I came up with this idea after I googled “Thomas cake” and pinterest lead me down a rabbit hole of creative crafty crap. I’m not usually that mom, but I’ll be the first to admit, when there’s food involved, my ears perk up a bit.
Here’s the play by play in photos with a few helpful notes and links for any other allergy peeps who want it.
First up, the cake recipe. Here’s my own. It makes enough for two 9 inch cake pans or one 13 x 9 inch casserole pan. I used the rounds, obviously. You could also use two bags of Pamela’s vanilla cake mix. I’ve used it before with great ease and delicious results (following the instructions on the bag). It’s available on Thrive Market FYI.
DO NOT SKIP greasing the bottoms of the pans AND putting parchment paper down. It makes popping the cake out a CINCH.
While the cakes are in the oven, line a big baking sheet with foil (or whatever board you want to use to present/transport your cake). Once they are done and cooled, flip one on to the baking sheet (bottom up) in the lower position and cut out the center so it’s a big open “o” shape. Then cut out the 9-12 corner position of it as if it were a clock. That will be the bottom of the “3”.
Get a large tupperware for the unused portion of the cake (I froze it in segments to bring to other kids’ birthday parties so P would have an allergy free option for himself).
For the top, use the second cake. Again, cut out the middle so it’s a large ring shaped cake. Then cut it nearly in half (but just a tad bit bigger). Check my photo above as a reference.
Don’t worry too much about imperfections or cracks because the frosting can fix almost anything.
For the frosting, I didn’t really measure things, but I used the solid portion of two cans of full fat coconut (stored in the fridge overnight so they’d be separated from the liquid as much as possible). You can also buy coconut cream on Thrive. Those are small cans though, so be sure you get enough. Then I blended the coconut fat with Navitas Naturals cocoa powder and powdered sugar until it tasted good and had the right consistency. I used roughly the same amount of powdered sugar as coconut cream and then added cocoa powder until I got the color I wanted. I’m sure some vanilla extract would be good in it too. If it seems too thin to spread, let it chill in the fridge a bit (and definitely don’t try to frost a still warm cake!).
I used Enjoy Life chocolate chips to make railroad tracks around the top.
I found this Thomas candle on Amazon.
I’m not sure if he’s in a tunnel or his berth at Tidmouth Sheds but either way it matched up with the mid-point of the “3” perfectly.
An allergy friendly Thomas birthday cake without dairy (lactose or casein), peanuts, tree nuts, gluten, wheat, sesame or soy.