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butter pecan cake with browned butter cream cheese frosting

Butter Pecan Cake

Buttery, nutty, roasted, and warm in flavor and depth, this butter pecan cake with browned butter cream cheese frosting has all of the elements of butter pecan ice cream in a fluffy and flavorful layer cake.


Toasted Pecans

  • 2 1/2 cup pecan pieces divided
  • 3 tablespoons butter

Butter Pecan Cake

  • 1 cup butter softened
  • 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs room temperature
  • 4 teaspoons vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
  • 2 1/2 cups AP Flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup whole milk room temperature
  • 1/4 cup full fat sour cream

Browned Butter Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 1 cup butter browned
  • 12 ounces cream cheese softened
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract or vanilla bean paste
  • 5 cups powdered sugar


Toasted Pecans

  1. In a saucepan, melt butter on medium heat.

    Then add pecans. Let them toast, stirring frequently, for 3 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool.

    Alternatively, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Toss pecans in melted butter then put in a single layer on sheet. Then roast for 5 minutes.

Butter Pecan Cake

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and lightly flour either: 2 8 inch pans, 2 9 inch pans. OR cut this recipe in HALF to make 3 6 inch layers or approx. 14 cupcakes!

    In a stand mixer with your paddle attachment, on speed 6, cream together the butter and sugar for 5 minutes.

    Scrape bowl, then add eggs one at a time, beating until each is incorporated. Then add vanilla extract or paste. Let it mix for 2 more minutes. 

    In a separate bowl, whisk together your flour, salt, and baking powder.

    In another bowl, whisk together your milk and sour cream until smooth. Do this by adding milk slowly to sour cream in a few additions.

    Turn your mixer to "stir". Begin alternating between flour and milk mixtures, beginning and ending with dry ingredients.

    Fold in pecans, reserving 1/2 cup for decoration.

    Divide evenly into cake pans. 

    Bake for approx. 26-30 minutes for 9 inch rounds, until toothpick comes out clean. Times vary based on your cake pan/cupcakes, etc. Please contact me for specifics, if needed.

Brown butter cream cheese frosting

  1. While cake is baking, brown your butter then allow to cool completely and set.

    Then, wash mixer bowl, add whisk attachment.

    On speed 6, beat your cream cheese, then add in the browned butter. Scrape every bit of the browned bits leftover! Let it mix for at least one minute. 

    Then turn to "stir" gradually add the powdered sugar. As it comes together, crank up mixer to 8. Add in vanilla extract or paste. Let it get fluffy for approx. 3 minutes, scraping down bowl if needed.

    Allow cakes to cool completely before frosting.