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Friday, August 17, 2012

Ombre Cake

I’ve been waiting for a reason to make one of these for a while now. Some of you may remember that when wee Max turned six months old I held a little celebration. Well, time certainly flies as he was 18 months old last Friday, so I thought why not bake a special cake to celebrate! It is easier than it looks and tastes yummy. I used a basic yellow cake recipe and divided into thirds to colour. This was a mini cake so I halved the below mixture and used three mini cake tins. The ingredients listed below will give you enough mixture to create a three tier 20cm cake.


200 grams of butter, softened
2 cups of sugar
4 eggs
3 cups of self-rising flour, sifted
1 cup of milk, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract or paste
blue (or a colour of your choice) food colouring – I used gel


Preheat your oven to 180°C and grease your cake tins.
Using your electric or stand mixer beat butter until it is light and fluffy.
Cream together the sugar and the butter for about 5 minutes.
Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.
Add flour and milk, alternating between the two, beginning and ending with the flour ensuring that everything is combined.
This is the trickiest bit and can be done 2 ways. You can either divide your mixture between 3 bowls before adding colour, to ensure that each layer is perfectly even or if you are lazy and want to save on dishes like me you can “eye ball” it and remove a third of the mixture and put it in your first pan. Add food colouring gradually until you get a colour you are happy with (a light blue, or pink or purple) and remove another third and place in pan. Add some more colouring to your final third, ensuring it is darker than your second layer and place in greased pan.
Bake for about 30 minutes or until cooked, you will know the cake is ready when you can remove a skewer cleanly from the centre.
Cool on wire racks and once cool you can level and frost with butter cream.

In terms of frosting you can take creative license, I tried my hand at a ‘petal frosting’ technique and used the same colours on the outside of the cake, I followed this tutorial, it isn’t perfect but I was pretty happy with it for a first go . These cakes look just as cool covered a solid colour on the outside like a plain white vanilla buttercream, which makes the surprise on the inside even greater!


200 grams butter, softened
4-5 cups icing sugar, sifted
1 teaspoon vanilla paste/extract
3-4 teaspoons warm water

Cream butter until light and fluffy. Add once cup of icing sugar and vanilla, mix until combined. Continue to add icing sugar alternating with tablespoons of warm water until you have a consistency you are happy with – add more water for a looser mix, less for a thicker mix.
*** The water can be substituted for milk but it is best to use room temperature milk as addling cold milk can split your mixture.


  1. I am making one of these for my husbands birthday this weekend.I am still trying to decide whether to do orange or blue.

    1. What did you decide Lynseyn? Would love to see pics if you have any, feel free to email them or share them on our facebook page :-)

  2. Your blog is AMAZEBALLS! I dribble every time I read a post lol.
    I'd like to pass on a blog award to you, you can grab it over on my blog www.mummyandthemonsters.blogspot.co.uk

    Kerri x

  3. Oh my gosh I love this!! Love that it is a little mini cake too. So cute!

    1. Thanks Sam, it it my first mini cake and oh so cute!

  4. Damn, I'm definitely going to try this for my bf's birthday!

    1. If you do try it Georgia Rose let us know how it goes, we'd love to hear. Also if you take pics feel free to email (bmtbblog@gmail.com) them or share them on our facebook page :-)

  5. Hi
    I want to I've this a try, what size are your mini cake pans?

  6. Hi Rita, my mini cake tins are 10cm although the as stated in the recipe the quantities listed are for a full sized 20-22cm cake so if you do decide to go mini you halve them :-)

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  8. This is just beautiful! I'm planning on baking it for my sister's Bday (she is turning 30...) and i think i'll keep the color team you did here - it's perfect.

  9. Hi there, I am going to make this for my daughters 3rd Birthday... but it has to be gluten free. Can I substitute regular flour with gluten free stuff and have it turn out? Help! Thanks <3

    1. Hi Helen, I only just saw this comment - sorry for the delay in reply. I have only dabbled in a very small amount of GF baking sorry so couldn't give you a guarantee that it would turn out well. If you are an experienced GF baker and are used to substituting things I'd guess it would be fine. If you have the time I'd give it a go.

  10. I made this for my birthday this year! It was a total crowd pleaser! I kept the frosting mono tone so that the funky colours on the insider were a complete surprise - I even got an applaud!

    Thank you for the recipe, brilliant! Fun! AND EVIL!!! (Cause it tasted so good and I couldn't stop and just 1 slice!)

    1. Awesome! Sounds great :-) If you have photos feel free to email them to bmtbblog@gmail.com or pop them on our facebook page to enter our fan bakes comp!