Cakes, Breads, Muffins & Scones/ Holidays/ Recipes

Attainable Eats: Easy Fourth of July Cake

easy fourth of july cake

The next installment in my Attainable Eats series is a gorgeous but easy Fourth of July cake for y’all.  <- like how I slipped that in there? Nice eh?  How’s that for a colloquialisms mash-up?

How could I leave out my amazing readers south of the border? While whipping up my Simple Canada Day Cake, I also baked up enough cakes to make sure I could create a, easy Fourth of July Cake as well. The beauty to a baking spree with cakes is that they improve after being frozen. I always freeze my cakes. When you wrap them up tightly in plastic wrap – air will make them stale so make sure they are sealed!- and freeze them for a day or two, they are moister by the time you put your cake together.

This cake did take a little more engineering to get the design working, however you can now benefit from my experimenting. Using three colors made it harder to evenly space them out, but after about 3 attempts, I nailed it.


Items Needed:

2 white cake mixes
2 batches of my Best Buttercream Icing

Supplies Needed:

 3 icing tips, Wilton size 18 or 17
3 icing bags
Wilton No Taste Red Icing Gel
Wilton Royal Blue Icing Gel
(2) 9″ cake pans

Bake up your cakes according to the instructions. Bake one cake mix plain white. With the other, divide the batter and color one red and one blue. The shade is up to you!

Once they are baked, freeze them.

When your 4 cakes are frozen, whip up a batch of my buttercream icing. Take the frozen cakes and stack them together in alternating colors, with a little layer of icing between each cake, to hold them together.

When they are frozen, you can trim the edges beautifully with a serrated knife, so you have a nice straight matching side to ice. The sides don’t even have to be perfect, but this works wonders to shape your cake nicely.

Put a crumb coating on and freeze again, to get the icing cold.

Now the decorating.

Ok, Let me ‘splain.

No, there is too much.

Let me sum up.

(Name that movie!)

Around the top border alternate your red, white and blue colored stars. Like below.

Once you have that done, here comes the slightly tricky part.

You need to alternate the colors.

Red will always be under the blue star, like below. Then follow the pattern and white will always be under the red star. Blue star is always under the white.

So below, I started with the red under the blue, all the way around.

Next, beside the single red star on the second line, pipe a white star. This white star is under the top red. Pipe that all the way around, beside the solo red stars.

Next you will have a space left for the blue star. Beside the second level of now two stars (red and white) pipe the blue to fill in the space.

You will now have 2 lines of stars.

Start again on the third row and pipe a single red under the blue stars. Repeat above.

Clear as mud?

This is the pattern that will emerge. Remember with my buttercream that the heat of your hands will soften it, take a break, put the icing bag in the fridge and let it cool again. It’s worth the little extra time spent because NOTHING tastes as good as real buttercream icing.

easy fourth of july cake

You can take the pattern about 3 rows onto the top of the cake as well, then fill in the rest with white stars. You can use your imagination and add flags, sparklers, candles, whatever you wish on top of the white space to spruce it up. This truly is such an easy Fourth of July cake, I promise!

easy fourth of july cake

All that’s left is slicing, serving and listening to the ooh’s and aah’s over your amazing (easy!) masterpiece. I actually served this Canada day to friends of ours who came over to visit. The life of a food blogger, if you want to get your recipes to your readers in time for them to make it, you’re baking days ahead of the event.

Happy Fourth of July wishes to all my American readers on Wednesday! I hope your day will be  full of family, friends and good eats!


The Totally Having Fun With All These Cakes Magpie





  • Reply
    The Kitchen Magpie
    July 4, 2015 at 9:20 pm

    So glad that you like them!!

  • Reply
    Jean Turnbaugh
    July 4, 2015 at 7:43 pm

    just made your oatmeal, chocolate chips, zucchini cookies today, awesome, will make again

  • Reply
    May 22, 2015 at 3:19 am

    I love this whole blog so much. I can hardly stand it! I need to go to sleep, but I’ve been looking for the perfect buttercream frosting recipe, and it sounds like I’ve finally found it!! I wish I could just go to the store right now to get everything and try it! If only the mixer wouldn’t wake my parents up 🙂

    And this 4th of July cake?? Absolutely adorable! I can’t wait to try this either!

    • Reply
      May 23, 2015 at 6:44 pm

      @Shelby Aw thank you sweetie! That means a lot !!

  • Reply
    March 21, 2014 at 12:34 pm

    Hi Karlynn,

    I have just joined your amazing online Baking Club. Who needs the GBO (fab as it is!!) when I now have you! I am in the UK. By the way. mary berry look out!!

