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Rainbow layer cake

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  • Serves: 10

  • Prep time:

  • Cooking time:

  • Total time:

  • Skill level: Bit of effort

  • Costs: Cheap as chips


This rainbow layer cake is the perfect colourful treat to brighten up a birthday party. These 5 vibrant and soft sponges sandwiched with a cream cheese buttercream will put a smile on anyone's face


For 5 layers of cake:
  • 250g plain flour
  • 15 large egg whites
  • 375g caster sugar
  • 2 tsp cream of tartar
  • 7.5ml vanilla extract
  • Gel food colours, like the Dr Oetker gel colours

For the filling:

  • 175g unsalted butter, softened
  • 325g plus 1tsp icing sugar
  • 5ml vanilla extract
  • 100g full fat soft cheese

That's goodtoknow

cartoon image of chef

Remember not to open your oven door whilst the cake is cooking, or it could sink in the middle. Just keep an eye on it so it doesn't get too brown on top


  1. Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4. Grease and line 5 x 20cm diameter tins - you will need one Victoria sandwich tin for each layer of the cake.
  2. Whisk the egg whites until they are stiff. Add half the sugar, the cream of tartar and vanilla extract to the egg whites and whisk the mixture until is thick and glossy.
  3. Sift the flour and remaining sugar in 4 batches, folding in gently after each addition, until well combined.
  4. Share the mixture out equally between 5 bowls and then add drops of the different colour gel to each mixture until it's the colour you want it to be. Carefully fold in the mixture into the tins.
  5. Smooth the tops out with a metal spoon and bake the cakes on the middle shelf in the oven for 14-15 mins or until it's just firm to the touch (you only want it to be lightly browned on top) Once you take the cakes out of the oven, carefully turn them on to a wire rack so they can cool completely.
  6. To serve, put the butter in a mixing bowl and gradually sieve and mix in all but 1tsp of the icing sugar. Add in the vanilla extract and soft cheese and mix until it's a smooth, spreadable filling.
  7. Spread 4 cakes with the filling and sandwich the layers of the cake together. Serve dusted with remaining icing sugar.

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