I'm pretty sure that the very best birthday parties happen at Abby's house. Every year I'm in awe of the super duper cutie parties she throws for her kiddos, and this year's Pancakes and Pajamas party she threw for Audrey? Takes the cake. Well, pancake cake that is—the perfect birthday cake for this all-out-fun theme. Grab the recipe below and go ahead, sneak some frosting in the meantime!
2 Boxed White Cake Mixes, prepared per instructions
8-9" round pans (we used disposable pie pans)
Parchment paper and/or spray
5 sticks butter, unsalted and softened
6-7 cups confectioners sugar
3 tbsp milk
1 tbsp vanilla
Preheat your oven per the instructions on your cake mix. Make the boxed cake mix. We used Betty Crocker and combined both mixes into one bowl. Prepare your pans by either lining with parchment paper, spraying well with cooking spray (what we did) or using oil and flour to coat the bottom and sides.
You should get about 6 "pancake" cake layers with each box so a total of about 12 layers. We scooped approximately 2/3 cup of batter into the base of the cake pan and made sure that it completely covered the bottom. The amount you use, will depend on the size of the pan you have. There is no exact science and if you need reassurance, remember that no two pancakes are exactly alike so it's totally fine if your layers are a little uneven.
Bake for 1/2 the time noted on your boxed mix. Ours baked up in about 8-10 minutes. When your cake begins to brown and pull away from the sides, it's ready to go. Let them sit in the pan for another 10 minutes, then flip them out onto a cooling rack or a paper towel to completely cool.
Meanwhile, make your frosting. You need A LOT of frosting because you'll also adding a big layer of "whipped cream" to the top. Not whipped cream at all, just a big ol' blob of buttercream.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with your paddle attachment, whip up your softened butter on medium until it's light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes. Turn your mixer to very low and slowly add your confectioners sugar, about 1 cup at a time until totally incorporated. Add your milk and vanilla, stirring to combine, then crank that baby up a bit and whip the frosting for another couple of minutes.
*Would be nice to add maple syrup to your frosting. Yum!
Prepare Your Glaze
1 cup powdered sugar
2 tbsp milk
Stir to combine then set aside.
Construct Your Cake
Each cake needs to be completely level, so trip the rounded top off of each layer. It won't be much cake but it will help the cake to sit tall and even. You can discard or devour the scraps.
Place a small blob of frosting on your pedestal or on a cake round. We constructed ours directly on the pedestal. Add your first layer of cake. Then, using an ice cream scoop, spoon about a scoop and a half of frosting onto your cake. Spread around very carefully, taking time to avoid pulling up any crumbs if you can. You want to go completely to the edges of the cake.
Add your second layer of cake and repeat with the frosting. Repeat this process until your cake is as high as you want. We did about 8 layers without needing additional support. If you are going to go higher, place 4 straws (cut to the height of the cake) into your cake and top them with a cardboard cake round about halfway through.
When you've reached the top, add your glaze, spreading it to the edges so that it spills over the sides of the cake. Let sit until it's set up completely, about 30 minutes. Pop it in the fridge for a faster experience.
Add the "Whipped Cream"
For our topping, you could most definitely use real whipped cream. But we wanted to use a sturdier buttercream so we used the last of our buttercream and a piping bag to create a whipped cream effect.
Place about 1—1.5 cups of buttercream in a pastry bag fitted with a star shaped tip. Sizing here doesn't really matter but we used a Wilton 21. Pipe a completely filled circle about 4" in diameter. Then, starting on the inside of the circle and working your way out, pipe an ice cream inspired cone of frosting. Perfection is not necessary. Top with sprinkles!
Photography: Ruth Eileen Photography | Event Design: Abby Larson