Cake for 60

My friend’s wedding is coming up this weekend, so the cakes were baked last week and are happily camping in the freezer, wrapped in plastic and tinfoil, awaiting transport to Vancouver in a few days. Baking the cakes was something I was a little worried about, despite the relative success of the trial run – would they bake evenly, would I have enough batter, would they taste good enough? Turns out all my fears were totally unfounded: the cakes turned out perfectly. They baked in flat, even layers (thanks so the wet towel/cake diaper trick) and they all baked in exactly 50 minutes, no matter which pan size. Even the big 10-inch baked evenly all the way to the middle without a heating core or anything.Remember the confidence I had in my math skillz when I calculated how much batter I would need and how I would need to scale the recipe? I was fairly sure that I would end up with just shy of the right amount of batter, but I got that part totally wrong: I ended up with about 2 cups of extra batter, which is definitely better than 2 cups too little! This meant that I got to use the extra batter to make these sweet little shell-cakes:I made one-and-a half times the recipe below and ended up with about 16 1/2 cups of batter, enough for two 10-inch, two 8-inch, and two 6-inch rounds, each 1 1/2 inches high when baked, plus a bunch of little shell cakes πŸ˜‰ I mixed the batter in three batches (a half recipe each), then mixed them all together in one big bowl to make sure the batter was uniform. Some of the batter sat for quite a while because I could only bake two cakes at once, and I was concerned that the baking powder and baking soda would lose their leavening power before they hit the oven, but it didn’t seem to make any difference πŸ™‚ Success!

Update: here’s my tutorial for how to frost and assemble the wedding cake from start to finish.

Lemon Butter Cake

Adapted from Cakewalk by Margaret Braun

This cake is delicious and lemon-y and has a texture similar to pound cake. The yield is for two 10-inch round cakes (about 4 1/4 cups of batter each), but I found I could use less batter per cake, as follows:

6-inch round: 1 1/4 cups

8-inch round: 2 1/4 cups

10-inch round: 3 2/3 cups

May 2016 update: For a vanilla version of this cake (and the ingredients in weights) see this post.

Preheat oven to 325˚F. Butter and flour your cake pans, and line the bottoms with parchment paper (*see note at bottom).Sift together the dry ingredients:

5 cups all purpose flour

2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp salt

In a mixer bowl, cream together:

2 cups unsalted butter, softened

4 cups granulated sugar

Beat until light and fluffy, then add:

6 large eggs

Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. When the eggs are incorporated, stir in:

2 tsp vanilla extract

grated zest of 4 lemons

juice of 1 lemon

Add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture alternately with:

2 cups sour cream

(Start and end with the sour cream – sour cream in four additions, dry ingredients in three additions.)

Scrape the bottom of the bowl periodically and stir until just mixed.Pour the batter into the prepared pans and spread it level. Whack the bottom of the pan against the counter a few times to release any large air bubbles in the batter. Wrap the outside of each cake pan with a strip of wet towel.Bake at 325˚F for 50 minutes, turning the pans half way through baking time, until golden brown on top and a skewer inserted in the centre of each cake comes out clean.Let the cakes cool in the pan for about 15 minutes before removing from the pan, otherwise the cake will stick and you’ll end up leaving chunks behind in the pan. Peel off the parchment paper from the bottom and let the cakes cool completely on a wire rack before decorating or freezing.To freeze, wrap each cake individually in plastic wrap, then in aluminum foil to seal out the air completely. Should keep for up to 1 month in the freezer if properly wrapped. Allow to thaw before decorating.

*To cut a perfectly-sized round of parchment paper for the bottom of your pan: (sorry for the terrible pictures – bad lighting!)

Fold your parchment paper in half then in half again to form a square.Fold the square in half on the diagonal…then fold again to form a point.Turn your cake pan over and place the point of the parchment paper in the middle of the pan. Mark the edge of the pan, and cut the parchment paper.Unfold and you have the perfect circle for the bottom of your pan πŸ™‚

Comments

  1. Wendy says

    Mmmm, very impressive. I wish I could be at the wedding so I could have a taste! I can’t wait to see the finished product!

