slice of peppermint cake on a plate with the rest of the cake in the background

Peppermint Cake with White Chocolate Buttercream

Peppermint cake with white chocolate buttercream is an easy and festive dessert that tastes absolutely delicious!

Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 32 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 2 minutes
Servings 10
Author Kelsie


Peppermint cake layers

  • 1 15.25-ounce box white cake mix*
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup full-fat sour cream
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 4 large egg whites
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon peppermint extract
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa powder
  • red gel food coloring

White chocolate buttercream

  • 4 ounces white chocolate finely chopped
  • 1 1/4 cups unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 5 to 5 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 3 to 5 tablespoons whole milk or heavy cream
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract use clear if you have it
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • peppermint candies and sprinkles for decorating


Peppermint cake layers

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray 2 8-inch round cake pans with cooking spray. Line the bottom of the pans with parchment paper, then spray the paper with more cooking spray. Set pans aside.
  2. Combine the cake mix, flour, sugar, sour cream, water, vegetable oil, egg whites, peppermint extract, and vanilla extract in a large mixing bowl. Beat with an electric mixer on medium speed for 2 minutes—batter should be very smooth.

  3. Pour half of the batter into one of the prepared pans. Sift the cocoa powder over the remaining cake batter and mix briefly to combine. Add red gel food coloring to achieve desired color and mix with a rubber spatula to combine.
  4. Pour into the remaining cake pan and bake cake layers 32 to 38 minutes, until a cake tester inserted into the center of the cakes comes out clean.
  5. Cool cake layers for 20 minutes in pans, then run a knife around the edge of the pans and carefully invert onto a wire rack to cool completely before assembling your cake.

White chocolate buttercream

  1. Place the chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl and heat at 50% power in 15-second intervals, stirring after each interval, until chocolate is melted and smooth. Set aside to cool for 5 minutes.
  2. Beat the butter in a large mixing bowl with an electric mixer until smooth and creamy, about 30 seconds.
  3. Turn mixer to low and beat in 5 cups of the powdered sugar, 3 tablespoons of the milk, and the vanilla and salt until combined. Add the cooled white chocolate and mix on low until incorporated. Turn mixer to medium and mix until smooth. If frosting is too thick, add additional milk; if it’s too thin, add additional powdered sugar.
  4. Assembly:
  5. Use a long serrated knife to trim your cake layers if they’ve domed. Use the same knife to split each layer in half to form 4 layers. (If the layers are too soft to split, chill them in the fridge until they harden a bit.)
  6. Set 1 red cake layer on a cake stand or cardboard cake circle. Spread about 3/4 cup frosting over the top. Top with a white cake layer and more frosting; repeat until you’ve used all the cake layers.
  7. Frost your cake with remaining frosting and decorate with sprinkles and peppermint candies. Serve.

Recipe Notes