Butter Pecan Cake

November 24, 2018  ·  Published November 24, 2015

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Butter Pecan Cake is a perfect cake for the holidays! It’s brimming with buttery pecan flavor, it has a soft and tender crumb and it’s a perfectly moist cake (because dry cakes are the worst). It’s a recipe you’ll definitely want to add to the recipe box!

Butter Pecan Cake slice on a red plate.

Butter Pecan Cake

You will want to savor each and every bite of this cake! Not only is the cake itself perfectly delicious but it’s coated with a luscious cream cheese frosting, because cream cheese frosting is simply the best.

I love how the cream cheese balances out the sweetness of the cake as well as the buttermilk that’s blended into the batter. They also just add more depth of flavor so you’re cake will be anything but boring.

Butter Pecan Cake | Cooking Classy

It’s Loaded with Pecans!

This cake has a whopping 2 cups pecans swirled into the batter and 1/2 cup pecans garnishing the top. And I didn’t just use any nuts, I used Fisher Nuts because they are my nuts brand of choice.

I chose to create this cake with Fisher Nuts because it is one of the only brands of recipe nuts entirely without preservatives, I also love that I can purchase them in larger bags so I get more for my money.

Pecans are the highlight of this cake so you’ll want to make sure you are using the best quality and Fisher is a brand you can always count on!

Chopped pecans added to butter pecan cake batter in mixing bowl.

A Cake Worthy of Special Occasions

I have the feeling this is a cake you’ll want to make for special occasions again and again!

It’s so good it will likely remind you of something your Grandma may have made and something she’d absolutely love to eat!

If you love the butter pecan flavor you’ve got to try this cake and what better time than during the holidays? It’s a cake destined to impress!

Butter Pecan Cake batter in cake pan before baking.

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Butter Pecan Cake on a wooden platter. A large slice is removed from cake to show interior.

5 from 19 votes

Butter Pecan Cake

The best butter pecan cake recipe! It's brimming with a rich buttery flavor and swirled with plenty of pecans. It's moist and sweet and a perfectly tempting cake fit for any occasion!
Servings: 18
Prep30 minutes
Cook25 minutes
Cool2 hours
Ready in: 2 hours 55 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 cups (204g) Fishers Pecan Halves, chopped into small bits
  • 3 Tbsp (42g) unsalted butter, diced into 3 pieces
  • 3 cups (424g) all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup (226g) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 3/4 cup (375g) granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (235ml) buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) milk

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 1 cup (226g) butter*, nearly at room temperature
  • 12 oz cream cheese , nearly at room temperature
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 5 cups (620g) powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup (56g) Fishers Pecan Halves, chopped, for topping

Instructions

  • Preheat oven, prepare cake pans: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and line 3 9-inch round cake pans with parchment paper, butter parchment paper and lightly dust pans with flour shaking out excess. Set pans aside.
  • Saute pecans in butter: Melt 3 Tbsp butter in a skillet over medium heat. Once melted add pecans and cook until slightly browned and fragrant, tossing frequently, about 4 minutes. Pour and spread onto a sheet of parchment paper or a baking sheet. Set aside and allow to cool.
  • Mix liquids together: stir together buttermilk and milk, set aside.
  • Whisk dry ingredients: In a mixing bowl whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt for 20 seconds, set aside. 
  • Cream butter and sugar, then eggs and vanilla: In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment whip together butter and sugar until very pale and fluffy. Mix in eggs one at a time adding in vanilla with last egg. 
  • Mix in flour alternating with milk mixture: Add 1/3 of the flour mixture to the butter mixture and mix on low speed just until combined, then add in 1/2 of the buttermilk mixture and mix just until combined then repeat process once more. Finish by mixing in remaining 1/3 of the flour mixture and mix just until nearly combined. 
  • Fold in pecans: Remove bowl from stand mixer and fold in pecans (fold batter until there's not longer streaks in the batter). Divide batter evenly among prepared baking pans. 
  • Bake until set: Bake in preheated oven 23 - 28 minutes until toothpick inserted into center of cake comes out clean. Remove from oven and cool in cake pans 10 minutes.  
  • Let cake cool completely on wire rack: Run a knife around edges of cake to ensure the are loosened and invert onto wire racks to cool completely. Once cool frost with cream cheese frosting and top with pecans. 
  • For the cream cheese frosting: In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment whip together butter and cream cheese until smooth. Mix in vanilla and powdered sugar and blend until smooth and fluffy.

