How to Decorate a Cake With Sprinkles

Welcome to the sweet and colorful world of cake decorating with sprinkles. Sprinkles are not only a simple, yet delightful, way to add flair to your cakes, but they also bring a festive touch that is sure to make any occasion more special. Whether you’re a beginner or experienced baker, learning how to decorate a cake with sprinkles opens up endless possibilities for creativity and fun.

Decorating cakes with sprinkles has become both an art form and a cherished tradition in the baking world. Sprinkles bring vibrancy, texture, and a whimsical charm that transforms ordinary cakes into eye-catching masterpieces. From birthday parties to weddings, sprinkles have the power to evoke joy and create lasting memories.

In this article, we will explore everything you need to know about decorating cakes with sprinkles. We will discuss the importance of sprinkles in adding that extra element of fun and excitement to your creations. Additionally, we will guide you through gathering the necessary tools and ingredients as well as preparing the perfect canvas for your sprinkles.

So get ready to unleash your creativity as we dive into the magical world of sprinkle cake decorating. Whether you prefer a classic sprinkle design or want to experiment with more intricate patterns, this article will provide step-by-step instructions and helpful tips along the way. Get ready to wow your friends and family with stunning sprinkle-adorned cakes that taste just as good as they look.

Importance of Sprinkles

Sprinkles are an essential element when it comes to cake decorating. Not only do they add a pop of color and texture, but they also bring a fun and festive touch to your cakes. Whether you’re celebrating a birthday, holiday, or simply want to add some cheer to a regular day, sprinkles are the perfect way to elevate your cake design.

Bringing Joy and Excitement

One of the primary reasons why sprinkles are so important in cake decorating is that they bring joy and excitement. The colorful and vibrant nature of sprinkles instantly grabs attention and creates a sense of celebration. Sprinkles have the power to transform an ordinary cake into something special and memorable. Whether you’re baking for children or adults, sprinkles will always bring smiles and happy memories.

Adding Texture and Visual Interest

Aside from their visual appeal, sprinkles also add texture to your cakes. The tiny, crunchy balls create an interesting contrast against the softness of the cake, giving each bite a delightful experience. This combination of textures enhances the overall eating experience for your guests, making each slice more enjoyable.

Sprinkles come in various shapes as well, such as stars, hearts, or even themed shapes like flowers or animals. These different sprinkle shapes can further enhance the visual interest of your cake design. For example, using star-shaped sprinkles on a galaxy-themed cake can create a whimsical effect while flower-shaped sprinkles can make a spring or garden-themed cake come alive.

Showcasing Your Personality

Furthermore, adding sprinkles allows you to showcase your personality and creativity. With an array of colors available, you can choose combinations that match your personal style or align with the theme of the occasion. Sprinkles give you the opportunity to customize your cakes according to individual preferences or specific events.

Whether it’s mixing different colors for a vibrant and eye-catching design or incorporating metallic or edible glitter for a touch of elegance, the possibilities with sprinkles are endless. They provide a simple yet effective way to express yourself and create cakes that truly reflect your unique taste and style.

Gathering Your Supplies

Before you begin decorating a cake with sprinkles, it’s important to gather all the necessary tools and ingredients to ensure a smooth and successful process. Here are some essential items you’ll need:

  1. Cake: Start with a freshly baked cake of your choice. It can be a homemade cake or store-bought, depending on your preference and time availability.
  2. Frosting: Choose a frosting flavor that complements your cake and matches the overall theme you have in mind. Popular options include buttercream, cream cheese, chocolate ganache, or whipped cream.
  3. Sprinkles: Of course, you’ll need a variety of sprinkles to decorate your cake. Consider different types, colors, and shapes to create contrast and visual interest on your cake. Some commonly used sprinkles include jimmies (long cylindrical sprinkles), nonpareils (tiny round balls), sanding sugar (coarse sugar crystal), dragees (metallic balls), or edible glitter.
  4. Piping Bags: If you want to create precise designs with your frosting, piping bags will come in handy. They allow you to control the flow of frosting more easily than using a spoon or spatula method.
  5. Decorating Tips: Attach different tips to your piping bags for various designs such as stars, rosettes, shells, or writing. Some commonly used tips for sprinkle decorating include open star tip #21 for stars or drop flowers, round tip #12 for writing or outlining shapes, or leaf tip #67 for leaves or grass texture.
  6. Offset Spatula: An offset spatula is useful for spreading and smoothing the frosting on the cake before applying the sprinkles.
  7. Turntable: A turntable enables easier access to all sides of the cake while decorating. It allows for smoother rotations as you work on creating beautiful patterns with your sprinkles.
  8. Cake Board or Stand: To display and transport your masterpiece, you’ll need a cake board or stand. Choose one that complements the overall aesthetic of your cake.
  9. Food Coloring (optional): If you want to customize the color of your frosting, food coloring is an essential tool. Gel or paste food coloring works best as they provide more vibrant colors without changing the texture of the frosting.
  10. Edible Adhesives (optional): Sometimes, you may need an edible adhesive such as piping gel or honey to help the sprinkles adhere better to the cake. This is particularly useful when working with larger sprinkles or nonpareils.

