Welcome to the 35th Annual San Diego Cake Competition

We have changed up our competition this year. We have revised our experience levels, streamlined our categories and add all new Awards! Read up on our new competition guidelines and feel free to email Admin@SanDiegoCakesShow.com with any questions.

To enter the JUNIOR Competition

Open only to ages between 4-16

  • Pre-Junior  Between the ages of 4 & 8
  • Junior Between the ages of 9 & 12
  • Teen Between the ages of 13 & 16
  • Non-tiered Any non-tiered cake with any theme decorated using buttercream icing, pastry pride, royal icing, fondant, rolled buttercream, or modeling chocolate. Any sugar material or technique may be used. Non-edible decorations are not allowed for Junior and Teen. PLEASE NOTE: Pre-Junior division is allowed the use of plastic non-edible items. Plastic non-edible items will not be judged as highly as handmade items, but will also not be judged down.
  • Tiered Any tiered cake with any theme decorated using buttercream icing, pastry pride, royal icing, fondant, rolled buttercream, or modeling chocolate. Any sugar material or technique may be used. Non-edible decorations are not allowed for Junior and Teen. PLEASE NOTE: Pre-Junior division is allowed the use of plastic non-edible items. Plastic non-edible items will not be judged as highly as handmade items, but will also not be judged down.
  • Sculpted Carved or shaped cakes, 2D or 3D sculptures. Must be made from at least 75% cake. Any sugar materials or technique may be used. Entry must include Storyboard Description which consists of a brief written description of your process for creating the piece as well as a minimum of 5 in-progress pictures.
  • Novelty Cake pops, cupcakes, cake balls, candy, cookies, gingerbread, petit fours. A combination of techniques and edible material can be used.

To enter the ADULT Competition

  • Amateur  Has taken (1) course in cake decorating, or is self-taught using beginner skills similar to those taught in a basic cake decorating course or been involved in any aspect of the craft for less than 1 year.
  • Intermediate  Has gone beyond beginner skills or has won 1st place in Amateur Division in a previous show or is a beginning culinary student.
  • Expert  Has gone beyond intermediate or has won 1st place in Intermediate Division in a previous show or is a mid to high level culinary student  or is a past/present decorator/teacher for a commercial enterprise(Wilton), or works as a baker/caterer/CFO or in a commercial bakery, or a person in an allied field.
  • Master  One who qualifies under at least one of the following: certified ICES CMSA, has had the equivalent of 140 hours or more of professional classes or hands-on seminars, is past/present national or international professional teacher, or has appeared on television as expert, or is an author, or is a cake show judge or webinar instructor.
  • Non-tiered  Any non-tiered cake with any theme decorated using buttercream icing, pastry pride, royal icing, fondant, rolled buttercream, or modeling chocolate. Any sugar material or technique may be used. Non-edible decorations are not allowed.
  • Tiered  Any tiered cake with any theme decorated using buttercream icing, pastry pride, royal icing, fondant, rolled buttercream, or modeling chocolate. Any sugar material or technique may be used. Non-edible decorations are not allowed.
  • Sculpted  Carved or shaped cakes, 2D or 3D sculptures Must be made from at least 75% cake. Any sugar materials or technique may be used. Entry must include Storyboard Description which consists of a brief written description of your process for creating the piece as well as a minimum of 5 in-progress pictures.
  • Foreign Technique  Cake entry with any foreign technique, including but not limited to: Lambeth, Korean Flowers, Australian, Oriental, Nirvana, South African Lace Points. 75% or more of entry must be of these techniques. Entry must include Storyboard Description which consists of a brief written description of your process for creating the piece as well as a minimum of 5 in-progress pictures.
  • Showpiece  Showpiece/sculpture/center piece/floral display can be made of modeling chocolate, pastilliage, blown sugar, pulled sugar, isomalt, granulated sugar, gumpaste, or gelatine. Entry must include Storyboard Description which consists of a brief written description of your process for creating the piece as well as a minimum of 5 in-progress pictures.
  • Novelty  Cake pops, cupcakes, cake balls, candy, cookies, gingerbread, petit fours or edible entry (artwork using only edible materials including but not limited to: seeds, nuts, candy, etc.) A combination of techniques and edible material can be used. 
  • Non-Cake  Cocoa butter painting on any medium, any royal icing pieces or color flow art, any gelatine molds, gelatine art, or gelatina. A combination of techniques and edible material can be used.

To enter the Spectacular Cake Competition

This competition will be judged as a Expert/Master Level Competition. Individual and Group Entries are Judged Separately. Limit 1 entry per contestant.

  • Spectacular Individual  Contestant is the sole creator of the sugar art piece incorporating the Show theme. Detailed Rules – See Spectacular Cake Competition Rules.
  • Spectacular Group  Contestant Group may consist of up to five (5) contestants maximum in creating the sugar art piece incorporating the Show theme. Detailed Rules – See Spectacular Cake Competition Rules.

The Official Competition Rules

Click to view/download a PDF of The Official Competition Rules for your Entry Type

What do you get with your Competition Entry?

Not only do you get to show off your amazing skills and best work, reaping the acclaim and amazement of the public, but you also get a Weekend Ticket to the 35th Annual San Diego Cake Show. You also get a goody bag with fun decorating items to experiment with and add to your collection! There will be live demonstrations of many sugar arts including various cake decorating styles, candy making, cookie decorating, flowers made from gum paste, sugar eggs, gingerbread art, marzipan, and rolled fondant. The Awards Ceremony will be more exciting than ever, with it’s presentation of the $1000 Cash Prize for the Best of Show Winner!

This annual event is the largest show of its kind in California. If you missed it last year, you missed out! The cake show this year will be bigger and better than ever!

Please review the Competition Types and Rules before you purchase your Competition Entry.

Happy Decorating and Good Luck!