Who Cares Where It’s From?

Posted by Roz Corieri Paige on Mar 16, 2021 11:17:00 AM
Roz Corieri Paige

This delicious Italian Cream Cake will knock your socks off


While it may have its roots in Renaissance Italy, there’s nothing Italian about this modern recipe. Italian cream cake is from—are you ready—Texas! Or maybe Canada, some say, but definitely not Italy.

Italian Cream Cake slice on plate

Italian cream cake is an elegant, show-stopping, moist 3-layer cake. The cake’s rich layers are studded with chopped pecans and coconut. The moistness comes from the coconut, and (in this version) cooking oil. The cake is topped with a rich, finger-licking-good whipped cream cheese frosting with more chopped pecans and delicate shredded coconut.  

Delicious Italian Cream Cake, plated

Here’s how to make this show-stopper.


Italian Cream Cake 


For The Cake

  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 5 eggs, separated and at room temperature
  • 2 - ½ cups flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2/3 cup finely chopped pecans
  • 1 (3-1/2 oz) can flaked coconut or 1 bag of flaked coconut
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp cream of tartar
  • 3 - 6 Tbsp light rum

For The Cream Cheese Frosting  (Double this)

  • 1 (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 (16 oz) package powdered sugar, sifted
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  •  2 tsp. vanilla extract



For the Cake

  • Grease (with softened butter) and flour three (3) 9″ round cake pans.
  • Line with parchment paper and then grease the paper also.
  • Cream the butter; add sugar, beating well with a handheld electric mixer at medium speed.
  • Add egg yolks, one at a time, beating after each is added.
  • Combine the flour and baking soda.
  • Add this to creamed mixture alternating with buttermilk, beginning and ending with the flour mixture.
  • Stir in pecans, coconut, rum, and vanilla.
  • Beat the egg whites on high until foamy.
  • Add the cream of tartar; beat until stiff peaks form.
  • Gently fold the beaten egg whites into batter.
  • Pour batter into prepared pans.
  • Bake at 350° F. for 20 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  • Let cool in the pans for 10 minutes.
  • Remove from pans; peel off the parchment paper, and let cool completely on wire racks.


For the Frosting

  • Combine cream cheese and butter, beating until smooth. Add vanilla and mix in for a minute.
  • Gradually add powdered sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Add more to your preferred level of sweetness.
  • OPTIONAL: Stir in pecans or keep the pecans out of the frosting in order to 'press' them into the frosted cake.


About the author

Roz Corieri Paige is the author of La Bella Vita Cucina, a food and lifestyle blog where she inspires others to live life more deliciously and beautifully, whether in the kitchen or the garden. Find out more about Roz at italianbellavita.com.

Tags: Country Kitchen


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