Easy Vanilla Birthday Cake & Funfetti Icing Recipe

My (not so) little brother recently turned 17 so I baked him this really easy Vanilla Birthday Cake with home made 'Funfetti' icing. 

As I figured there would probably be some parents out there with little ones to look after and bigger ones to make cakes for, I thought I'd share the recipe because although this cake is super quick and easy to make, it also looks pretty cool and like you've made a proper big effort. 

Scroll down for what you'll need and how to make this three layered vanilla birthday cake, and the 'funfetti' (a.k.a sprinkles) icing to go with it!


For the cake:

250g butter or margarine, softened plus extra for greasing
250g caster sugar
1tsp vanilla essence
5 large eggs
85g plain flour
100g Greek or Natural Yoghurt
250g Self-raising flour
3tbsp semi-skimmed milk

For the layers (optional):

3-4 tbsp jam (I used blackberry)

For the icing:

1 tub of sprinkles (I used the Dr Oetkar Sour Power ones)
500g icing sugar (sifted if needed) 
160g butter or margarine, softened
50ml of milk
half a tsp vanilla essence
food colouring


For the cake:

  • Heat oven to 180 degrees. 
  • Grease and line three 8" cake tins (or two and re-use one later like I did)
  • Whisk together sugar and butter until light in colour and smooth in texture.
  • Add eggs and plain flour and continue to whisk until combined.
  • Add the remaining ingredients and whisk together slowly until you have a smooth cake batter. 
Split batter evenly over three cake tins and bake in the oven (ideally on the same shelf for even baking) for 30-35 minutes. 

Allow cakes to cool slightly in their tins before turning them out to cool completely on a wire rack.

For the 'funfetti' icing:

(I adapted the Humming Bird Bakery's Vanilla Cupcakes Icing recipe)

  • Place butter, milk, vanilla and icing sugar in a large bowl. 
  • Whisk until light and fluffy.
  • Fold in sprinkles, I used three quarters of this jar of Dr Oetkar Sour Power Strands
  • Place a third of the icing in a separate bowl and add food colouring, I used about 2 tsp in total for one layer and kept the icing for the middle layers white.

 To Assemble:

  • Trim the bottom and middle sponges so that they are level (do all of them if you have time- I didn't). Use a serrated blade for this if you have one.
  • Add jam and white funfetti icing to the bottom layer, place the next cake on top then repeat adding jam and icing.
  • Place the final sponge on top.
  • Ice with coloured icing and add more sprinkles if desired.
Add candles, sing 'Happy Birthday' and away you go!



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