Now that you have gathered all your supplies, it’s time to move on to the next step in decorating a cake with sprinkles: preparing the cake for decoration.

SprinklesPiping Bags
Decorating TipsOffset Spatula
TurntableCake Board or Stand
Food Coloring (optional)Edible Adhesives (optional)

Preparing the Cake

Once you have gathered all your supplies and chosen the perfect sprinkles for your cake, it’s time to prepare the cake itself. Preparing the cake properly is crucial to creating a smooth canvas that will showcase your beautiful sprinkle decorations. Here are some tips to ensure that your cake is ready for its sprinkle makeover:

  1. Cooling the Cake: Before you even think about applying sprinkles, it’s important to let your cake cool completely. If the cake is still warm, the heat can cause the sprinkles to melt or lose their shape. Allow the cake to cool in its pan for about 10 minutes, then transfer it onto a wire rack to cool completely.
  2. Leveling and Trimming: To create an even base for your sprinkles, make sure to level and trim your cake if necessary. If there is a domed top or uneven edges, use a serrated knife or a cake leveler to carefully remove any excess cake until you have a flat surface.
  3. Crumb Coat: Before applying the final layer of frosting, consider doing a crumb coat on your cake. A crumb coat is a thin layer of frosting that helps seal in any loose crumbs and provides a smooth surface for decorating. Simply spread a thin layer of frosting over the entire cake using an offset spatula, making sure not to mix any crumbs into the frosting.

Once you have followed these steps and achieved a smooth canvas, you are ready to move on and start decorating with sprinkles. Remember, taking the time to properly prepare your cake will ensure that your finished creation looks professional and visually appealing.

Tips for Preparing Your Cake:
Cool the baked cake completely before applying sprinkles.
Level and trim the cake to create an even base for the sprinkles.
Consider doing a crumb coat to seal in crumbs and provide a smooth surface.

Choosing the Right Sprinkles

Sprinkles are a key component when it comes to decorating cakes. Not only do they add a pop of color and texture, but they also bring joy and excitement to any cake creation. To achieve the perfect sprinkle-covered masterpiece, it is important to choose the right sprinkles that complement your design and overall theme. This section will explore different types, colors, and shapes of sprinkles that you can incorporate into your cake decorations.

When it comes to choosing sprinkles, the options are endless. There are various types of sprinkles available in the market, each with its own unique characteristics. Nonpareils are small round sprinkles that come in a wide range of colors and add a playful touch to your cakes. Jimmies, on the other hand, are longer and thinner sprinkles that provide a more classic look. Sugar crystals are larger and have a coarse texture, perfect for adding sparkle to your creations.

Colors play an important role in cake decoration as they can set the mood and enhance the overall appearance of the cake. From vibrant primary colors to pastel shades or even metallic tones, there is a color for every occasion. Consider the theme or color scheme of your event or celebration when selecting sprinkle colors. For example, pastel-colored sprinkles would be ideal for a baby shower cake while bright rainbow-colored ones would be perfect for a birthday celebration.

In addition to types and colors, sprinkle shapes can also contribute to the overall aesthetic of your cake design. Sprinkles come in various shapes such as hearts, stars, flowers, and seasonal designs like snowflakes or pumpkins. These shape options allow you to get creative with your cake decorations and tailor them specifically to match the occasion or theme. By choosing different shapes of sprinkles or mixing them together, you can create stunning patterns and designs on your cakes.

