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Red, White, and Blue Cake with Semi-Naked Icing
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5 from 4 votes

Red White and Blue Cake with Semi-Naked Icing

This three-layer Red White and Blue Cake is perfect for celebrating all things patriotic. Switch up the colors and this delicious vanilla cake recipe can be used for any special event or holiday.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Cooling and Icing1 hr
Total Time40 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Servings: 12 slices
Calories: 871kcal


Vanilla Cake

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting


Vanilla Cake

  • Preheat your oven to 350°F.
  • Grease and flour the sides of 3 8-inch cake pans. Place Silpat mats or parchment paper rounds into the bottoms.
  • Combine the flour, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl. Mix until well blended.
  • In the bowl of an electric mixer, add the sugar and butter. Beat until well blended and creamy. Add the eggs, one at a time, then the vanilla extract. Slowly add the heavy cream.
  • Gradually add the flour mixture, about 1/4 cup at a time, letting each cup fully blend into the batter before adding the next. Beat on medium until the batter is smooth.
  • Divide the batter into 3 equal parts. If you are using food coloring, now is the time to add it and mix each batter until the color is nicely blended.
  • Pour the batter into the prepared cake pans and bake for 28-32 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. 
  • Allow the cakes to cool in the pan, then carefully remove to a cooling rack. Make sure the cakes are completely cool before adding the frosting.

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

  • Add the powdered sugar, butter, milk, and vanilla to a medium mixing bowl. Beat on low speed at first, then medium speed until smooth.
  • To frost the cakes, place the first cake on a plate or cake stand. Add 1 cup of the vanilla frosting to the top and spread evenly to the edges of the cake.
  • Place the second cake on top of the first and add another cup of the frosting and spread that out to the edges of the cake.
  • Top with the final cake and add another cup of frosting to the top. Spread evenly out to the edges.
  • To make a semi-naked cake, apply the remainder of the frosting to the outside of the cakes. It doesn't have to be neat as most of this will be scraped off.
  • Use a bench scraper to remove the excess frosting from the sides of the cake, as you turn the plate or cake stand. Wipe off the excess and repeat until most of the frosting is removed to your liking.
  • Decorate with sprinkles and/or icing, if desired.


Tips and Techniques

  • Set the butter out about an hour before you begin so that it has time to come to room temperature.
  • Refrigerating the cakes before applying the frosting will help keep crumbs to a minimum.
  • For cleaner cuts and to help the cake keep it’s shape better, keep your cake in the refrigerator until you are ready to serve it.
  • Baked cakes with buttercream frosting can be stored at room temperature or in the refrigerator for 3 days.

How To Make Enough Buttercream To Frost The Sides Of The Cakes

If you would prefer to fully icing the sides of the cake, use these measurements for the vanilla buttercream (follow the same instructions as in the recipe):
8 Cups powdered sugar
1 Cup butter
1/4 Cup milk
1 Tablespoon + 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
** Nutritional information is given as an estimate only and will vary.


Serving: 1slice | Calories: 871kcal | Carbohydrates: 129g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 36g | Saturated Fat: 22g | Cholesterol: 183mg | Sodium: 296mg | Potassium: 311mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 96g | Vitamin A: 1270IU | Vitamin C: 0.2mg | Calcium: 135mg | Iron: 2.4mg