Pecan Butterscotch Cake Recipe

This cake recipe is so delicious we just had to post it! It’s a sweet indulgence with butterscotch dressing, my favorite! And it had a great texture thanks to the pecans. It’s a bit involved so you will need to be skilled with a mixer but if you’ve made cakes before you’ll be fine. You’ll make three layers with frosting between so it’s really quite impressive when you show it off to your family and friends!

Cake Ingredients

  • Vegetable-oil cooking spray, for pans
  • 3.75 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1.15 tsp baking powder
  • 0.75 tsp baking soda
  • 2.5 tsp coarse salt
  • 10 oz (or 2.5 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 2.5 cups packed dark-brown sugar
  • 4 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 tbsp plus 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1.25 tsp rum, preferably golden or dark
  • 1.25 cups buttermilk, room temperature

Frosting Ingredients

  • 12 ounces unsalted butter (3 sticks), 1 stick left whole, 2 sticks cut into small pieces, softened
  • 2 cups packed dark-brown sugar
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 20 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar, sifted

Butterscotch Sauce Ingredients

  • 2/3 cup packed dark-brown sugar
  • 3 oz (6 tbsp) butter, cut into pieces
  • 0.5 cup light corn syrup
  • 0.25 tsp coarse salt
  • 0.5 cup heavy cream
  • 2 cups pecan halves, toasted and chopped, plus more halves for garnish

Directions for Cakes

  1. Preheat your oven to 325 degrees.
  2. Coat three 8-inch round cake pans with cooking spray.
  3. Mix flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  4. Use a mixer to mix butter and brown sugar until fluffy and pale. Then add in one egg at a time, then vanilla and rum. Add in flour mixture a little at a time. Add buttermilk. Split the mixture among your three cake pans.
  5. Put the pans in the oven and bake until golden brown for 40 minutes.
  6. Once they are cool, dump the cakes out.

Directions for Frosting

  1. Melt 1 stick butter in until dark golden brown for 10 minutes. Add brown sugar, cream, and salt, stirring until sugar dissolves. Let it boil for 3 minutes.
  2. With machine running, add remaining butter, a few pieces at a time, and beat on low until incorporated. Raise speed to medium, and beat for 2 minutes. In another bowl, beat cream cheese and confectioners’ sugar on medium-high until fluffy and smooth, about 3 minutes. Add brown-butter mixture to cream cheese, and beat until smooth. Cover, and refrigerate until chilled, at least 2 hours (or overnight, beating on low speed before using).

Butterscotch Dressing Directions

  1. Mix sugar, butter, corn syrup, and salt in a small saucepan over medium heat, and cook, stirring, until sugar dissolves. Bring to a boil, and cook for 2 minutes. Remove from heat, and whisk in cream. Return to heat, and cook for 2 minutes.

Putting it All Together

  1. Trim tops of 2 cake layers and top and bottom of third (this will be the middle) to create flat exposed surfaces. Brush 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons butterscotch sauce on cut sides. Let cool. Spread 1 cup frosting on 1 layer, then place middle layer on top, sauce side down. Spread 1 cup frosting on middle layer, then place third layer on top, sauce side down. Spread 1 cup frosting on top and sides. Refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.
  2. Using an offset spatula, spread remaining frosting on top and sides of cake. Press chopped pecans on sides, and garnish top with halves. Transfer cake to a serving plate or cake stand. Refrigerate until firm, at least 4 hours (or up to 2 days, covered).

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