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Styled Eats: How to Perfectly Frost a Scallop Cake

This post is sponsored by Nestlé® Toll House® Morsels, the perfect special ingredient for all of your family’s favorite treats!

Today is the second post in our “how to frost a cake” series. I asked pastry chef Hope Waggoner to us some tricks on how to frost a scallop cake. When I was a little girl I was always planning parties (even then!) and I remember my mom helping me bake miniature cakes for a tea party. This little girly cake would fit in perfect at a tea party or shower. Before frosting the scallops the cake needs to have it’s crumb coat and have set in the fridge. (Follow steps 1-4 on this post.) I like that you don’t need anything fancy to make this cake, just a pastry bag and a good ol’ butter knife.

Materials Needed: All you really need to frost this cake is: A large Offset Spatula for the first layer of frosting, a heavy duty pastry bag with large tip, and a knife.

Step 1: Follow steps 1-4 over here until the cake has it’s basic layer of crumb coat and has chilled. The cake should be cold and the frosting should be room temperature.
Step 2:  Fill a large pastry bag with icing and create a row of straight dots going from top to bottom.
Step 3: Gently spread each dot with a knife, cleaning the knife on a rag as necessary to make sure the scallops are even.
Step 4: Create another row of dots where the frosting ends and spread each dot with a knife. Repeat over and over until the whole cake is finished. (Pro tip: It’s easy to remove a mistake with a knife and begin a row again.)
Step 5: When the scallops end add a final row of dots to “seal” the seam for a finished look.

A special thanks to Michelle for letting us borrow her beautiful kitchen, to Hope for her expertise, and to little A for modeling.

Photos by Paul Ferney for Oh Happy Day


  1. Lele

    September 12, 2012


  2. Tara

    September 12, 2012

    How pretty! My sister-in-law’s birthday party is this weekend, and I usually frost cakes the regular ol’ way… maybe I’ll try this out!

  3. Damaris @Kitchen Corners

    September 12, 2012

    My daughter’s birthday is on Saturday, I think a scalloped cake is in order!

  4. Karen @sugarspicelivin

    September 12, 2012

    Gorgeous and so fun!!!

  5. Rebecca - A Daily Something

    September 12, 2012

    GASP! This is stunning – such a pretty, light-filled kitchen…and wow, I want to eat that cake NOW! :) Thanks for a great how-to!

  6. Debbi

    September 12, 2012

    How pretty! Thank you so much! I could/would never have imagined! And I have a birthday cake to decorate this very day! Thank you! Thank you!

  7. Caitlin

    September 12, 2012

    a crumb coat! seems so simple- why didn’t I think of that? can’t wait to try it on my next cake!

  8. Kate

    September 12, 2012

    Gorgeous, Jordan! I love having this – plus its intentionally less perfect kid brother ( – in my cake decorating arsenal.

  9. Lacey

    September 12, 2012

    Love it! I am having my wedding cake scalloped like this! What I REALLLLY want to know is where that cake stand came from! I need it in a big way!

    • jordan
      • jordan
      • September 12, 2012

      The stand was bought a few years ago from Sur la Table :)

  10. Evani G

    September 12, 2012

    How did I ever get through life without Oh Happy Day?! This is such an amazing tutorial!


  11. how2home

    September 12, 2012

    BEAUTIFUL cake and pipping :)

  12. Erin

    September 12, 2012

    Jordan I’m loving this series…. keep it up!

  13. Caitlyn

    September 12, 2012

    Yum. These little tidbits of knowledge make me so happy. It’s something I would have never thought to look up, but am very thrilled that I now know it. Thanks!

  14. Lisette

    September 12, 2012

    Simple and charming, the best combination!!

  15. marla

    September 12, 2012

    Such a fun post!! Beautiful cake and adorable birthday girl!

  16. Tamsyn

    September 12, 2012

    Gorgeous photos!! Thanks so much for this tutorial, I’m throwing my son a ‘fish’ party and these scallops could look just like the scales on a fish :)

  17. Melanie from A Cut Above The Retsy

    September 12, 2012

    I will have a go at this for my daughter’s birthday :) Thanks!

  18. Deb

    September 13, 2012

    Think I will do this with pastels, and offset… could be really cool…

  19. Bethany Lamb

    September 13, 2012

    I did the same, but instead of going sideways I dragged the knife up. I made the cake for a nautical themed party, so each layer was a little lighter color than the previous for an “ombre” feeling – turned out great! – I put edible sand (grahm crackers and brown sugar) around the outside and spiked the top to look like waves… I was really happy with how it came out!

  20. Hannah @ Sparrow + Spark!

    September 13, 2012

    Ooh pretty! I might just be able to attempt this, although I am sure it wouldn’t come out as neat!

  21. priscilla kwak

    September 13, 2012

    this is such a fascinating idea, will try to this next time i bake a cake!

  22. Stephanie Lee

    September 13, 2012

    Your post on how to ice a messy cake saved my butt in icing my friends wedding cake!!!!!!
    I was wondering what kind of buttercream icing recipe you used for this cake.

    Thanks!! I love love love these cake posts!

  23. Theresa

    September 13, 2012

    Beautiful! That makes me want to bake a cake!


  24. sofia

    September 14, 2012

    amazing! Planning to do this real soon!

  25. Dianna

    September 14, 2012

    LOVE this! I am a very amateur baker, but I am constantly trying to learn more and this is such a great tutorial to help!

    Thanks and have a lovely weekend!

    Dianna @ Virgnia is for Lovers

  26. Elena @ Randomly Happy

    September 14, 2012

    Thanks for another great tutorial on frosting. The whole crumb layer of frosting was a total revelation!

    Beautiful photos. Loving the colour co-ordination!

    x Elena @ Randomly Happy

  27. Christina Main

    September 14, 2012

    This is fantastic! Thanks!!!!

  28. Shannon

    September 14, 2012

    I have to make my son a dragon cake soon – this technique will be perfect for making the scales. Thanks!

  29. Iris

    September 14, 2012

    Love this…I think I will try it in blue for my dads bday this weekend. Thanks for sharing.

  30. Haylee

    September 15, 2012

    Wow, I love this. What a simple and incredibly creative idea. Well, I say it’s simple but it probably is 10x harder than it looks. ha nonetheless it turned out beautifully, great job!

  31. Iris

    September 15, 2012

    Hi…trying to make this tonight…and to be continued tomorrow morning…BUT I need to know if the cakes can be left in the freezer (in the saran wrap) over night? Instructions say a few hours…not sure if overnight too long or okay. Anybody have an answer for this???


  32. Glory Girl

    September 16, 2012

    OOOh, i need to try this! how glamorous!

  33. Kris

    September 16, 2012

    This is adorable! Can’t wait to try this out! Thanks for sharing.

  34. thecircleofit

    September 17, 2012

    ok…this is why i LOVE your blog!!!! perfect post perfect cake!

  35. Chelsey

    September 18, 2012

    I love this series and clear photographs/directions! Hope to see more of these in the future!

  36. Happy Wedding Anniversary

    September 25, 2012

    Brilliant instructions and photos for a DIY celebration cake! Really tapping into the big baking movement in the UK too as well.

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