best.

Birthday Party Ice Cream Cake via Sweetapolita

Delightful, right? What I love about cakes like this, is that each slice is different–like a work of art. ♥

Birthday Party Ice Cream Cake

Serving Size: One 6-layer, 9-inch round ice cream cake

Who needs an oven to make a 6-layer cake? Layers of cotton candy ice cream, oreos, birthday cake ice cream, bubble gum ice cream, ice cream sandwiches, and neapolitan ice cream sit atop a buttery Oreo crumb crust and are smothered in pastel whipped cream and sprinkles for this ultimate birthday party (or any-day-of-the-week party) ice cream cake.


  • 1 1/4 cups (125 g) chocolate cookie crumbs (I used Oreo Baking Crumbs)
  • 1/4 cup (115 g) butter, melted
  • 1.5 L carton of each ice cream--cotton candy, birthday cake, bubble gum, and neapolitan, or flavours of your choice (total of 4 standard cartons of ice cream)
  • 8-10 chocolate sandwich cookies (such as Oreo)
  • 6 classic ice cream sandwiches
  • For the Whipped Cream Frosting:
  • 2 teaspoons gelatin (such as Knox)
  • 2 tablespoons cold water
  • 2 1/2 cups (600 ml) whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup (50 g) sugar
  • Few drops each turquoise and pink gel paste colour (I used AmeriColor)
  • Sprinkles!
  • You will also need:
  • 9-inch springform pan
  • 2 9-inch round cake pans
  • Plastic wrap


  1. Line the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan with parchment. Cover the inside of two 9-inch cake pans with plastic wrap--bottom and sides--leaving a few inches of overhang.
  2. Into a medium bowl, add the chocolate cookie crumbs and the butter, and stir until combined. Transfer the crumb mixture into the prepared springform pan, pressing into an even layer (I use the bottom of a measuring cup). Place the pan into the freezer to set for 15 minutes.
  3. Take one of the ice cream flavours out of the freezer, and use a knife to cut slabs of the ice cream. Transfer all of it onto the crust layer. (If you're using a multi-coloured variety like the cotton candy variety I used, try not to spread it around too much, or the colours will become muddled.) Place a layer of plastic wrap on top and press the ice cream into an even layer. Place the pan back into the freezer for at least 2 hours.
  4. Meanwhile, repeat this step with the 2 prepared cake pans, adding a layer of bubble gum ice cream to one, and neapolitan to the other. Add a layer of ice cream sandwiches to the top of the bubble gum layer, cutting some in half and quarters to fit as many in as possible. Freeze both pans for at least 2 hours.
  5. Remove the springform pan from the freezer and remove the plastic wrap. Place the Oreos on top of the ice cream in an even layer. Add all of the birthday cake ice cream and flatten with another layer of plastic wrap. Freeze for at least 2 hours.
  6. Assembly of the Birthday Party Ice Cream Cake:
  7. Remove the springform pan from the freezer and run a small sharp knife around the edges to loosen. Release the latch and gently remove the outer ring from the cake. Remove the birthday cake layer from the freezer and use the plastic wrap overhang to remove the layer from the pan. Peel off the plastic wrap and place the birthday cake ice cream layer on top of the cake. Repeat with the bubble gum ice cream layer. Finally, remove the neapolitan/ice cream sandwich layer from the freezer and from the pan, and then invert the layer ice-cream sandwich side down and place on top of the cake. Cover the entire cake in plastic wrap, wiggle into place if necessary, and return to the freezer for at least 4-6 hours (ideally overnight) to set.
  8. For the Whipped Cream Frosting:
  9. Place a stainless stand mixer bowl and the whisk attachment (or if using a hand mixer, a stainless mixing bowl and the mixer beaters) in the freezer for at least 20 minutes.
  10. Into a small microwave-safe bowl, sprinkle the gelatin onto the water and let sit for 10 minutes. Microwave the mixture for 20 seconds and stir to combine.
  11. Remove the bowl and whisk from the freezer, add the cream and sugar to the bowl and whip on medium speed for 30 seconds. With the mixer running, add the gelatin mixture in one go. Increase the speed to medium-high and whip until medium-stiff peaks form (thick enough to spread/pipe/hold its shape, but not over-whipped and grainy). Transfer about 1 1/4 cups of the whipped cream to a medium bowl and tint it pastel pink. Cover the pink cream with wrap and refrigerate until ready to pipe the border. Tint the remaining whipped cream turquoise.
  12. Remove the chilled cake from the freezer and transfer the cake from the springform pan base (remove the parchment round) to a cake board or plate.
  13. Frost the cake with the turquoise whipped cream, just as you would a regular cake--use a small offset palette knife to cover the top of the cake, and a medium straight palette knife to frost the sides. Return the cake to the freezer for about an hour.
  14. Remove the pink frosting from the fridge and transfer to a piping bag fitted with a large swirl tip (I used #887). Remove the cake from the freezer and pipe a pink border around the top of the cake. Gently press sprinkles into the bottom third of the cake, and add a few on top, if desired. Return the cake to the freezer until ready to serve. The cake will keep up to 1 week in the freezer.