          • Korena in the Kitchen says

            talia asked: “hello sorry but i didnΒ΄t understand how many times i have to make the recipe to achieve el 6 pans πŸ™ can u please explain me :)”

            Sorry Talia, your comment got lost as I was making some changes to the blog, so I hope you check back to see this answer! I made the recipe 1.5 times to make the 6 cakes (2 x 6″ round, 2 x 8″ round, 2 x 10″ round).

          • stacy says

            I’m sorry, but the stupid tradition of smashing wedding cake in each others faces is just beyond childish! Be classy!!!! Don’t do it!

            • Korena in the Kitchen says

              Ehhh, to each their own, especially on your wedding day! But I’d vote no smashing because I wouldn’t want to waste the cake πŸ˜‰

            • says

              @Stacy, I definitely agree with you. A wedding should be an elegant, classy event, and not act the way kids would in a school cafeteria. I’ve always thought smashing cake into the bride or groom’s face is just tacky and shows no class. I’ve been making wedding cakes for four decades, and would hate to think of one of my cakes being remembered for being smashed in someone’s face.

  2. Sierra Kathleen says

    This cake looks absolutely wonderful, just what I was looking for! I’m getting married in June, and my fiance & I decided on a lemon pound cake sort of cake to serve with strawberries and whipped cream πŸ™‚

    • Korena in the Kitchen says

      That’s a good question. I’ve only ever used it on cakes that have a tendency to dome in the middle, ie: the outside edges bake faster than the center and it rises up. I don’t think it would hurt on a sponge type cake – it would just encourage more even baking.

      • says

        I have been making my own towel wrap for a while but I really like the way you did it. It is thicker and you use a safety pin. I made mine with old towels and I just realized they are not thick enough. Thank you for sharing!

  3. Eryn says

    Hi Koreana,
    How do you keep your cakes from sweating when thawing? That is the biggest reason I avoid freezing! Thanks!!

    • Korena in the Kitchen says

      Hi Eryn, I’ve never really noticed it being a problem. If there’s ever any moisture on the tops of my cakes, I just dab it off with a paper towel πŸ˜‰ However if you thawed the cakes overnight in the fridge, they would thaw more slowly and re-absorb any moisture that might otherwise turn into “sweat”.

  4. Brittney Schwaget says

    Hi I am wondering if you would need to measure out the ingredients first for three batches or do one at a time? Thanks! I have been baking for a while and I am looking for this in my future πŸ™‚

    • Korena in the Kitchen says

      Hi Brittney, I made 3 x half batches of the recipe as written to make the cakes pictured (which gave me a total of 1.5 x the recipe as written), and did each half batch one at a time. Does that make sense?

  5. EmilyC says

    If I wanted to do vanilla cake instead of lemon, would I just take the lemon components out and add vanilla?

    • Korena in the Kitchen says

      Yes, exactly – the recipe already includes 2 tsp vanilla, so just omit the lemon zest and juice. You could add the seeds scraped from a vanilla bean if you wanted it to be really vanilla-y.

  6. Brittney Schwager says

    Hi, could you just add vanilla and almond extract or do you only have to add vanilla? Also do you have any recommendations for frosting great frosting recipes? Thanks!

  7. EmilyC says

    Ok. Question! lol. Does the recipe make enough batter for the 2 layers of each size? So about 14 cups of batter?

    • Korena in the Kitchen says

      Hi Emily – to make enough batter for 2 layers of each cake (6″, 8″ and 10″ rounds) I made 1.5 times the recipe as written (in 3 half batches to fit in my mixer better). I used the amounts of batter per cake pan that I describe in the notes before the recipe. Hope that helps!

  8. Angela says

    Omg. This was the best looking cake. We have decided this lemon cake is our all time favorite. Thanks for putting the receipt and pics on line. Yum.

  9. Carlene Danielek says

    Korena…where did you get the adorable she’ll mini cake pans??? So cute and I will be making a wedding cake for an oceanside wedding…would love to make these!!!

