This post may contain affiliate links. Please read the disclosure policy.

This Heart Inside Cake is a fun dessert to make for Valentine’s, Mother’s Day or a birthday party. It’s a hidden design where the heart is only revealed as a surprise when you cut the cake!

Heart inside cake with red velvet cake on the inside and white cake outside

When you feel like a baking adventure, try making this heart-inside-a-cake recipe. It’s a great way to celebrate and everyone loves the surprise inside, since you literally can’t see it until you cut a slice.

We’ve made it for Valentine’s, Mother’s Day and birthday parties. Plus, it’s easy to customize the decorations whether you want to add sprinkles or a personalized message.

How to Make a Heart Inside Cake

Since this recipes involves baking two cakes, we’ve used cake mixes for easier preparation. You can use your favorite flavors such as white cake, yellow cake, lemon, red velvet, chocolate etc. Just make sure you have enough of a contrast between the two colors.

Start by making the batter for the inside cake, and then baking it in a loaf pan following the package directions. Let it cool completely and then slice it into 1-inch pieces. You can use a 2-inch heart-shaped cookie cutter or make one out of plastic soda bottle.

The heart cutouts need to freeze for 30 minutes before continuing, since they will be baking a second time.

Now clean up the loaf pan and make the outside cake batter. Fill the pan a half-inch and insert the frozen hearts standing upright while you pour in the rest of the batter. It should just cover completely, leaving an inch from the top of the pan to allow for expansion. Bake again for 20-30 minutes until a toothpick or cake tester comes out clean.

Once the combined heart inside cake has cooled completely, you can spread the frosting over the outside and add decorations.

Watch Recipe Video

This video tutorial shows how to make a heart surprise cake (including how to make a heart-shaped cutter if you don’t have one!):

Can I Make It Ahead?

Yes, you can make this cake up to 3 days in advance and store at room temperature in an airtight container. It also freezes well for up to 3 months in a resealable plastic bag.

More dessert ideas:

View all Valentine’s Day recipes

 

This Heart Surprise Cake recipe is perfect for Valentine's Day
Print Save Recipe
4.34 from 3 votes

Heart Inside Cake

This Heart Inside Cake is a fun dessert to make for Valentine's, Mother's Day or a birthday party. It's a hidden design where the heart is only revealed as a surprise when you cut the cake!
Prep Time: 20 mins
Cook Time: 20 mins
Freezing Time: 30 mins
Total Time: 1 hr 10 mins
Servings: 12 servings

Ingredients

  • 15 oz red velvet cake mix, 1 box, plus ingredients called for on the box
  • 15 oz white cake mix, 1 box, plus ingredients called for on the box
  • 1 tube white icing
  • sprinkles, optional

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven at 350°F. Grease a loaf pan with butter and line with parchment paper.
  • Make the red velvet cake batter according to the package directions. Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick or cake tester comes out clean.
  • Remove the cake from oven and allow to cool in the pan for 5 minutes before unmolding onto a wire rack to cool completely.
  • Cut the cake widthwise into 1-inch thick slabs. Place the slab on a work surface and use a 2-inch heart-shaped cookie cutter to make heart-shaped cutouts (see note). Place them in a resealable plastic bag and freeze for 30 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, prepare the white cake batter according to the package directions. Clean and dry the loaf pan, greasing it and lining with parchment again.
  • Pour a 1/2 inch layer of white cake batter into the bottom of the pan. Carefully stack the hearts upright in the pan side-to-side so they are touching. Then pour the remaining batter on top just to cover completely (you may find it helpful to have a second set of hands to pour while you hold the hearts while you're doing this).
  • Bake 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick or cake tester comes out clean. Cool completely in the pan without unmolding.
  • When completely cool, use a spatula to spread the frosting evenly across the top and sides of the cake. Add sprinkles and serve.

Notes

  • Heart Shaped Cutter: If you don't have a heart-shaped cookie cutter, you can use a medium-sized soda bottle to make one. Watch the video to see how to do it.
  • Cake Mix: You can substitute any two cake mixes, as long as there is a color contrast. However, avoid sponge cakes or angel food cakes, which are difficult to work with.
Nutrition Facts
Heart Inside Cake
Amount Per Serving
Calories 372 Calories from Fat 90
% Daily Value*
Fat 10g15%
Saturated Fat 2g10%
Polyunsaturated Fat 3g
Monounsaturated Fat 3g
Sodium 490mg20%
Potassium 105mg3%
Carbohydrates 70g23%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 49g54%
Protein 3g6%
Vitamin A 150IU3%
Calcium 80mg8%
Iron 1.6mg9%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Please read our nutrition disclaimer.

Author: Cindy
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: heart inside cake, hidden design cake
Did you make this recipe? Leave a comment below! Don't forget to follow us on YouTube and Instagram!

Recipe tools: