20 Celebratory Cake Recipes to Make for Your Graduate
From impressive multi-tiered creations to single layer sweets, these cakes are the perfect way to honor your new graduate's hard work.
Celebrate the very special graduate in your life with these delicious graduation cake recipes. From classic chocolate and vanilla combinations to seasonal flavors such as lemon and blueberries, there's a decadent dessert here for everyone. And the best part is, you don't need a culinary degree to make them—just a careful eye, patient hand, and a big-time sweet tooth.
Sheet cakes are always easy to prepare and guaranteed to please your guests. If you're celebrating your graduate during the beginning of the summer, make the simply delightful Strawberry Biscuit Sheet Cake that's pictured here. It's a delicious twist on the classic strawberry shortcake, and the entire family is sure to love it. For one of life's simplest and sweetest pleasures, make our Vanilla Sheet Cake with Chocolate-Ganache Buttercream, which is sure to earn you high marks. The harmony of moist vanilla cake and rich chocolate frosting is worthy of a standing ovation.
If you'll be celebrating in the middle of summer, when the heat is in full swing, we recommend cooling off with a decadent ice cream cake, like our chocolate-mint Grasshopper Dome Ice Cream Cake. A rich chocolate cake is filled with six cups of mint chocolate-chip ice cream and topped with a silky chocolate ganache for a tasty way to chill out. Another sweet showstopper is our Neapolitan Ice Cream Cake, which swaps in pistachio gelato for the usual chocolate in this lighter and brighter trio. After it freezes, top the cake with sliced strawberries and crumbled pistachios so that guests can get a hint as to what's waiting for them inside.
If you're looking for a way to send your graduate off to their next big adventure on a sweet note, make any one of these spectacular graduation cakes. They're sure to make this special occasion even more memorable.
Vanilla Sheet Cake with Chocolate-Ganache Buttercream
This moist, classic combination of vanilla and chocolate is both simple and spectacular. The cake is made with a mixture of vanilla bean and vanilla extract for extra flavor. Meanwhile, the swirled chocolate buttercream on top is in a league of its own, making it a delightful dessert for a graduation party.
Lemon-Glazed Sheet Cake
Flourless Chocolate-Almond Cake
Raspberry and Chocolate-Hazelnut Crepe Cake
Neapolitan Ice Cream Cake
This stunning make-ahead ice cream cake is a great way to honor your graduate's hard work. Generous layers of pistachio gelato, vanilla ice cream, and strawberry ice cream are sandwiched between homemade cornmeal cake for a dessert filled with a symphony of flavors.
Light and Fluffy Yellow Cake
Simple doesn't mean boring; in fact, this perfect yellow layer cake is worthy of an accomplishment as big as commencement. Buttermilk and whipped egg whites are the secrets to the moist, airy graduation cake.
Citrus Mousse Cake with Buttercream Frosting
Celebrate your graduate with this pretty-in-pink floral cake. The juice and zest of limes and lemons brighten the mousse filling and an arrangement of edible flowers, meringue, confetti candies, and candy pearls are decorated on top.
Confetti Cake with Vanilla Frosting
Vanilla Sponge Cake with Strawberry-Meringue Buttercream
Grasshopper Dome Ice Cream Cake
Chocolate and mint are one of the ultimate flavor combinations, and they really shine together in this double-chocolate dome cake filled with mint chocolate ice cream.
Coconut-Sugar Hummingbird Cake
Vanilla Sheet Cake with Lemon Cream-Cheese Frosting
Hosting a casual backyard graduation party? Make this seasonal cake with lemon and blueberries—it could not be easier or more delicious.
Pistachio Layer Cake
All of the pistachio flavor is hiding in the pastry cream filling, which is made with sugar, cornstarch, pistachio paste, an egg yolk, and whole milk. The topping is the most luscious vanilla buttercream, tinted pale green for a peek as to what's waiting on the inside.
Texas Sheet Cake
Whether your graduate is about to head to the state where bigger is better—or if they've just departed their southern campus—make our best-ever chocolate sheet cake for your graduation party. A dense, gooey chocolate cake is topped with rich chocolate icing and finely chopped toasted pecans.
The Ultimate Devil's Food Cake
Brownie Sundae Ice Cream Cake
Triple-Citrus Bundt Cake
Your graduate may not have much of a sweet tooth, but we're positive that they'll be excited to dig into a slice of this zesty cake. It has segments of citrus in it, a citrus simple syrup, a citrus glaze, and candied citrus zest on top.
The graduating class will be on cloud nine when they throw their caps in the air. Make that moment last a little bit longer with this cloud-like creamy caramel meringue graduation cake.