To summarize, choosing the right sprinkles involves considering their type, color, and shape in relation to the design and theme of your cake. Whether you opt for nonpareils, jimmies, or sugar crystals, be sure to select colors that complement your overall color scheme. Additionally, sprinkle shapes can add extra visual interest and customization to your cake designs. By exploring different types, colors, and shapes of sprinkles, you can elevate your cake decorating skills and create impressive edible works of art.

Sprinkle TypeCharacteristics
NonpareilsSmall round sprinkles in various colors
JimmiesLonger and thinner classic sprinkles
Sugar CrystalsLarger sprinkles with a coarse texture for sparkle

Methods of Application

Once you have gathered your supplies and prepared your cake, it’s time to dive into the world of sprinkle cake decorating. There are several different techniques you can use to apply sprinkles to your cake, each resulting in a unique and beautiful design. Here, we will explore some popular methods of application that are sure to make your cake stand out.

1. Sprinkle Toss:

The sprinkle toss method is one of the easiest and most fun ways to decorate a cake with sprinkles. Simply hold a handful of sprinkles over the cake and gently toss them onto the surface, allowing them to fall naturally. This technique creates a playful and whimsical look, perfect for casual celebrations or themed parties.

2. Pressing Sprinkles:

If you prefer a more precise and controlled look, pressing sprinkles onto the frosting is an excellent technique to try. Start by lightly pressing sprinkles into the frosting with your fingertips or a small spoon, working in small sections at a time. This method allows you to create intricate designs or specific patterns on your cake.

3. Sprinkle Borders:

Creating borders with sprinkles is another popular method for adding visual interest to cakes. Start by applying a thin layer of frosting along the bottom edge of the cake. Then, gently press sprinkles into the frosting, moving around the sides of the cake until you achieve the desired border width. This technique works particularly well for round or rectangular cakes.

4. Sprinkle Piping:

For those who enjoy piping decorations onto their cakes, why not try sprinkle piping? Fill a piping bag fitted with a small round tip with buttercream frosting mixed with colorful jimmies or nonpareils. Pipe shapes, letters, or patterns onto your cake using this mixture and watch as it adds texture and dimension to your creation.

5. Ombré Sprinkle Effect:

If you’re feeling adventurous, consider creating an ombré sprinkle effect on your cake. Start by applying a thin layer of frosting to the bottom of the cake, then gradually add more frosting as you move up the sides. Finally, apply a thick layer of frosting to the top. Using different shades or colors of sprinkles, sprinkle them onto each section in a gradient pattern, starting with the darkest at the base and transitioning to lighter shades towards the top.

Experiment with these techniques and don’t hesitate to combine them to create your own unique sprinkle designs. Remember, decorating with sprinkles is all about having fun and expressing your creativity, so let your imagination run wild.

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Creating Eye-Catching Designs


To create a striped pattern with sprinkles, start by frosting your cake with a smooth layer of buttercream or ganache. Once the frosting is ready, take a handful of sprinkle and carefully place it along the bottom edge of the cake. Gently press the sprinkles into the frosting to ensure they stick. Repeat this step, placing each line of sprinkles slightly above the previous one until you reach the top of the cake.


The ombre sprinkle pattern adds a beautiful gradient effect to your cake. To achieve this look, you’ll need different shades of sprinkles in the same color family. Start by separating your sprinkles into three or four bowls, with each bowl containing a gradually darker shade of sprinkles. Begin decorating your cake from the bottom up, starting with the lightest shade at the base. As you work your way up, gradually transition to darker shades until you reach the top.


Confetti sprinkle designs are perfect for birthdays and celebrations. Simply frost your cake with a generous layer of buttercream or ganache and cover it entirely with an assortment of colorful nonpareil sprinkles. You can gently press them into the frosting to make sure they adhere properly. The result is a fun and festive cake that will bring joy to any occasion.

Geometric Shapes

For those who prefer more intricate designs, geometric shapes made out of sprinkles can elevate your cake decoration game. To create geometric patterns, use small cutters in various shapes such as circles, squares, triangles, or hearts. Cut these shapes out of fondant or gum paste and attach them to your frosted cake using dabs of icing as glue. Then fill in these shapes with different types and colors of sprinkles to add texture and visual interest.


Marbling is a technique that creates a visually stunning effect on your cake. To achieve this pattern, take two or three contrasting colors of sprinkles and place them in separate bowls. Dip a paintbrush into water, shake off the excess, and then dip it into one of the sprinkle bowls.

Lightly flick or tap the paintbrush over the frosted surface of the cake, creating a splatter effect. Repeat this process with each sprinkle color, overlapping them slightly to create a marbled appearance.

