Cookie Butter Cake is a three-layer soft and tender cake filled and decorated with a silky cookie butter Swiss meringue buttercream. It’s the perfect celebration cake that’s pure cookie butter heaven.
I’m a huge fan of cookie butter, and it seems like those who have tried it are as well. Ever since I discovered it many years ago under the name speculoos, I’ve become obsessed. I love finding ways of incorporating it into my baking recipes. And cookie butter cake is no exception. The cake batter has added speculoos cookie crumbs for a lovely flavor and subtle texture. And the silky Swiss meringue buttercream has cookie butter mixed in for the perfect complement to this cake.
Why this recipe works
- It’s a tender cake paired with a creamy, silky frosting.
- The cake and buttercream can be made ahead of time.
- You can also make cupcakes using this recipe.
- It’s packed with cookie butter flavor for a delicious layer cake.
What is cookie butter?
Cookie butter is a spread made from ground-up European spice cookies that are called speculoos. It has a consistency similar to that of peanut butter. This spread comes in creamy or crunchy texture and makes a delicious addition to baked goods such as cookies, cakes, and blondies. You can find this spread at larger supermarkets under the brand Biscoff, at Trader Joe’s as speculoos cookie butter, or online.
Before you begin
Take out the following baking equipment.
Digital kitchen scale
Three 8-inch round cake pans
2 small bowls
Stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment
Wire cooling rack
Stand mixer whisk attachment
Allow all your ingredients to come to room temperature.
Read the recipe through from start to finish.
Speculoos cookie crumbs are added to the cake batter with the dry ingredients. Simply, process speculoos or Biscoff cookies in a food processor into fine crumbs. The finer the crumbs, the smoother the texture of the cake.
Always use unsalted butter in baking to control the amount of salt that goes into your recipe. Make sure to take your butter out of the refrigerator at least 1 hour in advance. Softened butter should be close to room temperature, malleable, and able to hold its shape without looking oily. It should be slightly firm to the touch, yet leave the impression of your finger when you press into it.
Baking powder is a chemical leavening agent that is double-acting, meaning the first leavening occurs when combined with the wet ingredients and the second when it’s heated in the oven. Because of this first reaction, you cannot prepare cake batter ahead of time, and it’s important to place your cake into the oven as soon as mixing it to achieve the best leavening power.
Vanilla is an important ingredient in a cake as it adds a lovely vanilla flavor while enhancing the other flavors in the recipe. Without vanilla, a cake tastes flat and bland. Use good quality vanilla to produce the best flavor and skip the imitation extract when possible.
How to make cookie butter cake
Prep baking pans. Grease and flour three 8-inch round cake pans. Line the bottoms with parchment paper and set aside.
Whisk dry ingredients. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cookie crumbs, baking powder, and salt.
Cream butter and sugar. In a mixer, beat together the softened butter and both sugars on medium speed until smooth and creamy, about 3-4 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.
Add eggs and vanilla. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, until combined. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and beat in the vanilla until mixed well.
Add milk and dry ingredients. With the mixer on low speed and in three parts, alternately add the dry ingredients and the milk to the batter, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients. Beat until just combined.
Bake. Evenly divide the batter between the prepared cake pans. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Cool. Allow the cakes to cool completely in the pans set on a wire rack before frosting.
Five essential steps to baking cakes
Grease your baking pan. It’s easy to skip this step, especially when using a nonstick pan. However, regardless of the material, always grease and flour your baking pans to prevent your cake from sticking, especially in the corners.
Allow the oven preheat. Give your oven ample time to heat, usually about 20 minutes. It’s a good idea to leave an oven thermometer in your oven to ensure the correct temperature is achieved and that your oven is properly calibrated. Cakes need to bake at the right temperature.
Measure by weight. For the most accurate and consistent results, measure all your ingredients by weight. Using measuring cups and spoons can vary depending on specific variables, such as using sifted flour vs. unsifted, packing down your ingredients, etc.
Do not substitute baking soda for baking powder. For a cake recipe that calls only for baking powder, do not substitute with baking soda. Although both chemical leaveners, these ingredients are not always interchangeable. Baking soda requires an acidic ingredient for activation, and unless a recipe has enough acidity, a substitution will not work properly.
Bake in the center of the oven. Unless otherwise specified, bake your cakes in the center of your oven to promote even baking.
How to assemble cookie butter layer cake
- Remove the cooled cakes from the pans and peel off the parchment paper. Using a large serrated knife, slice a thin layer off each cake to create a leveled surface.
- Place one layer of cake onto a cake turntable, cake stand, or serving dish. Spread an even layer of buttercream. Top with a second layer and repeat another layer of buttercream. Add your final layer of cake.
- Using an icing spatula, spread a very thin and even layer of buttercream on the top and sides of your cake to cream a ‘crumb coat’.
- Place your cake in the freezer for 5 minutes or until the buttercream is firm to touch.
- Spread an even layer of buttercream on the top of the cake. Apply the remaining buttercream to the sides of the cake. If using a cake turntable, then use a bench scraper or icing smoother to smooth the icing around your cake.
Tips and takeaways
- To help prevent lumps in your batter, scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl after beating the butter and sugar and adding each egg.
- It’s important to add the flour to the batter in portions. Alternate adding the dry ingredients and the milk. Doing this will produce a tender cake.
- It’s essential to ensure that your meringue for the buttercream is cool enough before adding your butter to it, otherwise, you will have a soupy mess. Once you add your butter to the meringue, if it is slightly runny, do not worry. Continue to whip the mixture on high, and it will come together. Be patient!
- For added texture, you can layer speculoos cookie crumbs on top of the frosting between each cake layer.
If you love speculoos cookies, then try these other recipes…
Make sure to tag me @thesweetoccasion on Instagram and leave me a review below if you make this Cookie Butter Cake. I’d love to see your creations and read your feedback. And if you would like to make this recipe later, be sure to pin this recipe using the button on any of these images. Let’s make every occasion a sweet occasion!Print