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Heart Shaped Cake (without heart pan)

You’ve got a hankering to make a heart-shaped cake but you don’t have a set of heart shaped pans. What do you do? In this easy tutorial I’m going to show you how to take a round pan and a square pan and turn them into a lovely heart-shaped cake you’ll be proud to serve.

How do I Make a Heart-Shaped Cake?

I’ve made a lot of heart-shaped cakes over the years, usually at Valentines Day.

Heart Shaped Cake without a Heart Pan from Out of the Box Baking.com

Heart cakes are also popular at weddings, usually as grooms’ cakes.

This year I decided to use a new technique to make a heart-shaped cake. I had seen several videos and blogs featuring an easy heart-shaped cake using round and square cake pans only. That would be my method this Valentine’s Day.

I had this random idea that I would make it three flavors: red velvet on bottom, pink velvet in the middle, and white velvet on top. When I came up with that idea I wasn’t thinking about the fact that this cake would end up being huge. Oops!

How Many Pans Do I Need?

For each layer of cake you’ll need one round pan and one square one (in equal dimensions). You can make this cake as tall as you like. I used three flavors but two would be plenty.

Let’s talk for a moment about pan size. If I could change one thing about the process I used, I would use smaller pans. I would go with 6-inch pans. (I used 8″ and the end result was bigger than I needed it to be.)

If you use 6-inch pans your cakes will be taller but not as wide, which is going to make it easier to plate.

I’m going to teach you how to make the version I made (with three flavors). You’ll have enough cake to feed a big crew!

Valentine Heart Cake Ingredients

Heart Shaped Cake without a Heart Pan from Out of the Box Baking.com

You will find a full printable recipe card at the bottom of this post but here’s a quick peek at what you’ll need.

For the Cakes:

  • red velvet cake mix
  • white cake mixes
  • vegetable oil
  • eggs
  • milk
  • vinegar

For the Frosting

  • Crisco
  • Butter
  • Powdered sugar
  • Whipping cream

How to Make a Heart-Shaped Cake without Heart Pans

This is such an easy process, y’all.

Start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

In a large bowl, mix the white cake according to package directions, adding milk (with a teaspoon of vinegar) in place of water. Divide the cake batter between two 6-inch pans (one round, one square).

Heart Shaped Cake without a Heart Pan from Out of the Box Baking.com

Bake for 30 minutes or until the cakes spring back to the touch.

Repeat the process with the pink velvet cake. You’ll make it exactly as you made the white cake but add a couple drops of pink coloring gel before baking. Divide batter into two pans.

Heart Shaped Cake without a Heart Pan from Out of the Box Baking.com

Repeat the process with the red velvet cake, making it according to box directions but replacing the water with milk, (no vinegar necessary).

Heart Shaped Cake without a Heart Pan from Out of the Box Baking.com

Once cakes are baked, cool them on wire racks.

Heart Shaped Cake without a Heart Pan from Out of the Box Baking.com

Once cooled, level the cakes.

Heart Shaped Cake without a Heart Pan from Out of the Box Baking.com

Make your frosting. Whip the room temperature butter and Crisco until light and fluffy. Add powdered sugar and continue to whip. Thin it down with heavy cream. The amount of cream you’ll add will vary. You want a light, fluffy frosting.

Heart Shaped Cake without a Heart Pan from Out of the Box Baking.com

Divide the frosting into three bowls and add coloring gel to make red and pink. You’ll need more white than anything else, so save back about half of it in white.

Heart Shaped Cake without a Heart Pan from Out of the Box Baking.com

Make Your Heart-Shaped Cakes

Start by frosting and stacking your round cakes. Use red frosting on top of the round red velvet, pink frosting on top of the round pink velvet cake. Then flip the round white cake upside-down on top of the other two.

Stack the square cakes using the same method and set aside.

Heart Shaped Cake without a Heart Pan from Out of the Box Baking.com

Cut the (stacked) round cake into two equal pieces. You’ll want to measure to make sure both sides are the same size.

Place on cake board. (Check out those pretty cake layers!)

Heart Shaped Cake without a Heart Pan from Out of the Box Baking.com

Place the square cakes onto the board to complete the heart. (The cakes are just the right size to fit together!)

Heart Shaped Cake without a Heart Pan from Out of the Box Baking.com

Add some frosting to the flat side of each half-round to hold the pieces together. (Look at that beautiful heart shape!)

Crumb coat the cake in a thin layer of white frosting using an offset spatula.

Heart Shaped Cake without a Heart Pan from Out of the Box Baking.com

Decorate the Cake

You can decorate the cake with rosettes, if you like. I did that with an earlier heart-shaped cake that I made. Check it out!

Heart Shaped Cake without a Heart Pan from Out of the Box Baking.com

Because I used larger pans this time my cake wasn’t really tall enough to create rosettes, so I used the 1M tip in a piping bag to create puffs.

Heart Shaped Cake without a Heart Pan from Out of the Box Baking.com

Regardless of which method you use, you’ll want to use red on bottom, pink around the middle, and white on top.

Use your imagination and make it pretty! Add extra color to the top of the cake if you like. If you like, you can use a star tip in place of a 1M.

Heart Shaped Cake without a Heart Pan from Out of the Box Baking.com

Once your cake is complete, slice and serve! Store in an airtight container. Cake will remain fresh for several days.

What to Expect from this Cake

Heart Shaped Cake without a Heart Pan from Out of the Box Baking.com

Like I mentioned above, the heart ends up being bigger than you expect. So, keep that in mind.

That aside, I think this is an amazing idea! I used to have a set of heart pans and no longer have them, so this was the perfect way to create this year’s Valentine’s Day cake. No special heart-shaped pan necessary!

Variations on this Recipe

You can use any flavor combination you like for your heart-shaped cake. Here are a few I would suggest:

Oreo: Make three layers of cake–chocolate on bottom, white in the middle, chocolate on top–and add crushed Oreos with the frosting between the layers. Frost the cake in white and add Oreos in a ring around the bottom.

Strawberry-Lemonade: Use strawberry and lemon cake mixes. If you like, you can get by with only two boxes of cake mix for this one. Decorate with berries.

Red Velvet: You might want to make a regular red velvet cake and frost it the ordinary way with cream cheese frosting. You can get by with using two cake mixes for this one.

Speaking of using fewer mixes, I’ll go back to one of my original statements at the top of this post. This is your cake. Make it your way! Just make sure you have the proper sized board to hold whatever you come up with. This heart cake is perfect for nearly any special occasion. (I think it would be great for Mother’s Day!)

Other Valentine Treats from Out of the Box Baking

I just love Valentine’s Day! Here are some of my favorite posts:

Valentine Cookie Bars from Scratch: They’re colorful, crunchy, and loaded with chocolatey flavor. Best of all, these delicious Valentine’s Day Cookie Bars are super easy to make. Talk about the perfect treat for your loved ones! 

Valentine Heart Cookies: If you love a tasty sugar cookie with an absolutely lovely Valentine’s Day design, you’ve come to the right place! These delicious sugar cookies are tasty on their own, but with this beautiful design they’re going to wow that special someone!

Valentines Sugar Cookies: There’s no better way to say “I love you” or “I care about you” than a lovely Valentine cookie!

Easy Red Velvet Truffles: If you’re looking for the perfect sweet treat to share with loved ones this Valentine’s Day, have I’ve got a recipe for you! These delicious Red Velvet Truffles are easy to make and oh, so tasty! 

That’s it for this post, y’all! I hope you enjoyed this fun and simple tutorial for this large heart-shaped cake.

