Animal Cell Cake

Happy Halloween! I hope your day is full of sweets and spooky costumes. Today I am sharing an educational way to use your leftover Halloween candy! Below you will find step by step instructions to make a delicious, scientifically-accurate animal cell cake.

The goal of this project is to have fun while you review the structures and functions of organelles in animal cells.


  • Round cake pan
  • Cooking spray
  • Mixing Bowls
  • Cake mix
  • Vegetable Oil
  • Water
  • Eggs
  • Frosting
  • Food coloring
  • Toothpicks
  • Labels
  • Various candy (Suggestions: Dots, Mike & Ikes, candy belts, circular sprinkles, candy fruit slices)


  • One large round cake (the animal cell)
  • Cake Frosting (the cytoplasm)
  • Various candies (the cell’s organelles)

Bake the Cake & one cupcake

  • Follow the instructions on the back of your cake box. This is where you will use your pan, spray, oil, eggs, water and mixing bowls. Set aside some cake mix to bake one cupcake to use as the nucleus.


Step 1: Turn your frosting into three separate colors. We chose purple, green and pink. Apply frostings to your cake & cupcake.

  • cell membrane (purple frosting)
  • cytoplasm (pink frosting)
  • nucleus (cupcake with green frosting)

Step 2: Organelle are the “mini organs” found in every animal cell. Each organelle has a different function and physical appearance. Together they work to keep the cell alive. Decide which candies you will use to represent the following organelles. I’ve added my suggestions but you can use any candy you want! Here is a cell diagram for reference.

  • nucleus (purple Mike & Ike)
  • mitochondria (purple candy fruit slices)
  • endoplasmic reticulum (pink candy belt attached to the nucleus)
  • Golgi bodies (green candy belt)
  • vacuoles (green Dots)
  • ribosomes (circular sprinkles)

Step 3: Discuss each organelle’s structure and include why you used a particular candy to represent that organelle. There is a good breakdown of each organelle and its purpose here.

Step 4: You have completed your animal cell cake!

Share your cake on social media and tag @themodernteacher! Happy Halloween!