My son Jaden just turned 15 years old on May 30th! He requested an all vanilla cake birthday cake, and I wanted to bake him one from scratch to make him feel extra special! This cake is not healthy by any means, so if you’re looking to try and substitute ingredients it’s not the cake recipe for you. All the fats and sugar keep this cake moist and fluffy.
Vanilla Cake Recipe
Ingredients: (makes 3 layers)
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened room temperature
½ cup vegetable shortening room temperature
3 cups granulated sugar
5 eggs room temperature
3 cups + 6 tablespoons cake flour (you can pick this up at an grocery store)
2 teaspoons baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup whole milk room temperature
½ cup buttermilk room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Directions and important notes:
***This cake does not rise much, but that does not affect its fluffiness. Follow the directions exactly, except for one very important step which will keep your cake fluffy inside. Cream your butter, shortening and sugar altogether until very white and fluffy (about 4 minutes). Don’t over beat the eggs after adding the them, they will produce a tougher cake. After that, follow the instructions exactly. Take extra care while rotating pans as to not deflate the cakes, and resist the urge to open your oven door to peek except when you need to rotate. This cake does form a bit of a crust on top from the high egg and sugar content, which makes it more difficult to tell when it is done. Your best hint is when you can smell the cake, then check it! If its not jiggly, take it out and scoop a little bit out of the middle to see if it’s done (you’re gonna cover it with frosting anyway). Don’t trust the toothpick-test with this cake.
Preheat oven to 350º F. Prepare three 9-inch round cake pans with nonstick baking spray or coated well with shortening or butter, then flour making sure to remove all excess flour.
Cream together butter and shortening until light and fluffy with an electric mixer. Slowly add sugar one cup at a time, making sure to fully incorporate each cup before adding another. Add eggs one at a time, making sure to fully incorporate each egg before adding another.
Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt. Pour milks and vanilla into measuring cup and whisk together witha fork. Add to butter and shortening mixture alternately with milk mixture, beginning and ending with
Gently stir all ingredients until well combined. Stop mixer and scrape down sides and bottom of bowl, making sure to have all ingredients mixed well.
Evenly distribute cake batter between cake pans and place pans into oven. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick or cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove and allow to cool slightly in cake pans for about 5 minutes, then cool completely on a wire rack. Frost cake as desired.
Vanilla Buttercream Frosting Recipe
Ingredients: (makes 9 cups, this is for a 3 layer cake, cut recipe in half for 2 layer cakes)
2 cups butter (4 sticks), softened room temperature
5 – 6 cups confectioner’s sugar, sifted
4 teaspoons vanilla
7-6 tablespoons milk, heavy cream, or half-and-half
Place softened butter into the bowl of a stand mixer that has been fitted with the paddle attachment. Turn the mixer on a medium setting and cream the butter until it is smooth and has lightened in color, about 3 minutes.
Add confectioner’s sugar, ½ a cup at a time. After each cup has been incorporated, turn the mixer onto the
highest speed setting and for about 10 seconds to lighten the frosting.
Add vanilla and a pinch of salt and combine until well-incorporated.
Add milk, heavy cream or half-and-half until the frosting has reached the preferred consistency.
For a firmer frosting, add more confectioner’s sugar, a ¼ cup at a time. For a softer frosting, add more milk or cream, a tablespoon at a time.