Close Close
Mother and Baby

Big Barn Birthday Cake From Ella's Kitchen

  • Serves: 10-12
  • Preparation time: 2 hours


This farmyard animal cake is perfect for birthdays - you can make the cow shape by making a template and cutting the icing to match it

  1. Preheat the oven to 170°C/Gas Mark 3. Grease a 20 cm deep round cake tin and line the base and sides with baking parchment. Grease the paper.
  2. Place the butter, sugar, eggs, flour and baking powder in a bowl and beat using a hand-held electric whisk until creamy. Peel the apples and grate into the bowl. Add the chocolate and milk and mix together. Spoon into the prepared tin and level the top.
  3. Bake in the oven for about 1 hour until risen, firm and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Turn out the cake onto a wire rack, peel away the lining paper and leave to cool.
  4. To make the icing, beat the cream cheese in a bowl to soften. Melt the chocolate and butter in a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of gently simmering water. Add to the cream cheese and stir until smooth, adding a dash of hot water if the mixture is very thick. Reserve 75g of the icing in another bowl.
  5. Cut the cake in half horizontally and sandwich together on a plate with a quarter of the icing. Spread the rest over the top and sides.
  6. Trace the cow template (below) and cut it out. Cut an 8cm square slab of the white chocolate (4 squares) and press it onto the top of the cake, grooves downward. Break off 2 double-square pieces of chocolate from the milk chocolate bar and position them either side of the white chocolate for shutters. Break squares of the remaining milk chocolate and press onto the side of the cake.
  7. Lightly dust the work surface with icing sugar, then roll out the brown icing to 5 mm thick and cut around the cow template. Place the icing over the white chocolate. Shape 2 horns in blue icing and place. Roll a cherry-sized ball of red icing and flatten it to match the size of the snout on the template. Place on the cow in the ‘window’.
  8. Use small pieces of the remaining brown icing as trunks for the trees around the side of the cake. Colour the reserved icing green and spoon it into one corner of a polythene food bag. Snip off the corner of the bag and pipe green icing to create trees. Push cranberry pieces into the green icing as fruit. Use white writing icing to pipe the cow’s features and coloured writing icing to pipe the window around the cow and the shutter features.
    Cut this so it's 8cm wide


Ella's Kitchen: The Yellow One

This recipe is taken from The Big Baking Book: The Yellow One by Ella's Kitchen (Hamlyn, £14.99)




Set aside extra grated apple and blend until smooth for your baby.

Finger Food

Chop the cake into easy-to-handle pieces.
Related content:


No comments have been made yet.

Chinese Gender predictor
Chinese Gender Predictor

Is it a boy or a girl? Tell our tool the month you concieved and how old you are and find out! 

Nappy rash is painful for parents as well as for your baby
Nappy rash is painful for parents as well as for your baby

Read Dr Pixie's guide to learn how to deal with nappy rash

The Magic Sleepsuit
The secret to a quiet night’s sleep – The Magic Sleepsuit

If you’re little one is struggling to settle now they’ve outgrown the swaddling stage, this could be the answer to your sleep-deprived prayers!

Celebrating parenting's small wins
Celebrating parenting's small wins

As mums, we're constantly told to enjoy every moment; in reality, parenting can sometimes be challenging. That's where small wins come in...

Subscribe to Mother&Baby

Be the best mum you can be and let Mother & Baby guide you along the way. Each issue is jam packed with REAL advice from mums just like you. Subscribe today & get a free welcome gift!

Ovulation Calculator
Ovulation calculator
Trying for a baby? Work out when you're most fertile to increase your chances of getting pregnant with our easy-to-use ovulation calculator.
Pregnant woman
Due Date Calculator

When is your baby due? If you’re having trouble remembering dates and counting up the days on your fingers and toes, don’t worry – use our due date calculator.

Get M&B in your inbox!

Sign up to Mother&Baby today and get news and advice about your body and your baby straight to your inbox every week. 

Lemonade Money
It’s time to make sure your loved ones are protected

Every parent knows the importance of planning ahead; from the new school shoes, to your little one’s education, you want to fill their future with hopes and dreams. Yet are you one of the 80% of adults here in the UK that has no life cover?