Once you have tried this Yellow Cake recipe with Homemade Chocolate Frosting you will never be able to go back to a boxed yellow cake mix or canned frosting again! This recipe makes the perfect cake with decadent chocolate buttercream frosting

If you like this classic celebration cake, you'll love my Classic Carrot Cake, this delicious Red Velvet Cake, and my fun Rainbow Funfetti Cake!

An image of the best yellow cake with chocolate frosting pipped on in swirls around the border, then sprinkled with rainbow colored sprinkles and sliced to serve.

Table of Contents
  1. Why we love this Yellow Cake Recipe
  2. Yellow Cake with Chocolate Frosting ingredients
  3. Yellow Cake substitutions and variations
  4. How to Make Homemade Yellow Cake
  5. How to make Yellow Cake Chocolate Frosting
  6. How to assemble the Yellow Cake
  7. How to store Yellow Cake with Chocolate Frosting
  8. Tips for the Best Yellow Cake with Chocolate Frosting
  9. The Best Yellow Cake Recipe FAQs
  10. More Better-Than-Box-Mix Cake Recipes
  11. Yellow Cake Recipe Recipe

There isn't much more iconic than a yellow cake with chocolate frosting for a celebration or special occasion. It's pretty much the classic birthday cake, decorated with sprinkles and candles!

I always had a yellow cake made from a box mix when I was growing up. I have fond memories of those cakes, and while cake box mixes have a time and a place (like when you are making a gazillion cupcakes for preschool carnivals and such) I do prefer homemade yellow cake.

Truthfully, I actually loved making yellow cakes from box mixes until not that long ago. I had tried too many disappointingly dry or tasteless yellow cakes made from scratch over the years that I didn't feel a need to say goodbye to my beloved Duncan Hine for a long time!

Except then I finally found the Best Ever Moist Chocolate Cupcakes. The difference in flavor between those chocolate cupcakes and the ones from a box mix was stark and eye-opening.

So, of course, I set out to create a classic yellow cake recipe that I could make from scratch that would be superior in both flavor and texture to the best cake mixes out there. This is the best yellow cake recipe I have made.

This yellow cake is so moist and tender, while still being super easy for any home baker to make. It uses ingredients almost everyone already has on hand, without any extra steps!

two slices of yellow cake with chocolate frosting below a cakestand of chocolate frosted yellow cake

Why we love this Yellow Cake Recipe

  • Customize this yellow cake by decorating it with your favorite frosting toppings!
  • Made with simple but fresh ingredients, it's a great recipe to have on hand for parties.
  • This easy yellow cake recipe tastes even better than the boxed mix, but still has the same classic flavor!

Yellow Cake with Chocolate Frosting ingredients

Scroll down to the recipe card below this post for ingredient quantities and full instructions.

Yellow Cake:

  • Butter - Use salted butter for the best flavor here. Make sure your butter is at room temperature before you begin.
  • Flour - All Purpose Flour is best to get that light and fluffy texture but you can use cake flour if you prefer.
  • Sugar - White granulated sugar is fine here.
  • Vanilla Extract - Use clear vanilla extract if you have it for more of a box-mix taste, but regular vanilla extract will work too.
  • Eggs - Use large eggs that are at room temperature before you begin.
  • Whole Milk - Whole milk is best for the best flavor, but you can use lower-fat or non-dairy milk in a pinch.
  • Baking Powder - The leavening agent for this cake to help it get nice and fluffy.
  • Salt - Enhances all the flavors.

Chocolate Frosting:

  • Butter - Use salted butter and make sure it is softened to room temperature to make it easier to mix.
  • Powdered sugar - Also known as confectioner's sugar, for the base of the frosting.
  • Cream or Milk - Use heavy cream for the creamiest frosting. You can use low-fat cream or whole milk if you prefer.
  • Vanilla Extract - Use clear vanilla extract for the whitest frosting.
  • Salt - Enhances the flavors of the frosting.
  • Cocoa Powder - Unsweetened cocoa powder is best to get a rich chocolatey frosting.

