Rainbow Cake Recipe

rainbow cake

This vibrant, six-tiered rainbow creation is a guaranteed showstopper. Layers of colourful sponge make for a super impressive celebration cake.

Prep time: 120 minutes

Cook time: 30 minutes

Servings: 18 people


  1. Heat the oven to gas 4, 180°C, fan 160°C.
  2. Grease and base line three 20cm sandwich tins.
  3. Put 180g of the butter into a bowl with 180g of caster sugar, 180g flour, 3 eggs, 2 tsp vanilla extract and 20ml milk.
  4. Beat, using a hand-held electric mixer, until light and creamy.
  5. Divide the mixture equally between three bowls.
  6. Add red food colour to the first bowl, orange to the second and yellow to the third.
  7. Add only 1/4 tsp of colour at a time until you reach the desired shade. Mix well.
  8. Pour each bowl of sponge mix into a prepared tin and spread to level.
  9. Bake all three in the oven for 12–15 minute, or until firm to the touch.
  10. Turn onto a wire rack to cool.
  11. Using the remaining cake ingredients, repeating the process to make three more sponges.
  12. Colour these green, blue and violet.
  13. To make the icing, put the butter and cream cheese into a bowl and beat until smooth.
  14. Add half the icing sugar and mix well. Then, add the remaining icing sugar and beat until smooth.
  15. Place the violet sponge on a cake board or plate and spread with a little icing. Place the blue sponge on top.
  16. Continue layering this way, following the colours of the rainbow.
  17. Spread a thin layer of icing around the sides of the cake and chill until firm.
  18. Spread the remaining icing over the top and sides of the cake. Chill until firm.

Freezing and Defrosting Guidelines

  1. Bake according to the recipe but stop before adding decoration or icing if called for.
  2. Allow to cool completely. Wrap well in clingfilm and tin foil (to prevent freezer burn) and freeze for up to 3 months.
  3. Loosen the tin foil and clingfilm but leave to defrost in packaging at room temperature for several hours before serving.
  4. If you wish to serve the baked goods warm, place them on a baking sheet for 10 minutes in a moderate oven.
  5. If you wish to add icing or decoration, add them after the baked goods have fully defrosted and are at room temperature.


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