This is a six inch painted buttercream cake with soft vanilla layers and swirls of buttercream flowers on top.
For Mother’s Day, I got to play around in the kitchen. Yes, I made my own Mother’s Day cake! It is so much fun to try out new trends like striped cakes or this painted buttercream cake.
One trend that I’ve been seeing is painted buttercream cakes. There are various techniques to “painting” on a buttercream cake. This technique is so simple and only takes a paint brush (food safe) and gel food coloring.
How to Create the “Paint”
To create the paint, I used a mixture of gel food coloring and vodka. However, you can use any clear alcohol. It only takes a few drops to thin out the food coloring.
You’ll need food safe brushes like these Wilton decorating brushes. Once your cake is chilled and crusted, dip your brush into the paint and softly brush onto the cake. If you start to notice your cake is warming up, pop it back into the fridge for a bit.
I used my crusting buttercream frosting for this cake. I think the “crust” allows you to easily paint the cake without smudging.
Painted Buttercream Tips
- Make sure your buttercream is chilled in the fridge. You should be able to touch your cake without the frosting sticking to your hands. If it gets too warm, the brush will start to indent the frosting. If so, put it back in the fridge for 20-30 minutes or until it is firm again.
- Use food safe paint brushes. No one likes to eat paint bristles in their cake.
- Use a good quality food coloring. I used gel food coloring but also tested out a few drops of liquid food coloring. Either worked fine, but I found that the gel food coloring seemed to work better.
- Thin out your food coloring with alcohol so that it goes on smooth.
- Mix the colors for a two-dimension look. At first I painted just pink and purple separately. I started to add layers of the different colors on top of each other and I really like how it turned out.
- Have fun with it! I do not have an artistic bone in my body. If you cannot paint characters or flowers, maybe stick with something more abstract like this. Just try not to stress about it.
Buttercream Flower Cake Top
- 2 1/3 cups of cake flour (280 g)
- 1 tsp of salt
- 2 1/2 tsp of baking powder
- 4 egg whites
- 1 stick of butter (120 g)
- 1 1/4 cups of sugar (280 g)
- 2 tsp of vanilla
- 1/2 cup of milk (125 ml)
- 1/2 cup of sour cream (130 g)
- Preheat oven to 325°F/160°C.
- Prepare three 6-inch cake pans by coating each pan with butter and adding a light dusting of flour. Add parchment paper to the bottom of the pan.
- Combine your dry ingredients (cake flour, salt and baking powder) in a bowl and set aside.
- Beat egg whites until a soft peak and set aside.
- In another bowl, beat the butter and sugar together until creamy.
- Add the vanilla.
- Add half of the dry ingredients to the butter mixture.
- Add half of the milk to the mix.
- Add the remaining dry ingredients.
- Add the remaining milk.
- Add the sour cream.
- Fold in the egg whites.
- Divide the batter evenly among the prepared pans. Bake for 25 minutes or until cake is cooked (when a toothpick is inserted in the middle and it comes out clean).
- Allow cakes to cool (15-20 minutes) and then gently remove from the pan and allow them to cool completely on a wire rack.