Single slice: Red Velvet Layer Cake

In true Pancake Princess fashion, A Certain Holiday in February cannot be celebrated with anything other than an obnoxiously large slice of cake.

A Single Slice: Red Velvet Layer Cake // The Pancake PrincessA Single Slice: Red Velvet Layer Cake // The Pancake PrincessA Single Slice: Red Velvet Layer Cake // The Pancake Princess

I am a fan of That Holiday, but I realize not everyone is. The past few V-days have been good to me.

My freshman year I received flowers from a secret admirer. One year my ex-boyfriend conspired with my roommate to cook me an amazing candlelit dinner and chocolate cake (which was especially impressive given that I didn’t know he could make anything but ramen). Another year, a bunch of girlfriends and I pitched in for a monstrous chocolate cake and split it 12 ways. And the first year Erik and I started dating, I was working late on V-day—teaching my baking class—and came back to find my dorm room strewn with rose petals, cute signs, chocolate, a little homemade heart-shaped cookie and Erik waiting to take me to dinner.

A Single Slice: Red Velvet Layer Cake // The Pancake Princess

So I’m kind of a fan. Anyway, the recipe: 

I made this cake three times. The first recipe I tried used a 1:1 ratio of flour to sugar. The cake came out with a pocked, sticky top with crunchy edges that stuck so badly to the pan that it was almost impossible to salvage. But I still tried because I hate wasting food. But after frosting it with a whipped cream/Greek yogurt frosting (verdict: weird), it became clear that all the sprinkles in the world couldn’t save the precarious lean. It couldn’t be shown to the world.

Except you guys understand me, so here it is:

I frosted the sides so it wouldn't look so hideous...then it still did.

I frosted the sides so it wouldn’t look so hideous…then it still did.

So I tried again, this time lining the bottom with ungreased parchment paper (tip: always grease your parchment paper. Unless you’re making cookies). The second cake came out cemented to the parchment paper. Both the first and second batches of cake became cake balls.

With the third cake, I finally listened to my instincts and reduced the amount of sugar. Sure enough, the pockmarked, sticky top disappeared and final cake came out perfectly sweet, smooth and flat.

Or so it seemed. I didn’t bother trimming the top, but upon stacking the cake wedges, the gentle leeaan of the cake made it apparent that the layers weren’t quite flat.

A Single Slice: Red Velvet Layer Cake // The Pancake Princess

It’s kind of like love, right? Your significant other looks totally picture-perfect and appealing in the beginning…but then you realize they’re maybe not QUITE as perfect as they seemed: there are some unforeseen bumpy surfaces. But then you frost them up and add sprinkles and in the end those bumps don’t really matter because they’re still DELICIOUS.

A Single Slice: Red Velvet Layer Cake // The Pancake Princess

Er…that’s how it goes, right?


This isn’t the healthiest cake you will ever make, but it is disarmingly simple–no fussing with halving eggs or creaming butter. The cake itself is vegan, but the 3-ingredient Greek yogurt frosting I’ve listed below is not. The one downside to the Greek yogurt frosting (aside from the fact that it doesn’t taste like a sugary buttercream, I suppose) is that it’s not really thick enough to spread in thick layers between the cake–but that can always be remedied by serving the cake with extra yogurt frosting.

If you want a stiffer or sweeter frosting, use your favorite frosting. This cake isn’t too too sweet so if you have some really sweet leftover cream cheese frosting lying around for example, this is an excellent application for it.

To assemble a layer cake slice, it’s simply a matter of baking 1 thin round of cake, slicing it into six equal wedges, and stacking + frosting the wedges. Try this technique with any of your favorite cake recipes! (My first try was chocolate on chocolate.)

