June 6, 2013

Tequila Sunrise Tiki Cake

This post originally appeared on my first blog, Amy's Cooking Adventures, in July 2012.

Last year, a friend of mine planned a big backyard luau for her husband's 30th birthday!

For the party, I made a fun Tiki Cake!  And because plain old cake is boring, we had a fun Tequila Sunrise Cake.   The cake is delicious, with a moist crumb that absolutely melts in your mouth.  The tequila buttercream is also amazing, especially when paired with the salty pretzels rods! 

Oh and those Hawaiian shirt cookies?  Check out Sweet Adventures of Sugarbelle for an amazing tutorial!

Tiki Cake
An Amy’s Cooking Adventures Original Recipe

1 recipe Tequila Sunrise Cake (recipe follows)
1 recipe Tequila Buttercream Icing (recipe follows)
1 (12 oz) package pretzel rods
2-4 tbsp dark brown sugar
Quarter sized ball of MM Fondant, tinted blue
Cocktail umbrellas
Hawaiian Shirt Cookies

Tequila Sunrise Cake
An Amy’s Cooking Adventures Original Recipe

1 package plain yellow cake mix
1 package vanilla instant pudding
¾ cup orange juice
½ cup canola oil
½ cup tequila
4 large eggs
½ tsp orange extract
½ tsp vanilla extract
Orange & red gel food coloring (optional)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and spray three 8-inch round pans with non stick spray.

Combine all of the ingredients (except for the food coloring) into the bowl of a stand mixer.  Mix on low until combined, then switch to medium and beat until smooth, about 2 minutes.

Separate the batter evenly into 3 separate bowls (about 2 cups of batter per bowl).  Tint the first bowl orange, the second bowl orange-red, and the third bowl red.  Scrape the batter into the prepared pans and bake in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cakes comes out clean.

Move the cakes to wire racks and cool for 10 minutes.  Then run a knife along the edges of the pans and flip to remove the cakes.  Cool completely.

Tequila Buttercream Icing
An Amy’s Cooking Adventures Original Recipe

1 ½ cups Crisco vegetable shortening
6 cups powdered sugar
1 ½ tbsp meringue powder
½ tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp tequila
4-5 tbsp water

Place the ingredients into the bowl of a stand mixer.  Mix on low until combined.  Then switch the speed to medium and mix until smooth and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Tint, if desired.

Cake assembly

Stack the cakes, with a layer of Tequila Buttercream in between each layer.  Be sure to place the red layer on the bottom, followed by the red-orange layer, and ending in orange to mimic a sunrise.  Frost the sides and top of the cake.

Snap the pretzel rods in half (they should not all be exactly the same height).  Stick the pretzels rods directly onto the buttercream on the sides of the cake.  Use a small amount of buttercream to stick to Hawaiian shirt cookies onto the sides of the pretzels.

Sprinkle the brown sugar on top of the cake to mimic sand.  Roll the fondant into a small rectangular beach towel and place on top of the cake.  Place a cocktail umbrella next to the beach towel and serve!


  1. That's an awesome looking cake, sounds awesome!

    Happy Blogging!
    Happy Valley Chow

  2. I would love for you to share and link up at my weekly TGIF Link Party if you haven't already this week. Your favorite posts, most popular, recent or new! The party is open every Thursday night and closes Wednesday's at midnight. http://apeekintomyparadise.blogspot.com/. Hope you will join us! Have a wonderful week!

    Hugs, Cathy

  3. This is SO cute! Girl, you rock the cakes :)


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