      • roxana says

        Hi, korene, your cake is amazing, But i have a question,could i substitute the sourcream For buttermilk? Thank you

        • Korena in the Kitchen says

          Hi Roxana, I just did some Google research on buttermilk vs sour cream, and I wouldn’t recommend the substitution – sour cream and buttermilk have very different fat contents (buttermilk has almost no fat in in, whereas sour cream has lots) so substituting one for the other could alter the cake quite a lot. If you want to use buttermilk I’d suggest finding a pound cake recipe that is formulated specifically with buttermilk instead πŸ™‚

            • Korena in the Kitchen says

              Hi Janelle, I guess you couldn’t completely rule out the possibility of the towel catching fire, but I’ve been doing the wet towel trick for several years now and it’s never happened to me. As long as the oven temperature isn’t super hot (and it shouldn’t be, for a cake) and the towels wraps don’t get anywhere near the heating element, you should be fine. I figure, people bake with parchment paper all the time and it doesn’t catch fire, right?

  10. ellen coletta says

    I want to try the wet towel trick what did you use to attach to the pan? Thank you for this post.

  11. says

    Thank you SO MUCH for this!! I’m an avid baker, but have never attempted to make a wedding cake before. My sister’s wedding is in two weeks and I’m so happy I found your article. I probably made your recipe (and used your wet towel technique–brilliant!) five times over the yield the quantity of cake I needed. I now have your recipe memorized. Haha. Not only is the cake delicious, but it seems pretty resilient…like it’ll hold its own when I start stacking the tiers. Thank you for this post! I think you saved my life πŸ˜›

    • Korena in the Kitchen says

      YAY I’m so glad the cake recipe worked well for you! That is a LOT of cake! And yes, it should be super resilient when you stack it – it was formulated specifically for that sort of thing by Margaret Braun, who is a wedding cake magician. Good luck with all of it – I’d love to see a photo when you’re done!!

  12. ines says

    Thank you so much for this tutorial!! I think i am still confused about the actual measures used for the cake. For example, for two 10″ cakes, did you use 3 2/3 cups together (to make two cakes) or 3 2/3 cups was used to make one 10″ cake. Thank you so much in advance!!

    • Korena in the Kitchen says

      Hi Ines, these measures are per cake:

      6-inch round: 1 1/4 cups per pan
      8-inch round: 2 1/4 cups per pan
      10-inch round: 3 2/3 cups per pan

      I baked two of each cake. Does that help?

  13. Edwina Hill says

    Well , Hello Korena. I read all the comments and got all my questions answered Thank you very much. I am making my nephews wedding cake and needed a yummy but firm and moist cake. Your recipe sounds like just what I need. Thank you

    • Korena in the Kitchen says

      Awesome, I’m so glad the comments were helpful πŸ™‚ Good luck with your nephew’s wedding cake! I’d love to hear how it turns out πŸ™‚

  14. Ines says

    Hi Korena,
    I have one more question! How many cups of batter would you use for one 12″ round cake? Thank you in advance!

  15. says

    I am trying to find ideas to make a 80th birthday cake for my ma. She just happens to love lemon! I pray I can pull something as awesome as that off!

  16. Ido says

    Hi! Thanks for the fantastic guide.
    I’m using 6 inch, 9 inch and 11 and a half inch cake tins.
    How many cups of batter would you recommend using for each cake tin?
    Also, would greek yoghurt make a good substitute for sour cream?
    Thank you!

    • Korena in the Kitchen says

      For the 11.5″ round tin, I’d go with 4 1/4 cups of batter. For the 9″, I’d use 2 3/4 cups of batter. For the 6″, 1 1/4 cups. And yes, Greek yogurt would probably work well instead of sour cream (but make sure it is full fat yogurt, as sour cream contains a fair amount of fat).

  17. candice says

    Is the amounts you’re using for 1.5 the recipe? I need to make 2 12′ cakes and I’m unsure if I need to double this recipe?

