This delicious vanilla layer cake recipe is easy to make and perfect for a birthday celebration. The recipe was adapted from Wilton cake decorating and recipes. The cake was used to make sonic the hedgehog theme birthday cake.
This cake was requested by my son for his birthday, and he wanted the cake to be a sonic cake. The cake is easy to bake, and I have been making the cake for a long time. It is one of the best cakes, which comes together quickly, and it can also be stacked and use for carving cake projects as well.
Ingredients needed for making the vanilla cake
Butter: unsalted butter was used for the recipe.
Sugar: white granulated sugar adds sweetness to the cake
Eggs: a combination of egg white and whole eggs was used for the cake.
Extract: vanilla extract for a unique taste and flavor
Flour: cake flour was used; self-rising flour is not recommended since it contains baking powder already.
Leavening agents: baking powder is used to provide lift for the cake.
Spices: salt and nutmeg were added to improve the taste and flavor of the cake
Liquid: buttermilk was used as the liquid for the cake.
Preparation before baking the Vanilla Layer cake
- Read through the recipe thoroughly to make sure you have all the ingredients and tools.
- Bring all the ingredients to room temperature before mixing for a better result
- Prepare cake pans with nonstick spray and parchment paper or homemade cake pan release
- Measure all ingredients for quick baking and prevent time wasting.
- Preheat the oven to the required temperature before you taste mixing ingredients.
How to Make Vanilla Layer Cake
begin by combining the flour, baking powder, salt, and nutmeg in a medium bowl. whisk well to combine and set aside.
The next step is to cream the butter and sugar until very light and fluffy and has changed color from cream to white, about 5 minutes.
Add the egg white and whole eggs one at a time and mix well after each addition when all is added. Scrape down and add the vanilla extract and mix again to combine.
While the mixer is running low, add a third of the flour mixture to the batter and mix. Next, add half of the buttermilk to batter and mix to combine. Continue alternating adding flour and buttermilk until finished.
Pour the cake batter into the prepared cake pans and smooth the top with an offset spatula. bake the cakes in the preheated oven for 30 – 35 minutes or until they have risen and firm or when a toothpick is inserted into the center and comes out clean and dry. Cool the cakes in the pans for about 10 minutes before moving onto a wire rack to cool completely.
Wrap the cooled cake tightly in a plastic wrap and put it in the freezer to firm up for easy handling.
Prepare the vanilla buttercream for filling and icing the cake. For the buttercream recipe check the step-by-step tutorial here.
Homemade vanilla layer cake Baking Tips
If you are new to baking, then I recommend you read my basic tips for baking, Basic Kitchen Tools For Every Baker, and Basic Ingredients For Baking as well. Below are some simple tips to produce or bake your best vanilla cake from scratch in your own kitchen.
- Measure the ingredients especially the flour correctly. The best method is to use kitchen scale which is easy and inexpensive to find in most local stores. But if you are more familiar with measuring cups, then scoop the flour into the cup and level without tapping or packing the flour into the measuring cup.
- Use room temperature ingredients. When mixing cake batter, it is important for all the ingredients to be at room temperature for easy mixing and to get a smooth batter without lumps.
- Prepare the cake pan well. This can be done by using baking spray and parchment paper. The other method I like is using my trusted homemade pan release which does not require parchment paper. The cake will slide out of the pan easily. Give the recipe a try and thank me later.
- Preheat the oven before baking. Preheating the oven to the required temperature stated in the recipe. When the oven is cold or too hot will affect the result of the cake. for a more accurate oven temperature, use oven thermometer.
- Allow the cakes to cool completely. Always allow baked cakes to cool completely before assembling or decorating. When stacking cakes, the best ways is to use very chilled cakes for easy handling and prevent breaking. Chilled or cool cakes help firm the frosting and prevent the cakes from sliding down.
Tools needed to assemble the cake
Bench or cake scraper
Cake board and cake circles
How to Assembly the cake
Make the buttercream to be used for the cake, bring the cake out of the freezer and if it is very firm, allow to thaw a little for easy cutting. Level the cake to achieve a flat top for perfect straight edge cakes. if you want more information on how to level cakes then check it out here. Fill the cakes with buttercream, crumb coat, chill and frost the whole cake. Then smooth the sides with a bench scraper.