Yellow Cake substitutions and variations

  • You can substitute buttermilk for whole milk as the liquid, but I actually prefer to use whole milk in yellow cake and buttermilk when making my Chocolate Cake.
  • Some recipes I looked at added in two extra egg yolks in an effort to nudge the cake just a shade or two closer to a true yellow, but I am perfectly happy with the simpler approach of using just 3 whole eggs. And in a layer cake like this, I don't actually think you notice a difference in texture or flavor from those two extra yokes.
  • If chocolate isn't your thing, this homemade rainbow chip frosting is seriously so good, so fun, and easier than you might think to make at home.
An image of a yellow cake frosted with chocolate buttercream frosting and sprinkles on a white cake stand.

How to Make Homemade Yellow Cake

  1. Prepare equipment. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour two 8-inch round cake pans or line the bottoms of each pan with parchment paper circles.
  2. Make flour mixture. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
  3. Cream butter and sugar. In the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. This will take about 2-3 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl a couple of times during mixing.
  4. Add eggs and vanilla. Next, add the eggs to the butter and sugar, one at a time. Beat well after each addition, then mix in the vanilla.
  5. Add flour mixture and milk. Then, add the flour mixture and the milk alternately. Add about ⅓ of each at a time, mixing between additions just until combined.
  6. Pour into pans. Divide the batter evenly between the two prepared round pans.
An image of yellow cake batter in two round 8-inch cake pans.
  1. Bake. Bake the cakes for 30-35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of each cake comes out clean. If using larger 9-inch pans, the cakes will be a little thinner and bake in slightly less time (around 23-27 minutes). If you're making cupcakes, they will only need to bake for 18-21 minutes.
  2. Cool cakes. Remove the cakes from the oven and cool for 10 minutes. Then, run a sharp knife around the edges, then gently turn the cakes out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
  3. Trim the tops. Trim the excess tops of the completely cooled cake layers so they are level, then frost them with chocolate buttercream and decorate with sprinkles!

How to make Yellow Cake Chocolate Frosting

Making this chocolate buttercream frosting is so easy! It pairs perfectly with this yellow cake recipe, and it's honestly 1,000x better than the stuff that comes in plastic tubs from the store.

Beat butter and cocoa powder. Use an electric hand mixer or stand mixer with a whisk attachment to beat the softened butter and cocoa powder together until totally smooth and creamy.

Add powdered sugar and cream. Gradually beat in the powdered sugar and heavy cream, about 1 cup of powdered sugar and 1 tablespoon of cream at a time. Remember to scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.

Add vanilla. Mix in the vanilla extract and a pinch of salt, adjusting the consistency of the frosting by adding more milk or powdered sugar, if necessary.

How to assemble the Yellow Cake

Cool the cake. Be sure to allow the cake to cool completely before attempting to frost it. You will be tempted to do otherwise, but the frosting will melt into the cake and not set properly if you do not wait. If you find the frosting melting once added to the cake, simply stop frosting and wait a few more minutes before continuing.

Frost first layer. Use your homemade chocolate frosting to generously frost an even layer on top of the first layer of cake. Spread the frosting on with a knife or spoon then add the second layer of cake.

Frost second layer. Add more frosting on top of the second layer in an even spreading.

Frost the sides. Frost all the sides of the cake, then decorate as you wish. You can try for a smooth look and pipe on swirls around the top, like I did here, or go for a more rustic look and simply swirl the frosting on thick with a knife.

Add sprinkles. Add colorful sprinkles and any other cake toppings you wish and serve!

An image of a frosted yellow cake with chocolate buttercream and sprinkles.

How to store Yellow Cake with Chocolate Frosting

Store this cake in an airtight container or covered in plastic wrap at room temperature for up to 1 day, or in the refrigerator for up to 7 days. Let the cake come to room temperature for a few minutes before serving.

Tips for the Best Yellow Cake with Chocolate Frosting

  • The butter and egg yolks are what give this yellow cake its signature golden color, which is a beautiful, pale buttery yellow.
  • Some recipes I looked at added in two extra egg yolks in an effort to nudge the cake just a shade or two closer to a true yellow, but I am perfectly happy with the simpler approach of using just 3 whole eggs. And in a layer cake like this, I don't actually think you notice a difference in texture or flavor from those two extra yokes.
  • Gradually add wet ingredients into the cake mixture, mixing until combined each time.
  • If your cakes rise to have a dome on top after baking, simply level them out by cutting the top off with a serrated knife before attempting to assemble the whole cake together.
  • Refrigerate the cake once decorated for 30 minutes to an hour before slicing it to ensure you get clean cuts for a better presentation.

