Christmas Tree Cake

December is already here, and it’s the holiday season, so this week, I’m taking a break from my regular baking and getting to my Christmas baking. Instead of making a regular round cake, I thought, why not make a Christmas tree-shaped cake filled with lots of color just like a real Christmas tree!

Ingredients for the Cake:

  • 3 cups cake flour (or all-purpose)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 3/4 cup oil
  • 1 cup buttermilk (or regular milk)

Ingredients for the Frosting:

  • 2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted, room temperature/softened butter
  • 3 1/2 cups of SIFTED powdered sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • app. 2 tbsp cream or milk as needed
  • pinch of salt
  • White, pink, and green gel food coloring.


  • You can use regular milk, but I like the flavor that buttermilk gives.
  • I use cake flour because it makes the cakes more fluffy and soft, but if you don’t have cake flour, you can also use regular flour.
  • I let my cake cool overnight.
  • You are welcome to use your favorite vanilla sheet cake recipe. The same goes for frosting. 
  • You can customize the frosting colors and tips, but I mentioned what I used. 

Directions for the Cake:

  • Preheat the oven to 350. Grease a standard size (9 by 13″) pan.
  • Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt. 
  • In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs and sugar. Add the vanilla extract and oil.
  • Slowly add in the dry ingredients and mix in on a low speed.
  • Pour the cake batter into the greased pan and bake for 30-35 minutes.
  • Let the cake cool before decorating.

Directions for the Shaping:

  • Turn the cake out of the pan, and use a cake slicer to slice it in half. This step is optional if you only want one layer, and if you wish multiple layers, you can cut accordingly. Leveling off the top is optional. I didn’t because I wanted more height. 
  • For the Christmas tree template, I went to Google and found a simple template that I liked. You can find one you want, print it out full size, and then cut it out as I did in the video. 
  • Place the template over the whole cake without separating the layers. Use a knife to cut neatly around the template.

Directions for the Frosting:

  • In a stand mixer, cream the butter at medium speed for 7 minutes. Remember to scrape down the sides of the bowl.
  • Add the sifted powdered sugar one scoop at a time, add in the vanilla, salt, and cream. I started with 2 tbsp of cream but added more until I got the right consistency.
  • Then I added white food coloring to this batch. I used this for the inside of the cake, as well as the top. 
  • I made one more batch for the other colors that I divided into two and added pink and green food coloring.

Decoration Details:

  • For the white frosting, I used either a round tip or no tip. 
  • For the pink frosting, I believe I used a small french piping tip.
  • For the green, I used a regular open star tip. 

Directions for the Assembly:

  • Use the white frosting to pipe rounds all around the cake’s border, then fill in the center. Try to make these a little bit tall to support the top layer, and stay visible.
  • Place the top layer of cake on top. If you didn’t level off the top like me, put that side facing down to have an even surface for the top decoration.
  • Use the different frosting colors and tips to fully decorate the top. 
  • After that, I used a variety of sprinkles and decorations on top.
  • Optionally, you can do a small border around the edge if you don’t like the naked cake’s look. 

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