These raspberry vanilla mini cakes are layered with a creamy vanilla frosting and raspberry jam.
Can you believe it’s October?? How the heck did that even happen? October is my favorite month of the year. It’s officially Fall, Thanksgiving next weekend, then my birthday and Halloween at the end of the month. This month pretty much rocks.
October is also Breast Cancer Awareness month. My friend Rebecca over at Sugar & Soul has put together a “Cooking for a Cure” round-up, with some pretty pink recipes from some pretty fabulous bloggers. Not that I ever need an excuse to bake something, but it’s nice to have a worthy cause to inspire a new recipe. I chose to make some pretty pink raspberry mini cakes for this theme so that I could break in my new 4″ cake rounds.
My ongoing search for the perfect vanilla cake recipe continues. For these mini cakes, I adapted Rose Levy Beranbaum’s Downy Butter Yellow Cake recipe from The Cake Bible. I changed it up a bit, as the original recipe called for only egg yolks and I didn’t want to waste the whites. The original was also for two 9″ rounds, so I had to do some math and volume calculations to convert it for three 4″ rounds. That was super fun.
My plan was to make three 3-layer cakes, but the cakes didn’t bake up quite as high as I’d wanted, so I pieced them together to make two 3-layer cakes and they turned out quite well. Since they didn’t bake up very high, I could have just divided the batter into two pans instead of three and then cut the cakes into 3 layers each. So really you could just use two 4″ rounds to make these (as long as they’re 3″ tall) instead of three like I did.
The buttercream is a simple vanilla buttercream recipe that I added a bit of color gel to. I was intially going to make raspberry buttercream and mix some jam into it, but I thought the jam would make a nice, striking layer inside the cake instead.
The delicious raspberry jam comes from my sister-in-law, Nissa. She made a whole bunch this summer and sent us home with a few jars when we were visiting Calgary. The cake layer itself is actually quite salty, and I was a bit worried, but it goes perfectly with the sweet buttercream and jam. It’s definitely a cake that needs a super-sweet buttercream.
Oh, and I overbaked the cake, so… don’t do that. It baked up quicker than I thought, considering the pans were deeper than the ones I usually use. Start checking at 20mins. Thankfully the jam and frosting added additional moisture, and in the end it turned out perfect!
Raspberry Vanilla Mini Cakes
- 1 1/2 cups cake flour sifted
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 3 oz unsalted butter room temperature
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 large egg room temperature
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 cup unsalted butter room temperature
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 drop fuschia color gel
- 4 tsp raspberry jam
- Preheat oven to 350F and grease three 4″x 3″ cake rounds*, line with parchment.
- In a small bowl whisk flour, baking powder, and salt, set aside.
- Cream butter and sugar on med-high until pale and fluffy, approx. 3mins. Add egg and mix until combined. Add vanilla.
- Alternate adding flour mixture and milk, beginning and ending with flour (3 additions of flour and 2 of milk), fully incorporating after each addition.
- Divide batter evenly amongst pans and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean (approx 25-30mins).**
- Cool in pans for 10mins, invert and cool completely on wire rack.
- Cream butter medium high until pale and fluffy. Reduce speed and slowly add in sugar. Beat until smooth and add vanilla and color gel. Beat until combined.
- Using a serrated knife or a cake leveler, cut each cake in half horizontally.***
- At this point you can either have three 2-layer cakes or make two 3-layer cakes.
- Place a cake layer down and add 1/3 cup buttercream on top, spread evenly. Add 1 tsp jam on top of buttercream and spread evenly. Place another cake layer on top and repeat the process, finishing with buttercream on top and fresh berries.
** Batter will be quite thick.
*** Remove any domes first, or prevent them by using bake even strips. Adapted from Rose Levy Beranbaum’s The Cake Bible.
Hi, I can’t wait to try this but I plan on only making one 3 layer cake using this recipe but how do i change the recipe to fit my quantity?
Hi Kiara! I would cut the recipe in half and use one 4×3″ cake pan. You can change the Servings to 4 to get the amounts. Baking time will be a bit longer.
