Someone recently told me they didn’t really like cherries. I was all like, “Yeah, cherries aren’t my favorite fruit either”. Then, I made a Cherry Cranberry Pie and this cake – not to mention my Sonic diet cherry coke addiction! Maybe I like cherries more than I thought?! 😉 This cake is so good, you don’t have to be a hardcore cherry lover to enjoy it! The cake is soft, fluffy, and full of chopped maraschino cherries. It pairs perfectly with the cream cheese frosting, which just has a hint of cherry. And I mean, isn’t it just the prettiest color pink?? =) Give it a try! It’s a crowd-pleaser. Enjoy!
Cherry Chip Layer Cake
For the cake:
10 oz jar maraschino cherries
1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1-1/2 cups granulated sugar
4 large egg whites
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp almond extract
2 cups cake flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1-1/3 cup buttermilk, room temperature
2 tbsp maraschino cherry juice
For the frosting:
1/2 cup butter, at room temperature
8 oz cream cheese, softened but still cool
4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
1-2 tbsp cherry juice (from above)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon almond extract
To make the cake:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour two 8-inch round cake pans (I used 3 (9 inch) cake pans) and line the bottoms with parchment paper.
2. Drain the maraschino cherries, reserving the juice. In a food processor or with a sharp knife, finely chop the cherries. Set aside.
3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, or in a large bowl with a hand-held mixer, beat the butter and sugar at high speed until light and fluffy. This will take about 5 minutes. Scrape down the bowl and add the egg whites one at a time, mixing after each. Add the vanilla and almond extracts and mix until combined.
4. In a separate bowl, combine the cake flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In a smaller bowl, combine the buttermilk and maraschino cherry juice. Add the flour mixture to the mixer in 3 additions, alternating with the buttermilk mixture. Mix after each addition and scrape down the bowl as necessary.
5. Stir in the chopped maraschino cherries. Divide the batter evenly between the cake pans and bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with a few moist crumbs, about 30-35 minutes. Let cool in the pans 10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
To make the frosting and assemble the cake:
1. Place the butter and cream cheese in bowl of stand mixer with paddle attachment. Beat until light and fluffy, about a minute.
2. Gradually add powdered sugar and beat until smooth. Add vanilla, almond extract, and cherry juice and beat until combined.
3. Place one cake layer on a plate or cake stand. Cover with ~1/2 to 2/3 cup of the frosting. Place second cake layer on top and cover tops and sides with remaining buttercream.
*adapted from Completely Delicious