Vanilla Blackberry Cake with Browned Butter Cream Cheese Frosting

Dreamy vanilla blackberry cake layers and an addictive browned butter cream cheese frosting. This cake is sure to be a summer hit!

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This cake is insanely good. Yes, I’m starting with my #humblebrag. It was made for a good friend leaving our workplace for a new job, and I knew I had to made something that was both her taste and summer-y. I knew it would be a fruity cake, and I loved the idea of tart blackberry juices swirled throughout the cake. And so, with a good quality vanilla (I looooove mine from Costco) the vanilla blackberry cake was born. But the true genius came when I thought of the browned butter cream cheese frosting. It was so good I could’ve (might’ve…) eaten it with a spoon. The tart creaminess of the cream cheese in combination with the browned butter really took it to the next level.

Let’s Talk Browned Butter

  • Browned butter is essentially ghee. Ghee is a clarified butter that is boiled on the stove until the milk solids separate out. But unlike ghee, you keep all of those delicious brown bits in so it packs a massive flavor-punch.
  • The process is simple to make browned butter. All it takes is about 10 minutes. You add 2 sticks of butter to a pot and allow to melt, eventually it will boil. You allow it to boil until it takes on a golden-brown hue and you see brown specks floating at the bottom. Then you know it’s done! Just be cautious not to over-brown and burn the butter.
  • Browned butter is a great tool to elevate many of your baking dishes! Try it out for a nutty, deepened flavor for your desserts! (I would HIGHLY recommend using it in my chocolate chip cookies recipe!)

Try it out and let me know how it goes!

The blackberry vanilla cake with a swirled, browned butter cream cheese frosting next to a glass of milk, ready to be served!

Vanilla Blackberry Cake with Browned Butter Cream Cheese Frosting

Recipe by Kaylea BakesDifficulty: Medium


Prep time


Cooking time




  • Cake Layers
  • 3 large eggs, room temperature

  • 1 cup oil*

  • 1/4 cup greek yogurt

  • 2 cups sugar

  • 1 tablespoon vanilla

  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract (optional)**

  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk

  • 3 1/2 cups cake flour

  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 2 pints blackberries, roughly chopped***

  • 2 tablespoons flour (to coat blackberries)

  • Browned Butter Cream Cheese Frosting
  • 16 ounces cream cheese, softened

  • 1 cup browned butter

  • 6 cups powdered sugar

  • 2 teaspoons vanilla

  • 2 tablespoons milk


  • Browned Butter
  • Take the 1 cup of cutter (2 sticks) and put them in a pot on the stove. Turn on medium-high and allow to melt. You will observe the butter melting, then bubbling. Occasionally stir.
  • When the butter takes on a golden brown color and smells slightly nutty, take off the heat. You will also see small brown bits at the bottom of the pot. Keep them! This is the most flavorful part.
  • Put into a container and store in refrigerator until solid.
  • Cake Layers
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease 3 8″ round pans.
  • Sift together the dry ingredients into a bowl, set aside.
  • Whisk together the eggs, oil, greek yogurt, sugar, extracts, and buttermilk until combined.
  • Add dry ingredients to the wet in thirds, mix until thoroughly combined and there are no lumps. Be careful not to over-mix and deflate your batter.
  • Rinse and roughly chop the blackberries so that some juices start to leak out. Add to a separate bowl and toss with the 2 tablespoons of flour. Add to batter and gently mix with a spatula.
  • Divide evenly among the 3 pans and put into the oven. Bake for 35-40 minutes, until a toothpick in the center comes out clean. Rotate pans halfway though. If the tops are browning too quickly, cover with foil.
  • Allow cakes to cool completely and trim tops so that they are flat.
  • Browned Butter Cream Cheese Frosting
  • Cream together cream cheese and butter until blended.
  • Add in powdered sugar, cup by cup, until well combined scraping the sides as necessary.
  • Add the vanilla and milk to thin out as desired.


  • *A neutral flavored oil is best, like canola.
  • **Optional addition. You do not really taste it, but it deepens the complexity of the cake and the flavor of the vanilla.
  • ***Roughly chop the blackberries so that the juices leak out slightly. We want the flavor and look of the purple juices, without turning our entire cake purple.


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