Sometimes, the perfect gift is obvious, but more often than not, you struggle to come up with the right kind of idea. And let’s face it, a box of candy just doesn’t cut it.

So in today’s blog post, I want to introduce one of the best gifts, the DIY money cake, because, let’s be honest, who doesn’t love getting some cold, hard cash? In fact, a money cake is also a brilliant idea for a wedding gift or baby reveal, too.

I have several other graduation-related posts, like this DIY Graduation Gap Card Holder, these Free Printable Graduation Cards with Positive Quotes, and several Easy Graduation Gift Ideas. When it comes to birthdays, check out this fabulous Money Bouquet as well as these Free Printable Birthday Cards.

image of a "money cake" with dollar bills tied with blue ribbon and chocolate cupcakes with blue-and-white-colored frosting on top, and a graduation cap topper.

Where Did the Money Cake Idea Come From?

Money cakes are popular across the globe, and with a little research, you’ll find that there are several different types.

First, there is the actual cake that has money inside it. These are usually made using a regular cake recipe, for example, a chocolate cake, and then coins are placed inside the cake wrapped in aluminum foil. Of course, they should be thoroughly washed and cleaned first! Paper notes can also be used, but they should be covered by plastic wrap or placed in a plastic bag.

We, however, are making the second type of money cake, a creative way to give a gift without needing a slice of cake in the traditional sense. Here, a money roll is what you use to decorate the cake, which is generally made out of styrofoam or foam circles of varying diameters. These dollars, rolled up as a separate money tube, are then placed in a circular formation on the outside of the cake.

To make it more “cake-like,” you could even use a traditional cake topper, including floral inserts at the top of the cake, especially if you are going to give the money cake as a wedding gift. Decorate the cake using ribbons and other cake decor or cupcakes and a graduation cap, as we have.

Supplies Needed to Make a Money Cake

You will need the following”

  • Glue glue or hot glue of any kind
  • Scissors
  • Rolled bills of varying denominations
  • Round styrofoam or foam circles (you’ll get these from any craft store)
image of a "money cake" with dollar bills tied with blue ribbon and chocolate cupcakes with blue-and-white-colored frosting on top, and a graduation cap topper.

Tutorial: How To Make A Money Cake

Here are the instructions on how to make a money cake. As you can see from the image, it’s not really difficult at all

  • Step 1: Roll your dollar bills tightly to help them hold their rolled shape. Tie a bow around each one to make them look extra special.
  • Step 2: Using the glue gun, apply a very small amount of glue to the styrofoam circle and attach the rolled bills right around, with the ribbon sticking to the glue and not the bills themselves. If you apply too much glue, it might be difficult to pull the bills off.
  • Step 3: Decorate the money cake as you see fit. We’ve opted for cupcakes, but it really depends on the occasion.

And there you have it, a money cake – a gift that’s a little different, but often perfect!

Other Gift Ideas

I would love to keep you fully stocked with creative ideas, yummy recipes, fun crafts, and loads of free printables. Subscribe to Skip to my Lou to get new ideas delivered to your inbox. Follow me on FacebookPinterestTwitter, and Instagram for all my latest updates.


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