This layered vanilla cake with vanilla buttercream post is sponsored by Wilton, who provided the products featured in this post, but my opinions are true and an accurate reflection of my own experience.
When I was a young newlywed, a friend of mine gave me a cookbook filled with delicious homestyle recipes. That motivated me to learn how to cook for my new husband, so I quickly got busy trying out some of the recipes. One of the first recipes I made was a vanilla cake with buttercream. It was my husband’s birthday, and I wanted to surprise him with a homemade cake. While I was at the store picking up the ingredients, I grabbed a book on cake decorating made by Wilton, along with one of their small starter decorating kits.
I baked the cake and spent the afternoon practicing buttercream flowers and piped borders. Looking back, it wasn’t the prettiest, but it was pretty to me and I was so proud of what I had learned in an afternoon! I had never decorated a cake before, but now I was hooked!
I began making cakes for my friends, family, and just because. I mean, do you really need a reason to bake a cake?! After I had my children, I also took some beginner cake decorating classes from Wilton at my local craft store as my own “mom’s night out” a couple nights a week. It was something I did for myself that was fun, creative, and to top it all off, we had a delicious cake to eat at the end of each class!
Wilton is a brand I’ve used regularly throughout the years, so I was super excited when they reached out to partner on promoting their new Navy & Gold Kitchen Collection, a beautiful line of bakeware which is durable as well as practical. It’s also dishwasher safe, including the pretty gold tools, a win in any mom’s book!
When baking the cakes, I appreciated the non-stick baking pans, which helped the cakes bake evenly and also helped them release easily from the pan. I also love the pretty gold accented kitchen tools, as well as the silicone utensils and prep bowls. They were perfect for mixing up small batches of colored buttercream!
This cake was inspired by my early days taking cake decorating classes as a way to have some “me time.” It was my “mom’s night in” weekend baking project and I’m only wondering why I haven’t made this a weekly occurrence these past few months! Baking is such a great way to de-stress and just have some fun in the kitchen, don’t you agree? Plus, it gave us the perfect treat in which to celebrate my son’s first week of college! We are so excited for him and have a lot to be thankful for!
At first glance, this cake might appear difficult, but trust me when I say it’s fairly simple to put together. I made it into a three-layer cake, but you can just do two layers or half the recipe and make one. There are no borders to pipe and the flowers are very simple 4- and 5- petal flowers with dot centers (the 5-petal flower look fuller because I piped a second row of petals on top.) Much simpler than roses, and that’s one of the flowers I learned first in cake decorating class!
I had so much fun practicing these simple flowers, which is why I had a lot of flowers to decorate the cake with! But believe it or not, I only used 3 different piping tips— tip #104 for the flowers and one leaf style, tip #3 for the dots on the flowers and around the cake, and tip #352 for the rest of the leaves. You can really make it as simple or as decorative as you wish. The sky’s the limit!
It’s not hard to make a cake look pretty and interesting, even with simple techniques. It just takes a little practice and some patience to pipe the flowers. I also find that using some fun colored buttercream doesn’t hurt either! I used the Color Right Concentrated Food Coloring Set to make the colors on this cake, which I’ll share the details of below. I love how clean and simple these are to use since they come in droppers instead of jars. Just remember that a little goes a long way!
Here’s how to get the colors I used. Remember to start with a tiny drop and add more if needed. For really small batches, use a toothpick to get the color instead of the dropper:
Blue-Green for the outside of the cake–50% blue, 30% yellow, 10% red, 10% black
Green for leaves–40% blue, 30% yellow, 20% brown, 10% black
Darker Peachy-Pink Flowers–70% red, 20% yellow, 10% black
(for the light-colored flowers, I made a bigger batch of the dark pink and took a spoonful to mix with white buttercream to make a lighter color)
I give detailed instructions below on how to create this cake. But this is your cake, so think of it like a blank canvas! Don’t be afraid to be creative! Experiment with different colors, flowers, and arrangements. What’s important is that you make it your own and most of all, have fun with it! I can’t wait to see your creations!Print