Happy Birthday to You, Happy Birthday to You, Happy Birthday Dear Okinawa Hai Reader … Happy Birthday to You! Yippee, let’s eat some cake! Oh, it’s not your birthday? Oh well, let’s eat some cake anyway. Yummy!

Speaking of cakes (was that segue too cheesy, maybe too cream cheesy?), where do you get a nice birthday cake on Okinawa?

Let’s see, you could make your own. Like the cake I made for my daughter’s cat-themed birthday party: View this photo  But if you’re like me, that kind of thing only happens once in a blue moon. Even I surprised myself with that one.

You could also go to your local commissary, which have produced some pretty decent cakes for me a few birthdays, like for my daughter’s pirate-themed party a year ago. See: View this photo

Here’s one not too many people know about though, and it’s a pretty awesome place–the Banyan Tree Club on Kadena. There are three reasons why I prefer the Banyan Tree Club over other options:

1) They can print any image you want. Yes, that’s right. Any image. The image has to be on a cake at least 12X16. It can be a photo, clip art, or whatever. They can scan the image in for you or you can send it to them via email.

2) They taste way better than any cake I’ve purchased here (or made for that matter). You can choose from butter cream topping or whipped. The butter cream is the more popular choice because not only is it yummy to my tummy, but according to the nice ladies there, it holds up to the heat better. The cake flavors they offer are chocolate, marble, white, and yellow.

3) The prices are better (meaning, more affordable so that you don’t have to mortgage your right leg just to have some cake) than the commissary.

Here are their prices:

8X16 cake (no digital images for this kind, just regular design)
single layer ~ feeds 16-18 ~ $25.00
double layer ~ feeds 32-36 ~ $30.00

12X16 cake
single layer ~ feeds 24-26 ~ $35.00
double layer ~ feeds 48-52 ~ $40.00

16X16 cake
single layer ~ feeds 34-36 ~ $45.00
double layer ~ feeds 68-72 ~ $50.00

24X16 cake
single layer ~ feeds 60-62 ~ $55.00
double layer ~ feeds 120-124 ~ $60.00

When you go in to order, they have a huge chart they will show you samples of cakes and their sizes (Because if you’re like me, you’ll think … hmmm, how big is 12×16??? Yes, I’m a visual learner, show me the actual size so I don’t have to figure it out in my head). Here is the picture of my son’s 12X16 Star Wars-themed cake from there: Img_1014

To order a cake, you’ll need to stop by the Banyan Tree Club and go straight to the manager’s office which is to the right when you first walk in the door. You’ll see the cashier’s cage first, go into the open door on the left side of the cage. This is the lounge area. The manager’s office is on the right side once you’re in the lounge.

Contact Bobbi Jo at 634-0644 or email her for more information. You can also send your image via email to them.  And of course, you don’t have to wait for a birthday to order a cake from here, any occasion will do! Happy eating!!


  1. I just ordered cake from the Banyan Tree Club on Kadena for my son’s birthday and was not happy with the results. The edible image turned out nice. What was just absolutely tasteless with horrible texture was the cake flavor. I ordered a 16 by 16 single layer half chocolate, half vanilla. She told me that it would be both flavors from left to right but they got that wrong…it was top to bottom. The colors they use are not bright but very dark too. The worst was the chocolate cake was not really chocolate…it was just white cake dyed dark brown made to only look like chocolate, wow! Then the cake flavors were overwhelmingly sweet and very wet! very odd! The only good thing is that it is very affordable, other than that I would reconsider.

  2. We bought my son’s cake last week at Jimmy’s. It was a welcome change from the commissary cakes. They will put Happy Birthday on it for you, and candles come with it, if it is for a birthday. Our cake cost Y2,200 which is probably about $5 more than what we spend at the commissary.

  3. Amanda I think the commisary(Kadena) has Carvel cakes in the frozen food isle between the frozen pies and the frozen fruits. Maybe try Baskin Robins in the food court as well they may have icecream cakes.

