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How to Make a Half Birthday Cake

An easy and cheap way of how to make a half Birthday cake so you can celebrate half birthdays at your house, here is how you make one to celebrate. Probably the best cake mix hack that we use year after year.

Half Birthday Cake

Have you ever just wanted to celebrate something, especially when your child’s Birthday is so close to a holiday? Sometimes if they do it’s overlooked. Well, a half Birthdays cake is a great way to celebrate your or your child’s birth, just because! This is why we started this….. (affiliate links present)

Half Birthday Cake Ideas

Whether you want to make one from a box, or homemade like our purple birthday cake this idea is just so much fun!

  • I have three girls, two of whom were born right before Thanksgiving, and one right before Xmas. I was bummed each year because amongst all the holiday hub bub was their Birthdays.
  • It just wasn’t as fun or seemingly elaborate as the parties I threw for my 3rd daughter who’s Birthday is in June. So, 1/2 birthdays emerged!

It is really cheap and the kids got a kick out of it. I always have at least one box of cake mix in the cupboard and a frosting I’ve found on sale and kept for “just in case times.” OR make our Chocolate Angel Food Cake, slice in half and keep the rest for the next night. 😉

What is a half cake?

It is exactly what it says, it is 1/2 of a cake used to celebrate half birthdays or just for fun. You essentially make a whole round cake pan full, or square. Cut it in half and you have 2 layers to add frosting into the middle and all the way around!

1_2 birthday cake

How to cut a half cake?

To cut a cake in half horizontally (also known as “splitting” the cake), you will need a long sharp knife, a cutting board, and the plate you want to serve it on. Then follow these steps:

  1. Cool the cake completely before attempting to cut it. Warm or hot cake layers are more fragile and may crumble or break apart.
  2. Place the cake on a flat surface, such as a cutting board or cake turntable.
  3. Use a long, serrated knife to make a horizontal cut across the middle of the cake. Do this with a square or round shape.
    • Start by holding the knife parallel to the cutting surface and gently scoring a line around the circumference of the cake. This will serve as a guide for the initial cut.
  4. Gradually tilt the knife downwards and gently saw back and forth, applying even pressure, to cut through the whole thing. Take your time and try to keep the knife as level as possible to ensure an even cut.
  5. Continue to saw back and forth until you have cut all the way through the cake layer, creating two evenly sized halves.
  6. Slide a spatula under one half with your hand on the other end to transfer half to your plate
  7. Flip upside down so the flat side is facing up. If you want to add Pudding Frosting into the center do that now.
  8. Do the same thing to lift the second 1/2 up and on to the top of the bottom piece with the flat side facing down.

Now you can frost the outside of it to your liking. It is best served and enjoyed right away. If you are making in the morning and serving later, wait to frost. Wrap tight with plastic wrap, refrigerate, and frost in the evening – there will be less crumbs that way too.

Half Birthday Cake ideas

1/2 Birthday Cake

I put an alarm on my phone for the date of each child’s 1/2 birthday, and just repeated that date to chime the day before it was to occur each year. This gives me time to grab something small from the dollar store, and bring out the you are special plate.

  • Create a Birthday closet in your home too so you are always prepared for a celebration.

Just use a round cake pan (1 box makes this round cake pan plus about 4 cupcakes). When it is done let it cool a bit (make sure you spray pam on the bottom before baking), cut it in half and put one half upside down, frost the middle and put the other half on top….then you aren’t wasting any cake.

This is one of the best presents for men too if you surprise them. Then play some games together for the celebration: How to make your own Jenga game.

How to Make a Small Birthday Cake

This is one cheap idea, especially if you make it as a boxed cake mix recipe. Many times you can find them for $1 on sale which means you actually could make two flavors, one for each layer to make it even more fun. Save the rest wrapped in plastic wrap for the next night.

1/2 Birthday Cake

So the frosting will go in the middle and on top of the 2nd half of a layer. You can then add sprinkles, a fun birthday cake topper of some kind or leave as is. If you want to make a different shape than rounds, this is How Long Does it Take to Bake a Cake.

Jump to recipe below and get started. Figure out when everyone in your house would be able to celebrate like this and surprise them year after year. They won’t likely remember themselves

How do you save leftover cake?

You may have some left after you celebrate right? You want to keep them moist, that is key. The best way to do that is to eliminate all of the air around it, which makes sense. If you leave it on the same plate that is okay but cover with plastic wrap and down around the dessert itself, not just one side to the other.

If you add frosting to all sides you’re more likely to keep it moist as well as you lock it inside. Then enjoy again the next day friends!

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the typical mom
Half Birthday Cake
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5 from 1 vote

Half Birthday Cake

How to make a half birthday cake for kids or an adult so you can celebrate twice a year.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword birthday cake, half
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Servings 8
Calories 238kcal
Author The Typical Mom




  • Mix ingredients necessary listed on the back of the cake mix to make batter. Preheat to necessary tempertaure (listed on back too).
  • Spray inside of 2 8" round cake pans. Pour half into one and half into the other. Bake for 28-32 minutes or until middle springs back when touched gently.
  • Put pans on top of a cooling rack until completely cooled. Carefully put a dinner plate on the top of the pan and flip over, it should slide out.
  • Use a sharp knife to cut it in half. Put a layer of frosting on one flat side of half of the cake. Pick up the other half and flip it over so that piece has the flat side facing down and on to the layer of frosting.
  • This will make 2 half birthday cakes made this way. frost the top and enjoy.
Nutrition Facts
Half Birthday Cake
Amount Per Serving (2 oz)
Calories 238 Calories from Fat 18
% Daily Value*
Fat 2g3%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Trans Fat 1g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 1g
Sodium 470mg20%
Potassium 30mg1%
Carbohydrates 53g18%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 28g31%
Protein 2g4%
Calcium 136mg14%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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5 from 1 vote (1 rating without comment)
Recipe Rating

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