The Best Yellow Cake Recipe FAQs

Is yellow cake just vanilla cake?

Yellow Cake is a type of vanilla cake, but it is different from a white cake which is also typically flavored with vanilla. Vanilla cakes will either use egg whites to make them white, or whole eggs and butter to make them yellow. Many white cake recipes will also use oil and colorless flavorings to keep the color consistent.

How do you add flavor to yellow cake?

If you want to add more flavor into this yellow cake, consider adding in a flavored extract like almond extract. You could also add in some cake fillings, like dried friut, fresh berries, or even chocolate chips! Add crushed nuts or shredded coconut on the top too for decoration, extra flavor and extra texture.

What's the difference between yellow cake and vanilla cake?

Not to be confusing, but yellow cake IS a vanilla cake because the primary flavor is vanilla. To determine if a vanilla cake is yellow or white, it really depends on the ingredients which contribute to both the color and flavor of the cake. A white cake typically only contains egg whites for a more pure white color while a yellow cake contains the whole egg, which gives it its yellow coloring. While the flavors can be similar, white cakes are usually more delicate and spongy than a yellow cake. Both are delicious though!

What is the flavor of yellow cake?

Yellow cake will have a vanilla flavor and pairs well with chocolate frosting. But honestly, a good basic yellow cake has a pretty mild flavor and goes well with everything.

How do you keep a yellow cake moist?

If your cake is not properly stored, it will start to dry out. There are a couple different techniques you can do to keep your cake from drying out, frosting and unfrosted. If the cake is unfrosted, tightly wrap the layers in plastic and store them in the fridge for up to a week. Once your cake is frosted, the frosting will help form a protective barrier and keep the cake moist. Keeping the cake in an airtight container or placing plastic wrap on parts of the cake that have been cut and forming a barrier, will also help prevent the cake from being exposed to air.

The Not-So-Secret Secret To Baking

Use room temperature ingredients when you are baking from scratch. It DOES make a huge difference, so it's worth waiting a few minutes to let them come to room temperature before you begin. Using melted butter or cold milk and cold eggs can totally sabotage your efforts at achieving a beautiful, delicious yellow cake.

An image of a slice of yellow cake made from scratch with homemade chocolate buttercream frosting and sprinkles.

More Better-Than-Box-Mix Cake Recipes

Did you make this recipe?

Let me know what you thought with a comment and rating below. You can also take a picture and tag me on Instagram @houseofnasheats or share it on the Pinterest pin so I can see.

Stay in the know

Yellow Cake Recipe

4.93 from 141 votes
Amy Nash
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Additional Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 45 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 12 people
Fair warning:  Once you have tried making this Yellow Cake with Chocolate Frosting, you will never be able to go back to a boxed cake mix or canned frosting again.  This is the best yellow cake with chocolate buttercream I've ever had and I'm preeeeeetty sure you will agree.


Yellow Cake

  • 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup salted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 1 ½ cups granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup whole milk

Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

  • 1 ½ cups salted butter, softened to room temperature (3 sticks)
  • 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 5 cups powdered sugar
  • cup milk or cream
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • Pinch of salt



  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour two 8-inch round cake pans or line bottoms of each pan with parchment paper circles.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
  • In bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl a couple of times during mixing.
  • Add the eggs to the butter and sugar, one at a time, beating well after each addition, then mix in the vanilla.
  • Add the flour mixture and the milk alternately, about ⅓ of each at a time, mixing between additions just until combined.
  • Divide the batter evenly between the two prepared round pans, then bake for 30-35 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of each cake comes out clean. If using larger 9-inch pans, the cakes will be a little thinner and bake in slight less time (around 23-27 minutes), and if making cupcakes, they will bake for 18-21 minutes.
  • Remove the cakes from the oven and cool for 10 minutes before running a sharp knife around the edges, then gently turning the cakes out onto a wire cooling rack to cool completely.
  • Trim the tops of the completely cooled cakes so they are level, then frost with chocolate buttercream and decorate with sprinkles.


