This is my collection of recipes that I have worked with.

Cake Recipes –  Icing Recipes –  Filling Recipes

Cake Recipes


Golden Yellow Cake

Recipe Source: Wilton

Verdict: Love this recipe. It is moist and very tasty. This is my go-to yellow cake.

**NOTE ON PAN SIZES AND BAKING TIME: I have never made this cake with 9″ pans (I don’t have them!). I have used:

  • 2 8″ round pans — 35 minutes
  • 2 6″ round pans (using about 3/4 recipe) — 35 minutes
  • 2 10″ round pans (using 1 1/2 recipes) — 40 minutes
  • 24 cupcakes — 20 minutes


Best Birthday Cake (Yellow)

Recipe Source: Smitten Kitchen

Verdict: This cake was dense and sturdy and it baked up tall. It was less moist than Wilton’s yellow cake, and it had a slight tangy taste to it (probably from the buttermilk). It was good, but I didn’t LOVE it.


Classic White Cake

Recipe Source: Wilton

Verdict: I have tried this recipe once to date and it was a little dry. But that may be because I over-whipped the egg whites. It deserves another try.


Perfect Party Cake (White)

Recipe Source: Dorie Greenspan’s Baking: From My Home to Yours


Verdict: This recipe is much more moist than Wilton’s white cake. The cake layers baked up very short for me (an inch tall) so I needed 3 layers for a 4″ cake.


Hershey’s “Perfectly Chocolate” Chocolate Cake

Recipe Source: Hershey’s

Verdict: This is a great chocolate cake! Very chocolate-y and moist.


Chocolate Cake

Recipe Source: Good Housekeeping, via Annie’s Eats

Verdict: I loved how this cake looked. The tops of the cupcakes were slightly cracked and it was nice enough to have served unfrosted. The cake did seem drier than the Hershey’s chocolate cake.


Magnolia Bakery’s Red Velvet Cake

Recipe Source: The Nest

Verdict: This is delicious and moist!

**NOTE: This recipe halved makes the perfect amount of batter for two 6″ round pans.


Carrot Cake

Recipe Source: Smitten Kitchen

Verdict: This cake has gotten rave reviews!! It smells almost as good as it tastes 🙂

**NOTE: If you leave out the carrots, you will have a plain spice cake.


Banana Cake

Recipe Source: Annie’s Eats (adapted from Half Baked via Blake Makes)

Verdict: I loved this cake. It was very dense and moist and very easy to carve.

**NOTE: The above recipe and links are for 24 cupcakes, though I used 1.5 batches for two 10″ rounds and had a scant cup of batter leftover.

**NOTE: I used 5 medium bananas and got exactly 2 cups of mashed banana. So for the 1 1/3 cup called for in the single recipe, you’d need 3-4 medium bananas.

Icing Recipes


American Buttercream (butter & shortening)

Recipe Source: Wilton

Verdict: Good basic crusting buttercream. Pipes and spreads well. It’s very sweet which is typical of American buttercream.

**NOTE: I sometimes cut the powdered sugar in this recipe by about 1/2 cup to cut the sweetness. Be aware that this will affect the consistency and while it can still be spread and piped, it will not crust as well, if at all.


American Buttercream (butter only)

Recipe Source: Domino

Verdict: Slightly better tasting than Wilton’s buttercream since this one is all butter, no shortening. But it melts easier and is slightly more difficult to pipe – again because there is no shortening.


American Buttercream (Easy Buttercream)

Recipe Source: originally Cooks Illustrated, via The Way the Cookie Crumbles, via Annie’s Eats

Verdict: Better tasting than a butter/shortening buttercream. I’m not sure if this is more or less sweet than the above two buttercreams, but it was light and fluffy and easy to work with. This is a crusting buttercream.


Flour Icing

Recipe Source: Tasty Kitchen

Verdict: This icing is still sweet, but it has a lighter more whipped-creamy texture than regular buttercream. It needs to be whipped to death, but it is a good icing. It does crust.


Swiss Meringue Buttercream

Recipe Source: Martha Stewart

Verdict: This icing is VERY buttery. It’s a matter of preference, but I prefer the adapted version below that makes it slightly more sweet and less buttery.


Swiss Meringue Buttercream (adapted)

Recipe Source: Martha Stewart’s recipe, adapted by Annie’s Eats

Verdict: I like this ratio of butter to sugar better than the original. The link to Annie’s Eats shows a tequila lime icing, but you can leave out the tequila and lime juice and substitute any flavoring for a basic icing.


Cream Cheese Icing

Recipe Source: SlashFood

Verdict: I love this recipe! The icing is delicious and easy to work with.

**NOTE: I have added crushed Oreos to this recipe for a cookies n’ cream filling. You can also add 1/2 cup of cocoa powder to make a chocolate cream cheese icing which is amazing!


Peanut Butter Buttercream I

Recipe Source: Wilton

Verdict: This icing is very rich and thick. I have only piped it on cupcakes or used it as a filling so I’m not sure how it would spread.


Peanut Butter Buttercream II

Recipe Source: AllRecipes, with adaptations to quantities shown below

  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 3 tbsp heavy cream

Verdict: This made a very fluffy icing that was tasty and easy to work with. I doubled the recipe to make sure I would have an ample amount for 12 cupcakes, but that was completely unnecessary. I had tons leftover!


Peanut Butter Icing

Recipe Source: originally Good Housekeeping, via Proceed with Caution, via Annie’s Eats

Verdict: This icing was smooth and had a lovely sheen to it. It piped on cupcakes very well. It was a little thin for border piping.


Chocolate Buttercream

Recipe Source: my Mom!

Verdict: This is the icing we always had on cakes my mom made and it is delicious! It spreads and pipes well and it does crust.

