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Vanilla Buttermilk Spice Cake

This is not your traditional spice cake, in fact there is just a hint of ginger and nutmeg in this delicate, perfectly textured Vanilla Buttermilk Spice Cake. But a hint is enough. Truly this cake is just heavenly!

Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword easy dessert recipe, party recipe
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 12 servings
Author Linda Spiker


The Cake:

  • 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 sticks butter room temp plus 1 tablespoon for preparing pans
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla paste or extract
  • 6 eggs room temp
  • 1 1/3 cup buttermilk

The Glaze:

  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla paste or 1/2 teaspoon extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried nutmeg
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk plus a tablespoon or two if needed


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and place oven rack in center position
  2. Prep pans: Fold a large piece of parchment and use 9" cake pan bottom to trace a circle onto parchment. Cut circles and place in the bottom of pans. Use a paper towel to wipe sides of pan and parchment with butter. Lightly coat with flour. Set aside.

The Cake:

  1. Combine flour, baking powder and salt, set aside
  2. Place butter, sugar and oil in mixer and mix until well combined
  3. Add vanilla and ginger, mix
  4. Add eggs one at a time, mix until well incorporated
  5. Alternate adding flour mixture with buttermilk until well combined, mix for one more minute
  6. Pour equal amounts into prepared pans, tap pans firmly on counter to take out any bubbles
  7. Bake for 35 minutes or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean
  8. Allow cakes to cool and then gently remove from pans and glaze (be sure to remove parchment)


  1. Place sugar, vanilla and nutmeg into a bowl. Add 1/4 cup buttermilk and whisk.
  2. I can not emphasize this enough, glaze need to be really thick. If needed, add more buttermilk a tablespoon at a time until glaze thins out enough to be spreadable but not pourable... thick people! If you make it too thin it will run off the cake and pool on the plate and you won't be happy.
  3. Scoop 1/3 of the glaze onto the first cake and use a spatula to gently spread glaze to edges of cake, it should start to drip down the sides of cake.
  4. Place second cake on top, scoop and spread the glaze on top, again gently urging glaze to edges of the cake so it drips down the sides. Serve.
  5. If you want to top with flowers, cut a small circle of parchment paper and place on top of the cake, so the flowers rest on the paper and not the icing.