    • Korena in the Kitchen says

      You could probably make the recipe as written and get 2 x 12 inch cakes from it just fine. The amounts as written are for one recipe, not 1.5 (I made 1.5 x the recipe to get 2 of each 6, 8, and 10 inch cakes).

    • Korena in the Kitchen says

      Yes, if you are stacking this cake (or any cake) I would highly recommend using some kind of support system – wooden dowels or otherwise. They should go in each tier that is supporting something on top of it.

      • Bonnie says

        This recipe sounds so good can’t wait to try it I love lemon. I have to do a wedding cake soon and the bride wants red velvet & chocolate. If I use your recipe omit the lemon & use cocoa instead do you think it would be good?

        • Korena in the Kitchen says

          Hi Bonnie, this is an excellent lemon cake (or vanilla cake if you omit the lemon) but I don’t think it would be very good as a chocolate cake – it’s not just as simple as adding cocoa powder, unfortunately! Most chocolate cake recipes (the best ones, anyway) have a very different formula/ingredients. But if you are looking for a great chocolate cake recipe, I can recommend this one: http://korenainthekitchen.com/2012/02/14/rebar-chocolate-cake/. And if you need a red velvet cake recipe, this one is great! I’ve also made it as a 3-tier wedding cake and it worked well: http://korenainthekitchen.com/2014/07/22/the-best-red-velvet-cake-with-magical-cream-cheese-frosting/

          • Bonnie Page says

            Thank you so much for the info about the chocolate. The recipes you sent sound heavenly. I hope to make a test cake of chocolate for bride to taste. She also thought about chocolate pound
            cake instead of layers. I know the texture would be different do you think that would work as well. If I use your chocolate recipe how many batches would I need for 2 12″ layers & 2 6″ layers that are 2″ deep.

            • Korena in the Kitchen says

              Hi Bonnie,

              Chocolate pound cake would be really good, I’m sure!

              For the chocolate cake recipe I linked to, it makes 3 x 8″ layers, which is the equivalent of 2 x 9″ layers, each 2″ deep. For 2 x 6″ layers, you need half the recipe. For 2 x 12″ layers, I’d double the recipe. So for all the layers you asked about, you’d need 2.5 x the recipe, with maybe a bit left over for cupcakes (always better than not enough!). This chart might be helpful for determining batter amounts for pan size: http://www.wilton.com/cakes/making-cakes/baking-serving-guide.cfm

  18. Sondra says

    Hi, I have made cakes for years at home for family and profit. If you remove a cake immediately to a cake round. Then flip to upright cake, wrap in plastic coated freezer paper and place in freezer immediately it will remain moist and will be solid for leveling when ready to decorate. The steam allowed to escape when cooling on a rack is preserved. Losing that moisture in the cooling process is what makes cakes dry. Crumb sealing and decorating is much easier when the cake is firm.

  19. Kathy says

    do you think that I could add butter extract and leave out the lemon yest. My daughter in law want a butter cake for her wedding?

    • Korena in the Kitchen says

      Hi Kathy, for a butter cake, just omit the lemon – no butter extract necessary! This cake is plenty buttery on its own.

  20. Eri says

    The taste is amazing, i made them today and its my fav butter cake recipe from now on ! the only thing is that they didnt rise as beautiful as yours… Do you have some tips that could help.me achive better rising ? or maybe am doing something wrong πŸ™
    Grettings from Mex:)

    • Korena in the Kitchen says

      Hi Eri, glad the cakes tasted good for you! As for rising – one good tip is to make sure you beat the butter, sugar, and eggs together until VERY light and fluffy. Second, maybe check the expiry date on your baking powder and soda – if they are old, they tend not to react as well to make things rise.

    • Korena in the Kitchen says

      Yes, definitely! Just replace the lemon zest and juice with orange. I bet it would be delicious πŸ™‚

  21. Debra Burbank says

    I made your cake and it turned out wonderful!! Lots of compliments on the taste!! Thank you! This will be the recipe I will use over and over!