  • In a large bowl, beat the butter and cocoa powder together until creamy and smooth.
  • Gradually add the powdered sugar 1 cup at a time, with 1 tablespoon of the milk or cream at a time, mixing between each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
  • Add the vanilla and salt and mix well, adjusting the consistency by adding powdered sugar or milk as needed. Use to frost a 2-layer cake.


  • Storage: Store this cake in an airtight container or covered in plastic wrap at room temperature for up to 1 day, or in the refrigerator for up to 7 days. Let the cake come to room temperature for a few minutes before serving.
  • Freezing: Wrap individual slices of cake in plastic wrap then freeze in an airtight container for up to 2 months. Thaw at room temperature before serving.


Calories: 737kcal | Carbohydrates: 99g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 38g | Saturated Fat: 23g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 10g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 141mg | Sodium: 570mg | Potassium: 201mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 76g | Vitamin A: 1175IU | Calcium: 110mg | Iron: 2mg
Tried this recipe? Show me on Instagram!Mention @HouseOfNashEats or tag #houseofnasheats!

Share This With the World


Related Recipes

About the author

Hi, I'm Amy

I enjoy exploring the world through food, culture, and travel and sharing the adventure with mostly from-scratch, family friendly recipes that I think of as modern comfort cooking.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

How many stars would you give this recipe?

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Reader questions and reviews

  1. Helen says:

    5 stars
    What a useful post! I'll book-mark it for when I next need a standard yellow birthday cake base!
    I'm sure it's amazing, as is anything based on one of Sally's recipes!

  2. April says:

    5 stars
    Perfect! I've been on the hunt for a moist yellow cake recipe for a looong time. Can't wait to give this one a try!

  3. Maria says:

    5 stars
    Oh....my.... GOSH!!! Yum!!! I just made this for my husband’s birthday today (batter is still cooling) but the frosting and the batter are sooo delicious!!! Can’t wait to frost it and have for dessert tonight!

    1. Mo Davey says:

      I made one for my mother's birthday. Same day 9-11. We've been looking for this recipe for a long time. Reminds us of a cake we would have when I was a child.
      It was yummy. I've made about 5 of them since then.

  4. MGL says:

    5 stars
    Can I use this recipe for cupcakes? The cake was excellent.

    1. Amy says:

      Yes! Just adjust the baking time to around 19-22 minutes and fill cupcake liners about 2/3 full.

  5. Kiera says:

    Did you use unsalted butter or salted for the cake and frosting?

    1. Amy says:

      I always use salted butter. I know most bakers use unsalted butter, but I honestly don't notice a difference except for when eating the butter on toast, when I totally notice if the butter is unsalted (the danger of having more than one type of butter in the fridge). 1 stick of butter has about 1/4 teaspoon of salt in it in total, so you could always adjust the amount of salt down by that amount for each stick of butter if using salted butter, if there is a concern.

    2. Stephanie says:

      I substituted butter with applesauce!!! 🙂 so moist and delicious. My kids 💖 it

    3. Stephanie says:

      Substituted butter with applesauce. Equal parts. So moist and delicious!! Thank You Amy. my kids made it. 1 yr old and 4 yr old 💖

      1. Amy says:

        You are welcome! I'm glad to know it worked with with the substitution!

  6. Katie says:

    5 stars
    Holy wow! This cake was very yummy. I love letting cakes sit for a day before taking them to an event so I made my cake, iced and sprinkled it and set it in the fridge. Then took it to two families on Thanksgiving and they loved it. I usually come back with a good bit of cake on the holidays, but was surprised when I came back with very little this time (which I am grateful for, because it's so delicious!). I love this recipe and will be using it from now on for my favorite cake.

    I did not have vanilla extract at the time of baking, and going out to get some was out of the question, so I excluded it from the cake and put about half a tsp of honey instead. I know vanilla extract sometimes gives a cake that extra oomph, but I felt it was fine without it. However, I can't wait to make it again with that extra ingredient!

    Thanks for sharing this yummy favorite!