By following these step-by-step tutorials, you can create eye-catching sprinkle patterns that will truly impress your guests and make any occasion extra special. Experiment with different techniques and let your creativity shine as you explore the endless possibilities that decorating cakes with sprinkles has to offer.

Fixing Mistakes and Enhancing Your Creation

Once you start decorating your cake with sprinkles, it’s natural to make a few mistakes along the way. Don’t worry. There are several troubleshooting tips that can help you fix these mishaps and enhance the overall look of your creation.

Firstly, if you accidentally apply too many sprinkles in one area and it looks overcrowded or uneven, you can easily fix this by gently patting down the excess sprinkles with a clean fingertip or a soft brush. Take care not to press too hard as it may damage the frosting or cake underneath. Alternatively, you can carefully remove the excess sprinkles using a small offset spatula or tweezers.

If you find that some areas of your cake are missing sprinkles or look sparse, don’t fret. You can simply add more sprinkles strategically to fill in these gaps. Use your fingertips or a spoon to sprinkle them onto the desired areas. To prevent the newly added sprinkles from falling off, lightly brush some edible glue or simple syrup onto the cake before applying them.

In addition to troubleshooting tips, there are also various additional decorative elements that can enhance your sprinkle-adorned cake. Consider incorporating edible flowers, chocolate curls, or fresh fruit slices for an extra pop of color and texture. These elements not only complement the sprinkle design but also add a touch of elegance to your creation.

Remember, practice makes perfect when it comes to decorating cakes with sprinkles. Don’t be discouraged if your first attempt doesn’t turn out exactly as planned. Embrace the process and have fun with it. With time and practice, you’ll gain confidence in creating stunning designs that will impress everyone who sees (and tastes) your sprinkle masterpiece.

  • Gently pat down excess sprinkles without pressing too hard
  • Remove excess sprinkles with a small offset spatula or tweezers
  • Add more sprinkles to fill in sparse areas
  • Brush edible glue or simple syrup onto the cake to prevent sprinkles from falling off
  • Incorporate additional decorative elements like edible flowers, chocolate curls, or fresh fruit slices

Adding the Finishing Touches

When it comes to decorating cakes with sprinkles, incorporating other decorative elements can take your creation from ordinary to extraordinary. These additional touches not only enhance the overall aesthetics of the cake but also allow you to customize your design and make it truly unique. Here are some ideas for adding those finishing touches:

  1. Edible Flowers: Adding edible flowers to your sprinkle-adorned cake can bring a touch of elegance and beauty. You can find edible flowers at specialty grocery stores or online retailers. Popular choices include pansies, violets, and marigolds. Before placing them on the cake, make sure they are clean and free from any chemicals or pesticides.
  2. Chocolate Accents: Chocolate is always a crowd-pleaser, and incorporating chocolate accents into your cake design can elevate its visual appeal. Consider using chocolate curls, shavings, or ganache drizzles to add texture and depth to your creation. You can easily create chocolate curls by using a vegetable peeler on a block of quality chocolate.
  3. 3.Fresh Fruit: Fresh fruit not only adds a burst of color but also provides a refreshing contrast to the sweetness of the cake and sprinkles. Choose fruits that complement the flavors of your cake, such as berries for a vanilla or lemon-flavored cake or sliced tropical fruits for a coconut or pineapple-flavored cake. Arrange the fruit in an aesthetically pleasing pattern on top or around the edges of the cake.
  4. 4.Customized Cake Toppers: Personalize your cake by adding customized cake toppers that reflect the occasion or theme you’re celebrating. These can be anything from mini figurines representing hobbies or interests to monogrammed initials made out of fondant or sugar paste.

Remember, when incorporating other decorative elements for a stunning presentation, it’s important not to overwhelm the sprinkle design. Rather, aim for complementary elements that enhance and highlight the beauty of the sprinkles. By carefully considering and incorporating these finishing touches, you can create a cake that not only looks delightful but also tastes delicious.

Tips for Storing and Serving Sprinkle-Adorned Cakes

After putting in the time and effort to decorate a cake with sprinkles, it’s important to know how to properly store and serve your creation to ensure it stays fresh and delicious. Whether you’re preparing for a special occasion or simply want to enjoy the cake over a few days, knowing the right techniques can make all the difference.

