17 Christmas Cakes and Cupcakes to Make Your Holiday Sweet

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Whether you're throwing an epic holiday party or just baking something for the fam to enjoy, the holidays are the perfect reason to go all out with your cakes. Get all the Christmas cake design inspo you crave, then head to the kitchen!

1. A Festive Unicorn

With its modeling chocolate antlers and braided gum paste horn, this unicorn reindeer cake is pure holiday magic. Especially when it's decked out with DIY holly leaves and berries, big buttercream rosettes and gold mirror glaze .

Ready to trade in the cake slayin' for a little cake sleighin'? The MAC crew is getting man about the holidays with a unicorn reindeer cake for Joshua's niece. (Okay, so maybe it's not that manly… but hey, he had us at peppermint mocha!)

2. Pom-Pom Power

The subtle star gives this white tiered cake an elegant look we can't get enough of. Make the sweater-like texture on the top and bottom tiers by pressing braided ropes into the fondant before it's draped on the cake , then craft the cute (but non-edible!) pom-poms to add a little whimsy.

Meet your instructor, cake artist Erica O'Brien, and preview the four seasonal cakes you'll create in this class. Then, dive right in and make the Winter Cake, complete with knitwear texture, a pieced Nordic star and adorable pompoms covered in icy sprinkles! Erica will take you step by step through all of the techniques you'll need to make this amazing cake, from texturing fondant to using templates and attaching 3-D elements.

3. The Hippest Snowman

This snowman would probably roll its eyes if its design went mainstream, but let's be real: it's too cute not to. The tiers are filled and covered with coconut and Swiss meringue buttercream , then sculpted into domes and decorated with fondant and modeling chocolate embellishments.

It's holiday office party season, and JJR's here to make a winter snowman cake with a hipster twist. Check out this rad snowman that's soaked in rum and covered with coconut.

4. Lifelike Blooms

Those aren't real poinsettias, but we can see why you (and your guests) would think so! These hyper-realistic sugar flowers are a beautiful way to top off any cake, but if you want something a bit more beginner-friendly, you can always pipe your poinsettias with buttercream instead.

Find out what makes poinsettias so distinctive! Learn about each of the components that go into these classic, seasonal flowers, then get started making your own as you create the three distinctive centers of the poinsettia.

5. A Sugary Dream House

Flex your piping skills and create the most gorgeous gingerbread house. Make it 3D by using scrap pieces of gingerbread for the shutters, bushes and trees!

Like any well-designed home, your gingerbread house starts with a good foundation. Stephanie helps you build a ground floor of success by sharing her tips for straight sides, flat roofs and level decorating surfaces. (If you’d like, you can use a pre-baked house instead.) And, learn how to make holiday wreaths and festive window boxes to give your house sweet curb appeal.

6. Whimsical Winter

With a dome mold , there's no sculpting required for this Christmas cake. Simply bake and coat with a heaping amount of coconut, then make the trees and gingerbread with fondant and cutters. It couldn't be easier!

You've long been asking for a holiday cake. Here's Man About Cake's fun twist on a snowy whimsical winter cake scene.

7. #UglySweaterSeason

This sweater was made for waddling, and the adorably plump penguin is so fun to sculpt and decorate. Use candy, buttercream, fondant, cookies and ice cream cones to bring him to life, then design the sweater with simple piping techniques .

Even for a cake novice, this cute holiday penguin is not as difficult as it looks. In fact, it's the perfect project to wow your fam and explore basic sculpting and piping skills. All it takes is a little bit of pract-ice. (Ice... because it's a penguin. Get it?)

8. He's Melting!

Hone your fondant skills and build a snowman before he melts away! There's no sculpting required, so it's totally beginner-friendly. You can even make melted snowman cupcakes to match!

Nothing says winter fun like building a snowman! But if you're short on the white stuff, this cake is your next best bet. Even better: Our melting snowman cake tutorial is the perfect easy project for newbies to hone their fondant skills.

9. Mini Ginger

Amp up a run-of-the-mill cake with a mini gingerbread house. Just make sure to steer clear of buttercream and frost your cake in royal icing — it'll help hold your house upright, whereas the buttercream can lead to a gingerbread disaster.

If you're not ready to commit to a full-on gingerbread village, get started with a mini gingerbread house cake topper. It's a quick project that will add a festive touch to your favorite cake recipe.

10. Winter Wonderland

Naked cakes are totally trendy, and they make fast, easy winter cakes. Whip up a batch of chocolate cake and ice the top in whipped cream snow. You can even mold some quick fondant toppers to make it more festive.

Oh the weather outside is frightful... so stay inside and bake! This winter cake is perfect for holidays, birthdays, or as a special snow day treat. Plus, it's easy to customize to whatever you're celebrating.

11. Grinch-y Cupcakes

These cupcakes would make the Grinch's heart grow three sizes, and you'll love crafting 'em too. Bonus: they're the perfect treat for your Christmas special viewing party.

Let's just say that we totally would touch these cupcakes with a 39-and-a-half-foot pole. We can't make any promises, but we bet they're cute enough to cheer up even the grouchiest Grinch on your list.

12. Candy Cane Cupcakes

Hey, peppermint lovers: you won't want to snack on any other sweet this season. The buttercream is loaded with peppermint extract, and when you top it off with crushed candy canes it's a delicious burst of seasonal flavor.

Not all holiday treats need to be big and elaborate. This easy-to-make buttercream is packed with holiday flavor, making it perfect for all your Christmas cakes and cupcakes.

13. A Fondant Blizzard

The best thing about these fondant snowflakes? There are no molds or cutters required. Simply roll out white fondant and assemble each piece with edible glue, then add them to your cake (or cupcake). Easy peasy.

Here’s a real winter treat: snow you don’t have to shovel, trek through or clean off your car! These sweet snowflake decorations are made of fondant and don’t require any special cutters. (They do require some patience, but the results are #worthit.)

14. O Christmas Tree

These fancy evergreens are much easier to make than you'd think, and it's all thanks to a hidden ice cream cone! Pipe green buttercream up each cone, then decorate your trees so they're merry and bright.

These fun Christmas tree cupcakes have a secret: there's an ice cream cone under there! That means you get to make a big splash at the holiday party with remarkably little stress.

15. Deck the Halls

Dress up your cupcakes with ornaments that are cute enough to hang on your tree! Serve them at your holiday party, or even host a cupcake decorating night so everyone can design their own.

While we wouldn't suggest putting edible cupcakes on your tree, these ornaments are cute enough to do just that. They're sweet, festive and will definitely bring the holiday cheer!

16. Hey There, Kris Kringle

Santa Claus is coming ... to your cupcakes. Sculpting a mini St. Nick from fondant is hassle-free thanks to edible glue and toothpick anchors, and it makes for an incredibly adorable topper.

Yes, these Santa cupcakes really are good (for goodness sake!). And even if you've never molded cupcake toppers before, the fondant design is totally forgiving and beginner-friendly. Make 'em and you're guaranteed to impress a crowd!

17. Elf Magic

If a 3D fondant figure is a little intimidating, never fear — you can sculpt a simpler 2D (but still so sweet) topper for your Christmas cupcakes instead. Just make sure you have plenty of colors and fondant tools to play with!

Turn your kitchen into Santa's workshop and sculpt cute elves for your cupcakes. Fair warning: these little guys are so adorable, you may not want to actually eat them.

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17 Christmas Cakes and Cupcakes to Make Your Holiday Sweet