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Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Paula Deens Caramel Cake

It has become a tradition to bake my husband a caramel cake on his birthday. This happened because one year I asked him what kind of cake did he want for that year.  He said a caramel cake.  ?????  I'm not sure I had ever eaten a caramel cake and knew I had never seen a recipe for one.  What exactly is caramel?  Where does it come from?  Do you buy caramel flavoring, caramel spice???

I began by searching the Food Network site.  Relieved, I found a recipe by Paula Deen.  Just let me say, I have never cooked a Paula Deen recipe that my family simply didn't love and wanted more of.  So, I knew I could trust Paula and have a sure-fire winner with her caramel cake recipe.  This is a 3-layer cake with a caramel filling and caramel frosting. 

And to answer the earlier question.....caramel is just butter and brown sugar.  No wonder my husband is crazy about it!  In fact he has always said that french cooking and southern cooking is very similar.  Both use butter and more butter!  And this recipe has a LOT of brown sugar and butter.  In fact, it uses 4 different kinds of sugars and 2 cups of butter. 

Here is my cake from last year. 

Yes, it is somewhat uneven!  Hey, don't judge, I only make it once a year!

And from another view.

You may also add pecans to the top for decoration. Below is the recipe.  And the link is here if you want to go straight to the Food Network site and see the recipe there. 

Caramel Cake by Paula Deen



  • 1 cup butter, room temperature
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 3 cups self-rising flour, sifted
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract


  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream, or more if needed
  • 1 (16-ounce) box confectioners' sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup chopped nuts, optional



Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour 3 (9-inch) cake pans.
Using an electric mixer cream butter until fluffy. Add granulated sugar and continue to cream well for 6 to 8 minutes. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Add flour and milk alternately to creamed mixture, beginning and ending with flour. Add vanilla and continue to beat until just mixed.
Divide batter equally among prepared pans. Level batter in each pan by holding pan 4 inches above counter dropping it flat onto counter. Do this several times to release air bubbles and assure you of a more level cake. Bake for 25 minutes or until golden brown.


While cake is baking, in a saucepan, combine butter, brown sugar, and milk. Cook and stir over medium heat for 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla.
Remove cake layers from oven and allow cake to remain in pans as you prepare to stack and fill. Remove first layer and invert onto cake plate. Pierce cake layer with a toothpick over entire surface. Spread 1/3 of filling mixture on cake layer. Top with second layer, repeat process. Top with last layer and repeat process again.
*Cook's Note: As you stack layers together, stick them with toothpicks to prevent cake from shifting.


Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat and stir in brown sugar and cream. Bring to a boil, and transfer to a mixing bowl. Add confectioners' sugar and vanilla. Beat with a handheld electric mixer until it reaches a spreading consistency. At this time it may be necessary to add a tablespoon of heavy cream, or more, if frosting gets too thick. Be sure to add cream in small amounts because you can always "add to", but you can't take away. Frost cake and sprinkle top with chopped nuts, if desired.

Thanks for stopping by.  Enjoy your cake!  Libby~



  1. oh. my. gosh. 4 sticks of butter in that puppy? sheesh! i guess it's good:)

  2. This looks so yummy! I think I'll have to try it!

    Hope you have a wonderful weekend!

    (We met at Rhoda's Atlanta blogger lunch a few weeks ago!)

  3. Looks delicious, but if you want that man around forever, make him a homemade caramel frosting where you brown white sugar and cook it. You will be amazed at the taste.Of course I am not sure if any man is worth this much trouble, except maybe every other year.