Use this recipe for a moist cake which can hold up to several tiered layers including fondant. The texture leave a nice crumb which is easy to work with. It's perfect for decorating.


The other day was my daughter’s fifth birthday. She had been requesting a birthday princess castle cake for a couple years now, and once my mother sent me Wilton’s Romantic Castle cake kit, I lost all excuses not to make it. I had originally planned to use fondant on this cake to give it a nice, clean look, but I make my own fondant using marshmallows and, unfortunately, I didn’t start the cake until the day of her party. Strawberry buttercream it is.

I love my wee diva, so I got my grumpy-butt up at 6 a.m., threw some cereal in the kids’ general direction along with the approved flatware, got my apron & headphones, and went to “work” on this cake. I knew it had to be sturdy since it was going to be two tiers. I don’t care much for fluffy, airy cake, so I wanted to make something with some oomph...a strong cake. Think of it’s density and ability to hold up it’s fellow tiers as you would Atlas holding up the world. But wait...there’s more! Not only is this cake the strong silent type, it also has a tender side. As a tear dropped down from Atlas’ cheek, it must have landed in the cake batter, because this cake is moist too.

Recipe Highlights

Maybe I should call it the Atlas Teared cake. Get it? Tiered = Teared, Atlas Shrugged? Ok, if I need to explain my puns...I should just keep them to myself, but then I’ll laugh for no reason and look a little crazy (dare I say Twisted?)

Too much?

This particular cake incorporates a thin strawberry filling (in between a three inch and two inch layer). It held up a second tier made up by a double layer 6 inch cake on top of it without breaking a sweat. Ewww, who wants sweaty cake?


p.s. Despite how awesome I might appear online, mistakes happen. If you happen to spot one on this recipe, save your fellow cooks a disaster and let me know by using the contact form.

Sturdy & Moist White Cake

Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 55 minutes
Total Time: 75 minutes


1 cup milk
1/2 pound (2 sticks) butter VERY COLD
1/2 tbsp almond extract
1/2 tbsp butter extract (if available)
1/2 tbsp vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 cups sugar
3 cups all-purpose flour
5 eggs
1/2 cup vegetable shortening


  1. Preheat your oven to 325 degrees and grease/flour your cake pans (I usually cut a piece of parchment paper the same shape as the bottom of my pan and add that on top of the grease/flour as a further precaution against the cake bottom sticking to the pan).
  2. In your mixer, add your chilled butter, shortening, and sugar. Mix until creamy...the sugar will be fully incorporated.
  3. Add in your extracts.
  4. Combine in a separate bowl, your dry ingredients: flour, salt, baking powder.
  5. Alternating: add a bit of your dry ingredients, then a bit of the milk, then one egg. Repeat until all ingredients are incorporated. The batter will be thick.
  6. Place batter into the cake pan/pans and bake in the preheated oven for 40-60 minutes.

NOTE: Keep an eye on it. The lower temperature means longer baking time and each cake size requires different bake times. My 10” round cake 3” in height took over an hour, and my 6” round cake 2” in height took around 40 minutes.

Yields: 16 servings.

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