Six-Layer Rainbow Cake

As a follow-up to the double-rainbow cupcakes, today’s post is about the six-layer rainbow cake!! I first made this as a birthday cake for a girlfriend, who loves rainbows almost as much as I do. The cake was brought to a camp-out over her birthday weekend and kept cold (and a secret!!) until Sunday afternoon. I lit the candles and presented a white-frosted cake to the birthday girl’s surprise party. But the best part was her shock when I cut in to the cake and a rainbow magically appeared! 🙂

I made the cake last week for a friend’s 30th birthday, and it went over amazingly well again!! 🙂

For the cake:

First, assemble your ingredients.

You are going to need:

  • Your favorite vanilla cake recipe (white cake works better than yellow because of the food dye) – You should have enough for a 3-layer cake or 36 cupcakes, so you may need to make 1.5x your recipe.
  • 6 bowls and 6 spoons for mixing each color
  • Food coloring in red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple (I use these because the gel food coloring provides a more vibrant color without thinning out the batter.)
  • Chop sticks
  • 3 9-inch cake pans
  • Cooking spray (for baking, I am a big fan of PAM’s Baking spray)

Divide batter evenly among your 6 bowls.

Add a pea-sized amount of food coloring to each bowl. (I use chopsticks for measuring out the food coloring because spoons are too big to fit in the pots.)

Mix each of the colors together. (Your red may look a little more like hot-pink because deep red is hard to get, but all the colors will brighten once you bake them.)

Spray your cake pans with cooking spray and pour in three of your colored batters. Bake for approximately 15 minutes or until a cake tester (or toothpick) comes out clean.

When done, remove from the oven and let cool in the pans for approximately 5 min or when until they are cool enough to handle. Remove to a wire rack and let cool. Let your pans cool to room temperature and repeat with your remaining three colors. Remove last three layers to a wire rack and let cool for at least 30 minutes.

For the icing:

First, assemble your ingredients.

You are going to need:

  • Your six layers of rainbow cake
  • Your favorite vanilla icing recipe, doubled, at room temperature (If you’re buying pre-made frosting, 4 tubs should be enough.)
  • Icing spatula or knife
  • 10-inch cake board or plate

First, place a small amount of icing on a cake board or plate. Place the purple cake layer on the cake board in the center, top-side up.

Add a thin layer of icing to the purple layer. Next, place the blue layer on top of purple layer, top side down. (Alternating the layers this way will help keep the cake flat overall and leave you with a flat-topped cake.)

Add a thin layer of icing to the blue layer, and repeat with the green, yellow, orange, and red layers. You can do all of this on your counter. However, I use this turntable because it makes icing the cake significantly easier. (If you have a lazy susan, this will also help.)

Ice the top and sides of the cake. Be sure to use a thick layer of icing to hide the rainbow cake layers. Also, avoid scraping the side of the cake with your icing spatula/knife or you will pick up crumbs in your icing.

You can choose to serve your cake completely white, with the surprise rainbow inside, or you can decorate it as you choose. Enjoy!! 😀

Any questions? Feel free to ask in the comments below! And thanks for reading! 🙂


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