  7. Emma says:

    How should I adjust the bake temperature /time in order for it to be made in a 9x13” pan? Should I also make less frosting?

    1. Amy says:

      It's still probably going to take around 30 minutes, but I would start checking at 25. Use the same 350 degree F temperature though. And yes, you won't need as much frosting. Half a batch would be sufficient.

  8. Allison Ebersole says:

    This looks great; can't wait to try it!
    I assume we should use milk for the frosting, since it's listed in the ingredients that way, but in he instructions it mentions cream.

    1. Amy says:

      Yes, they are actually interchangeable. I use cream if I have it on hand, but if not I just use milk.

  9. Sona S. says:

    5 stars
    Hi, I wanted to know how thick (as in how many inches tall) each cake layer was? I didn't have 8in. pan on hand, so I used a 9in. pan, and each layer came out about an inch high. Just wanting to know if that's due to the pan size, or maybe because my ingredients weren't at the right temperature.


    1. Amy says:

      Hmm, I have never measured height on these layers before! But about an inch high sounds pretty typical for a 9-inch cake pan.

    2. Jenn says:

      Same thing happened to me and I didnt think about the size of the pants. So happy I read this post!

  10. Lauren says:

    Hi Amy! I was wondering if you could give me instructions on how to reduce the size of this cake so it's more of a 2 layer 4 inch cake. Is it appropriate if I just cut the recipe in half??

    1. Amy says:

      Hmm, I've never attempted that before, but yes, I would just halve the recipe. But you are going to want to watch your bake time and check it a lot earlier, I think, to see if it's done.

  11. Arlene says:

    I’ve made many cakes and this one turned out a little dryer then I care for. I didn’t overtake and all ingredients were room temperature. How can I adjust for this?

    1. Amy says:

      If you feel like this is too dry, try subbing half of the butter called for with an equal amount of oil. Oil tends to give a moister crumb, but I wouldn't use just oil because yellow cake needs a buttery flavor as well.

    2. Jah says:

      Yes. I agree. This cake was very dry, more white than yellow, and the icing turned out nothing like the pictures; it was much lighter color. Very disappointing. Will not make again.

  12. Theresa@Two Much Fun says:

    5 stars
    I also grew up with those boxes of yellow cake. When we had kids, we decided we wanted to try to limit the extras that are added to processed food. We have tried baking yellow cake, after yellow cake. None had that soft, fluffy and sweet texture and taste that we were looking for.
    When my husband, said that he was just going to cave and buy a box of yellow cake mix, my kids and I scoured the internet and cookbooks for what seemed like it may be the right one. Luckily, after hours (yes, hours) of searching and reading and debating, we found and tried yours.
    THANK YOU! My husband thanks you. My kids thank you, and I thank you. It's even better than the store bought, and no extra junk!
    We quickly printed off your recipe and added it to my kids' recipe book. We now have the perfect yellow cake recipe. I'm looking forward to trying more of your recipes. Thank you again!

    1. Amy says:

      Your comment absolutely made my day. I had a very similar experience to you and agree that this yellow cake recipe is even better than a mix! You should try my chocolate cupcakes and homemade rainbow chip frosting too! And I'm working on my vanilla cake and hoping to have that up soon as well because I never use mixes anymore because I have found that not only does making it from scratch mean it doesn't have all the extras from processed food, but it just plain tastes better too!

  13. Shelley says:

    Could sugar be lessened?

    1. Amy says:

      You could try decreasing the sugar by 25%, but it's not something I have done before and I really don't know how it would turn out. I think it's pretty much perfect as is.

  14. Martyna Sprague says:

    Cam I use a 9 by 13 pan instead of 2 8 by 8 pans?

    1. Amy says:

      Yes, absolutely.

  15. Nora says:

    Hi Amy,
    I grew up with my father actually baking the most delicious yellow cakes with chocolate frosting- he always used cocoa. But that was over 50 years ago. All my elementary school teachers would ask if he was baking a cake for our class functions. I have lost his recipe ( whose actual measurements I had to figured out myself) and I’m planning to bake your cake for my son’ 30th. So i only have a hand mixer. Can you help with any adjustments on speed and time when making the layers?

    1. Amy says:

      Speed and time will be the same using a hand mixer as a stand mixer. You shouldn't have any trouble making this cake for your son with that.

  16. Layla says:

    Hi so I made the frosting but it looks separated when I finished making it. I put it in the fridge so it can harden a lil and maybe whip it again. Is it normal to look separated its a smooth frosting but just looks separated

    1. Amy says:

      No, it shouldn't really separate. That sometimes happens with a little too much cream. Rather than beat again, I might try stirring with a spatula to break up some of the air bubbles for a smoother frosting and see if that helps.

  17. Emma says:

    I do not have a hand mixer or stand mixer. Would this still turn out well mixing by hand?

    1. Amy says:

      Absolutely! You could do this by hand with a spoon and a whisk and it will turn out great!

  18. Siobhan says:

    I have a special afternoon event and the celebrant would love a dark chocolate frosted yellow cake. I would love to surprise him with this recipe but would like to make it a 9x13 layer cake. Any suggestions regarding baking pans, double recipe and dark chocolate frosting would be most helpful. Thank you Amy 😀

    1. Amy says:

      Shoot, I can't remember for sure, but I would go for 20-25 minutes in a 9x13-inch pan and then check to see if the cake is close. I need to write this down the next time I make it this way.

  19. Tatumn Vernon says:

    My cake looks sad. They didn't rise very much if at all. They look like cake Frisbees, maybe 1.5 in tall. What did I do wrong?

    1. Amy says:

      Oh no! Could your baking powder have been old? The only other thing I can think of is if your pans were 10-inch pans, since I made this using 8-inch pans.

  20. Cara says:

    How many cupcakes does this recipe yield roughly?

    1. Amy says:

      It should be around 20-24 cupcakes.

  21. Patty says:

    2 stars
    I made this recipe on 2 9-inch pans and the cake was too dense. Not fluffy at all. Didn’t have much taste either. 🙁

  22. Will says:

    5 stars
    This recipe looks amazing and I plan on making it tomorrow for a Friday Birthday! I need to serve 15 people so I was planning on finding a 12" cake pan unless you think the recipe as it is will serve 15. If not, how do you think I should adjust this recipe for a larger pan?

    1. Amy says:

      I have never used 12" cake pans but would assume it will take longer baking time. I would do 1 1/2 batches in order to fill the larger pans I think. The normal recipe probably won't serve 15 unless you are doing really small slices.

  23. Deb Beechy says:

    5 stars
    My husband loves this cake and frosting. I use the 9x13 pan and bake 30 minutes. I half the frosting recipe. Thanks so much for this great recipe. This will be the 3rd weekend in a row that I've made it and it's gone in 2 days. lol.

  24. Becky says:

    5 stars
    Hi! Just wanted to know if I could put this in a simple 13x9in pan instead?

    1. Amy says:


  25. Susan Hernandez says:

    Thank you for this recipe! I recently made the yellow cake and chocolate frosting for my sweet sister-in-law’s Birthday. It was a hit! Everyone in my family loved it. I will definitely make this again and again.

    1. Amy says:

      I'm glad it was a hit!

  26. Betty says:

    How do you prepare your pans? shortening and flour, parchment paper, both....?

    1. Amy says:

      I use baking spray with flour in it and a circle of parchment paper in the bottom just to be safe.

  27. Heather Grishaber says:

    Hi, I'm making a bear head smash cake with a 6x2 pan and two 4x1.25 pans. What would you suggest my baking time be? Also, would I need to adjust any of the ingredient amounts to get the right texture for the cake since I'm using smaller pans? Thanks!

    1. Amy says:

      I really have no idea what the baking time should be adjusted to with those pan sizes. I think you are going to just need to watch the cake for doneness and test with a skewer or toothpick to be sure. Personally, I would make the whole cake and just fill the pans as needed and use leftovers for cupcakes!

  28. Andrea Gugliuzza says:

    Do I need to keep the extra frosting in the fridge? Do I refrigerate the cake if it is for tomorrow? I am not a baker, but I tried! I think it looks good so hopeful that means it will taste good. It is for my Hubby’s Bday. Thank you!

