If you’re in the mood for a fall dessert, look no further: this spice cake with brown butter frosting is perfect for the crisp season.
I don’t bake cakes often but when I do, I bake a huge one. The “go big or go home” philosophy applies to this spice cake topped with brown butter frosting. I suppose I’m like the Goldilocks of cakes: one layer cake feels like an insult, two layers doesn’t seem like enough, but three layers looks juuuuuust right.
As far as flavours go, I love spice cakes. I’ve been a fan for as long as I can remember. This one has both great taste and texture. It’s also the right amount of moist thanks to the added apple sauce.
There are a few things that I would recommend before tackling this recipe.
First, don’t over mix your batter once you add the dry ingredients. Doing so will create a dense cake (which isn’t what we’re going for here). What ends up happening when batter is over mixed is that too much air gets into the batter as well as extra gluten developing. Hence, gummy dense cake. So let’s not do that.
Second, I have a two-step method to keeping the cake from sticking to the pan. My first step is spraying the cake pans with non-stick spray. The next is lining the bottom of my cake pans with parchment paper. I do so by tracing the cake pan on a piece of parchment paper, cutting out the shape, and placing it at the bottom of the pan. Rocket science, I know. Honestly though, it avoids loads of issues after the fact.
Lastly, I suggest to start browning the butter for the frosting while the cake bakes. The butter has to cool before mixing the frosting. Browning the butter early allows for more wiggle room within your cake schedule.
Scroll below for this Spice Cake with Brown Butter Frosting recipe and if you haven’t already, don’t forget to subscribe!
Spice Cake with Brown Butter Frosting
For The Cake
- 3 Eggs, large
- 3 cups Dark Brown Sugar
- 1 1/4 cups Canola Oil
- 1 1/2 cups Apple Sauce, unsweetened
- 2 tsp Pure Vanilla Extract
- 3 3/4 cups All Purpose Flour
- 2 tsp Baking Powder
- 1 1/2 tsp Baking Soda
- 1 Tbsp Cinnamon, ground
- 1 tsp Ginger, ground
- 1 tsp Nutmeg, ground
- 1/2 tsp Cloves, ground
- 1/2 tsp Salt
- 1 cup Sour Cream
For The Frosting
- 1 cup Butter, softened
- 16 oz Cream Cheese
- 6 cups Confectioners' Sugar
- 1 tsp Pure Vanilla Extract
- 1 tsp Cinnamon, ground
- 1-2 Tbsp Milk
For The Cake
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray three 8" cake pans with nonstick cooking spray and line the bottom with parchment paper. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine brown sugar, canola oil, applesauce and eggs. Beat with an electric mixer until smooth. Add vanilla extract and beat until combined.
- In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, spices and salt. Whisk until blended.
- Add dry ingredients to wet ingredient bowl. Beat with electric mixer until just combined. Fold in sour cream until well blended.
- Divide batter evenly between 3 prepared cake pans. Bake for 40 minutes, or until toothpick pocked into the centre comes out clean.
- Once cakes are baked, remove from oven and allow to cool 5-10 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack.
For The Frosting
- While the cakes are baking, begin the frosting. In a medium saucepan, add butter over low/medium heat. Allow butter to bubble until it begins to brown, about 3-4 minutes. Remove from the heat and transfer to a heatproof bowl. Allow to cool completely before moving to next step.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine (cooled) browned butter, cream cheese, confectioners' sugar, vanilla extract and cinnamon. Beat with an electric mixer, adding 1-2Tbsp of milk to soften, until smooth and fluffy.
- Level the top of each cake layer with a sharp serrated knife.
- Add a layer of frosting between each layer. Cover cake and chill for approximately 30 minutes.
- Once chilled, frost cake with remaining frosting as desired.
- Serve and enjoy!
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