Sweetapolita’s Notes:

  • You can modify this recipe to any number of layers–simply omit or add the ice cream layers you wish. Since making extra layers is as simple as spreading ice cream into a plastic-wrap-covered cake pan, you could keep going. And going. #skyhighicecreamcake
  • For the gel paste colors, I used AmeriColor turquoise and Soft Pink.
  • I used rainbow jimmies for the sides, but of course you can use any sprinkles you love.
  • If you were really longing for a super-sweet frosting for this cake, more like a traditional birthday cake style, you could certainly do that.

Good luck & enjoy!


Share the Sweetness!


    • says

      Thank you, Kerry! They sure did! Actually, my husband was the one literally standing there waiting for me to photograph it so he could eat it, which never, ever happens (Mr.Fitness!). But the girls thought it was pretty awesome. xo

  1. says

    Oh the cake is so amazing! And what a month! Happy 40th my gorgeous friend. I’ll be there next year -I’m actually looking forward to it!


  2. Angelina says

    Gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous ice cream cake, love the whipped cream color :) 40 isn’t a bad age at all, and I’m loving the fact that you’re embracing it as well! I would love to see photos of your cakelets being flower girls, they must have emitted sounds of adoration from everybody <3 do you know where I can get your book in Taiwan?

    • says

      Thank you, Angelina! I’m going to share some of the wedding photos, as soon as my sister-in-law gets them back. Can’t wait to see! Hmm, I will check into getting the book in Taiwan for you. Very soon I will have more info re: all of the retailers selling the book internationally. Will keep you posted!

  3. says

    What an incredible month. Congrats on the cookbook cover, I am sure it is gorgeous! Also, happy belated Birthday! This cake looks so good and so fun! :)

  4. Kathryn says

    That cake is a dream come true! Looks amazing. Can’t wait for your book! (I was disappointed that I’ll have to wait almost a year!) It was a good month for you! Congrats!

  5. says

    This cake is the embodiment of all my childhood wishes!!! I love it :) Everything you make is so gorgeous. I am so excited for your book to come out! It’s going to be right before my birthday so I know what I will be asking for. And by the way, happy belated birthday to you!

  6. jennifer says

    I love the way this ice cream cake looks and the flavors too. Ive never assembled one this way,its such a clever idea! Ill be looking forward to when I have an occasion to make it:)

  7. Ruthy says

    Love the ice cream sandwiches in your cake!

    Looking forward to your Bakebook! My copy is already on pre-order. :)

  8. says

    happy birthday to a beautiful, ultra talented, stylish and super sweet woman and mama!! i LOVE this wild and crazy cake! so many good colours and flavours – and yes, ice cream cakes are so easy and fun! i’m stoked to try out your whipped cream with gelatin frosting! Like you, I eat cake all year round so I always choose ice cream cake for my birthday! I am so stoked for your baking book, Rosie! What a great year for you!!! – and an ultra special month! those cakes you made for your sis – they’re heart achingly beautiful!! love the look and colour scheme. here’s to an incredible birthday year!! xoxo

  9. says

    I’ve never made an ice cream cake before, but this one looks so good that I will have to give it a try. Love it soooo much!xo
    P.S. I can’t wait for your book, I’m so glad it’s available in Spain!

  10. Carrie says

    Happy Birthday! And I’m so excited for your cookbook, it comes out right after my birthday so now I know exactly what to ask for!

  11. says

    This is gorgeous and sounds absolutely amazing! I love that you put so many different kinds of delicious ice cream in there, PLUS the Oreos and ice cream sandwiches (which I never would have thought to do). Brilliant!! I made pie for my birthday and my husband’s birthday, but I definitely should have made ice cream cake instead.

    PS I love your author photo! And the one your husband shot of you putting sprinkles on the cake. Beautiful.

  12. says

    I am wanting to squeal with joy at the release of this book! I want to see it NOW! Guess I’ll be trying to wait (not so) patiently until April! So excited for you, your cakes are gorgeous and I have used your recipes for my birthday cakes, I think I will continue that tradition. Always a Sweetapolita birthday cake for me! ;) Gorgeous cake and colors!

  13. Manola says

    Wonderful, it would take a tutorial.
    If you do, I’ll follow him for sure.
    I got just a passion for cakes and as soon as I find one that leaves me speechless, I want to do it.

  14. says

    Happy Birthday Rosie!
    what an exciting and happy month. For sure your cakelets were the words cutest flowers girls.
    you are super talented and I imagined that your book will be the best! And the name is perfect “The Sweetapolita Bakebook” I love it.
    my birthday is on April 20 th and your book will be my perfect gift.
    the cake looks amazing and yummy. I love ice cream and oreos, just perfect for me.