    1. Amy says:

      You could go ahead and frost the cake now and refrigerate until tomorrow. Or if it's just overnight it would be fine sitting out, covered. That's probably what I would do. But yes, you could refrigerate the extra frosting and let it come to room temperature before using. I'm so glad you tried it and I hope your husband likes it!

  29. Jess says:

    Ever freeze the cakes before frosting? I’d like to make it a few days before the event.

    1. Amy says:

      Yep! It works great. Just wrap the layers well in plastic wrap.

  30. DANIELLE says:

    Hi! I use cake flour for my cakes. Do I still need to use the baking power?

    1. Amy says:

      Yes. Cake flour isn't the same as self-rising flour which has leavening agents in it.

  31. Julia Davis says:

    I used your recipe for pineapple upside down cake replacing the milk with juice from can of pineapples. Came out delicious. Cheers!

    1. Amy says:

      I love that idea!

  32. Bex says:

    Im curious about using a full cup of butter rather than just 3/4 C. I wonder if it would ruin the recipe or just make it butterier (is that even a word?) About to make it. Looks like it's going to be great!

    1. Amy says:

      Lol - if butterier isn't a word it should be. You are welcome to try it and let me know what happens! I don't think that amount of butter will make a significant difference, but you might need to offset with an additional tablespoon of flour as well.

  33. Charmian says:

    I made this cake and followed the directions to the T; I found that the cake was very dry; not at all what I was hoping for. I used (2) 9" rounds and only baked for 27 minutes so I don't know; however the frosting was delicious!

    1. Bianca Hayes says:

      I used 9 in pans as well but I used three and baked at 20 min and cake was super moist

  34. Cami says:

    Delicious, moist, and made with easy ingredients I had on hand. Perfect, tasty yellow cake. Thank you! I don't think I've ever written a review and I've made so many recipes from blogs. This one was so good I just had to comment. I used 9 in h pans and it still had nice height. Yum.

    1. Amy says:

      Thank you for such a wonderful review, Cami! I'm so glad you liked it!

  35. Mary says:

    I made the cake for my husbands birthday, 1st of all he was shocked I made it from scratch. LOL. I made the frosting and went by taste, didn’t use all the powdered sugar it called for and adjusted the milk., forgot the salt. I am not a chocolate fan but the frosting was AMAZING! I loved how the cake turned out. Plus, it was super easy to make, will keep this in my book. It’s true, once you have made something from scratch you will never go back to box style.

  36. Debbie A Readling says:

    Simple and delicious! I doubled the recipe for an 11x15 sheet cake and it baked beautifully at 40 minutes! It made a wonderful graduation cake for my son and was followed by many compliments! Thanks for sharing!

    1. Amy says:

      You are welcome! I'm so glad you enjoyed this yellow cake and I love that you turned it into a sheet cake!

  37. Erin says:

    This is such an AMAZING cake. I made this for Ostara and gave a slice to my favorite nearby witch and she loved it. Definately making this again

  38. Kelly says:

    Made this tonight and it is to die for. The cake is moist and decadent and the whipped frosting well who goes wrong with choc. Lol will definitely make again

  39. Jessica Farris says:

    I have been baking cakes for over 30 years and this recipe was deemed the best ever! It was super easy to make and so delicious!. This will for ever be the birthday cake that I make for my family.

    1. Amy says:

      Oh I'm so happy to hear that!

  40. Amy says:

    My cake was dry and crumbled when attempting to put the icing 😫.  Not sure what I did wrong?!

    1. Amy says:

      On no! It's hard to troubleshoot without being there, but for next time, try baking the cake layers for a little less time so they stay moist. Then I would also recommend wrapping each layer in plastic wrap after it has cooled and freezing it. Frost the layers while still frozen (or at least chilled) and that should help it not to fall apart.

  41. Ian N says:

    Hello Amy,

    I wanted to thank you for posting this perfect recipe.

    I followed the instructions verbatim and the cake turned out flawless in both appearance and flavor.

    Just one question, in the pictures of the cake you added sprinkles around the base with Godlike perfection, what is your secret?

