Vanilla cake with butterscotch filling and vanilla buttercream icing is our family favorite Birthday cake. Get the recipe here.
The fact that our boys choose this cake recipe every year has made me declare it the best vanilla cake recipe ever!
This moist vanilla cake recipe is finished off with a creamy butterscotch filling and vanilla buttercream icing. It’s a perfect birthday cake for men – or anyone, actually!
Vanilla Cake with Butterscotch Filling and Buttercream Icing Recipe
Ingredients you’ll need to have on hand:
For the vanilla cake recipe:
- 2 ½ cups flour
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 1/3 cups buttermilk or sour milk (To make your own sour milk, in a 2 cup measuring cup, add 1 Tablespoon vinegar or lemon juice. Add enough milk to equal 1 1/3 cups.)
- ½ cup shortening, margarine, or butter
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 4 egg whites
For the butterscotch filling:
- 1 cup brown sugar (packed)
- 3 tbsp. flour
- 1 cup milk
- 2 egg yolks, slightly beaten
- 2 tbsp. butter
- 1 tsp. vanilla
For the buttercream icing:
- 1/3 cup butter or margarine
- 4 ½ cups sifted powdered sugar
- ¼ cup milk
- 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla
- Additional Milk as needed
Step 1. Bake the Vanilla Cake and cool completely.
To bake the cake:
- In the bowl of your mixer, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and 1/8 teaspoon salt on low speed. Then add buttermilk, shortening, and vanilla. Beat with an electric mixer on low speed for 30 seconds, scraping the bowl. Beat on medium to high speed for 2 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally. Add egg whites and beat for 2 minutes more, scraping bowl occasionally.
- Pour into 2 greased and parchment-paper lined 9×1 ½ inch round baking pans.
- Bake in a 350 degree oven for 30 to 35 minutes or till a toothpick inserted near the centers comes out clean. **Tip: Place the pans staggered on 2 shelves in the oven. When it has baked for half the time, switch the location of the pans so they bake evenly.
- Cool on wire racks for 10 minutes. Loosen sides. Remove from pans. Cool thoroughly on wire racks. Serves 12.
Update: Click the video below for tips on how to get cake to come out of the pans beautifully every time! Also note that I used waxed paper in the demo. I’ve since discovered wax paper is no longer recommended for the oven. Parchment paper is the new recommendation!
Step 2: Prepare the Butterscotch Filling and spread in the middle of the 2 vanilla cakes
To make the butterscotch filling:
- Combine sugar and flour in saucepan. Gradually stir in milk.
- Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens and boils. Boil 1 min., stirring constantly.
- Remove from heat. Slowly stir at least half of hot mixture into egg yolks. Blend into remaining hot mixture in saucepan.
- Boil 1 min. more, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and blend in butter and vanilla.
- Cool completely. Spread filling over top of cooled cake to within 1” of edge.
Step 3: Prepare the vanilla buttercream icing and spread onto cake.
To make the icing:
- In a bowl beat butter or margarine till fluffy.
- Gradually add 2 cups of the powdered sugar, beating well. Slowly beat in the ¼ cup milk and vanilla.
- Slowly beat in remaining sugar. Beat in additional milk, if needed, to make spreading consistency. Frosts the tops and sides of two 8 or 9-inch cake layers.