15+ Birthday Cake Alternatives

15+ Birthday Cake Alternatives

Do you need cake alternatives to make your birthday unique?

Let them eat cake! …Or brownies, or macarons, or pancakes, for that matter! With September being the biggest birthday month of the year, it’s no surprise that a lot of us get cake burnout. If you’re like us, your sweet tooth is already hankering for something a little bit more unique. We’ve compiled a list of the best birthday cake alternatives ranging from healthy to decadently delicious that will take the cake at your next birthday party. You can stick candles in a popsicle, right?


Crepe Birthday Cake

Crepes topped with ice cream and sprinkles

Who doesn’t like breakfast for dessert? Crêpes (or those razor-thin, French pancakes) make for a fun alternative to birthday cakes that both kids and adults will love. Create a crêpe cake by spreading Nutella between layers of ready-made Belgian Boys crêpes. Or, get creative with fillings like caramel, mascarpone cheese, and fresh fruit.


Mini Pancakes

Bite-sized pancakes topped with nutella and berries

For a lighter birthday dessert recipe, these light and fluffy bite-sized pancakes are as cute as they are snackable! Known as poffertjes in the Netherlands, these pancakes have a spongy texture and a rich, complex taste, so a couple of bites is all you need to feel satisfied. Prepare dips of syrup, melted chocolate, jam, and whipped cream for a little extra indulgence.


Brownie Birthday Cake

Brownie birthday cake

Birthday brownies are an easy-to-serve crowd favorite with all sorts of potential flavor combinations to satisfy every taste. Put a spin on the classic chocolate brownie by mixing crushed Oreo cookies, peanut butter, or even espresso into your batter. Or, follow a flourless recipe for a fudgy gluten-free birthday dessert.


Candy Buffet Ideas For a Birthday Party

Candy buffet

Your guests will feel like they’ve won the golden ticket when they see this colorful and easy birthday dessert. Just arrange your favorite candies in mismatched clear containers for an impressive, bake-free cake alternative. You can even make a candy birthday cake by stacking candy on a three-tiered cake stand.

It’s also easy to get creative with candy combinations that follow your birthday party’s theme. Princess party? Pink candies only! Sports party? Throw in some chocolate sports balls and M&M’s in your favorite team’s colors! Pool party? Flip flop lollipops and fish gummies will work swimmingly!


Birthday Cookies Ideas

Stack of lemon cookie tarts

Decorated birthday cookies can make any birthday more festive. Create delicate designs by sprinkling powdered sugar over a stencil on Belgian Boy’s lemon cookie tarts, or let your guests get in on the fun by baking your favorite cookies beforehand and setting out sprinkles, frosting, and edible ink markers. Kids (and adults!) will have a blast designing their own birthday party desserts.


Belgian Waffle Dessert

Stacks of Belgian waffles with various toppings

We’ve yet to meet anyone who doesn’t love waffles, so why deprive yourself on your birthday? Belgian waffles are made of a brioche dough with pearl sugar mixed in for a more decadent, birthday-worthy twist on the classic. Stack between layers of frosting to create a waffle cake, or keep things simple by heating and serving with a scoop of creamy gelato.


Birthday Macarons

Variety of macarons

These delicate, meringue-based sandwich cookies have a crisp exterior and smooth, creamy center (is your mouth watering, too?). As pretty as they are delectable, macarons are both a chic decoration and a unique birthday treat. Just add gel-based food coloring to match your party’s theme perfectly.


Frozen Fruit Popsicles

Strawberry popsicles over a bright blue backdrop

For diet-conscious partiers, frozen fruit popsicles are a refreshing and healthy birthday cake alternative. The easiest way to make them is by rolling a banana in melted chocolate, sprinkling with your choice of toppings (crushed nuts, granola, or sprinkles), and freezing until set. 

For a low carb birthday cake alternative, make frozen berry kebabs by skewering strawberries, blackberries, and raspberries, and drizzling with yogurt before freezing.


Birthday Pie

Birthday pie

Move over Thanksgiving, you’re not the only holiday with pie on the menu! From classics like apple and pecan, to more daring flavors like banoffee (a mashup of bananas, dulce de leche, and whipped cream) or French silk (think chocolate mousse, but smoother), the varieties of these birthday party desserts are endless.


Donut Birthday Cake

Donut birthday cake

Donut tell me that you wouldn’t be delighted with a donut cake for your birthday! Pile your favorite flavor of donuts into a pyramid and top with a candle for a dessert your guests will go nuts for. Or, for a lower fat variation, bake donuts instead of frying them and sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar.


Nutella Dipped Strawberries

Nutella dipped stawberries

This elegant and easy birthday dessert puts a nutty twist on a Valentine’s Day classic. Simply dip ripe strawberries in Nutella (no need to double boil chocolate!) and voilà, a birthday treat anyone would fall for! You can even cover the Nutella dipped strawberries in chopped hazelnuts, crushed graham crackers, shredded coconut, or anything else your sweet tooth desires.


Birthday Muffins

Birthday muffins

If you’re craving that traditional cake consistency but not the resulting sugar crash, these healthy birthday desserts are sure to satisfy. Mix rainbow sprinkles into a vanilla muffin batter to get a classic birthday cake flavor (with a lot less sugar!). If you’re feeling ambitious, bake a few batches in different flavors such as chocolate, blueberry, or apple streusel, and let your guests pick their favorites.


Crumble Dessert With Fruit

Red Berry Crumble topped with ice cream

Especially popular during the summer, fruit crumble will wow your party guests at any time of the year. You can whip up this crunchy, buttery dessert from scratch, or simply heat up Belgian Boys’ red berry crumble and serve. If the birthday party is outside, the individual glass ramekins will be a lot easier to pass out and enjoy than a cake, too.


Ice Cream Birthday Parties

Birthday ice cream topped with sprinkles and candles

I scream, you scream, we’ll all scream if we see another ice cream cake at a birthday party (well, maybe not, who doesn’t like ice cream cake?). But some of the best frozen desserts are made of ice cream and deserve their time in the sun, too. The cherry on top? Ice cream also makes a great theme for any birthday party!


Fresh Fruit Birthday Cakes

Watermelon Cake

Unique, chic, and jaw-droppingly beautiful, these healthy birthday cake alternatives can be made from whatever fruit happens to be in season during your birthday month. For the base, slice out the center of a watermelon, cantaloupe, or honeydew, rounding off the edges by removing the rind. Decorate with patterns of berries, kiwis, grapes, or sliced starfruit. Top with a dollop of whipped cream and a candle.


Cake Alternatives for Every Occasion

Birthday not for another six months? You don’t need to turn another year older just to try out these recipes— there are plenty of occasions for celebratory treats! Go ahead and swap out the cake for one of these creative alternatives at your next anniversary, grad party, or “just because” night.

If you want more of these irresistible mouth-watering dessert combinations, check out these tea party dessert ideas.