Decorating the Sonic Hedgehog Cake
I used two shades of brown fondant and a green fondant were to create a pattern on the cake. I also attached a sonic printout on fondant and allowed it to dry. When the sonic cake topper is ready, attached the sonic top with a lollipop stick and hot glue. Place the topper on the cake and use it for your celebration.
crumb coat cake decorated cake
How to freezer the cake for later use
if you want to bake this cake at of time, then you can because the cake can be frozen for later use and still taste good and moist for up to 3 months. After baking the cakes, allow them to cool completely and double wrap them securely with aluminum foil and plastic wrap. Label with content and date before freezing. When ready to use, thaw slightly and assembly as desired but allow to come to room temperature before serving.
- You can make the cake into one layer cake (8-inch round cake) by using half of the original recipe.
- You can easily use all-purpose flour in place of the cake flour and that works for the recipe.
- The icing can be varied, one of my favorite is making vanilla layered cake with chocolate icing.
Other Cake Recipes
If you have any questions about this recipe, I will love to hear about them in the comment section below. Did you make this recipe? Let me know by leaving a review and rating below. Tag me @ #theduchezkitchen- on Instagram and Facebook? Find me @theduchezkitchen.
Thanks for reading. As always, know that God loves you, and stay blessed!
Happy baking and decorating!!
Vanilla Layer Cake Recipe
- 3 cups (360g) cake flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
- ¾ cup (170g) butter
- 1 ½ cups (300g) granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup (225g) buttermilk
- 4 large egg whites
- 1 large whole egg
- Adjust the oven racks, place the rack in the middle of the oven and preheat the oven to 350 F or 180 C. Prepare two 8 inches cake pan or three 6-inch cake pan with nonstick cooking spray or use my homemade magic pan release spread. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt, and nutmeg together and whisk well to combined and set aside.
- In a separate bowl or in a bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar until very light and fluffy and has changed color from cream to white, about 5 minutes. Add the egg white and whole eggs one at a time and mix well after each addition until all is added. Scrape down and add the vanilla extract and mix again to combined.
- While the mixer is running low, add a third of the flour mixture to the batter and mix. Next add half of the buttermilk to batter and mix to combine. Continue alternating adding flour and buttermilk until finished. Scrape down with a rubber spatula and stir the mixture twice to make sure everything is well incorporated.
- Pour the cake batter into the prepared cake pans and smooth the top with an offset spatula. Bake the cakes in the preheated oven for 30 – 35 minutes or until they are risen and firm or when toothpick inserted into the center and comes out clean and dry. Cool the cakes in the pans for about 10 minutes before moving onto wire rack to cool completely.
Assembly the cakes
- After the cakes have cooled completely, then tort and level the cakes for a flat top for easy decoration. Check this post on how to tort and level cakes easily. I used this buttercream recipe for icing the cake.To assemble the cake, place a nonslip mat on a turntable and then tape a 6 inches cake cardboard circle to an 8 inches cardboard circle (the8 inches cardboard helps to transport the cake to the fridge and back easily)and place the cake board on the turntable.Apply a small amount of buttercream to the center of the 6inches cake board. Place the first cake layer on the board and add enough buttercream onto the cake and smooth the buttercream as level as you can get(check the visual guideline above).Place another cake layer on top of the frosting and repeat the process until all the cakes are stacked. The last cake layer should be placed flat side up that is the bottom should face up. Press down on the stacked cakes lightly to help the cakes stick to the icing.
Decorating the cake
- Tint the remaining buttercream green, then crumb coat the cake with a thin layer of buttercream and smooth it with a cake scraper. Refrigerate the cake for about 30 minutes or 10 minutes in the freezer. Bring the cake out and add enough buttercream to the sides and top. Smooth with icing scraper. Roll out dark brown and light brown fondant. Cut out 1-inch squares to decorate the bottom of the cake. Roll out green fondant and cut 1 x ½ inch stripes to go on top of the brown fondant pattern (check the cake for a visual clue). Decorate with a sonic cake topper, serve, and enjoy.