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Everyone's Favorite Birthday Cake

An easy and delicious cake that's suitable for any occasion from baker Matt Lewis of Brooklyn's Baked bakery.

  • Yield: Makes one 8-inch round layer cake
Everyone's Favorite Birthday Cake

Source: The Martha Stewart Show, January 2011


For the Cake:

  • 10 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces, room temperature, plus more for pans
  • All-purpose flour, for pans
  • 1 3/4 cups cake flour (not self-rising)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup firmly packed light-brown sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup sour cream

For the Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting:

  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 5 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 2 to 2 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 ounces dark chocolate, melted and cooled


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter two 8-inch round cake pans; line with parchment-paper rounds. Butter parchment paper and lightly dust pans with all-purpose flour, shaking out excess.

  2. In a large bowl, sift together cake flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon; set aside.

  3. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter and both sugars on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, and beat until just incorporated, scraping down sides of bowl as necessary. Reduce speed to low; add flour mixture in three additions, alternating with sour cream and beginning and ending with flour mixture, scraping down sides of bowl as necessary.

  4. Pour batter into prepared pans and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 30 to 35 minutes. Set pan on a wire rack to cool for at least 20 minutes before loosening sides of cake from pan and inverting onto a wire rack. Remove parchment paper and reinvert; let cool completely.

  5. Beat butter in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until smooth. Add cream cheese and beat until well combined. Add 2 cups confectioners' sugar and salt; beat until smooth. Add chocolate and mix until well combined. If frosting seems too loose, add additional confectioners' sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, until it becomes firm. Do not over-beat. Frosting can be made up to 1 day in advance if stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator; let soften at room temperature before using.

  6. Using a serrated knife, trim tops of cakes to make even. Place 1 layer on a cake plate; frost top with 1/2 cup frosting and top with remaining layer. Frost top and sides with remaining frosting to cover. Cake can be kept in an airtight container, refrigerated, for up to 3 days. Let come to almost room temperature before serving.

Reviews (17)

  • abibibee 23 Sep, 2012

    This was a great recipe! I agree that the cakes did not rise as shown in the video. I would double the recipe next time. It tasted delicious and the frosting was awesome!

  • smoothness 3 Sep, 2012

    is that just me or did martha seem unusually obnoxious in this video segment?

  • ennag 1 Jul, 2012

    I omitted the cinnamon and it was delicious. The only criticism I have is that these cakes did not rise as expected. I made 2 batches in order to have a normal sized cake. Should baking soda be exchanged for baking powder?

  • KaraWoman 2 Nov, 2011

    P.S. I'm not sure why it filtered my word- what I said was it left a h o l e in the top of the cake where it oozed. Weird? . . .

  • KaraWoman 2 Nov, 2011

    The cake was rather dry, but not the worst I've had. Also, during baking, one of the cakes oozed what looked like a mix of egg & sugar? It was really shiny. I've never had this happen before & didn't know what the cause was. It left a [filtered word] in the cake in that spot. If you use this recipe, use a simple syrup to moisten the cake before you frost it. This frosting recipe is small- I had to double it. I used raspberry jam filling in the center & frosted w/ the frosting. Wish I could share a pic!

  • thirstyboots 26 Oct, 2011

    Followed the recipe exactly. The cinnamon in the cake was overpowering the rest of the ingredients. Also, it was a rather dry and dense cake. The icing however was divine!

  • Vypies 17 Oct, 2011

    This cake is delicious and easy to make and put together for a quick cake everyone can enjoy. (Except vegans) My family loved it.

  • jmitch416 11 Oct, 2011

    When I watched this episode the man said he used all purpose flour but the recipe says cake flour????

  • rholder 7 Oct, 2011

    I do not see were you can print on the side. this is not the only recipe that cannot be printed.

  • Vypies 3 Oct, 2011

    Yes, where is the print button along with the "Save in my collection" button. How do we save these now?

  • Bella305 2 Oct, 2011

    I still do not see the print button. Has anyone been able to find it??? If so, where?? Thanks

  • kitkat4 1 Oct, 2011


  • kitkat4 1 Oct, 2011

    Please lets keep this going;
    where is the print button without all the ads,really Marthat are you that cheap
    what about convenience

  • Mailebear 1 Oct, 2011

    Look to the left in the aqua portion of the page next to the recipe.

  • BeknBuk 1 Oct, 2011

    I too cannot find the print link to print the recipe. Please advise.

  • JannetteB 29 Sep, 2011

    Where is the "print link" to be able to print this recipe and all the other recipes on your website without the advertisements? HELP and THANK YOU!!!

  • PrancersMom 29 Sep, 2011

    I had so much fun at your tv Birthday Party. Thanks for inviting me. Happy "50th" (smile) Birthday.
    STO LAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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