Kidspot Kitchen

Kidspot Kitchen

Rainbow marble or layer cake recipe

Up the 'wow' factor with this bright rainbow cake - perfect for birthdays, special occasions and just about any time you want to create a splash of colour. As well as looking and tasting great, it's also relatively easy to whip up!



  • 2 cups (300g) plain flour, sifted
  • 1 1/2 cups (335g)  white sugar
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 3/4 cup (180ml) milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup (125g) butter, softened
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten

Food colouring

  • red
  • yellow
  • pink
  • green
  • orange
  • purple
  • blue

Buttercream icing

  • 200g butter, softened
  • 2 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 cups (380g) icing sugar mixture
  • 2 tbsp milk


Preheat oven to 180°C, or 160°C fan-forced. Line 2 x 20cm round cake tins with baking paper and set aside.

To make the cake batter, place the flour, sugar and baking powder into a bowl. Using a mixer, beat in the milk, vanilla, butter and eggs until combined. Beat for 4 minutes.

Divide the mixture evenly between seven bowls. Using the food colouring, tint each bowl of mixture the colours of the rainbow (please see Notes for directions on food colouring).

In the first cake tin, pour in the red, yellow, pink and half of the green batter. Pour each directly into the centre of the tin to create layers.

Repeat with the second cake tin, beginning with the remaining green mixture and then the orange, purple and blue.

Bake for 20 minutes or until centre of cakes bounce back after being touched lightly. Remove from tins and cool on a wire rack until ready to frost.


With an electric mixer, beat the butter until it's pale and fluffy. Gradually beat in the vanilla and icing mixture, half a cup at a time. Beat in the milk at the end until well incorporated.

To assemble, place the cake with the red bottom on a serving plate and spread 1/2 cup of icing over the top using a flat-bladed knife.

Place the second cake on top and cover the whole cake with the remaining icing.


  • This is a no-fuss cake. You can literally throw the cake ingredients into a mixing bowl and beat it well to get a great cake.
  • The amount of food colouring you add is up to your discretion. You can use liquid or gel colouring for this recipe. Just add a little at a time and mix until you have the colour that you want. I used red and blue to make the purple mixture, and red and yellow to make the orange mixture.
  • Avoid giving this cake to anyone with a sensitivity to food colouring. You can try using natural food colouring, but you won’t get the same vibrant end result.
  • If you want the buttercream icing to be white, you will need to beat it for around 5 minutes.
  • Thanks to our sister company Kidspot Australia for creating the instructional video.
  • This recipe was created by Jennifer Cheung for Kidspot, New Zealand’s best recipe finder.

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