The 9 Best Substitutes For Birthday Cake

What can I use instead of birthday cake? We found some of the best replacements for birthday cake are brownies, Belgian waffles, Mille crepe cake, ice cream cake, fresh fruit cake, donut pyramid, cream puffs, trifle, and microwave cheesecake.

Birthday cakes are great for celebrating birthdays and adding sprinkles or candles. Still, the thought of another slice of cake can become tedious if you have a big social circle or family. So instead, why not look at a fun and creative alternative to replace the traditional birthday cake?

The Best Birthday Cake Substitutes


Everyone’s favorite, brownies make an excellent substitute for birthday cakes.

Chocolate brownies are an American confection created in the late 1800s that resembles a cake.

However, they have a denser consistency than cake and can range from chewy, fudgy, or cakey depending on the ingredients.

Brownies have a rich deep chocolaty flavor and, depending on the fat-to-flour ratio, can be dense and moist with gooey chocolate.

You can also vary the taste by adding your favorite nuts to add texture and a nutty flavor.

Bake a tray of your favorite brownies and cut them into squares.

Layer your brownies to create a tiered cake and decorate or add candles to make it more festive, and each person can have a square of decadent, moist brownies.

Belgian Waffles

Belgian waffles are a fun substitute for birthday cake.

Belgian waffles are rectangular confectioneries, thicker with large deep pockets compared to the standard American waffle.

The batter is light and airy, leavened with yeast. Sometimes the addition of pearl sugar adds texture and crunch.

These waffles were introduced into the American market in 1964 at the World Fair.

The light, airy batter is reminiscent of crepes, with a light, sweetish texture and a delicious crunchy outer.

To create a chocolaty tower cake of melted chocolate and chocolate drops, you can pile towers of waffles drenched with your favorite toppings.

Maybe a syrupy cascade with golden syrup or honey. It’s also delicious, topped with layers of fresh cream and strawberries.

Mille Crepe Cake

A Mille crepe cake is a tasty and fancy substitute for birthday cakes.

Crepes are the French term for pancakes. The thin layer upon layer of crepes stacked with delicate cream filling between each crepe makes a Mille crepe cake.

The French have many traditions around crepes, with the most significant day celebrated as le jour de crepe (the day of the crepe). This also commemorates the change of season from winter to spring.

Crepes are light and thin with a sweet pastry flavor. The Mille crepe cake, however, takes on the flavors of the delicate cream fillings that are layered between each crepe.

You can fill your layers with soft velvety chocolate mousse or serve it with tiramisu cream.

Another option is mascarpone cheese and creating a delicious Mille crepe cheesecake with strawberry jam or fruit pulp layered as the finishing touch on the top crepe.

Ice Cream Cake

Ice cream cake will always be a crowd-pleaser and is a great alternative to a birthday cake.

Ice cream cake is popular for many different occasions in America. It can be made with layers of ice cream and cake or simply layers of different ice cream flavors.

The cake is usually topped and decorated with cream, complementing the ice cream and cake textures and flavors.

Taste depends on the flavors your ice cream cake is composed of. For example, some cakes incorporate fresh fruit into creamy, seductive vanilla ice cream.

Others will enjoy chaffings of chocolate logs in the decadent, rich, velvety chocolate ice cream.

Create your favorite mix of flavors by layering a pan with different ice cream flavors. You can add sweets, candy, or chocolate.

For a lighter, refreshing cake, add sliced pieces of fresh fruits and berries, top with fresh cream, and garnish accordingly.

Fresh Fruit Cake

If you are sick of flour and sweets, fruit cakes are a great alternative to birthday cakes.

Fresh fruit cakes can be a variety of things, depending on how you want to serve them. Imagine a two-tier cake of rip, juicy watermelon wheels garnished with seasonal fresh fruit.

Perhaps the snow white crispy, sweet meringue flavors layered with seasonal fruits and topped with white clouds of airy meringue, fresh cream swirls, and garnished with some berries.

These make light and fresh desserts to replace a birthday cake’s heavier and sweeter flavors.

Donut Pyramid

Donuts make an excellent replacement for birthday cakes.

Donuts are ring-shaped deep-fried dough confectioneries glazed with sugar, syrup, chocolate, or other toppings.

Dutch settlers have been said to have brought deep-fried dough to America in the early 1700s. The hole in the donut was apparently created because the middle was never appropriately cooked.

Donuts are doughy confectionery that is sweet and chewy with a delightful crispy outer and somewhat of an umami flavor due to being deep fried in oil.

Create a pyramid of different topping donuts for various flavors.

You can also create a pyramid of donuts and dribble decadent chocolate sauce over the tower creating a volcano of chocolaty donuts with a few candles for the birthday party.

Cream Puff

Rich, soft, and delicate cream puffs are fantastic substitutes for birthday cakes.

Cream puffs are made with choux pastry consisting of water, butter, eggs, and flour.

It relies on high baking temperatures instead of leavening agents to get its light, airy, and fluffy interior with a pleasantly crispy exterior.

Cookbooks reference that the dough was created by head chef Panterelli in France in 1540 and evolved over the years to the pâte à choux that it is today.

Decorate a three-tier stand with an array of delicate balls of puff pastry confectionery. Each is filled with a choice of Chantilly lace cream, custard, chocolate mousse, whipped cream, or mascarpone cheese.


Trifles are a nice mix-up to the tractional birthday cakes, and it’s delicious.

Trifles are traditionally made with sponge cake soaked in sherries or fortified wines. Layers of jelly and fruits with custard and whipped cream make up the rest of this delicious mix.

It was originally a dessert invented in the United Kingdom but is enjoyed worldwide in many ways.

The taste varies depending on the type of trifle you make. Still, traditional trifles are fruity with a hint of boozy sponge cake.

The seductive vanilla custard and whipped fresh cream soften the harsher flavors of alcohol, and the nuts add a layer of texture and depth.

Enjoy a traditional trifle served in a glass or glass bowl to visualize all the delicious layers of cake, fruit, custard, and whipped cream. Top it off with crushed nuts or slivers of toasted almonds.

Microwave Cheese Cake

Microwave cheesecake is an easy and hassle-free alternative to birthday cakes.

This is a quick cheat to a cheesecake that doesn’t actually contain cheese. Instead, it combines condensed milk and your favorite yogurt flavor. The two are thoroughly mixed, poured over a layer of crushed buttered coconut biscuits, and placed into the microwave to set.

The origin of first cheesecake comes from ancient Greece. But today, so many variants come from different countries worldwide with their unique twist to cheesecake.

If using plain double cream yogurt, you get a creamy and sweet composition of a cheesecake. The coconut biscuits add that nutty, crunchy flavor and texture.

You can decorate the top of the cake with any fruit pulp that tickles your taste buds and add complementing fresh fruits for that extra special occasion.