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+ servings

Fluffy Vanilla Birthday Cake with Sprinkles

A light, moist and delicious frosted vanilla cake with sprinkles - my favorite and perfect for a birthday or any celebration!
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword birthday cake, cake for girl, vanilla cake for birthday
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings 12 servings
Calories 454 kcal


Vanilla Cake:

  • 3 cups cake flour sifted (345 g)
  • 2 cups granulated sugar 400 g
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder 17 g
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt 2.5 g
  • 5 large egg whites at room temperature (150 g)
  • 1 whole egg at room temperature
  • 1 cup whole milk or full fat buttermilk at room temperature 237 ml
  • 2-1/4 teaspoons pure vanilla extract 12 ml
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter cold and cut into 24 even pieces (170 g)

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting:

  • 1-1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter softened to room temperature
  • 3 - 3-1/2 cups powdered sugar sifted
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • Seeds scraped from one vanilla bean or add 1 more teaspoon of pure vanilla extract
  • 3-4 tablespoons heavy cream
  • pinch salt


  • rainbow sprinkles I used about 1 cup of rainbow jimmies


For Vanilla Cake:

  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease three 6-inch cake pans with non-stick baking spray (I use Baker's Joy) and line the bottom with parchment paper.
  2. In a medium bowl or measuring cup, combine and whisk together the egg whites, whole egg, 1/4 cup of milk, and the vanilla extract. Set aside.
  3. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the dry ingredients together on low speed for 1 minute.
  4. Add the cold butter one piece at a time, about every 10 seconds. (I like to keep some in the refrigerator while I'm adding pieces to ensure that the butter stays cold) until all the pieces are added.

  5. Continue to mix on low until the mixture is a fine crumbly texture. Add 3/4 cup milk, and mix on low speed for 5 minutes. Make sure to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl down.
  6. Begin to add the egg mixture in 3 separate batches making sure to scrape the sides and bottom before and after each batch, mixing until light, fluffy, homogenous and well incorporated. Fold once or twice to ensure the batter at bottom of the bowl is incorporated.
  7. Divide the batter evenly into the prepared pans.
  8. Bake until a cake tester comes out with a few crumbs when inserted into the center, about 25-30 minutes. Be very careful to not over-bake. Check cake at 20 minutes, but not before, and then set the timer for 2-minute intervals. Let cool on racks for 10 minutes before loosening the sides with a small metal spatula, and invert onto greased wire racks. Gently turn cakes back up, so the tops are up and cool completely.
  9. Wrap tightly and store at room temperature for up to 2 days, refrigerator for up to 5 days, or frozen for up to 2 months. Best eaten the same day as baked.

For the Vanilla Bean Frosting:

  1. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, whip the butter until light and creamy for about 7-8 minutes on medium speed.
  2. Add the vanilla extract, vanilla bean seeds and salt and mix until combined. Slowly add in the confectioners' sugar one cup at a time and mix on low speed for about a minute and then on medium speed for 3 minutes. Add the heavy cream one tablespoon at a time until desired consistency reached. Whip on medium speed for another 2-3 minutes. The frosting will be very light, creamy, and fluffy and is best used right away.

To Assemble the Cake:

  1. Place the bottom cake layer on a cake plate. Serrate or cut off the top of the cake with a sharp knife if needed for an even layer. Spread 1/4 - 1/3 cup of frosting on top with a small offset spatula. Gently place 2nd cake layer face down on top. Place another 1/4 - 1/3 cup of frosting on top. Gently add the 3rd cake layer. Add a generous scoop of frosting and spread evenly with a small offset spatula working your way down the sides until you have a thin layer of frosting over the entire cake. Chill until set, about 30 minutes.
  2. Remove from refrigerator and apply a final “coat” of frosting. Decorate with sprinkles if desired.

Recipe Notes

Barely adapted from The Cake Bible

*Be careful not to overbake since every oven is different. Know your oven.

*This recipe is written for a 6" three layer cake - please make sure to increase the baking time to around 28-30 minutes and amount of frosting per layer if you are making this into an 8" two layer cake.

Nutrition Facts
Fluffy Vanilla Birthday Cake with Sprinkles
Amount Per Serving (1 slice (1/12 recipe))
Calories 454 Calories from Fat 198
% Daily Value*
Fat 22g34%
Saturated Fat 13g65%
Cholesterol 72mg24%
Sodium 139mg6%
Potassium 223mg6%
Carbohydrates 57g19%
Sugar 34g38%
Protein 6g12%
Vitamin A 710IU14%
Calcium 97mg10%
Iron 0.5mg3%
* Nutrition facts are provided as a courtesy using the WPRM recipe calculator. It is best to make your own calculations to ensure accuracy. We expressly disclaim any and all liability of any kind with respect to any act or omission wholly or in part in reliance on anything contained in this website. Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.