Dowelling Cakes

Estimated reading time: 2 minutes

Stacking cakes or even placing a heavy-ish decoration on a cake, will require support. All this means is that you are going to be inserting some rods called dowels into the lower cakes to take the weight of the top cake, just as in construction! All but the top layer will need dowelling.

90th Birthday Cake
90th Birthday Cake

It’s not as difficult as it sounds. For the purpose of these instructions, let’s assume we’re making 2 stacks. You only start this part of the assembly when you’ve completely covered both cakes with fondant or buttercream, depending on what you’re using.

If making more stacks, just repeat the process for the other levels, just remember that the top cake will not need it!

That’s it, you’re ready to stack. Take a look at the Piano Man recipe.

You may also be interested in my Madeira Cake recipe and Buttercream Icing Recipe.

Now, shall we get our aprons on?

The Piano Man Cake

If you like the tutorial, don’t forget to leave me a comment and that all important, 5-star rating! Thank you!

And if you make the recipe, share it on any platform and tag me @azlinbloor, and hashtag it #linsfood

Lin xx

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Dowelling cakes

Step by step instructions for dowelling cakes.
Prep Time7 minutes
Total Time7 minutes
Course: Dessert
Keyword: cake decorating
Author: Azlin Bloor


  • 2 plastic dowels if long, more if they're short
  • pencil
  • similar sized cake card as for the top cake


  • 2-3 cakes as needed


  • Take the similar sized thin cake card as the one that's holding the top cake and place it on the base cake. Make light marks around the card to show where the top cake is going to sit.
  • Take one of the dowels and plunge it into the base cake gently, about an inch from the edge of the circle. Keep it straight
  • Take the pencil and mark the height of the cake on the dowel.
  • Now break the the dowel off by snapping it at the mark. Sometimes, it helps to just mark the pencil line with a knife to provide a "give" point.
  • Repeat with remainder dowels making a square inside the circle mark.

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