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Vanilla Cake with Kahlua Raspberry Buttercream_MidPage

Vanilla Cake with Kahlua Raspberry Buttercream

This vanilla cake with Kahlua raspberry buttercream is the perfect quarantine dessert. The cake is moist and light while the buttercream is rich and tasty.
5 from 1 vote
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Prep Time: 45 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Inactive Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 2 hours 15 minutes
Servings: 16 servings
Calories: 424kcal


  • 2 Bowls
  • Electric hand mixer (or standing mixer)
  • Two round 9'' cake pans


  • cups cake flour plus more for coating pans
  • 1⅓ cups granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup unsalted butter room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 2 large eggs
  • Baking spray or butter for coating the pans
  • Flour to dust the pans

Kahlua Raspberry Buttercream:

  • 1 cup unsalted butter room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup Kahlua
  • 16 ounces powdered sugar plus more, if needed
  • ½ cup freeze-dried raspberries
  • Whole milk or heavy cream a splash or two, if needed


Before Starting the Cake:

  • Preheat oven to 350ºF.
  • Spray two 9'' cake pans with baking spray or coat with butter. Sprinkle flour over each pan.

Start the Cake Batter:

  • In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt and mix with a spoon to combine.
  • Add the butter and use a hand mixer on the lowest setting to blend for 1 minute or until a grainy consistency has been reached.
  • Add the vanilla and the milk and use the hand mixer for 1-2 minutes until combined and smooth. Do not over-mix.
  • Add the first egg and mix for thirty seconds. Add the next egg and mix for 30 seconds. Use a rubber spatula to scrape down the sides and incorporate.

Bake the Cakes:

  • Divide the batter between the two prepared pans and transfer to the oven for 30 minutes. Check the doneness with a toothpick and if it doesn't come out clean, bake for an additional 3-4 minutes.
  • Remove the cakes from the oven and allow them to set for 10-15 minutes.
  • Carefully turn the cakes on to a wire rack and cool for at least 1 hour.

Prepare the Kahlua Raspberry Buttercream:

  • Place the freeze-dried raspberries in a food processor and pulse until they reach a fine powder.
  • Add the room temperature butter to a bowl and mix with a hand mixer for 1 minute. Add the vanilla and Kahlua and and mix for 2 minutes more. Add the powdered sugar and mix for 3-5 minutes until well-combined and smooth.
  • If the buttercream seems too stiff, add a splash of milk or heavy cream and mix until well-combined and smooth.

Frost the Cake:

  • Place a cake on a stand and frost the top of it with 1/3 of the buttercream frosting and use a stainless steel icing spatula to create an even layer. Using a fine mesh sieve, add half the the raspberry powder to the top of the buttercream. (Adding through a fine mesh sieve allows you to avoid adding the seeds to the buttercream.)
  • Place the second cake on top and add another 1/3 of the buttercream and smooth it out with an icing spatula. Using the icing spatula, frost the outside of the cake with the remaining 1/3 buttercream frosting.
    Note: Some people prefer to do a crumb coat but I skipped that because I wasn't too concerned about little pieces of cake in my frosting.
  • Using a fine-mesh sieve, dust the top of the cake with the rest of the powdered freeze-dried raspberries.


Calories: 424kcal | Carbohydrates: 61g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 19g | Sodium: 243mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 47g
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