    I am making my daughter a similar cake to yours … But the buttercream is all yours! Ummmmm I hope you don’t mind me asking, but how does the buttercream freeze and then defrost when you do the crumb coat? I assume it must be very stable otherwise you would not suggest it??? And when the cake underneath the frosting defrosts, is it ok??? Not too damp. This seems like a perfect method to me, but u cannot afford to mess it up! Only time for one go. So I would be so grateful if you had time to Nswer me. Thank you very much. Xx

    • Reply
      March 21, 2014 at 7:15 pm

      @Maggie Yes, it defrosts. You CAN get a little bit of weeping, but I’ve never had much at all when it comes to cakes, I freeze everything! The small amount you might get only adds to the cake, to be honest and perhaps that’s why mine are always so moist after freezing. Most people actually recommend freezing the layers of a cake for that very reason.

      If you freeze the entire cake after, you can also get small beads of moisture on top but they air dry by the time I serve the cake. Again, freezing seems to add a level of moistness that only makes the cake better!

  • Reply
    February 6, 2014 at 1:44 pm

    Hi karlynn, have you ever put an edible image on one of your cakes with your buttercream icing? Does the image stay well, doesn’t melt too much due to moisture (seeing this buttercream icing has cream) and do you store your cakes in refrigerator after icing or just room temperature covered? Thanks 🙂

  • Reply
    February 6, 2014 at 1:30 pm

    Have you ever used an edible image on top of cake whit your buttercream icing? Do you leave out in counter with cover or do you refrigerate. Thx!

  • Reply
    Karlynn Johnston
    June 5, 2013 at 4:15 pm

    You can do it Jolene!!

  • Reply
    May 29, 2013 at 2:13 am

    It’s so pretty! I’d like to try this for my daughter’s birthday on July 4th!

  • Reply
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  • Reply
    Once Upon a Recipe
    July 4, 2012 at 6:18 pm

    What a beautiful cake! You are one patient woman!

  • Reply
    Laura Scola
    July 4, 2012 at 3:38 pm

    Thank You!;))

  • Reply
    Winnie Rottem
    July 4, 2012 at 10:30 am

    STUNNING looking cake!Have a wonderful 4th of July 

  • Reply
    July 4, 2012 at 6:31 am

    Nice! Very patriotic..looks like a precious ceramic thing more than a cake..very very pretty and awesome! 🙂

  • Reply
    July 4, 2012 at 4:48 am

    Karlynn, you have OUTDONE yourself! The Canada Day Cake was gorgeous (we could use it for Valentine’s Day in the States!), but this Fourth of July Cake! WOW!!! You’re right, it IS “easy”, but DOES require patience and a commitment of TIME!
    You are a Kitchen Magician! What an inspiration you are! PLEASE don’t stop! A million thanks to you!

  • Reply
    baking supplies
    July 3, 2012 at 5:54 am

    Its Amazing and yummy cake.

  • Reply
    July 3, 2012 at 1:17 am

    wow! so beautiful….i &lt;3 this cake!

    thanks for sharing


    su 🙂


  • Reply
    July 2, 2012 at 10:29 pm

    Gorgeous and yummy and a LOT of cake for one fambily of 4… maybe you need to save some for me. 🙂

  • Reply
    July 2, 2012 at 9:40 pm

    HO.LEE.COW! That cake is amazing!!!

  • Reply
    July 2, 2012 at 8:31 pm

    @KitchenMagpie Your 4th cake is adorable, Karlynn!

    • Reply
      July 2, 2012 at 9:17 pm

      @PhytoK Thank you! It was fun to make!

  • Reply
    July 2, 2012 at 8:04 pm

    @KitchenMagpie Holy cowabunga! That cake is spectacular! Perfect for the Fourth & Canada Day. Go unity!

    • Reply
      July 2, 2012 at 9:18 pm

      @HeyNanaBread I laughed at cowabunga. Awesome.

      • Reply
        July 2, 2012 at 9:32 pm

        @KitchenMagpie Those tiny patriotic stars seriously knocked my socks off. Oh, the patience exhibited! You’re amazing. Period.

        • Reply
          July 2, 2012 at 9:33 pm

          @HeyNanaBread aw thanks! A glass of wine helped the process. A lot! Easy but a little time consuming

        • Reply
          July 2, 2012 at 9:36 pm

          @HeyNanaBread You’re good for my ego. Period. 😉

        • Reply
          July 2, 2012 at 9:41 pm

          @KitchenMagpie That’s what girlfriends are for.

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