Pride Rainbow Cake with Hemp Hearts

Rainbow cake with vanilla buttercream and hemp hearts
Cake Layers
  • Nonstick cooking spray
  • 3 cups cake flour, plus more for dusting
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3/4 cup hemp hearts (the hemp hearts can be toasted for a nuttier flavor)
  • 12 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • Red, yellow, green and blue food coloring (red + yellow for orange, blue + red for violet)
Vanilla Buttercream
  • 4 sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • 10 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons heavy cream

Tinted Hemp Hearts

  • 1/4 cup hemp hearts
  • 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • food coloring gel


Baking the Cake 

  1.  Preheat the oven to 350°. Coat three 8-inch round cake pans with nonstick cooking spray and line with parchment paper. Dust with cake flour, tapping out the excess.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk the 3 cups of cake flour with the baking powder, salt and hemp hearts. In a stand mixer fitted with a paddle, cream the butter with the granulated sugar at medium speed, scraping down the bowl as needed, until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add the eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla. Alternately beat in the dry ingredients and milk at low speed until just combined.
  3. Scoop the cake batter equally between each of 6 the medium bowls, about 1+ cup per bowl. Using a few drops of food coloring at a time, tint the batter in each bowl to create red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and violet layers. Scrape the batter from 3 of the bowls into the prepared pans and smooth the tops with a spatula. Bake the layers for 12 to 14 minutes, until a cake tester inserted into the centers comes out clean. Transfer the pans to a wire rack and cool for 10 minutes. Invert each layer onto a wire rack and remove the parchment.
  4. Clean the cake pans and repeat step 3 to bake the three remaining layers. After cooling, invert each layer onto a wire rack and remove the parchment.

Make the Vanilla Buttercream

  1. In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle, cream the butter at medium speed until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes.
  2. At low speed, add the confectioners’ sugar in 3 batches, beating well after each addition.
  3. Add the vanilla and salt. Beat at medium speed until smooth, about 6 minutes.
  4. Add the cream and beat until very light and fluffy, about 4 minutes.

Tinted Hemp Hearts 

  1. Place the hemp hearts and powdered sugar in a zip-close plastic bag.
  2. Add a line of coloring gel about 2-inches long onto the hemp heart sugar mixture. Close the bag and massage the gel into the hemp hearts.
  3. Optional: Toast in a 350°F oven for 8 to 10 minutes, creating a nuttier flavor and crunch from the toasted sugar.

Assembling the Cake 

  1. Set the violet cake layer on a cake plate.
  2. Using an offset spatula, spread the top with 1/2 cup of the vanilla buttercream. Repeat with the blue, green, yellow, orange and red layers.
  3. Spread or pipe 1 1/2 cups of the remaining buttercream over the top and sides of the cake in a decorative pattern.
  4. Top with tinted hemp hearts in a rainbow pattern.
  5. Refrigerate until the buttercream is firm, about 20 minutes.