This is the original Neapolitan Rose Cake… everything else is just a copy! 🙂 This cake is always a showstopper. Not only are people in love with how it looks, but who can resist vanilla, strawberry, and chocolate?
Neapolitan Cake (Box Mix Version)
There is a lot going on with this cake so I recommend starting out with cake mix. Meaning, bake 1 box of white cake in two 8-inch round cake pans, 1 box of strawberry cake in two 8-inch round cake pans, then 1 box of chocolate cake in two 8-inch round cake pans. You will only need one layer of each (1 white, 1 strawberry, 1 chocolate) so be sure to wrap up the other layers tight and freeze until the next time you want to make this amazing cake!
Neapolitan Cake (From-Scratch Version)
If you happen to want to make this cake from scratch I recommend baking one day then assembling and decorating the next.
I made my perfect chocolate cake, a strawberry cake, and a white cake in 8-in round cake pans. I added pink food color to my from-scratch strawberry cake to ensure it was a gorgeous shade that matched the buttercream.
I used the basic buttercream recipe below for the white and strawberry layers. Prepare your buttercream as directed and then divide into 2 bowls. One will stay white (vanilla) and the other will be tinted pink. I also added strawberry extract to the pink buttercream so it would taste like it looks!
For the chocolate, I made a 1/2 batch of my favorite Chocolate Buttercream. You can make a full batch and freeze it with your other chocolate cake layer to save steps for the next time you prepare this cake! When freezing buttercream I place it in an airtight pastry bag, seal it, then drop that into a plastic bag. Allow it to come to room temperature before piping.
To pipe this cake I started by placing my remaining buttercream (after you have added frosting between the layers and done a light crumb coat) into pastry bags fitted with 1M or 2D tips. Start and the bottom of the cake with chocolate and begin by piping a rosette. I like to end the rosette on top, leaving the “tail” where it will be hidden by the next row. Try to begin and end each flower in the same way to have a consistent overall look. You can find detailed information on a Rose Cake Tutorial here.
Next time I make this cake I will start by placing my chocolate cake on the cake stand and covering it with chocolate buttercream, not the strawberry as I did for the pictures.
- 1 c (2 sticks, 226g) unsalted butter softened
- 2 tsp. McCormick® Pure Vanilla Extract
- 32 oz confectioners sugar sifted
- 2 tbsp. whole milk you can use up to 1/2 cup
- pinch salt
- Beat butter in bowl of stand mixer with whisk attachment on medium-high speed until light and fluffy. (about 3 minutes)
- Add vanilla extract.
- With the mixer on low, slowly add in confectioners sugar, milk, and salt; frequently scraping sides and bottom of the bowl.
- Once incorporated, whip frosting for at least 3 minutes on medium-high to high. (My mixer went for 7 minutes)
- If frosting is too thick to spread, gradually beat in additional milk.