Chocolate Ombre Cake

  • Serves: Makes one 9- x 2-inch 3-layer cake
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Multiple shades of pink buttercream layered between decadent chocolate cake make a sensational and delicious presentation for any special event. We bake our Sinful Chocolate Cake Recipe and fill it with the Swiss Meringue Buttercream or SMBC, Strawberry Variation, tinted in hues of pink that are graduated in tone, hence the name ombre. Here, we've decorated the cake with organically grown edible flowers and leaves to really take it over the top. My daughter-in-law, Cara, even used this cake design and recipe for her bridal shower. We made 3 versions: one 9-inch cake and two small 6-inch cakes placed on either side, and it was stunning. We also served 100 of our Heart Shaped Bridal Wedding Favor Cookies. The guests raved about the whole dessert set-up. Find out how we tinted the buttercream below!


In the following recipe, we'll instruct you on exactly how many drops of AmeriColor Super Red gel paste food coloring to use in the Strawberry Variation of Swiss Meringue Buttercream or SMBC. Follow our instructions, and you'll be rewarded with a gorgeous creation.

1 recipe (3 layers) Sinful Chocolate Cake 

1 recipe Swiss Meringue Buttercream or SMBC, Strawberry Variation
Super Red gel paste food color, we used AmeriColor

Disposable piping bags

Large plain piping tip, such as Ateco 806

Medium plain piping tip, such as Ateco 801

1. Make sure the mixing bowl is clamped onto the mixer fitted with a paddle attachment.

2. Add three drops of Super Red food color to completed Swiss Meringue or SMBC, Strawberry Variation, while the mixer is on low speed.
NOTE: If you use a different brand of food color, you may need to add less, or more.

3. Mix until the frosting is uniform in color. This will produce a pale pink frosting.

4. Remove the frosting from the bowl and split it into three equal portions.

5. Leave one of the portions as is, then add 5 additional drops to one of the bowls, and 8 additional drops to the other bowl.

6. Stir the frosting until the color is uniform.

7. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside until needed.

1. Place one Sinful Chocolate Cake Layer on a cake stand or serving plate.

2. Put the darkest tinted Swiss Meringue Buttercream in a disposable piping bag, fitted with a large open tip.

3. Pipe a thick spiral of frosting, leaving a 1 inch border around the edge of the cake.

4. Use a small offset spatula to smooth the buttercream.

4. Pipe large “pearls” of frosting around the edge of the cake, using the same buttercream and piping tip.

5. Carefully place the second layer of the Sinful Chocolate Cake on the buttercream, pressing GENTLY to level.

6. Repeat the above steps on the second layer, using the medium-tone pink icing, in another disposable piping bag.
NOTE: If you only have one large piping tip, like I do, you will have to remove it from the first bag, wash and dry it and then place it in the second bag.

6. Carefully put the third layer in place. Try to avoid adjusting the position too much, or you will disturb the buttercream.

7. Repeat the steps above with the third layer, using the lightest pink buttercream, then replace the large piping tip with the smaller one and pipe a border of small “pearls” around the edge, next to the large pearls.

8. Decorate the cake with organically grown edible flowers and leaves.

Because this Swiss Meringue Buttercream or SMBC needs to be refrigerated, store the decorated cake in the refrigerator, and  remove it about 1 hour before service, to give the frosting time to soften.

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