  15. MarielT says

    Love it, I am thinking I may make this for my next birthday. Best wishes for the big 40, and many happy returns.

  16. says

    Happy belated birthday Rosie! You look amazing (no surprise there!) and your little girls were adorable in their wedding photo (as always). Been a busy few months for you for sure but I can only imagine how excited you are about the release of your book. I know it is going to be a beautiful one and best wishes to you with it.

  17. says

    Totally amazing looking ice cream cake. Love the vibrant colours. Congratulations on the release of your book. Will be ordering it, i absolutely love your blog and recipes

  18. Cudlz says

    Belated happy birthday! Can’t wait for the book! Seriously, what do you do with all the cakes you bake? I love to bake but don’t know what to do with cakes!

    • Megan T says

      I’ve been trying out many of these cakes and sharing them with my co-workers. They certainly love to see the cake carrier when I come in in the morning!

  19. Megan T says

    Your cake looks amazing. I am trying it right now with one fewer layer of ice cream (chocolate, coffee, and blueberry pomeganate chocolate chunk-couldn’t find your suggestions at my store) and it is looking great so far. I was confused in the steps you have to make the cake and I could just be reading it wrong. In step 5, you say to put the birthday cake ice cream on top of the Oreos and freeze the product. (The Oreos are on top of the cotton candy ice cream that is already in the springform pan, on top of the cookie layer.) Then, in step 6, you say to take out the springform pan from the freezer, and then to add the birthday cake ice cream on top of the cake. What am I misreading here? Isn’t the birthday cake ice cream already in the springform pan?

    I’m thinking of adding a layer of magic shell or caramel between one of the layers. What do you think?

  20. Veronika says

    Just curious. How long did you wait before cutting into your cake. It’s so thick was it difficult to cut into?

  21. Gemma says

    My little Ava is turning 4 on Tuesday and I’m throwing her a Frozen themed party. Now I have found the perfect cake. I was getting worried as I’ve been so un inspired cake wise with this theme. Just hope I can find some fun ice cream flavours easily in London. Last year I threw her a rainbow party and used your rainbow cake as inspiration ….thank you for a beautiful blog! Look forward to the book.x

  22. Janet Sosa says

    Thank you so much for this beautiful, cake. You gave perfect instructions and I’m proud to say mine came out almost as good looking as your picture. I, as you suggested, tailored it to my daughter’s favorites…can’t wait to serve it at her party this weekend. Do you think it’s ok to leave it unwrapped in freezer for a couple of days?

  23. Karen Lawson says

    So happy for you! Congratulations on all your achievements. I can’t wait to buy a book and hopefully meet you one day on a book tour. I love your website and all that it contains. I also really dig all your references to the 70’s; I can so relate being born myself in 67. I think we were the last generation of the good ol days. Awesome that you are creating a sweet life for your family and us too taking a peak in.

  24. Jackie says

    Already like your page on facebook (: btw i have tried some of your cake recipes and they always comeout delicious☺️

  25. Coryn says

    Would you please list the brand of cotton candy ice cream you used? I’m having a hard time finding that brilliant color. Thanks!

  26. Afshan says

    I made this cake for my son’s 4th birthday. It was a hit! It is an impressive cake; quite tall with all the layers. The height made it a bit tricky to cut, but we figured it out! I couldn’t find bubble gum ice cream so I used President’s Choice “Loads of Cherry and Chocolate Chip” ice cream instead. Delicious! Thank you for this wonderful yet simple recipe. I really enjoy your blog.

  27. Sarah says

    I was wondering how you froze this cake once it was finished? I am assuming that it was not placed in the freezer without anything protecting it, although I am not positive.

  28. Anett Erwin says

    HI, Did you find that the whipped cram stayed on the cake pretty well (given the fact that the cake itself is very wet) ? Is there a trick to make sure it doesn’t just slide down on the sides? Thanks! Anett

  29. says

    Such a simple and adaptable cake idea! A little sweet something for every palate :) Had to share this on my ICE CREAM SOCIAL Party Inspiration post.

  30. Jennifer says

    Hello:) I’m planning on making this beaut for my son’s grad party,i wondered how many it would serve? Thank you!

  31. Katie says

    The cake is beautiful but that adorable elephant apron is even better! Could you share where you got it? It’s my favorite animal and my favorite color. thank you!

  32. Aileen says

    hey rosie!! was trying to make this cake and noticed that it says 1/4 cup melted butter is 115grams. I think 115 grams is 1/2 cup butter, unless I’m mistaken. Any idea whether it’s suppose to be 1/4 cup or 1/2 cup butter?


  33. janette says

    Thank you so much for posting your beautiful cake. I just finished making it for my granddaughters birthday. I am sure she will love it. Can’t wait to eat it. The only thing I changed was the flavors of the ice-cream. Thanks again.

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