See this recipe at

Full Plate Thursday 

Weekend Potluck

Busy Monday

About the Author

Janice Thompson is an author, baker, and all-around mischief maker! She has overcome a host of baking catastrophes, including a toppled wedding cake, to learn more about the baking process. Janice has published over 150 books for the Christian market but particularly enjoys writing recipes and baking devotions. To learn more about Janice or to drop her a note, visit her About the Author page.

Heart Shaped Valentine's Cake

Heart Shaped Valentine's Cake

Yield: 36
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Additional Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 2 hours 50 minutes

You've got a hankering to make a heart-shaped cake but you don't have a set of heart shaped pans. What do you do? In this easy tutorial I'm going to show you how to take a round pan and a square pan and turn them into a lovely heart-shaped cake you'll be proud to serve.

Ingredients

  • FOR THE CAKES
  • 1 red velvet cake mix
  • 2 white cake mixes
  • 1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
  • 9 room temperature eggs
  • 3 cups milk
  • 2 teaspoons vinegar
  • FOR THE FROSTING
  • 2 cups Crisco
  • 1 1/2 cups Butter
  • 10 cups Powdered sugar
  • Whipping cream to thin

Instructions

    How to Make a Heart-Shaped Cake without Heart Pans

    Mix the white cake according to directions, adding milk (with a teaspoon of vinegar) in place of water. Divide the batter between two 6-inch pans (one round, one square). Bake for 30 minutes or until the cakes spring back to the touch.
    Repeat the process with the pink velvet cake. You'll make it exactly as you made the white cake but add a couple drops of pink coloring gel before baking.
    Repeat the process with the red velvet cake, making it according to box directions but replacing the water with milk, (no vinegar necessary).
    Once cakes are baked, cool them on wire racks. Once cooled, level the cakes.
    Make your frosting. Whip the room temperature butter and Crisco until light and fluffy. Add powdered sugar and continue to whip. Thin it down with heavy whipping cream. The amount of cream you'll add will vary. You want a light, fluffy frosting.
    Divide the frosting into three bowls and add coloring gel to make red and pink. You'll need more white than anything else, so save back about half of it in white.
    Make Your Heart-Shaped Cakes
    Start by frosting and stacking your round cakes. Use red frosting on top of the round red velvet, pink frosting on top of the round pink velvet cake. Then flip the round white cake upside-down on top of the other two.
    Stack the square cakes using the same method and set aside.
    Cut the (stacked) round cake into two equal pieces. You'll want to measure to make sure both sides are the same size.
    Place on cake board.
    Place the square cakes onto the board to complete the heart.
    Add some frosting to hold the pieces together.
    Crumb-coat the cake in white frosting using an offset spatula.
    Decorate the Cake
    You can decorate the cake with rosettes, if you like. I did that with an earlier heart-shaped cake that I made. You'll need a 1M tip.
    Because I used larger pans my cake wasn't really tall enough to create rosettes, so I used the 1M tip to create puffs.
    Regardless of which method you use, you'll want to use red on bottom, pink around the middle, and white on top.
    Use your imagination and make it pretty!
    Once your cake is complete, slice and serve! Store in an airtight container. Cake will remain fresh for several days.

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[…] Heart-Shaped Cake without Heart Pan: You’ve got a hankering to make a heart-shaped cake but you don’t have a set of heart shaped pans. What do you do? In this easy tutorial I’m going to show you how to take a round pan and a square pan and turn them into a lovely heart-shaped cake you’ll be proud to serve. […]

Tammy

Wednesday 25th of January 2023

Absolute show stopper! You made it look so easy without the heart pan and so, so beautiful! What a lovely way to show your love :)

booksbyjanice

Wednesday 25th of January 2023

Thank you!

Helen at the Lazy Gastronome

Sunday 22nd of January 2023

I think even I could do this!! You make it so easy - Pinned! I would be so honored if you shared it (and anymore of your recipes) at our What's for Dinner party! https://lazygastronome.com/whats-for-dinner-sunday-link-up-403/

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