Butterscotch Cake with Caramel Icing

I love the icing even more than the cake itself, and I think next time I will try it with a standard butter cake. Caramel icing is a wonderful treat and another one of those old things that fell out of favor but now is making a comeback.

Prep Time:
20 mins
Cook Time:
25 mins
Additional Time:
35 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 20 mins
1 9-inch layer cake



  • 2 cups brown sugar

  • ½ cup unsalted butter, softened

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 2 large eggs

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour

  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

  • ½ teaspoon salt

  • 1 cup buttermilk

Caramel Icing:

  • 1 ½ cups brown sugar

  • ¼ cup unsalted butter

  • ¼ cup milk

  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour two 9-inch round cake pans, or line with parchment paper.

  2. Combine brown sugar and butter for cake in a bowl; cream with an electric mixer on medium speed until fluffy. Add vanilla extract, then add eggs, one at a time, beating on low speed just until they are mixed in.

  3. Sift flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt together in a separate bowl. Add flour mixture in 2 batches, alternating with buttermilk, beating batter on low speed until well mixed, scraping down the bowl by hand as needed. Pour batter evenly into the prepared pans.

  4. Bake in the preheated oven until a toothpick inserted into the center of each layer comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes. Cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Run a table knife around the edges to loosen. Invert carefully onto a serving plate or cooling rack. Let cool, about 30 minutes.

  5. While cake cools, combine brown sugar, 1/4 cup butter, milk, and flour for icing in a small saucepan over medium heat; bring to a boil. Continue to boil, stirring frequently to prevent burning, for 1 minute. Remove from heat and stir in 2 tablespoons butter and vanilla extract. Cool the mixture, stirring occasionally, until it is still warm (but not hot) and has thickened enough to spread.

  6. Spread icing over the cake, moving fairly quickly because it will set as it cools. It will be a thin coating, not a thick layer. Let set completely before cutting into the cake.

Cook's Note:

You can use three 6-inch round cake pans instead.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

467 Calories
15g Fat
81g Carbs
4g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 12
Calories 467
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 15g 19%
Saturated Fat 9g 45%
Cholesterol 68mg 23%
Sodium 298mg 13%
Total Carbohydrate 81g 29%
Dietary Fiber 1g 2%
Total Sugars 64g
Protein 4g
Vitamin C 0mg 1%
Calcium 117mg 9%
Iron 2mg 9%
Potassium 163mg 3%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

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