A Rainbow Birthday Cake 4 The Husband

by DanicasDaily on August 17, 2009

I have been wanting to make THIS cake for The Husband ever since I first saw my friend Kirwin make a version of it for her daughter’s birthday party.  I think it is such a fun cake because it has so many colors and there are so many different color combinations you can use to make it.

The Story Behind The “Rainbows” and ME!

The Husband always teases me about Rainbows because I was really into the whole “hippie” colorful tie dyed thing when I was growing up.  Each year he makes it a point to give me something rainbow (think, CareBears with the Rainbow) and my family has joined in by nick naming me Rainbow Bright.  Oh, did I mention that my mom even helps The Husband out by sharing pictures of me dressed all colorful?! LOL….So, I had to share my rainbowness with him on his birthday.

To make the cake ~ here is everything you need to do.  I have given you a shortcut way and a homemade way.

I modified the original recipe a bit because The Husband didn’t want his cake to be “healthified” LOL.  You can use your standard Betty Crocker or any favorite white cake mix or you can create your own white cake mix.  My favorite homemade white birthday cake recipe is from Cookinglight.com.  Click HERE to make your own.


1-2 White Cake Box Mixes (depending on how big you want your cake) or make your own

** If you are using the boxed cake mix, be sure to buy the ingredients you need to make it (eggs, oil, water, etc)

1 box of food coloring

Nonstick spray

Parchment Paper

1.  To make The Cake: 

Mix the cake mix according to package instructions if using a box or follow the recipe above.

2. To make a rainbow of colors:

Measure the total volume,  then divide by 6 and measure into separate bowls.   My recipe made 12 cups, so I had roughly 2 cups per bowl.

Stir color into each bowl with its own spoon.   Pour 1 cup of the first color into the pan as close to the middle as you can.  Repeat for your second color.  For the third color drop 2/3 c in the middle.  Then repeat with the last three colors. So if you’re doing rainbow order, it should start with red, then orange, then yellow, and then be topped with the purple, blue and green.  Follow this same process for the second pan.

Bake the cake for however long the box or recipe tells you to bake it.   Keep baking and checking back every 5 minutes or so until a toothpick to the center comes out clean and the cake springs back when touched. Let cool for 10 minutes in the pan before removing to cool completely on a wire rack.

3.  Frost your your colors:

Frost after completely cooled with the recipe below or buy premade frosting to use.  Color frosting if desired.

I always believe in making your own frosting over buy the jar of chemicals.  I double my frosting to make sure i have enough.  If you want less you can 1/2 this recipe


Whip together:

4 Tbsp butter

6 oz light cream cheese

1 tsp pure vanilla extract

1/2 tsp sea salt

2-4 Tbsp fat free milk

6-8 cups powdered sugar

Beat the butter through salt together until creamy.  Slowly add the powdered sugar alternating with the milk to form a frosting consistency.  For thicker frosting use more sugar, for thinner, use more milk.

Start out by preparing two nonstick pans with parchment paper & then coating with nonstick spray.


Prepare your white cake mix.


Divide your cake batter into 6 1 cup bowls and add food coloring to get desired colors.  I started out with red, blue, green and yellow.  Then, I made orange (yellow plus red) and purple (red plus blue).  You can get as creative as you want with your colors.  To make your colors brighter, add additional color.


I started off layering 1 c red plus 1 c orange and then 2/3 cup yellow.


Then, I realized I had a TON of batter left, so I repeated the process.  I realized AFTER I had added the same colors, that I was supposed to add the other 3 colors (purple, blue, green) ~ ooops.


So I made sure I put a few dallops of the other colors on top for presentation LOL.


I repeated the process with the remaining 3 colors.

IMG_0526 IMG_0527 

And another dallop.  I was so bummed when I realized that important step I missed LOL but I think it still turned out looking pretty neat (yup, Wally – Neato!)


Being the Kid I am, I couldn’t just let them cook in the oven without looking.  I felt so much better when I saw them fluffing up perfectly as they cooked.  Looks so cool!


Cool the cakes in the pan for 10 minutes before removing them to the cooling racks and cooling the rest of the way.  Frost once they are completely cooled.


I chose to frost mine in blue (smurf color!) on the outside and I meant to make the inside yellow since the Cal Bears is The Husband’s favorite football team.  I accidentally grabbed the red food coloring so I made the frosting orange on the inside.  Yes, my cooking challenge continued ALL day on Saturday ~ I seriously should have stayed out of the kitchen!


But, in the end, I think it turned out pretty cool and I am happy with how it looks.  I am not sure if I should call mine a rainbow or a tie-died cake, but, either way, it was fun to make.  I definitely will make it again maybe just using different colors. 


The Husband LOVED his cake and was singing “Happy Cake Day to Me”! LOL!  I was absolutely cracking up when he told me he could taste all the different flavors in the cake and maybe it had too many going on.  It’s funny how colors can do that to someone ~ he still stood by that though even after I told him it was all white cake.

Now, I just NEED to get this HUGE cake out of the house.  I already delivered some to his family but now it taunts me ~ anyone want some??? :)

{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

janetha August 17, 2009 at 10:09 am

i love these cakes! my niece had an “artist” birthday party where they all painted ceramics and my sister mad this cake in the shape of a paint palette, it was so cute! yours looks great. happy bday to the hubs!!


Lizzy August 17, 2009 at 10:21 am

HOLY crap that cake is amazing! it looks SOOOOOOOOOOOO freak nasty good! yummy i hope he enjoyed


DaMora August 17, 2009 at 10:36 am

Pretty cool. Great b-day cake idea.


Caroline August 17, 2009 at 11:44 am

Wow, that looks so cool! You’re such an artist!


K August 17, 2009 at 11:53 am

That cake is SWEET!!!! Well done!


Jenny August 17, 2009 at 12:57 pm

i wish i had you around to bake my birthday cakes when i was younger — i would’ve been the coolest kid ever!


Alicia August 20, 2009 at 9:08 am

Awesome cake! I have a grid that fits into two cake pans to make a checkerboard cake. It always looks so cool. Now I want to try your recipe!


pictures of cakes August 27, 2009 at 8:09 pm

Some very groovy cakes! Would be great for a 60’s themed birthday party.


Emily (The Experimentarian) October 28, 2009 at 4:02 pm

Om my gosh, that is the COOLEST cake ever! I love how it turned out, even if it wasn’t quite how you expected it. I heart cake and frosting–frosting more though :)


Katherine January 14, 2013 at 10:11 am

Hi Danica!
I did this for my best friend and it worked out beautifully :) I’ll be sure to give credit to your blog for giving me the idea! :)


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