IE 11 is not supported. For an optimal experience visit our site on another browser.

Woman asked to bring birthday cake for relative she doesn’t like: ‘Help me be petty via cake’

“I’d like to bring a cake that very clearly conveys a ‘I did not put any effort into this cake because you’re not important to me’ vibe,” she wrote. And people came through with suggestions.
Petty cake
Who knew baked goods were so good at conveying pettiness?TODAY Illustration / Getty Images

On Reddit, they call what this woman did for a relative’s birthday “malicious compliance.”

On Aug. 25, Reddit user deloslabinc posted a request in the subreddit r/baking that has garnered hundreds of suggestions. In the post, the user first posted an image of a cake she made: beautifully decorated, frosted in shades of pink and white with little yellow flowers and golden candles. It’s the perfect birthday cake — exactly what she doesn’t want to make for a certain someone.

“Pictured here are the caliber of homemade baked goods I usually bring to parties,” wrote deloslabinc.

“I’ve been asked to ‘bring the cake’ (like it’s no big deal) for a birthday party that’s less than 24 hours away for a person I cannot stand. It’s a family member, with a long history of awful behavior,” she wrote. “Basically I’m trying to convey that my distaste for this person is justified to you all (that’s important to the story).”

The Reddit user said that the party would consist of 12 guests, all family “that let themselves be pushed around and walked on by this douche,” she wrote, not mincing words. “I am going because I’m married into the family, and I actually wasn’t going to go at all but 1 hour ago I got a text asking if I would ‘bring the birthday cake.’”

The Reddit user then turned to the netizens of Reddit with her request: “Help me be petty via cake.”

“I’d like to bring a cake that very clearly conveys a ‘I did not put any effort into this cake because you’re not important to me’ vibe. This person will not be greatful, regardless of what cake is brought. They also might leave the event before cake is even served because they’re that much of a douche,” she wrote. “So I come to you all and ask — without actually writing ‘f--- you’ on the cake, what’s the best thing I can bring that correctly conveys this vibe?”

She ends the post by stressing that not making a homemade cake is out of character for her, as she always brings ”high quality, high effort, entirely scratch made treats.” She rattled off a few ideas, including bringing a totally blank grocery store sheet cake or a unfrosted raspberry cake, but hadn’t truly settled on one.

“No greater way to say f--- you than a cake made entirely of fondant,” commented one Reddit user.

“‘Oohhhh, I thought you said ‘bring the salad’!’” suggested another Redditor. “The worst cake at any party is no cake at all!”

“If you insist on going and really want to stick it to your FIL, decorate a cake with guns and write ‘happy’ birthday with only the word ‘happy’ in quotes so it’s definitely sarcastic,” commented someone else.

“Have them write something like Congratulations on your Bat Mitzvah, or Good Luck on Retirement... If you know that he hates a certain flavor, get it,” suggestede yet another user.

After many more suggestions for an obviously low-effort cake, one user finally pulled through with the answer.

“A basic, ready-made grocery store cake,” they suggested. “Nothing else says ‘f--- you’ in quite as tidy a way as having the whole party, including the a--hole, expecting someone will be going to a lot of effort to bake a cake for them, only to find that the baker grabbed something off the shelf. Don’t even have it personalized. Just, here’s your generic a-- cake, jerk.”

“Excellent suggestion,” replied another Reddit user in agreement. “They did ask OP to ‘Bring’ the cake not ‘Make’ the cake.”

When another user suggested she leave the price tag on an “ugly” store-bought cake, the OP replied, “That’s a good idea. I bet they have some real ugly boys at the super Walmart near me.”

On Aug. 26, deloslabinc shared the birthday cake update everyone was waiting for.

“I took what I think we’re all the best aspects of your advice,” she wrote, sharing a stunningly low-effort cake picked up from Walmart. “Grocery store cake ✅ Clearance sticker ✅ S------- written name ✅ Period instead of exclamation point ✅ Will still taste decent to other party goers ✅ Not bitchy enough to get anyone in trouble ✅ My own personal touch, these rainbow candles (because he’s also homophobic) ✅ Black gel letters (aka ) the most unfestive ✅.”

A little over an hour ahead of the 4 p.m. party, the OP shared an image of the cake: a cake scored for about a third off of full price, probably because it’s a few days old, according to the sticker. Emblazoned on the mostly stark, white and blue cake are the words, “Happy Birthday Steve.”

The OP says there will be children at the fete looking forward to one of her homemade cakes, confident that if the adults don’t notice, the children surely will.

“My trunk is wide open with space so there will be lots of room for it to jostle around on the way to the party,” deloslabinc wrote, adding that she would update everyone with the reactions after the party.

“I walked in with the cake slightly sideways. My 7 year old niece asks ‘did you make that?’ I said ‘no, it’s from Walmart, see the sticker?’ She looked at me with disgust and said ‘oh’ 😂 ,” deloslabinc wrote in her update.

After walking into the party, the OP set the cake down, sampled the frosting, then replaced the top.

“A little bit before it was time to cut the cake I put in the candles. Nothing was said about the rainbow candles to my utter disappointment,” she added. “Cake was served, one relative asked ‘did you make this?’ So I said to everyone at the party ‘No, it’s from Walmart, didnt you see the box?’”

The bitter partygoer then goes through recalling the highlights — or, rather, the lowlights — of the party: talking up a previous three-layer chocolate peanut butter, Butterfinger and homemade fudge cake she made, a tense gift-giving section where she tells the birthday boy his cake was their gift, and a jilted hug. An awkward time was had by all, this much is certain.

Although the OP thinks their spite cake may have gone over the heads of the other partygoers, one commenter disagrees, saying they “guarantee the second you left it was talked about.”

“The moral of this story is — even though the level of pettiness wasn’t fully felt by the party-goers, I knew. And you guys knew, and it helped me feel a little better knowing that you all collectively said a big ‘f--- you’ along with me,” wrote deloslabinc, thanking the Redditors who came along for the ride. “I think it will be even more evident at the next birthday when I do bring a really big, beautiful, obviously homemade cake just how little effort was put into this one.” has reached out to deloslabinc for comment.