Holiday Spice Cake

I made this cake for dessert as part of a surprise Christmas luncheon my coworkers and I gave our higher-ups. I’d realllly been craving spiced-baked-sweet-buttery something-cake and wanted to impress.


It’s a Paula Deen recipe  (which covered the “buttery” requirement) and this is the cake in the profile photo of this blog. I figured posting the recipe was timely.

WARNING: do not eat unless you want type-2 diabetes!!


(adapted from Paula Deen)



  • 3 cups cake flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ground nutmeg *trust me- FRESH will make a huge impact!
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 2 sticks butter, softened
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 1/4 cups buttermilk
  • Butter Cream Icing (recipe below)
  • Finely chopped nuts, for garnish *I used toasted pecans- they were lovely

Directions:  Preheat oven to 350. Butter and flour THREE 8-inch, round cake pans.

In a small bowl, whisk together cake flour, baking powder, baking soda, ground nutmeg, ground cinnamon, ground ginger and ground cloves. This smells amazing.

Cream the butter, sugar and salt with an electric mixer in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one by one, beating well after each addition. Beat in the dry ingredients and the buttermilk alternately beginning and ending with the dry.

When the batter is well mixed and smooth, divide it amongst the 3 prepared cake pans. I wish I would have measured out the batter into each pan a half cup at a time- I’m kind of OCD and one layer was larger than the others. If you want a perfect cake, don’t eyeball your batter. Make the icing while your cakes bake (scroll down for icing recipe).

Bake 25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cakes come out clean. Let cool in the pans for 10 minutes, then turn out to cool completely. If the cake layers have domed during the baking process (or if you pulled a me and didn’t divide batter evenly), slice off the tops with a long serrated knife so they are flat and even.

Place the first layer, cut side down, on a cake pedestal or serving plate. Spoon about 3/4 cup of butter cream onto the center of the cake. Spread it over the edges slighlty with an offset spatula. Repeat with the remaining 2 layers. Garnish the top of the cake with finely chopped nuts. I thought mint springs would have been really pretty on this cake- maybe next time.


  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup shortening
  • Pinch salt
  • 6 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream

Beat the butter, shortening and salt together until creamy with an electric mixer. Add half the confectioners’ sugar and beat until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Combine the vanilla extract and heavy cream. Gradually beat in the remaining confectioners’ sugar alternating with the cream mixture until it is all incorporated and the frosting is very light and fluffy. Serve to your bosses and beam with buttery, Southern pride. This cake was deceivingly light from all of the beating with the mixer, and was very (VERY) good with coffee.

Serves: a lot of diabetics and anyone else with functioning taste buds

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