Dora's Backpack Cake

Dora's Backpack Cake

If you want to create a super-special cake, but think you don't have the skill, think again. We'll make you a pastry chef in no time.

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Dora's Backpack Cake
More for Parents
This recipe is best suited for parents to make on their own or with minimal help from kids.
Party Snacks
Try this recipe at your child's next party. Double the ingredients or divide them in half, depending on the size of your celebration.
Allergy Alert
This recipe contains one or more of the following common food allergens: dairy, nuts, soy, wheat, or eggs.

Servings: 10

Prep Time: 80 min.

Cook Time: 35 to 40 min.


  • 1 box (18.25 oz.) yellow or favorite cake mix
  • 1 cup mini chocolate chips
  • 15 yellow lemon-flavored fruit chews (Starbursts)
  • 1 white taffy bar (AirHeads)
  • 1 red taffy bar (AirHeads)
  • 2 cans (12 oz. each) whipped vanilla frosting
  • Violet paste or gel food coloring (available at baking-supply stores)
  • 2 cream-filled snack cakes (Twinkies)
  • Butter or margarine and flour (for greasing and dusting cake pans)


  • 8-in. round cake pan
  • 8-in. square cake pan
  • 3 plastic resealable bags
Tip: Check your market for a package of plastic frosting bags. To fill one, fold the top half down, holding the bottom with one hand. With the other hand, and using a large spoon, scoop frosting into it. Unfold the bag. To use the bag, hold at the top and push down using a twisting motion.


  1. Step 1

    Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease and flour an 8-inch-round and an 8-inch-square cake pan. Prepare the cake mix according to package directions. Fold the mini chips into the cake mix. Divide the batter evenly between the prepared cake pans. Bake the cakes until golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 35 to 40 minutes. Transfer the pans to a wire rack. Cool for ten minutes; then invert and cool the cakes completely.

  2. Step 2

    In the meantime, unwrap yellow fruit chews and heat them in the microwave for five seconds to soften. Roll together all but one piece, making a 4- by 7-inch rectangle. This will be Map. Cut the remaining piece in half diagonally for Backpack's eyebrows and set it aside.

  3. Step 3

    Make eyes by cutting the white taffy into two sizes, 1 1/2 inches and 3/4 inch. Cut the red taffy into a 3-inch crescent and a 1-inch triangle for Backpack's and Map's mouths. Set aside.

  4. Step 4

    Spoon two teaspoons of the white frosting into a resealable plastic bag and set it aside. Divide the remaining frosting into thirds. Tint each bowl a different shade of purple; from light to dark. Spoon the darkest purple into a resealable plastic bag.

  5. Step 5

    Cut the round cake in half, making two semicircles. Cut out a 2 1/2-inch-wide strip from the square cake. Place the large cake rectangle in the center of a cake platter so the long sides are at the top and bottom. Place one semicircle on either long side of the rectangle with their cut sides facing in. The top semicircle should overhang the right side of the rectangle by 1 1/2 inches. The bottom semicircle should overhang to the left by 1 1/2 inches.

  6. Step 6

    Using a bit of the medium-purple frosting, attach the two cream-filled cakes along the left side of the cake. Make Map by rolling the yellow candy rectangle around the top snack cake, letting some overhang at the top.

  7. Step 7

    Cut the leftover rectangle of cake into a 4-inch and a 2-inch piece. Place the smaller piece at the top of the cake so it fills in the gap between Backpack and Map and helps support Map. Place the longer rectangle at an angle by the upper-left corner of the cake, to make the shoulder strap. Trim the pieces slightly to round the cake's corners.

  8. Step 8

    Using the photo above for reference, frost the part of the cake that will be Backpack's face with the lightest purple frosting. Frost the snack cakes, Backpack's top, the shoulder strap, and the sides of the entire cake with the medium-purple frosting. Snip a small corner from the bag of dark-purple frosting and pipe along the sides of the cake using a top-to-bottom, zigzagging motion.

  9. Step 9

    Trim and attach the licorice as a strap. Place the eyes, eyebrows, and mouths on the cake and on Map. Use the candy-coated chocolates as the center of the eyes. Spoon chocolate frosting into a resealable plastic bag. Pipe chocolate lines around the eyes, mouths, and around Map use chocolate frosting to write a birthday greeting.

Tip: Let kids mix the icings as you add the color. They will love to watch the white icing turn into different shades right before their eyes!

Nurtition Facts

  • Calories: 616
  • Total Fat: 21g
  • Saturated Fat: 7g
  • Trans Fat: 1g
  • Cholesterol: 69mg
  • Sodium: 477mg
  • Total Carbs: 103g
  • Fiber: 1g
  • Sugar: 86g
  • Protein: 7g
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