When it comes to storing sprinkle-adorned cakes, there are a few key tips to keep in mind. Firstly, it’s important to properly cover the cake to protect it from drying out. One of the best ways to do this is by using plastic wrap or a cake dome that fits securely over the top of the cake. This will create a tight seal and help maintain moisture.

If you don’t have a cake dome, you can also use toothpicks and plastic wrap. Simply insert a few toothpicks into the top of the cake, ensuring they are evenly spaced apart. Then, gently drape plastic wrap over the toothpicks and press down lightly around the edges of the cake. This method will help prevent any smudging or damage to your beautifully decorated surface.

When it’s time to serve your sprinkle-adorned cake, there are a few presentation tips that can take your creation to the next level. One idea is to add a little extra flair by garnishing each slice with an additional sprinkle or two. This not only adds visual appeal but also allows guests to see what delightful surprises lie beneath each layer.

Another great way to elevate your presentation is by pairing your sprinkle-adorned cake with complementary flavors or textures. For example, if your cake features colorful confetti sprinkles, consider serving it with a side of whipped cream or vanilla ice cream. These additions will enhance both the taste and appearance of your creation.

By following these tips for storing and serving sprinkle-adorned cakes, you can ensure that every bite remains just as fresh and delicious as when you first decorated it. So go ahead and share your masterpiece with friends and family, knowing that they’ll be impressed by both the taste and the stunning visual appeal.


In conclusion, decorating a cake with sprinkles is a delightful and fun way to add a touch of whimsy to your creations. Sprinkles are not only visually appealing, but they also bring joy and excitement to any occasion. Whether you’re celebrating a birthday, a holiday, or just want to make an everyday treat extra special, sprinkles are the perfect addition.

By gathering the essential tools and ingredients and preparing your cake properly, you can ensure that your canvas is smooth and ready for sprinkles. Choosing the right type, color, and shape of sprinkles allows you to create the desired look for your cake. From traditional round sprinkles to more intricate shapes like stars or hearts, there are endless possibilities for designs.

Once you have all the necessary materials, experimenting with different application techniques can result in stunning designs. Whether you prefer a random sprinkle scattering or more elaborate patterns, there is no wrong way to decorate with sprinkles. And don’t worry if you make some mistakes along the way – troubleshooting tips and additional decorative elements can help enhance your creation.

Remember, decorating cakes with sprinkles is not limited to birthdays or special occasions. You can unleash your creativity any day by incorporating other decorative elements such as edible flowers or chocolate shavings. The possibilities are endless when it comes to creating unique and eye-catching designs that will leave everyone in awe.

So go ahead and embark on this magical journey of sprinkle cake decorating. Let your imagination run wild and enjoy the process of adding color, texture, and happiness to every bite. Remember that the true beauty lies in the joy that both baking and enjoying these delicious creations bring. Happy decorating.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best way to put sprinkles on a cake?

The best way to put sprinkles on a cake is by using a gentle and careful approach. First, ensure that the cake is completely cooled down to prevent any chance of the sprinkles melting or losing their shape. Next, choose a method to apply the sprinkles that works for you.

One option is to hold a handful of sprinkles over the cake and gently let them fall from your fingers, allowing an even distribution across the surface. Alternatively, you can use a spoon or small spatula to sprinkle them on top. Remember to evenly cover all areas, including the sides if desired, for a visually appealing result.

Do you put sprinkles on a cake before or after baking?

Sprinkles are typically added to a cake after baking and cooling down. This helps preserve their shape and color since most sprinkles contain sugar and are prone to melting or discoloration when exposed to high heat in the oven.

Adding sprinkles before baking will likely result in them blending into the cake batter or losing their vibrant colors during the baking process.

How do you get sprinkles to stick to cake frosting?

To get sprinkles to stick to cake frosting in an effective manner, there are several techniques you can employ. Firstly, it is important that the frosting has a slightly sticky surface for better adhesion. You can achieve this by lightly misting some water onto the frosted surface or brushing it with simple syrup before adding the sprinkles.

Another method is gently pressing the sprinkles into the frosting using clean fingers or a small utensil immediately after applying them. This ensures that they embed themselves into the frosting rather than just sitting on top loosely. If you have frosted your cake in advance and want to add sprinkles later, consider using edible glue or piping gel as an adhesive specifically designed for food decorations like sprinkles; dabbing these substances onto each sprinkle will create stronger adherence when attaching them onto hardened frosting surfaces.

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