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Dump Truck Cake

Gearing up to host a construction-themed birthday? This hauler will get your party on a roll! Using packaged cake mix, easy-to-mix frosting and basic loaf pans instead of a special mold to form the truck's shape, we made this cake speedy. You can pave the way for your own big rig, too, by following these simple instructions. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
  • Total Time
    Prep: 1 hour Bake: 25 min. + cooling
  • Makes
    10 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 package chocolate cake mix (regular size)
  • 5 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon shortening
  • 5 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon butter, softened
  • 2-2/3 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 2 tablespoons whole milk
  • 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Yellow and blue liquid food coloring
  • 3 Ho Ho's
  • 6 chocolate-covered miniature doughnuts
  • Shoestring black licorice
  • 2 large white gumdrops
  • 2 red M&M's
  • 1 milk chocolate candy bar (1.55 ounces)

Directions

  • Preheat oven to 350°. Prepare cake batter according to package directions. Pour into two greased 8x4-in. loaf pans.
  • Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 25-30 minutes. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely.
  • Using a serrated knife, level the top of each cake. Crumble removed tops; set cakes and crumbs aside.
  • For frosting, cream shortening, butter and confectioners' sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in milk and vanilla until smooth.
  • Place 1 cup frosting in a small bowl; tint yellow. Place 3/4 cup frosting in another bowl; tint blue. Leave remaining 1/4 cup frosting white. Frost the top of one cake yellow; top with the remaining cake to form truck body.
  • For truck cab, measure 2-1/2 in. from one end. Cut at an angle 1-1/2 in. deep and 1/2 in. toward the front of the truck. Remove cake wedge and save for another use.
  • For dump truck bed, leave 1-1/2 in. of cake for cab roof, then cut 1/2 in. deep at an angle. Make a horizontal cut to the back of the truck. Remove cake wedge and save for another use.
  • For wheel axles, place two Ho Ho's side by side and 1/2 in. apart near one corner of an 11x10-in. covered board. Place the remaining Ho Ho parallel to and 2 in. from the inside Ho Ho. Carefully arrange truck body over Ho Ho's. Frost the hood, doors and bottom third of the truck with yellow frosting. For wheels, attach doughnuts with plain frosting on each side of truck.
  • Spread some of the white frosting on the slanted windshield. Place the remaining white frosting in a pastry or plastic bag; cut a small hole in a corner. Pipe the windows on the doors. Frost the rest of the dump truck blue.
  • Cut thirteen 3/4-in. strips of licorice. Arrange eight strips on the front of the truck for the grille; set the remaining strips aside. For headlights, cut gumdrops in half. Place rounded half of each on outside of grille; discard the remaining cut gumdrops.
  • Cut two 3-1/2-in. strips, two 1-in. strips, six 1-3/4-in. strips, two 1-1/4-in. strips and four 2-in. strips of licorice. Using the 3-1/2-in. and 1-in. strips, outline the windshield. Place two 3/4-in. strips on windshield for wipers. For doors, position two 1-1/4-in. strips for the door tops; place the 2-in. strips for the door sides. Decorate sides and back of truck with remaining licorice.
  • Place M&M's on back of bed for rear lights. For back bumper, break candy bar into individual sections at perforations. Cut one piece in half widthwise. Place some of the chocolate, flat side out, on the truck back (save remaining chocolate for another use). Spoon reserved crumbled cake into truck bed for dirt.

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