Ombre Valentine Cakes


Since my husband had promised to make a Valentine’s dinner to impress (and he doesn’t like to cook, so this was no small feat), I thought it only fair that I should make a Valentine’s Day dessert fit for my little Romeo. As per usual, my love of all things miniature overruled my desire to make a full size cake, but I make so many cupcakes I couldn’t bring myself to make more for this special occasion. I wanted something different, something special. My husband had loved the red velvet cupcakes I’d made a few weeks earlier, so I settled on making more of those, with a decorative twist.

Ombre Valentine Cakes
Yields 4 small cakes


For the cupcakes:
4 tbsp. (57 grams) butter, room temperature
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 egg
3 tbsp. cocoa powder
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 cup milk
1 cup all purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/4 sour cream
Red food coloring

For the frosting:
2 1/2 sticks (300 grams) butter, room temperature
2 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3-5 tbsp. milk
Red food coloring

Since I just made red velvet cupcakes using the exact same ingredients listed above, here’s a link to that post rather than re-typing it all over again. For those of you not keen on red velvet, or who simply would prefer a different flavor, any recipe that makes 12 cupcakes would work as well. Preheat your oven to 350* Fahrenheit (175* Celsius) and mix up your batter. Pour the batter into 4 ramekins, and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes our clean. As you can see, I over filled mine a bit, but that’s okay because they’ll be covered in frosting later, and you can even out any imperfections at that time. Remove the cakes from the ramekins, and let cool completely. Cut them in half to make two layers for each finished cake, and use a round cookie cutter to make them more uniform if necessary.



To make the frosting, cream the butter in a medium bowl until smooth. Add the vanilla extract and powdered sugar, and mix until the mixture becomes thick and smooth. To make the frosting a little more workable, thin the frosting with milk to the desired consistency. Spread the frosting between the two layers of cake, and around the top and sides to even out any imperfects. This will also help the piped frosting to adhere to the cake.



Split the rest of the frosting into three bowls, and mix a little red in one to make a pink frosting, and a lot of red in another to make red frosting. Spoon the frosting into disposable piping bags or ziplocs, and snip straight across the corner. Be careful not to snip off too much because you’ll want a relatively small opening so you don’t get too much frosting at once. Once the bags are prepared, pipe a vertical column of dots of frosting, alternating colors. I chose to make an ombre cake, so I piped two red, two pink, and two white dots of frosting. Once your column is complete, use an icing spatula or the handle of a spoon to spread the frosting out and away from the center of each dot. Pipe another column of dots over the spread frosting and repeat moving around the cake. Do the same for the top.



You can also get creative and pipe images using dots of frosting. I chose to put a red heart on top of one of the cakes for a little variety. As you can see, I only ended up making two cakes because I really didn’t have the time or energy to frost all 4, but there was plenty of left over frosting to cover two more. So be creative and try different designs!


Happy Valentine’s Day and happy baking!

4 thoughts on “Ombre Valentine Cakes

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