Notes

  1. I like to use 1/2 cup salted 1/2 cup unsalted butter for the frosting.
  2. Since there's a cream cheese frosting I recommend storing the cake in refrigerator in an airtight container. If fully chilled allow to rest at room temperature about 20 - 30 minutes before serving.
Nutrition Facts
Butter Pecan Cake
Amount Per Serving
Calories 689 Calories from Fat 360
% Daily Value*
Fat 40g62%
Saturated Fat 19g119%
Cholesterol 118mg39%
Sodium 284mg12%
Potassium 213mg6%
Carbohydrates 77g26%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 56g62%
Protein 6g12%
Vitamin A 1025IU21%
Vitamin C 0.2mg0%
Calcium 91mg9%
Iron 1.8mg10%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Fisher. The opinions and text are all mine.

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115 Comments

  • Stacy

    Hi. Would doubling this recipe be sufficient for a two-layer 12 inch cake?

  • Amy McKeag

    Just baked a half batch of this recipe using Bob Battles measurements from the comments. (160g of pecans, 360g of flour, add some almond extract) and the cake is delicious. Half batch perfectly makes 3 6inch rounds. The frosting is delicious and I will use on other things, I just can’t decide if a regular buttercream might work better since the cake isn’t overly sweet.

  • Anagha Ray

    Amazing!! Just baked this cake, added some orange zest to the mix and its simply awesome!

  • Karen Martin

    Sorry didn’t like it, couldn’t wait to make it, it was not dry but something was off with taste. Wouldn’t make again

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      Sorry to hear that! Did you check the expiration on the nuts? If they expire that can start to taste off.

  • JJ

    The flavor was fabulous, but the cake was very dense. I was surprised to find that of my three different liquid measuring cups, none held the exact same amount as the others. This may have accounted for the density. I think cutting back on the amount of pecans might have made a difference as well. If I try it again, I’ll make adjustments to see if I can get a better consistency.

    • Nencica

      I found the exact same thing… cake was extremely dense. The taste was awesome…I’d just prefer a fluffier softer cake … any suggestions?

      • Jaclyn

        Jaclyn Bell

        You can try cake flour. Then also whip egg white separate to medium stiff peaks and fold in with the pecans.

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      I would probably do 2/3 of the recipe. Scale servings down to 12 with toggle bar (and just use 3 eggs). Then just increase bake time.

  • Bob Battles

    I have baked this recipe twice in the past two weeks (Jan of 2021). It is absolutely fantastic! There are some changes and additions I made, though:
    AP flour weighs 120g per cup (per King Arthur Flour), so I reduced the flour to 360g. The first time I baked it I used the full two cups of chopped pecans and I thought the texture of the cake suffered (too much like a fruit cake texture). The second time I baked it, I used 1-1/3 cup (160g) chopped pecans and I much preferred the texture. I also added 1/2 teaspoon almond extract when I added the vanilla extract and liked the extra nuttiness it added to the flavor. I bake using convection and had to reduce the bake time to 17min at 350 degrees. I also used 1/4 cup of bourbon to brush the layers before fronting the cake. The frosting as per the recipe is one of the best there is, but I added the zest of two oranges to it and I think it took it over the top!

  • Jo Matlock

    Wanted something different for my husband’s birthday cake. This was a hit! Will definitely make this cake again… and again… and again!