Layers of light and buttery vanilla cakes studded with rainbow sprinkles and frosted with fluffy vanilla buttercream frosting. Such a fun and cheerful dessert!

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Funfetti Cake with Fluffy Vanilla Frosting |

My mother passed away a few weeks ago. She had been seriously ill since the new year, but her death was still sudden and expected, not to mention completely devastating.

I took a few weeks off to spend time with my family, say goodbye to mom, and try to process everything. It’s been hard, as I’m sure you can imagine. But I’m finally ready to get back in the kitchen and try to move on as best as I can.

Funfetti Cake with Fluffy Vanilla Frosting |

I also celebrated my birthday last week, which was really bad timing. I didn’t really feel like celebrating, so I laid pretty low and tried to not think about the fact that my mom wasn’t going to call. Thankfully I have awesome friends and family who cheered me up and made this gal feel loved.

Funfetti Cake with Fluffy Vanilla Frosting |

When I finally felt ready to enjoy a little birthday cake, I baked myself the happiest one I could think of— funfetti! It doesn’t get any cheerier than a cake filled with and covered in rainbow sprinkles.

The cake recipe is adapted from my basic vanilla layer cake. It’s light, tender, and has excellent buttery and vanilla flavor. The frosting is my favorite go-to— whipped vanilla buttercream. The secret is to use heavy cream instead of milk, and to beat it for a real long time to get it as fluffy as possible.

This cake is pure delight and all fun. And delicious too! Just want this girl needed.

I ate the whole thing and I don’t even feel bad about it.

Funfetti Cake with Fluffy Vanilla Frosting |

>> Have you tried this recipe? I’d love to hear about it! Leave a comment below, send me an email, or take a photo and tag it on instagram with #completelydelicious.

Funfetti Cake
Vanilla layer cakes filled with rainbow sprinkles frosted with fluffy vanilla buttercream frosting. It's the happiest cake ever!
Yield: 8 large servings
For the cake:
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1¼ cup (310 ml) buttermilk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon almond extract
  • 3 cups (360 grams) cake flour, sifted
  • 2 cups (400 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (226 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 egg whites
  • ½ cup sprinkles (see Notes)
For the frosting:
  • 4 cups (1 lb, 455 grams) powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1 cup (226 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • ¼ cup (60 ml) heavy whipping cream
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon almond extract
  • Sprinkles, for decorating
To make the cake:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two 8 or 9-inch pans with parchment paper and grease with butter and flour (see Notes).
  2. In a small bowl whisk together the eggs, ¼ cup of the buttermilk, the vanilla, and almond extract.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment or in a large bowl with a hand held mixer, combine the cake flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, butter, and remaining 1 cup of buttermilk. Beat on low speed until it comes together, then increase speed to high and beat until light and creamy, pausing to scrape down the bowl as needed, about 3-4 minutes. Add the egg mixture in 3 additions, mixing after each.
  4. In a separate mixer bowl (alternatively you can transfer batter to another bowl and wash that mixer bowl) with a whisk attachment beat the egg whites to soft peaks. Gently fold in two additions into the cake batter. Add the sprinkles with the second addition.
  5. Divide the cake batter evenly into the two pans and bake until the centers of the cakes bounce back when touched or a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out with a few moist crumbs. Let cool 10 minutes in the pan, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
To make the frosting and assemble cake:
  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, or in a large bowl with a hand held mixer, combine the powdered sugar, butter, heavy cream, salt, vanilla and almond extracts. Beat on low until the frosting comes together, then increase speed to high and beat until light and creamy, about 3-4 minutes.
  2. Place one cake layer on a cake stand or plate. Cover with 1 cup of frosting. Top with other cake layer. Cover completely with frosting and top with sprinkles as desired. For clean slices, let sit in the fridge for 20 minutes before slicing.
Do not use "nonpareil" sprinkles as they will bleed into your batter. Use "jimmies" or "confetti" sprinkles.

For a double layer 8-inch cake (as shown here) you'll need to use two 8-inch pans that are 4 inches deep. Shallower pans will not be able to hold all of the batter. You can also use more than 2 pans (washing and reusing pans as necessary) or use 9-inch pans.