Thanks 🙂 I’ll try!
Your cakes are all so beautiful and yummy! Love your recipes!
This weekend, it’s my birthday and I want to make a cute small cake, with two 6″ pans. Which one of your recipes will work the best?
Hi Audrey! Most of my cakes are for either three 6″ or two 8″ pans. You can 2/3 the recipe for any of these to make them in two 6″ pans instead.
Any idea what could be substitute for egg allergy?
Hi Sarah! I have only made this recipe with eggs so I can’t be sure. I would google some egg substitutes for baking and try one of those. I can’t guarantee the results will be the same though.
Would vanilla bean paste be the same measurements?
Hi Madeline! Yes, same amount 🙂
Can I use buttermilk instead of regular milk?
Hi Sarah! Yes, that should be fine but it will affect the flavor slightly.
HI! can I double the recipe and bake in two 8″ round cake pans?
Hi Bernadette! That should work but it might make too much cake batter (unless your pans are 3″ tall). Just be sure to fill them 2/3rd or so max and make cupcakes with the rest. Or, I recommend using this recipe instead, it’s a reader favorite! https://livforcake.com/vanilla-cake/
I made adjustments for high altitude and it came out great! Thank you for the recipe!
Hi Cherie! So happy you like it 🙂
I just have 2 4 inch pans. Can i leave out the remaining batter when those two bake and then bake the third one once i have the pan free up?
Hi Akbar! How tall are your pans? If they are 3″ tall you should be fine to make the recipe as is. It’s best to bake the cake batter right away.
Chi Day says
I dont have milk and I’m wondering if there is anything I could substitute it.
Anyways, I changing the recipe by cutting it by 2 since if I did something wrong I wouldn’t dump as much ingredients. I also changed the recipe by instead of putting jam in the middle, I’ll put blackberries cuz I have them since they were on sale. Would that work??
Hi Chi! Do you have any milk substitutes? Almond milk? Soy milk? Etc. And yes, you can use blackberries instead of jam.
Hi, I’m looking to make my first commissioned cake for a friend in the coming weeks and she wants a 12” for this flavor. How much would you guess needs to be adjusted in order to get that size without any mishaps? I’ve never made a cake this large before but I’m interested in trying this recipe.
Hi Kat! Converting pan sizes is always tricky. Here’s a site I use as a guideline: http://www.joyofbaking.com/PanSizes.html I would suggest starting with this cake recipe instead.
Hi Marilyn! Glad you still loved it!
Zoe Murphy says
I’m planning on making one 3 layer 4” cake and the left over batter I’m going to make cupcakes? Would this work? Xx
Hi Zoe! Yes, that should work fine! The cupcakes won’t take as long to bake.
Moira Hearn says
“Berry” tasty and “berry” delicious!
So happy you loved it Moira! 🙂
I love the look of this recipe and I’m hoping to make it as a little birthday cake for my girlfriend seeing though it’ll just be the two of us in the morning.
I was just wondering- does the 8 servings the site defaults to make the two cakes exactly? So does each cake have 4 servings?
Hi Sam! Yes, I assumed each cake would serve 4, but those were pretty small servings. I think one cake each would be perfect for you two 🙂 Just to note, in case you haven’t read the post. I actually baked three 4″ cakes, but they weren’t as tall as I’d like so I cut them all in half and made two 3 layer cakes instead of three 2 layer cakes, if that makes sense.
Fearne ava says
Hi, do you know approx how much fondant I would need to cover this cake thanks xx
Hi Fearne Ava! I don’t use fondant these days so I’m not sure. Not a lot though especially if you were just making one.
Adrienne Andresen says
Can these be made in ramekins? My friend cannot eat chocolate.\
Hi Adrienne! You can try making them in ramekins — are they 4″ wide? Be sure to grease and flour them.
The recipe is good but not for two 4 X 3 inch pans. Overflowed in my oven.
Hi Farah! I used three 4×3″ pans as per the recipe.
Bee Smith says
The cake was amazing.. I added a little lemon zest to it .. it was a hit for my party
So glad you liked it! Love the addition of lemon.