Recipe (makes 2 cups)

  • 2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • 5 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup margarine/butter, softened
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2-3 tbsp milk

(1) Combine powdered sugar, cocoa powder, and margarine/butter. Beat at low speed until well blended.

(2) Add milk and vanilla extract. Beat at high speed until smooth and creamy.


Dark Chocolate Ganache

Recipe Source: Janice McManus (a family friend who made our wedding cakes!)

Verdict: This recipe is amazing!! It pipes well and spreads well.


  • 4 sections unsweetened baking chocolate
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/4 cup half & half
  • Pinch salt
  • 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

(1) In heavy sauce pan on low heat, melt chocolate (broken in small pieces) with butter half & half and salt. Stir constantly until thick and smooth.  Remove from heat.

(2) Mix in sugar & vanilla. Beat until thick enough to spread.

Filling Recipes


Raspberry Filling

Recipe Source: Group Recipes

Verdict: This filling was good. I liked that it did not bleed into the white cake. It was less sweet than regular jam. And it did have seeds.


Chocolate Mousse

Recipe Souce: Food For A Hungry Soul

Verdict: This mousse was delicious and relatively easy to make.

26 Responses to Recipes

  1. […] they were good, but VERY buttery – probably too much so. For the chocolate cupcakes, the chocolate ganache icing, and the chocolate buttercream I used recipes that I have used […]

  2. […] I made a 2 layer 8″ round cake with my go-to yellow cake recipe. The cake turned out a little dry this time so I’m thinking that I overcooked it slightly. It’s either that or the fact that I used whole milk instead of skim had some kind of effect. For the frosting, I made a chocolate buttercream. […]

  3. […] chocolate cake was a new recipe for me and when it came out of the oven, I thought the cupcakes were beautiful and I LOVED the way […]

  4. […] the filling, I made a single batch of chocolate buttercream. For the icing I made a double batch of vanilla buttercream. I had plenty leftover but I prefer to […]

  5. […] don’t really go together. I ended up making an 8″ round carrot cake using my usual carrot cake recipe. I also made a 6″ round red velvet cake using a red velvet recipe that I had used once before […]

  6. […] made 2 recipes of a basic yellow cake (one for each pan), plus a single recipe of chocolate ganache for the filling, and a triple recipe […]

  7. […] The whole thing would be covered in vanilla buttercream. I made two 11×15 cakes – one chocolate and one yellow – and then cut each one in half and filled it. I then pushed the two half […]

  8. […] would be covered in vanilla buttercream. I made two 11×15 cakes – one chocolate and one yellow – and then cut each one in half and filled it. I then pushed the two half cakes together to […]

  9. […] used a red velvet cake recipe that I’ve used a few times before. I made 4 batches – all 9×13′s. I replaced […]

  10. […] asked for cream cheese icing, so I made up 4 batches and tinted it using Wilton’s Lemon Yellow color. I also made up […]

  11. […] frosting – simple as can be!! I decided to try out a new yellow cake recipe and went with this one from Smitten Kitchen. Deb’s carrot cake is fabulous, so I figured I could trust another cake […]

  12. […] I made them last summer and they’re fresh and summery and they look pretty too. I used my basic yellow cake recipe and added some lime juice and zest. Then I was going to make a lime and tequila flavored […]

  13. […] I used box cake mix – one vanilla and one chocolate. Heidi said she liked chocolate so I made a chocolate mousse filling. I covered the cake with vanilla buttercream. I printed out a picture of The Cheat and traced it […]

  14. […] used this vanilla buttercream recipe that has now become my favorite, and I mixed up several different colors […]

  15. […] made a batch of chocolate cupcakes using Hershey’s recipe and it came out to a perfect 24. I made up 2 batches of buttercream icing and I replaced the […]

  16. […] decided to use the yellow cake recipe I found over at Smitten Kitchen. I’ve used this recipe once before and I know it makes a nice […]

  17. […] I made the frosting (dark chocolate ganache) and though I’ve made it several times before, I had issues with this too! It was too thick […]

  18. […] cupcakes (though for a little bit longer). And when they were all done and I iced them with a chocolate buttercream, they tasted pretty much like regular cupcakes. They were slightly drier and crumbier but if […]

  19. Holli (Lawson) Tucci says:

    Hey Sarah! I just wanted to let you know that I love your blog. :o) I have been trying my hand at making pretty cupcakes and I always refer to your blog for whatever I need…recipes, tips, techniques, etc. :o) So thanks for sharing!!

  20. […] nothing fancy, but there was food, there were presents, and there was cake (obviously). I made a chocolate cake and while I normally do 2 layers, I thought that would be overkill for the number of people we were […]

  21. […] used this recipe for the cake and cupcakes. The frosting is all from the same recipe, I just switched out some of […]

  22. […] made 1 dozen chocolate cupcakes (1/2 of this recipe) and 1 dozen yellow cupcakes (1/2 of this recipe). I made 1 1/2 batches of vanilla buttercream […]

  23. […] the icing, I used my favorite vanilla buttercream (1 1/2 batches, but I think just 1 would have been enough). I assembled the cake and crumb-coated […]

  24. […] cake and I found the recipe on one of my favorite blogs, Annie’s Eats. I used my normal vanilla buttercream for the icing, filling, and […]

  25. […] used plain white frosting (my go-to vanilla buttercream that never fails!!) and piped a swirl using my new super jumbo star tip (Ateco size 9). Seriously, […]

  26. […] but those were easy too. I used a box mix for Funfetti and made 3 dozen cupcakes. I used my go-to vanilla buttercream icing and colored it red, blue, green, and yellow to match the cupcake liners and picks that came […]

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