A few months ago, my boyfriend, Greg decided he wanted to bake a cake. While I was supportive, I was also a bit skeptical. He said he didn’t want my help or input, so I kept my nose out of his buttercream.

Unfortunately, the cake was a complete failure. Rather than being juicy and fluffy, it was compact and a painfully chewy mass (not meaning mess).

We began to discuss how we could use it since we ruled out flushing it down the loo – after all, it would wreak havoc on the pipes. While we could throw it in the organic waste bin, I actually felt bad about throwing out all those costly ingredients. Milk, sugar, eggs….they all cost money.

The solution hit me like a ton of bricks – not unlike Greg’s disastrous cake.


Dehydrating the cake meant that while it was not the tastiest thing on the planet, it was still full enough of sugar that it could be used for other desserts in the future – like later that night!

Once dehydrated I used some as a streusel topping for a bread pudding I made and even used some in ice cream saving the ingredients (and my poor Greg’s pride). I really worked out great and tasted pretty good, too.

I had some of the dehydrated cake left over, so I took a cue from my Denmark buddies and created some rum balls! I actually had to rehydrate the cake for this, but it worked pretty well. All I had to do was mix the leftover cake with cocoa and a sticky component (I used jam). Then roll the balls in your favorite topping – more cocoa (for all you chocolate lovers), shredded coconut, sprinkles or something else. You can also include some rum essence if you like (I did not in this case).

Honestly, this will work with any type of cake, which is why I know Greg’s mass of ingredients would be perfect for this. I even sent some to his co-workers, where they were a big hit. (I let Greg take credit for these – after all, his cake was the inspiration!)

If you find you have a cake fail, don’t automatically throw it out. There are options out there, all you need is a bit of creativity and a desire to make magic out of madness.

As always, happy baking!

The Story of Greg’s Failed Cake and How I Turned a Mess Into a Masterpiece