  4. I have been to many parties that the Biz-E cakelady- Jenn’s cake have been at. And they are Super Delicious! She not only makes them all herself at home with small children at home. But she is SELF TAUGHT!! Now that’s talent! I know she’s doing my kids bday cakes for as long as we live on Oki with her here! And I will surely miss those delicious cakes once we PCS.

  5. I am the Biz-E Cakelady and I need some help. My email was somehow deleted (maybe the kids??) and there is one lady thatI have no way to getin touch with. Her name is Sophia and she ordered a cake from me for May 2, 2009. It is a Hawaiian Barbie cake for her daughter. If anyone knows her, please have her call me…959-8161.
    Thanks for your help.

  6. I have ordered many cakes from Jennifer they have always been fabulous never dry. (especially her silver white cake) Some people may not appreciate the fact that she makes her edible artwork while running a household with small children. Kind of like a cake making super mom. I am glad she is feeling better!!!

  7. I’ve been to a party with a cake from Jenn-I have to agree, they look fabulous. However, the cake was extremely dry-and not very good. I’m hoping she just had an off day, since her cakes are really cute.

  8. I also ordered a cake from Jenn when she fell ill. She was kind enough to email me a few weeks prior and let me know she would not be able to make the cake. She told me as early as possible so I could make other arrangements. She is a one woman business and sickness does happen. I think she handled it the best she could given the circumstances.
    I still plan to use her for our next birthday party as her cakes truly do look fabulous.

  9. Unfortunately, I didn’t have such a great experience with Jenn Bizjak AKA “the Biz-E Cake Lady.” I made arrangements with her five weeks in advance to do a birthday cake for my little boy. She was suppose to drop the cake off between 12:30-1:30 for a party that was scheduled at 2 o’clock. At five minutes til 2 I was calling her to see where my cake was, only to get an answering machine. She never showed. My husband had to miss about 45 minutes of my son’s party while he went out to pick up a last minute cake. Thank goodness for the Commissary! They were able to put together something quickly.
    The following day Jenn e-mailed me and said she had bronchitis and didn’t think anyone would want her to do their cakes. She claimed that she had sent an e-mail informing everyone of the situation; I never received the e-mail. 🙁

  10. I just ordered a cake from Jennifer (the Biz-E Cake Lady) listed earlier this month on Okinawa Hai. The cake was fabulous – it looked great and tasted even better. Tristan wanted a cake with trains and dinosaurs – Jennifer was so creative and found a way to put the two ideas together. The cake was so much better than any cake I’ve had from the commissary – plus, her prices are very reasonable. Jennifer’s contact information – Thanks again Okinawa Hai for helping me find another hidden “jem” on the island!

  11. Iko, and anyone else interested…I can do wedding cakes to your specs. Western style, big, small, fancy, and so on. Let me know what you are looking for as far as size, flavor, design. I can also help with ideas if you are unsure of exactly what you want. I do buttercream and fondant, a mixture of both. Email me or call… 633-8161

  12. Jennifer, heading toward Kadena from Foster’s commissary gate on Hwy 58, get into the left hand side. Just after a couple buildings past the intersection of 58 and hwy 130 is the Castle bakery on the left. (If I remember correctly, they are open until 9pm. Super convenient for any pregnant lady!)

  13. Anyone know of anywhere on island (on base or not) that will do a nice western-style wedding cake to my specifications (i.e. not a Japanese style cake)? I`ve been told the commissary does but haven`t heard any reviews one way or the other.

  14. My youngest son’s absolutely most fave cake is from the Castle bakery on Hwy 58. Its a sponge cake layered with whipped cream and strawberries. Its not the typical birthday party kind of cake though. We had just arrived and had a small family party, so it was a perfect size. I’ve NEVER seen him eat so much cake in one sitting. They also provide free candles and will write a SHORT message on the cake.