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Teddy Bear Cake

Tender chocolate cake layers filled with creamy vanilla buttercream and topped with fondant decorations.

Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword Cake Decorating, Cake Recipe
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 40 minutes
Cooling/Decorating Time 2 hours 30 minutes
Total Time 4 hours 10 minutes
Author Katie

Ingredients

Milk Chocolate Cake

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 cup milk cocoa powder
  • 1 Tablespoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4 whole eggs
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 cup brewed coffee
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Vanilla Buttercream

  • 2 cups (or 4 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 7 1/2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
  • 2-3 Tablespoons heavy cream
  • Brown gel food coloring

Decorations

  • Fondant (ivory, tan, pink, black and white)

Instructions

Milk Chocolate Cake

  1. Preheat oven to 350 °F. Spray three 6-inch round cake pans or two 8-inch round cake pans with non-stick spray, line the bottom of each pan with parchment paper and spray again. Set aside.

  2. In the stand mixer bowl fitted with a paddle attachment, stir together the all-purpose flour, milk cocoa powder, granulated sugar, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.

  3. Add the eggs and the vegetable oil on low until well incorporated.

  4. Pour in the buttermilk and add brewed coffee. Mix on medium for 30 seconds. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.

  5. Evenly distribute the cake batter among the three cake pans and bake for about 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of each cake comes out clean or with just a few moist crumbs.

  6. Remove cakes from oven and let cool in pans for 10 minutes before inverting onto cooling racks to cool completely — wrap cakes in plastic wrap and place in the freezer to chill for 30 minutes.

Vanilla Buttercream

  1. In the stand mixer bowl fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.

  2. Turn the mixer to low and add the salt and vanilla.

  3. Next, gradually add powdered sugar, followed by the cream. Mix on medium-high speed for about 5 minutes, until light and fluffy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.

  4. Before using turn the mixer on low and mix for 2 minutes to push out any air bubbles or use a rubber spatula to push out the air bubbles. (You may need to repeat this step when frosting the outside of the cake).

  5. Reserve half of the white buttercream for stacking and filling the cake and dye the remaining half with a brown gel food coloring to make a light brown or tan color buttercream for the fur of the teddy bear. Fill a piping bag prepared with a coupler and small star piping tip with ½ of tan buttercream, set aside for later.

Fondant Decorations

  1. On a silicone mat, roll the pink fondant to 1/8 inch thick then use a sharp x-acto knife to cut out one long strip. Flip the strip over and add a touch of water to the middle of the strip. Fold each end to meet in the center. Then pinch the center together and cut a thin strip to wrap around the center to create a bow.

  2. Roll a piece of ivory fondant into an oval piece that's about a 3 ½ inch nose/muzzle.

  3. Roll out tan fondant to 1/8 inch thick, cut out two circle ears. Then roll out light pink fondant for the inner ears. Attach with water and cut off the ends to create a flat bottom of the ear. Insert a covered wire into each ear.

  4. Next, roll black fondant into a 1/8 inch thick piece. Cut into two small circles for the eyes. Then roll a short rope. Cut out two pieces to outline the top of each eye for the eyelashes then cut one small piece for eyelashes for the ends.

  5. Add two small dots of white fondant highlights on the black eyes. Use water to attach the white fondant. Set aside all fondant pieces to dry for one hour.

Assemble

  1. Remove the cake layers from the freezer and unwrap the cake layers. Next, use a serrated knife to cut off the dome of the cakes to make the layers flat and even.

  2. Add a small amount of buttercream onto the center of the cake board. Layer the chilled milk chocolate cake, cut side up onto the cake board.

  3. Add a 2/3 cup of vanilla buttercream over the cake. Place another cake layer cut side down over the top. Repeat the process for another layer — Crumb coat and freeze for 30 minutes.

  4. Attach the nose/muzzle ivory fondant piece with toothpicks to the side of the cake.

  5. Then begin to pipe the tan buttercream around the fondant and continue piping small stars all over the cake.

  6. Add the fondant eyes about the nose/muzzle as well as ears and finally pink bow.

  7. Serve cake at room temperature and enjoy!

Recipe Notes

  • Read through all the ingredients and instructions so you can get a better idea of how much time and what you need to make this cake.
  • I highly recommend making the cake taller, so when you are creating the face of the teddy bear, it's in portion to everything else. 
  • If you are in a rush for time or you would like to break up the decorating, then make the fondant decorations the day before, so the fondant has plenty of time to dry.  
  • In this cake recipe, you need 1 cup buttermilk; if you don't have any buttermilk on hand, you can easily use 1 cup whole milk mixed with 1 Tablespoon lemon juice or white vinegar to make your own. 
  • You can bake the cake layers ahead of time. Wrap the cake layers in plastic wrap and freeze up to one month. 
  • You can make the buttercream a day ahead and refrigerate it overnight. Then take them out to come back to room temperature. Make sure the buttercream is at room temperature before re-whipping.
  • A single batch of this cake recipe makes three, 6-inch round cake layers or two 8-inch round cake layers. Double the cake recipe to make enough cake batter for three, 8-inch cake layers.
  • Food coloring gets darker over time, so it's best to gradually add the food coloring, which is best for lighter colors.