Here are some tutorials to help you make your cake:
How to prepare cake pans
How to bake flat cake layers
How to cut a cake into even layers
How to build a layer cake

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24 Responses to Funfetti Cake

  1. Kay Anderson says:

    I was in tears before I ever got to the recipe. My heartfelt condolences to you and your family in this time of deep sadness. I have not experienced that grief yet, but I cannot imagine how much it will change my life.

    Good to see you back and with such a great recipe. I am going to bake it this weekend in honor of you and your mom. I love what you do on here in the wild, wild web. Thanks for sharing your life with us.

    • Annalise says:

      Your comment is one of the nicest I’ve ever received. Thanks so much, Kay. Readers like you keep me going!

  2. Emily R says:

    Sending you virtual hugs. <3 I am so sorry. Losing a parent is an unthinkable tragedy. I'm glad you have such a good support system of family and friends to help get you through this devastating time.

    Funfetti is the perfect cake to make – it truly is the happiest of cakes. I hope each day starts to get a little easier for you.

    • Annalise says:

      Thanks Emily! Each day is getting a little easier, especially thanks to kind words from people like you. 🙂

  3. Kate H says:

    I’ve never cried reading a recipe. I’m so sorry for you and the passing of your mom. To have a birthday and know she won’t be calling….. brought me to tears. My mom is dying. She’s almost 90 years old and I know how blessed I’ve been to have her in my life and cherish every moment with her. But life without my mom is unimaginable even knowing it’s inevitable . My youngest adult son loves confetti cake . I’m going to make this for his birthday this month. Will be thinking of you and our moms.

    • Annalise says:

      One thing I’ve learned from those around me is that it’s devastating to lose your mother, regardless of how old you both are. My thoughts are with you and your mother, and my heart goes out to you. Thank you so much for the kind words, Kate!

  4. My heart aches for you and your family, friend. I can’t imagine what loosing a parent, especially your own mother is like. Just know that it’s your turn now to carrying on her love, wisdom, quirks, laughter, and stories. The ultimate gift is life, but the true present is the tribe you leave behind. I know that will be the best mother to your two boys and that is where her love with shine the brightest. Happy Birthday again to you twinkie! You deserve nothing but the best. Love you!

  5. So sorry to hear about your mother. I can’t imagine what you’re feeling but I hope you find happiness and hope in the things around you. Big hugs! xx
    Beautiful cake, by the way!

  6. If anyone deserves a few extra sprinkles to their birthday month, it’s you. Your mom would love that you are choosing to make this next phase in your path one that’s filled with light and happiness. XOXO and keep the sprinkles coming.

  7. Fatty abregok says:

    Siento mucho tu pérdida. Te abrazo con cariño.

  8. Joanne says:

    I am so sorry for the loss of your mom! My mom passed away a few years ago, and it does take time to deal with it. This cake looks so colorful and delicious!

  9. Erin R. says:

    Ohhhh, Annalise. I’m sorry. You’re too young to lose your mom. I don’t know what I will do when it happens to me. I’d better go over to my mom’s house this weekend. I’m so very sorry.

  10. monica dunton says:

    I’m so sorry….lost my mom just a year ago. It IS hard and every holiday, celebration is hard. I too started crying before I got to the recipe and now I want to go to the kitchen and get baking. Baking must help you. THank you for the heartfelt post.

    • Annalise says:

      Monica, I’m so sorry to hear you’ve lost your mom as well. It just plain sucks, huh? Yes, baking does help some, especially baking recipes we baked together. 🙂

  11. Alice says:

    So sorry to hear about your mom. My mom passed away a few years ago so I definitely know how difficult this is.

    Eat as much cake as you want!


  12. Jackie says:

    Hi Annalise

    I’m so sorry you lost your mom, but I know your mom would want you to move on and not sit around and mope. Enjoy every minute you have with your family and friends, bcuz you just don’t know when it’s your last day. Here today and could be gone tomorrow. Sometimes you just don’t know. So just try enjoy and live every moment you can.

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