Living in Sugar

Three Layer Yellow Cake with Honey Lemon Buttercream

Hello loves! Today I have a special, special recipe for you! It’s the perfect birthday cake! Mostly because it’s mine…but hey, you know, you could make it too and have some with me! Ha! But anyway, yes, today is my birthday and yes, I made my own cake (Yellow Buttermilk Cake with Honey Lemon Buttercream to be exact)– but I got exactly what I wanted and I’m ready to share this fab recipe with you!

I was inspired to make this yellow cake from a couple of sources. First off, my favorite (I mean every birthday of my life, favorite) cake was a yellow cake with vanilla frosting and yellow roses. All the roses. Yellow roses are my favorite flower, but besides that, I just LOVE flowers on cakes. I wish I could do that. I guess I should work on that skill.


The other reason I was inspired to make this yellow three-tier chunk of awesome was Joy the Baker’s recipe for a buttermilk cake. Now, lets be real. I made some modifications to her recipe, but the inspo is still there! If you’re not following Joy the Baker, you totally should. She makes all the delicious things on her insta and her blog! Go. Check it out. I’ll wait.

OK. You’re back? Good. Now lets get to baking. I really enjoyed making this cake because it was very a straight forward — no frills kinda recipe and it also didn’t require you to separate, or cut, the cakes in half in order to get to three tiers. I’m sure that if you only have 2 9″ inch cake pans then you could still make this cake, it just might take a little bit longer to get there in the oven. But! I think this is a great all purpose recipe in that you could make a round cake, a square cake, a sheet cake, or even cupcakes from this batter. So have at it. Make what you want.

I also decided to go a little different with the frosting and make a lemon Honey Buttercream also inspired by Joy’s recipe, but with my own twists on it. I added some marshmallow fluff to the mix to make it even lighter and also a little bit whiter to make the colors stand out. So yum. Of course, you can make whatever frosting you like and frost this sucker however you want. I went with more of a “naked” feel, because I like to have a little bit of frosting with my cake, but you do you boo!

Soooo…that’s pretty much it! I hope you enjoy this recipe when you’re looking for a quick layer cake to whip up for any special occasion you may have — or the best kind, just because.

Happy Baking!



Yellow Buttermilk Cake with Honey Lemon Buttercream

Get fancy with this three tier buttermilk cake and honey lemon buttercream! Perfect for an celebration or get together -- this cake will not disappoint!
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 12 Slices
Author Danielle



  • 1 Cup 2 Sticks Butter, unsalted
  • 2 Cups Granulated Sugar
  • 2 Cups Buttermilk
  • 4 Large Eggs
  • 1 tbsp. Imitation Vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 tsp Butter Extract
  • 2 Cups AP Flour
  • 2 Cups Cake Flour
  • 2 tsp Baking Powder
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp Baking Soda


  • 1 Cup 2 sticks Butter, unsalted
  • 1 Cup Marshmallow Fluff
  • 1/3 Cup Honey
  • 2 tsp Lemon zest
  • 1 tsp imitation vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp lemon extract
  • 4-6 Cups Powdered Sugar
  • 2 tbsp. Milk



  1. Preheat your oven to 350 deg F. Grease and line three 9" pans with butter, flour and parchment paper & set aside.
  2. In the bowl of your stand mixer, beat butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add extracts and mix well.
  3. In a large bowl, combine flours, baking power, salt, and baking soda.
  4. Alternate adding flour and buttermilk to the butter mixture, starting and ending with the flour mixture. Mix until well combined.
  5. Divide batter evenly between the pans and bake for 20-30 minutes, or until golden, checking for doneness around the 20 minute mark.
  6. When a toothpick or cake tester comes clean from the center of the pan, remove them from the oven and cool in the pan for 20 minutes. Turn out and allow to cool completely.
  7. Frost cakes with desired frosting! Enjoy!
  8. Store frosted cake in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or freeze unfrosted cakes for up to 3 months -- frost while frozen!

For the frosting:

  1. In your stand mixer, combine butter and marshmallow fluff, beating until smooth.
  2. Add zest, extracts, and honey. Mix to combine.
  3. Slowly add powdered sugar, adding milk as needed. Mix on med-high speed until well combined and fluffy.
  4. Frost cakes how you want!

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