There’s nothing scary about this Colourful Halloween Layer Cake, it’s just extremely bright, but still yummy! It’s really easy to make too, and a super fun project to do with kids this Halloween!
This Colourful Halloween Layer Cake has been on the cards to bake for a while! Over the last few years I’ve seen examples of Halloween Layer cakes, like this one, this one, and this one, but for some reason I put off giving it a try. I think I always forget just how ridiculously easy my rainbow cake is (which this cake basically is, just halved!).
The recipe is simplicity itself, it’s actually my Rainbow Cake recipe, cut in half! This gives a more normal sized cake with three vivid layers, rather than six as in my Rainbow Cake. I chose a vibrant orange, a neon green, and a ghastly purple for my colours, and I used very bright gel food colouring. The colours I used were Americolor’s Electric Orange, Americolor’s Electric Purple, and Asda Home 2 Bake’s Green. Since Asda have now stopped selling their gel colours, I’d try this one or this one.
The other awesome thing about this cake is that it really does taste delicious! The sponge is soft and tender, and the cream cheese frosting is to die for! I divided my cream cheese frosting into three and added a little gel colour to each bowl, so that it would give an ombre (ish!) effect, similar to the colours of the inside of the cake.
It would also be really effective to cover the outside of the cake in either white or black frosting and either leave plain or decorate with ghoulish Halloween sweets and candy – no one will know what’s inside! I think kids will LOVE the funny colour it makes your mouth as you’re eating it too!
Please note, you’ll need to make the cream cheese frosting by using my new, foolproof method – it will give you perfect results every time – I promise!
Note: This recipe makes one 6 inch three-layer cake. You do need to use 6 inch tins (I like the disposable 6 inch ‘flan tins’ from Wilkinson’s) to get the same tallness of layers as is sh own here. You could also use up to an 8 inch tin, the layers would just be thinner.
- 175g unsalted butter
- 175g golden caster sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 1 tbsp vanilla bean paste
- 175g self-raising flour
- pinch salt
- 75g unsalted butter
- 200g cream cheese
- 300-400g icing sugar
- Preheat your oven to 160C/gas mark 3/350F and prepare three disposable 6 inch tins by brushing them with melted butter.
- In either a stand mixer or a large bowl, thoroughly beat together your very soft butter and caster sugar. Add the three eggs and the vanilla bean paste, and continue to beat until they're completely incorporated.
- Next, stir in the self-raising flour gently, just until it's all combined. Using two smaller bowls, decant a third of the batter into each bowl. Add gel colouring in your chosen Halloween-y colours, a bit at a time, until it's just as bright as you want it. For a really neon cake, you're probably going to want to add about 1 tsp of gel to each bowl.
- Fill your flan tins, and then use an offset palette knife or the back of a spoon to level out the surface - you want the cakes to bake up really flat.
- Bake in the middle of the oven for 10-15 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean, and allow to completely cool before removing from the tin.
- Use my tutorial for foolproof cream cheese frosting (see link above). To give an ombre effect mirroring the inside of your cake, divide the mixture into three bowls, and add a couple of drops of gel colouring to each. Keep going until you reach the colour you want, and then frost the cake. Leave to set in the fridge before serving.
If you make this cake, tweet me or tag me on instagram #kerrycooks so I can see your version! Happy Halloween!
PS – If for any reason (like a naughty kitten jumping on the kitchen worktop and knocking off bowl of cake batter and smashing it all over the floor and then running off with green footprints everywhere) you need to make another layer for this cake (or maybe you just want four layers instead of three!), it’s simple! Just whip up 60g of butter with 60g caster sugar, add one egg, some vanilla, and add 60g self-raising flour. Voila! Just keep a close eye on those cats… they sure do love cake batter!