5 Layer Cakes That Are Sure to Impress

Before Duncan Hines and Betty Crocker, making a layer cake was a labor of love. Baking the separate pans, frosting each layer, and building the entire structure took a day or two and was reserved for special occasions.

Fillings are an important part of a great layer cake. They can add 생일케이크 texture, flavor and color to your dessert.

Pineapple Layer Cake

Pineapple layer cake is a classic dessert with a tropical twist. It’s one of those rare cakes that isn’t afraid to use a boxed mix for the layers but it’s doctored up with pineapple juice and canned pineapple chunks to give it more of a homemade flavor. This recipe is sure to impress your guests!

Start by prepping the pans and heating the oven. While the cake is baking, make the filling. In a saucepan combine crushed pineapple, sugar and cornstarch. Heat over medium heat, stirring frequently until the mixture boils and thickens. Add the drained pineapple and stir until well combined. Cool before using.

For the cake, cream the sugar and butter until light and fluffy. In another bowl, sift together flour, baking powder and salt. Alternately, add the flour mixture and milk to the creamed mixture, beginning and ending with the milk. Beat in vanilla. Gently fold in beaten egg whites. Divide the batter between three prepared cake pans and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Allow the cake to cool in the pans for 20 minutes before turning out onto wire racks to cool completely.

Whipped cream frosting can be made ahead of time and kept in the fridge until ready to use. Be sure to stir the frosting just before you need it so that it doesn’t deflate too much. This pineapple cake can be topped with more dried pineapple slices or even coconut, for a little extra tropical flair!

Coconut Layer Cake

As a child, Karen Clay lived around the corner from her grandmother, Margaret Newborn, a born-and-raised Southerner with a knack for making an impressive dessert. She remembers Margaret’s coconut layer cake, tall and proud with four fluffy layers and airy buttercream. Clay tried to recreate her grandma’s delicious treat, but her results were less than desirable—cake was dense, frosting was too sweet, and store-bought shredded coconut didn’t offer enough flavor.

In this recipe, we took the cake to a new level by adding a pinch of cardamom and blending in some canned cream of coconut. The result was a moist, tender, coarse-crumbed cake with a subtly flavored, softly spiced buttercream and a topping of fragrant toasted coconut. The cardamom added just the right amount of warming spice, and the cream of coconut offered a slightly different texture with a more open crumb.

We also used a high ratio of fat and sugar to create a light, fluffy buttercream that was stiff enough to hold the layers together without dripping down the sides of the cake. To prevent cake crumbs from getting into the final frosting layer, we used a thin “crumb coat” on all the layers before applying the rest of the frosting. When the cake was fully frosted, we sprinkled the top and sides with the toasted coconut.

Italian Layer Cake

For a cake that takes your dessert game to the next level, try this moist Italian cream layer cake with pecans and coconut. This recipe uses three cake pans (each about 9 inches) to create taller layers of this buttermilk dessert.

To prepare this Italian cake recipe, heat oven to 325 degrees F. Lightly grease and flour three 8-inch round cake pans. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour and baking soda. In another bowl, beat sugar and butter until creamy. Add egg yolks one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in vanilla. Alternately, add the buttermilk and the flour mixture to the sugar/butter mixture. Beat until smooth and fluffy.

If your recipe calls for the separate preparation of batters, be sure to use fresh ingredients for each. Also, be sure that your leavening agents are fresh; if they’re old, your cake won’t rise.

If you’re preparing this recipe ahead, be sure to wrap the unfrosted cakes tightly in plastic wrap (twice) and then aluminum foil. The cake layers will keep in the freezer for up to a month. Be sure to defrost the cakes completely before frosting and assembling. To avoid a messy frost, a crumb coat is recommended, which is a thin coating of frosting that seals in any crumbs and helps the cake to keep its shape.

Chocolate-Coffee Layer Cake

Coffee is often a baker’s secret ingredient for deepening chocolatey flavors in cakes and baked goods. But this cake takes it a step further with a flavorful, creamy coffee buttercream that’s irresistible. The layers of soft, coffee-flavored cake are stacked and frosted with the buttercream for a decadent homemade cake that’s easy to put together.

In a large bowl, whisk together the sugars, cocoa powder, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and kosher salt. Add the eggs, buttermilk, vanilla extract, and oil and stir until well combined. In another small bowl, combine the hot coffee with the instant espresso powder. Add the mixture to the batter and mix until no streaks remain.

Beat the butter at medium speed in the electric mixer until pale and fluffy. With the mixer running, gradually add the confectioner’s sugar, and then the buttermilk and vanilla extract. When all the ingredients are well incorporated, turn the mixer to high and beat for 2 minutes until light and fluffy.

Evenly distribute the chocolate batter into the prepared cake pans. Bake for 33-36 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with a few moist crumbs clinging to it. Let the cakes cool in their pans for 10 minutes, then invert them onto a rack to cool completely. If desired, wrap the cooled cake layers in plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to use. The buttercream can also be made ahead of time and kept in the refrigerator, covered. Be sure to re-whip it before using so that it is light and fluffy.