    I tried to copy this and:

    a) it looked like I just threw them at the cake 
    b) I used tons of sprinkles 
    c) the majority ended up on the floor
    d) I still find them in the vacuum 2 weeks later

    Thank you again for the recipe.

    Kind regards,


    1. Amy says:

      Lol, I'm so glad you liked the cake! But yes, the sprinkles are never super clean and I always end up sweeping afterwards. I find that the best approach is to set my cake stand on a large baking sheet, and use one cupped hand to sort of press the sprinkles along the bottom edge of the cake. They spill around the sides but most of them land in the baking sheet so I'm able to reuse and mostly contain the mess. I hope that helps!

  42. Nariman says:

    Felt like making cake.. so this post, got all my ingredients up to room temp and started right away!  Super quick and super easy.  Cakes came out perfectly. and the chocolate buttercream complements the lightly sweet and simple yellow cake perfectly. Cake is super moist and the buttercream is super fluffy and not too sweet. 

    I will note.. room temp ingredients make a difference for sure. I didn't really need to level the cakes. I did tap the pan after I poured the batter. 

  43. Ann Cole says:

    In your 12/18/18 comment you said that using both butter and oil might produce a moister crumb. Would you add the oil at the end of step 3, after you cream the butter and sugar?  Thanks. 

    1. Amy says:

      Yes, I would cream the butter and sugar first.

  44. Alli says:

    Made this recipe today as a 13x9 cake. Turned out excellent! My family loved it. Even my 4yo who usually only eats the frosting ate the cake! Will absolutely make this again! 🙂

  45. Sara says:

    We don’t usually keep regular milk at home, so I made this with 1 and 1/4 cups of unsweetened vanilla almond milk and 2 extra tablespoons of butter to compensate for the fat in the milk and it turned out AMAZING.

  46. Luisa says:

    Tried this cake for the first time today (cake only) And it is a good cake. Some things bakers would like to know:
    Cups of batter: 5 cups of batter
    Baked in 8x3 round cake pan (Magic Line) Cake was 1.5” in height for one layer. Total finished cake frosted was about 4” in height. 
    Cake is a little dense. (This can be fixed by substituting Cake Flour as per directions on cake flour box)
    I used Buttermilk (didn’t have whole milk) 
    I added a tsp of Almond Extract along with the 2 tsp of Vanilla (because I like it) 
    I used Unsalted Butter (because I thought the recipe would automatically call for it) I think next time I will use Salted butter and see how it come out. I’ll add update later. 🙂 
    Overall: Cake is a yummy flavor, not overly sweet, semi-soft crumb. 
    I will make this again for sure! Thank YOU for sharing a great recipe. 

    1. Amy says:

      Thank you for such a helpful comment! I know others will find this helpful!

  47. Emily says:

    Beautiful cake! I made this for my mom's birthday yesterday in a 9.5 x 13.5 pan (35 mins.). I will say the bag of powdered sugar I purchased provided only for 4 cups for the frosting but the 5th cup was not missed at all. Because I made a sheet cake I only needed have the frosting but now I have extra for something later.

  48. Karen says:

    I made the cake for my dump cake recipe. Instead of box cake. I pour the batter over peaches. The cake turned out beautiful and delicious. Thank you

    1. Amy says:

      I love this idea! I haven't thought to use it as a dump cake yet!

  49. Cynthia Brasher says:

    This is a delicious moist cake, and the chocolate buttercream frosting is wonderful! I made half the amount of frosting and it was plenty. I used 2% milk in the cake and frosting, since it was what I had on hand. Everyone in my family loved it!

  50. Taryn D McBride says:

    I have a sister that loves yellow cake and chocolate frosting, but what I need to know is can I make this cake a day in advance and frost it that morning and if so, how should I store the cake?

    1. Amy says:

      Hi Taryn! Yes, you can make the cake a day (or even up to a month in advance!). I highly recommend wrapping each layer individually in plastic wrap and setting them on a baking sheet in the freezer. After a few hours, you can stick the frozen layers into a freezer-safe ziploc bag for longer term storage. When you are ready to assemble the cake, make your frosting, then go ahead and frost the cake layers while they are still frozen (it actually helps keep crumbs to a minimum) or let them thaw first on the counter and then frost.