Pirate Ship Cake

5 from 5 votes

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This Pirate Ship Birthday Cake will be a HIT at your kid’s next birthday party. Get all hands on deck and set your sails toward the kitchen! 

Pirate Ship Cake on a white platter with gold coins around the edges

Pirate Ship Cake

Believe it or not, this Pirate Ship Birthday Cake was our VERY FIRST POST here on Favorite Family Recipes (way back in 2007). I made this cake for a birthday and thought it was the coolest thing ever! So, I took pictures and put it up on this blog for the family to see. Hilarious, right? We have come a LONG way since this was posted! Anyway, back to the Pirate Ship Cake. This looks darling in real life.

Pirate Ship Birthday cake on a pirate map surrounded by gold coins

Get Creative with Your Pirate Ship Cake

This recipe really gives you a chance to be creative! You can add plastic pirate figuresgold coins and gold sprinkles, whatever you can to make it the best pirate cake ever! (These links give an example of what’s available on Amazon. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.)

If you want to really take it to the next level you could add more of the blue frosting around the sides and put plastic sea creature figures! The possibilities are as endless as the open sea! Feel free to leave your ideas in the comments! As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Pirate Ship Cake on a table at a birthday party

Birthday Cakes for Kids

Need more inspiration for a fun birthday cake or cupcakes for our next birthday party. With a little creativity, you can make something memorable that your child will love.

Princess or Barbie Birthday Cake

Our princess or Barbie cake is easier to make than it looks. The cake is baked in a bowl that is used for the skirt of the dress. The princess or Barbie doll is inserted into the upside down cake, and then it just requires some basic piping on of frosting to decorate. Click on image for recipe.

Homemade Rapunzel Doll Birthday cake

Hamburger Birthday Cake

A Hamburger Birthday Cake is just the ticket for the hamburger lovers out there. Two round, yellow cakes are the hamburger buns, a frosted chocolate cake is the burger, and fondant and frosting are used for the toppings and condiments. It looks like a hamburger, but tastes like a delicious frosted cake.

Hamburger Birthday Cake made with fondant and frosting for toppings
Ice Cream Cone Cupcakes

Another birthday surprise treat are these Ice Cream Cone Cupcakes. The cake batter is poured into ice cream cones and baked in the oven. The frosting on top looks just like ice cream! This is the perfect birthday cupcake. It is easier to eat than a slice of cake or a regular cupcake, so there is less mess.

Pin image of four ice cream cone cupcakes with sprinkles

Pirate Ship Cake

5 from 5 votes
Pirate Ship Birthday Cake – Aye Matees! Do you know a wannabe pirate? Then you have to make this Pirate Ship Cake! It will be the hit of the party!
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Freezing and Decorating Time 1 hr 45 mins
Total Time 1 hr 10 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 12


  • 2 9 inch round cakes prepared and baked
  • 2 1/2 cups chocolate icing
  • 2 cups white icing
  • blue food coloring


  • 3 Pepperidge Farm Pirouette Cookies
  • 4 Hershey candy bars
  • plastic pirate figurines
  • 3 10 inch wooden skewers
  • white or black paper for sails
  • Pirate flag (you can find one online and print it)
  • Pirate map (optional)
  • Gold coins (optional)


  • Cut the cakes in half. You will have 4 semi-circles, but you will only use 3 for the cake. Set 4th aside for extra cake slices.
  • Put frosting on each half and layer them. Wrap in plastic and freeze for 1 hour.
  • Remove cakes from freezer. Trim off about an inch of the most rounded part of the cake on an angle (the bottom of the ship) so the front of the ship is higher than the back of the ship. Turn the cakes upright, as shown.
  • Optional: place cake on a cookie sheet or board covered by a Pirate map.
  • Frost the deck of the ship or top of the cake with a light layer of frosting. Place the skewers (masts) on the cake.
  • Unwrap Hershey Bars and place them on top of the cake (around the masts) as the floor of the deck to fit.
  • Frost the sides of the cake in one of two ways – you can simply spread frosting on the cake or use a star tip. Use a star tip to put a top border around the top of the cake (ship deck).
  • Cut 7 sails (3 inch by 5 inch) from the paper, then slip them onto the skewers (masts) and pinch them so it looks like they are billowing in the wind.
  • For the cannons, cut 2 Pepperidge Farm Pirouette Cookies into three equal sections (so you have 6 cannons). Place a candle in the center of each cookie so the wick end is sticking out about a half an inch. Push three cannons into each side of the cake.
  • Make sure that the surface on which the cake rests is impervious to wax, as the burning candles will drip.
  • Add yarn for the rope around the masts.
  • For the front bow part (the pole) use a full Pirouette cookie or a pretzel stick. Tie a rope, using jute or yarn, from the end of the cookie to the top of the mast.
  • Marble blue food coloring into white icing, making it look like water. Pipe it on with a star tip, like waves, along the bottom of the boat.
  • Place pirate figurines on deck with a little frosting under their feet so they will stick to the deck. Place gold coins around the cake (optional).

Nutrition Information

Calories: 416kcalCarbohydrates: 71gProtein: 3gFat: 14gSaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 1mgSodium: 400mgPotassium: 186mgFiber: 2gSugar: 48gCalcium: 106mgIron: 3mg

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About the author

Erica Walker

Erica lives in Boise, Idaho with her husband, Jared, an attorney, and her three beautiful girls. Beyond the world of recipes, she loves adventuring with everything from kayaking, to cruising, to snowboarding and taking the family along for the thrill ride.

More about Erica Walker

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  1. 5 stars
    We made this for a birthday party and oh my gosh was it a hit. Super cute and fun. I loved that it was easy to make!