This chai cake is a very soft layered chai spice cake. This cake is topped with a pumpkin frosting full of spices! This is a simple layered cake that is perfect for the fall season. It taste just like a pumpkin chai latte.
This chai cake is a two layer cake. I wanted a chai cake to taste like chai, without using tea bags. The cake uses 7 spices to flavor it!
The best part about this cake is the pumpkin frosting. The buttercream uses pumpkin puree and spices. Together it taste like a chai latte you would get at starbucks.
Why This Recipe Works
- Chai cake layers- This is a two layer cake full of chai spices.
- Pumpkin buttercream frosting- The frosting tastes incredible! It is perfectly spiced and uses pumpkin puree that gets blotted to remove the moisture.
- Easy to make- Since this cake is only two layers, it is very easy to put it together!
Here are some notes on the ingredients. For a full list of ingredients, check out the recipe card below.
- Spices- You will need ground cardamom, ground cloves, ground cinnamon, ground ginger, pumpkin pie spice, ground nutmeg, and black pepper.
- Unsalted butter- The butter needs to be pulled out 2 hours before using so it is softened.
- Sour cream- Use full fat sour cream or greek yogurt. Pull this out 2 hours before using.
- Eggs- Pull the large eggs out 2 hours before using.
- Buttermilk- Use full fat or reduced fat buttermilk. Pull this out 2 hours before using.
- Powdered sugar- Make sure to sift the powdered sugar to avoid a gritty frosting.
- Pumpkin puree- Use canned pumpkin puree like Libby's, don't use pumpkin pie filling. Lay the pumpkin puree on top of plate. Then, soak one paper towel on the puree to soak up the moisture. Do this 4 times.
Step By Step Instructions
Here is how to make and bake the chai layer cake and pumpkin frosting. You will need a stand mixer with a paddle attachment or a hand mixer. You will need two 8-inch cake pans.
STEP 1: Mix the dry ingredients. In a medium bowl, mix the all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and all of the spices.
STEP 2: Beat the butter and sugar. In a large bowl using a mixer, beat the butter and white sugar together on high speed for 3 minutes.
Then, add the vanilla extract, sour cream, and eggs on medium speed.
STEP 3: Alternate between flour mixture and buttermilk. Alternate between these two on low speed. Then, pour batter between the two prepared pans.
STEP 4: Bake. Bake the cakes for 26-30 minutes. Bake until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
Cool the cakes in the hot pans for 10 minutes before flipping onto a cooling rack. Make sure the cakes cool completely before decorating.
STEP 5: Pumpkin frosting. Before mixing the butter, sift the powdered sugar in a large mixing bowl. Then, blot the pumpkin puree on a plate. The pumpkin should be a thicker consistency.
Then, beat the butter on high speed for 3 minutes. Then, add half of the powdered sugar at a time and mix until combined.
Next, add the pumpkin puree, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. The frosting should be very fluffy.
Assembling the Cake Tips
- Items that will be helpful in cake decoration: turntable, icing offset spatulas, straight icing spatula, cake scrapper, cake leveler (or a bread knife), and a cake carrier.
- If you have any uneven cake layers, use a serrated knife or cake leveler to cut the top, so they are perfectly even.
- Spread 1 ½ cups of frosting over the first cake layer. Then, place the second cake layer with the bottom of the cake facing up on top.
- Frost the cake in a very light layer of frosting and freeze for 15 minutes.
- Next, frost the rest of the cake. I used a 1M Wilton tip in a piping bag to pipe the border on top of the cake. I got these pumpkins here!
Yes you can! It will make 24 cupcakes. Half the recipe for 12 cupcakes. Bake for 18-20 minutes.
You can use 2 9-inch cake pans, or 4 6-inch cake pans, or a 9X13-inch cake pan (half the frosting recipe for this pan).
YES! In fact that is exactly what I did for this cake. I made the cake ahead of time, once it cooled completely I wrapped it tightly in plastic wrap. Then, when it was time to decorate, pull it out at least 1 hour.
Storing and Freezing
Store this chai cake in an airtight container like a cake carrier. Store in the fridge up to 5 days.
The cake taste best at room temperature.
The cake can be frozen in individual cake slices. Wrap the slices in plastic wrap and freeze up to 30 days. Thaw for 1 hour before eating.
Other Cake Recipes To Try
- 3 ½ cups All-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoon Baking powder
- 1 teaspoon Baking soda
- 1 teaspoon Salt
- ½ teaspoon Cardamon
- ½ teaspoon Ground cloves
- 2 teaspoon Ground cinnamon
- 1 ½ teaspoon Ground ginger
- ½ teaspoon Pumpkin pie spice
- ¼ teaspoon Ground nutmeg
- ⅛ teaspoon Black pepper
- 1 cup Unsalted butter room temperature
- 1 ½ cups White granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoon Pure vanilla extract
- ¼ cup Sour cream room temperature
- 4 Large eggs room temperature
- 1 cup Buttermilk room temperature
- 2 cups Unsalted butter room temperature
- ¾ cup Pumpkin puree blotted
- 6 cups Powdered sugar sifted
- 1 teaspoon Pure vanilla extract
- 1 ½ teaspoon Ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon Ground nutmeg
- ½ teaspoon Salt
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spray two 8-inch cake layers with baking nonstick spray. Line the bottoms of the pan with 8-inch parchment paper circles and spray again.
- In a medium bowl, mix the all-purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cardamon, cloves, cinnamon, ginger, pumpkin pie spice, nutmeg, and black pepper.3 ½ cups All-purpose flour, 2 teaspoon Baking powder, 1 teaspoon Baking soda, 1 teaspoon Salt, ½ teaspoon Cardamon, ½ teaspoon Ground cloves, 2 teaspoon Ground cinnamon, 1 ½ teaspoon Ground ginger, ½ teaspoon Pumpkin pie spice, ¼ teaspoon Ground nutmeg, ⅛ teaspoon Black pepper
- Using a mixer, beat the butter and sugar on high speed for 3 minutes. Add the sour cream and vanilla and mix until combined. On medium speed mix the eggs in one at a time.1 cup Unsalted butter, 1 ½ cups White granulated sugar, 2 teaspoon Pure vanilla extract, ¼ cup Sour cream, 4 Large eggs
- Add ⅓rd of the dry ingredients and half of the butter and mix on low speed. Add another ⅓rd of the dry ingredients and the rest of the buttermilk. Finish with the rest of the dry ingredients.1 cup Buttermilk
- Pour the cake batter evenly between the two cake pans. Bake for 25-30 minutes until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
- Let the cakes sit in the hot pans for 10 minutes. Then, transfer to a cooling rack. Cool the cakes completely before decorating.
- In a large bowl, sift the powdered sugar. Place paper towels on the counter. Add the pumpkin puree to it and take it over the sink and squeeze out a bit of the moisture.6 cups Powdered sugar, ¾ cup Pumpkin puree
- Using a mixer, beat the butter on high speed for 3 minutes. Scrape the bowl and add in half of the powdered sugar. Mix on low speed until combined. Add the rest of the powdered sugar and mix until just combined.2 cups Unsalted butter
- Add the pumpkin puree, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Mix on high speed until creamy.1 teaspoon Pure vanilla extract, 1 ½ teaspoon Ground cinnamon, ¼ teaspoon Ground nutmeg, ½ teaspoon Salt
- Use a serrated knife to cut the domes off the cakes.
- Place the first cake layer down and spread 1 ½ cups of frosting over the cake. Top with the other cake cake. The bottom of the cake should be facing up.
- Frost the cake in a light layer of frosting. Freeze for 15 minutes.
- Frost the rest of the cake.