Two Cakes for Twin Birthdays

An easy way to celebrate each twin on their birthday

two cakes for twins birthday
Two cakes for twins birthday. Jade Brookbank / Getty Images

Twins share a lot, including a birthday. (At least most twins!) For families with twins, celebrating birthdays can present some logistical issues. Both individuals deserve special recognition, but a double celebration can quickly escalate. Should their be two parties, two rounds or presents, two sets of party guests? Many parents wonder how they should handle the question of "how many birthday cakes for twins?" Should they have one cake to share, or one separate cake for each individual?


Why I'm in Favor of Two Cakes for Twin Birthdays

Whether you make cakes yourself or purchase them from a bakery, a birthday cake is a classic birthday tradition. The multitude of flavor and decorating options make them a perfect opportunity to offer each individual a personalized tribute. To further support the individual approach, consider lighting the candles and singing the traditional “Happy Birthday” song twice -- once for each twin. That way, each individual has their own celebratory moment to commemorate the milestone of a new year. It’s a small gesture, but reinforces the concept that twins are individuals that are each special and cherished.

In our family, for my twin daughters, we have tried a variety of approaches over the years. I've always felt that one way to acknowledge each twin in a unique but relatively inexpensive way is by having two birthday cakes, and I generally strive to ensure that we celebrate with two cakes.

But on other occasions, when the girls were old enough to express their preferences, one cake was sufficient. Perhaps they wanted a theme cake or an expensive bakery cake in a particular style. As long as they were in agreement, one cake was acceptable. (But, we always made it a point to sing the birthday song twice.)

If you're going to do a single cake for both twins, give some thought to how you'll handle the details. Will the cake be decorated with their names? If so, whose name will be listed first? Perhaps the decorator can use some creative styling so that the names are featured equally, perhaps on either side. What if your twins like different colors or flavors? Again, a creative baker can provide solutions. A marble cake satisfies both chocolate and vanilla lovers. Swirled frosting combines multiple colors and flavors. Some bakeries will even agree to decorate a larger sheet cake with a half-and-half theme for twins who are divided in their design preferences.

More Cake Considerations

Birthdays aren't the only milestone that twins celebrate together. For example, when my twin daughters graduated from a high school, cake was featured prominently at their graduation party, and we made sure that there were two cakes -- one for each. Although the cakes were alike in style and flavor, they were definitely personalized for each of them, so that they would know that we were celebrating them individually, although together. Their beautiful cakes, which were baked by a friend, featured an edible print of their senior portraits, leading to many funny comments about, "Which twin's face are you eating?"

Of course, as twins grow and develop, they may have their own preferences about how they celebrate. Some relish the idea of sharing a birthday -- and all the trappings. Sharing a single cake, and blowing out the candles together, may be their preferred way of acknowledging their twinship and shared birth. As parents, always be sensitive to their feelings and preferences.

As long as it's not a financial or logistical burden, two cakes make sense for twin birthdays. And the advantage for the families of twins is clear -- twice as much cake to enjoy! It's the perfect excuse to have more than one piece!

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