  22. hellen says

    Hullo Korean can’t wait to try your cake today.l live in Africa please give me these measurements in grams can’t get cups

    • Korena in the Kitchen says

      Hi Ahjane, sorry for the late reply. Yes, you can make 1/4 of the batter (just divide all the ingredients by 4) and then bake it in 2 x 6″ round cake pans, or 1 x 8″ cake pan. For 1/4 of the recipe, you will need 1 1/2 eggs – for that 1/2 egg, you could either use just the yolk, or beat a whole egg together and then just add half of it to the batter (along with one whole egg, of course). Hope that helps. Good luck!

  23. Alex says

    Hey Korena! I absolutely love this recipe. I will be making a 3-tier cake for my niece’s event, however, I need this cake to be white. Will skipping egg yolks ruin the recipe? Can I use egg whites only?

    • Korena in the Kitchen says

      Hi Alex, this recipe was formulated to use egg yolks, which contain a fair amount of fat, so I’m not sure how the recipe would turn out without them. I’d use a proper white cake recipe instead if you really want the cake to be white. This one looks pretty good: http://iambaker.net/the-perfect-white-cake/ – you could omit the almond extract and add lemon juice and zest if you want. Good luck!

  24. maria says

    Hi Korena, have you ever frosted a wedding cake and froze it for later? Whether with buttercream or fondant? If so, how did it turn out?

    • Korena in the Kitchen says

      Hi Maria, no I haven’t ever frosted a wedding cake and then frozen it… I have a tiny freezer with not enough space for a frosted cake and I’d be concerned that the frosting would get marred in between storage and thawing, so I’m more comfortable frosting it at the last minute (I did work at a grocery store in high school and I know the bakery successfully froze buttercream frosted cakes… so it can be done). I haven’t worked a lot with fondant and have never frozen a fondant-covered cake… but this link might be helpful? http://rosebakes.com/can-freeze-fondant-decorated-cake/ Good luck!

  25. JanC says

    Hello Korena, I have just joined pintrest and found your lovely cake. The tip with the wet towels I am just going to have to try, the recipes in cups are a bit strange to us accross the pond, weights would be easier thank you so much for sharing this, a little question though, how do you attach the fresh flowers on the cake and would the cream be safe to eat where the flowers were?
    Thanks again JanC
    England

    • Korena in the Kitchen says

      Hi Jan, I hope the wet towel trick works out for you! I recently made this cake for my own wedding in September and converted the recipe to weights, but I haven’t gotten around to posting it yet… stay tuned! As for the flowers: to attach them to the cake I just stuck the stems into the frosting. You want to make sure that the flowers are non-poisonous (this means that the frosting where they touch is fine to eat) and also that they are hardy enough not to wilt without being in water.

      • JanC says

        Thank you again Korea, I have cut my towels up ready for the 6″8″and 10″ cakes I am making for a wedding on 5th April, it would be really helpful if you could give me the batter weights 8n grams or ounces for a 2″ deep cake in each tin. Love all your really helpful tips and recipes. JanC

        • Korena in the Kitchen says

          Hi Jan, delayed response here… I’m sorry but I don’t have the batter weights. Your best bet is to fill each tin to 2/3 full and then write down how much it weighs so that you can duplicate it with the second cake of the same size. Good luck with the wedding cake – I’m sure it will be fantastic!

  26. says

    Korena, your photo shows the cakes wrapped & stacked. Silly question but you didn’t freeze them like that, right? And do you use a special type of plastic wrap? Thanks – can’t wait to try this!

  27. Monideepa says

    Hi. I bake my cake in microwave oven (convection mode). Is it safe to use wet towels in it? Won’t it get burned? I am scared.

    • Korena in the Kitchen says

      Hi Monideepa, I have never used a convection microwave oven so I’m not sure about the safety. I can tell you that the point of the wet towel is to help the cake bake more evenly in a regular oven, however from what I’ve read, the microwave part of a convection microwave oven does that already, so the wet towel may not be necessary? That’s my guess, anyway.

