Labour cake: delicious idea or slightly insane?

Sorry about the hiatus. Two weeks ago, I brought my beautiful little guy into the world. After a grueling delivery, five days at the NICU and a introduction to the world of total sleep deprivation, I’ve been slightly distracted.

I wanted to talk about this idea that was given me by … I’m not actually sure where, now that I think of it. Probably in one of those hippie-esque books on labour I read over the past few months. The concept is that a mother in labour is to bake a cake while in the early stages – apparently that’s what girls used to do, anyway. It served several purposes: It kept you out of the hospital longer, as you had to wait for the cake to cool and be iced before you could go in. It kept you distracted. Then, once you’ve had the baby, you have a pre-made goodie to serve all your guests like the good hostess that you are.

I found this idea charming, asides from the hostessing thing. Now I think it might be psychotic, but that notwithstanding, I did go ahead and make a cake while in labour. It provided less of a distraction than I imagined.

I went with a Cinnamon Heart Cake – a favourite in my family and all decked out to welcome our little guy home.

Cinnamon Heart Cake:

3/4 cup and 3 tbsp packed brown sugar

1/2 cup butter, room temperature

1 tsp and 1 tbsp cinnamon

1 package yellow cake mix

1 cup sour cream

3 eggs

1/4 cup water

1/3 cup canola oil


Preheat oven to 350 and coat pan(s) with Pam

Combine 3/4 cup brown sugar, butter, 1 tsp cinnamon and spread along the bottom of pan(s)


Oh my goodness decadent – nothing but yumminess here

Beat cake mix, sour cream, eggs, oil and water til blended. Beat until fluffy. Keep 1 cup of batter in separate bowl.


Pour rest of batter into pan(s). Stir remaining brown sugar and 1 tbsp cinnamon into reserve batter. Drop reserve batter into cake pans and gently swirl. Bake 25-30 minutes.

LabourCake5That gives you the basic cake, but here’s where you can go fancy. I used a store-bought icing to cover the cake, then I went out and bought some cinnamon hearts for decoration.

I went to Freak Lunchbox, a candy store on 17th Ave I’ve been meaning to try. I was horrified at the price of the cinnamon hearts I bought … until I realized I bought an extraordinary amount, like five times more than I needed. Better safe than sorry, I guess I was thinking.


This is me between contractions, decorating my cake

This is me between contractions, decorating my cake


And here’s the final result – pretty and delicious. One thing I hadn’t considered, though, is that I wouldn’t be interested in eating it when the time came. I am not normally a fan of sugar, but craved it like crazy during my pregnancy. I was SOOO excited to eat this cake. As soon as the pregnancy was over, though, I went right back to how I was before. Sugar is great and everything, but no longer holds the appeal it once did. I’ve learned my lesson – make my cake before the labour or anything else, and eat it right then and there!

Word of the day:

Convalesce: to recover health and strength after illness; make progress toward recovery of health


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