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Heather Wong of Flouring LA has created the ultimate birthday centrepiece.

| By Antonia Day | Recipes

Get the Party Started with This 3D Vanilla Sprinkle Cake

Heather Wong of Flouring LA has created the ultimate birthday centrepiece.

Welcome to Put on a Spread, a recipe series that takes you inside the kitchens – and dining rooms – of some of our favourite home cooks. For this instalment, LA-based chef Heather Wong of Flouring LA shares her recipe for a 3D Vanilla Sprinkle Cake.


For the cake

  • 1 ½ cups granulated sugar
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, room temp
  • 4 large eggs, room temp (for emulsification)
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ tsp kosher salt
  • 1 cup full cream milk
  • 3 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 tsp oil, (I like using grapeseed)
  • ¼ cup rainbow Jimmie sprinkles

For the vanilla buttercream

  • 340g unsalted butter
  • 1 ⅓ cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1-2 tbsp heavy cream
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp kosher salt


To bake cake

  • Preheat the oven to 180ºC/350ºF.
  • Grease 3, 6-inch cake pans and line with parchment round.
  • For best results, sift together flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
  • Mix together milk, oil, and vanilla. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl, mix butter with a hand mixer until lightened in colour for 2 minutes.
  • Add sugar and mix on high speed for 5 minutes, until tripled in volume and lightened in colour.
  • Add eggs one at a time, mixing into batter for 10 seconds before adding the next. Blend on high until fully emulsified into batter, about 2-3 minutes.
  • In 3 parts, add ⅓ of the flour mixture to batter, blend for a few seconds, then add ⅓ of the milk mixture, blend for a few seconds. Repeat 2 more times until flour and milk mixture is added. Blend on high for about 7 seconds to ensure everything is fully blended together, but not overmixed.
  • Gently fold in sprinkles.
  • Pour batter evenly amongst the 3 pans.  Tap the bottom of the pans on the counter to release bubbles.
  • Bake for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown and toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean. Allow to cool 15 minutes before removing from the pan.

To make buttercream

  • In a large bowl, mix butter until lightened in colour for 2 minutes.
  • Add powdered sugar and mix on low then increase speed, for 3 minutes.
  • Add heavy cream, salt, vanilla, and a few drops of Color Mill’s “Dusk” food colour and mix on high for another 5 minutes until light, fluffy, and no graininess remain. Continue to mix on high if there's graininess.

To decorate the cake

  • Using an offset spatula, add a dollop of buttercream to your cake plate and place the first layer of cake down and centered. Add 2 heaping scoops of buttercream to the top and smooth your frosting evening across the cake. Repeat this step for the second layer.
  • Once the top cake layer has been added. Frost your cake completely with a generous layer of buttercream. Using your bench scraper and rotating your cake turntable to ensure the sides and top of your cake are smooth. Once satisfied with your smooth buttercream sides and edges, transfer your cake to the refrigerator to firm up while you prepare fondant decor.
  • On a flat surface, generously sprinkle your work surface with corn flour. Using a rolling pin, roll out your light purple fondant to 1⁄4 inch layer. Place your 6-inch cake pan over the center of the fondant, and using your pizza cutter, cut a gentle wave-like pattern around the pan at least 3-4 inches wider than the pan. Remove and reserve the excess fondant and set aside in plastic wrap so it doesn't dry out.
  • Remove your chilled cake from the refrigerator and place the waved patterned fondant over the top of the cake, using both dry hands to gently press the sides of the fondant down against the cake to create a faux cartoon frosting look.
  • Fit a pastry bag with the medium round piping tip and fill with the leftover pink frosting. Pipe faux sprinkles all over the top of the fondant layer to create the appearance of large cartoon looking sprinkles. Once again, transfer the cake to the refrigerator to chill while moving on to making the candle.
  • Roll out 1⁄2 cup of white fondant and 1⁄2 cup leftover purple fondant into long pasta-like strings, 1⁄4 inch thick. Holding both long pieces of fondant together, wet a wooden skewer or dowel and wrap the fondant piece around the stick, creating a swirly cartoon candle. Leave an inch of stick at the top and at least 3 inches at the bottom to insert into the cake.
  • Take a small piece of your yellow fondant and roll it into a ball and using your fingers press it into a flame shape. Add the flame to the top of the candlestick. Stick the skewer into a colander to dry upright.
  • Fit a piping bag with your star tip and fill with the remaining pink buttercream. Pipe a frosting swirl on top of the cake.
  • Stick your candle in the top of the swirl.
  • Fill a piping bag with black buttercream. Snip a small hole at the end. This will be for adding the cartoon bordering effect. Remove chilled cake from the refrigerator and following the outlines of your sprinkles, frosted top swirl and edges of fondant, slowly pipe a single outline of buttercream to create a cartoon effect. Don't forget to pipe along the bottom of the cake! Photograph for best cartoon results!

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