  28. says

    This is by far the best tutorial on wedding cakes I’ve seen. I haven’t made a wedding cake in about 20 years. Things have really changed. It is June 2, out doors at 6pm in Delaware.
    1. Will your cream cheese meringue hold a rosette. I typically just use a standard cream cheese icing. But I’ve never used it outdoors.
    2. Also, is the cake moist?
    3. And what do you do with all the left-over egg yolks?

    Thank you for sharing this! I was trying my best to avoid the typical Wilton/crisco/buttercream. This sounds great.

    • Korena in the Kitchen says

      Thank for the compliment! To answer your questions:
      1) yes, it will hold a rosette (here’s proof: https://www.pinterest.com/pin/45458277465363553/)
      2) yes, this cake is moist – when assembling, you can also brush a simple syrup on each layer for extra moisture and flavour.
      3) haha, I don’t actually remember – I probably saved them to make lemon curd or something! You could just use pasteurized egg whites in a carton instead and save yourself the trouble of left-over yolks.

      Best of luck with your cake!

  29. Robin says

    A tip I learned from a cake decorating instructor is you don’t have to cool the cake before wrapping in plastic wrap. You can wrap it straight out of the pan and then cool before freezing it. The benefit is a the cake keeps the extra moisture and there aren’t as many crumbs on it.

  30. Sheila Bradford says

    By wrapping pan with a wet towel, keeps it Baking evenly , without center domeing in center?? Sounds interesting to try…

  31. hannah says

    Hi! So I made exactly this three tiered two layer each cake for my cousins wedding coming up in a few weeks and its now happily waiting in the freezer. I am planning on frosting, filling, assembling, and decorating the morning of at the wedding. When do you think I should start to thaw? Should I thaw while it is still all wrapped up or take the plastic and foil off first? I am taking a bus from to philly to ny the day before the big day which is where the wedding is. Should I travel with the cake all wrapped up? I was thinking to tale the cake out the day before all wrapped, get on the bus, and have the cake sit out at room temp overnight the night before. Help? πŸ™‚ your recipe made this whole process doable. THANK YOU!!

    • Korena in the Kitchen says

      Hi Hannah! I’m so excited for your cake!! In terms of thawing and travel: definitely keep the cakes wrapped in the plastic and foil while thawing, until you are ready to assemble. Likely the cakes will need about 24 hours to thaw completely, so take them out of the freezer the day before, ie: the day you travel, still wrapped, and they’ll be fine. You could probably actually keep them in the fridge overnight before you assemble them (if they’ve fully/mostly thawed by then) – I find it easier to work with a chilled cake (less crumbs and it helps the icing to set up nicely). GOOD LUCK!! I’d love an update after the wedding πŸ™‚

  32. Katt Toney says

    I am soooo amazed at the wet towel making a level cake…I just got my second pans out of the oven. I baked one 6″, one 8″, and one 10″ at the same time, did it twice. Your measurements are perfect. My cakes look just like yours “YAY”.I mixed 1.5x and it is perfect. I had about 2 cups left over that is in the oven now. I’m going to freeze them and decorate them next week for my parents 50th wedding anniversary, so now if the decorating goes well, I’ll be one very happy girl…The cakes came out of the pans perfectly, I have NEVER baked a level cake in my life, always had to trim them..lol..So just wanted to say Thank You and this is my new favorite recipe! Everyone reading comments, follow her recipe exactly and the cakes are beautiful….btw, I did the vanilla version…..and I mixed 3 half batches, my mixer wouldn’t have accommodated a whole batch either…:):):)xo……

    • Korena in the Kitchen says

      Awww thanks Katt! I agree, the wet towel trick is pretty magical – I’m still always amazed by it πŸ™‚

  33. Marianne from New Zealand says

    What a great recipe and full of really clear instructions! I have a big anniversary cake to make for my parents in law, which is tomorrow. I have made the cakes and they look great! Thanks for putting up the recipe. I know it would have taken a while for you to write it up, but I just wanted you to know that we all appreciate the fact that you did. πŸ™‚

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