Single slice: Red Velvet

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 45 minutes

Yield: 1 monstrous slice of cake

Serving Size: 1 slice

Calories per serving: 560

Fat per serving: 15.8g


  • 1/3 cup almond milk
  • 1 teaspoon vinegar

  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • ½ tablespoon cocoa powder
  • Scant ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • Scant ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt

  • ½ teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ½ tablespoon red food coloring

  • For simple Greek yogurt frosting:
  • 1/2 cup Greek yogurt
  • 2-3 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • chocolate chips, optional


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and grease a 9-inch cake pan VERY well.

In a measuring cup or small bowl, combine the almond milk and vinegar.

In another small bowl, whisk the dry ingredients together until thoroughly incorporated. Sift this mixture if you can; you don’t want any lingering lumps of cocoa powder.

Add the vanilla, olive oil and food coloring to the almond milk mixture and whisk to combine. Pour over dry ingredients and stir until just combined.

Pour into the greased pan and bake for 12-15 minutes, or until the top looks firm and dry around the edges; nothing should jiggle. Let cool completely, then cut into six equal wedges.

If making the Greek yogurt frosting, simply stir all ingredients together. Stack and frost cake wedges with your desired frosting.

For a chocolate drizzle on top, melt a few tablespoons of chocolate chips in the microwave (in 30 second-or-less increments--be careful not to scorch your chocolate!). Once smooth, dip a fork in the melted chocolate and shake it over the cake to create a deliciously haphazard drizzle. Top with

Top with sprinkles and serve with extra frosting if desired!


Adapted from my single slice layer cake and here.

You don’t have to make this for a significant other. Make this for anyone and they will adore you.

A Single Slice: Red Velvet Layer Cake // The Pancake Princess

Throwback to my first attempt at a single slice of layer cake–chocolate on chocolate (of course):











Also, beet red velvet pancakes. For the diet-conscious! (ish.)



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36 thoughts on “Single slice: Red Velvet Layer Cake

  1. Pingback: Apple Pie Bundt Cake | The Pancake Princess

  2. Kathy Patalsky

    great recipe! and the yogurt frosting could easily be veganized with a coconut or soy yogurt I am guessing. Some coconut yogurts are now made in “greek yogurt” flavors!

    Happy to share this on FindingVegan!

    1. erika Post author

      Thanks Jennifer! I know, aren’t baking fails the worst? I can’t bring myself to throw them out most of the time either, so I end up with a lot of bags in the freezer!

  3. The Wimpy Vegetarian

    I’ve been absent for awhile and have missed reading your posts! I so enjoyed reading this one!! Love the leaning cakes (been there!) and love the recap of some great V-days you’ve had. So, so nice. But cracked up on the comparison of cakes and relationships LOL!

  4. Katie (The Muffin Myth)

    I love your single slices cakes! Sometimes healthy eating is all about portion control and it’s so much better to have just that one slice of cake. If I had an entire cake sitting around there would be trouble with a capital T! But wait – I’ve never, not even once, greased my parchment paper. Maybe I’m using an especially non-stick brand? Who knows! Anyways, enjoy your cake!

  5. Selena @

    Oh my goodness this cake is BEAUTIFUL! I am not even a huge red velvet fan but I so want to try this! It looks so delicious and I can’t believe how healthy the ingredients are! I’m a huge fan of greek yogurt “frosting” so no problem there. Can’t wait to try this :)

  6. Nancy @ gottagetbaked

    This is seriously the most brilliant way to make a slice of cake. Isn’t there a medal or a ceremony we can throw to honour your ingenuity? I’ll start a petition 😉 It sounds like you’ve had some pretty wonderful Valentine’s Days, Erika! No wonder you love the holiday! It doesn’t hurt that we can indulge in delicious, chocolatey, sticky things like sprinkle-covered frosted cakes. This is so pretty. Even the one you think looks terrible looks awesome! Enjoy every bite of this delicious dessert & I hope Erik spoils you rotten from now until February 14 (heck, and even after ;)!

  7. Mary Frances

    I am a self proclaimed aquaintence of cake. Not best buddies, not enemies, just the nod-the-head-and-look-away.
    That has changed. THIS CAKE. oh maaah word. Erika, I want to stare at this forever! The cake, the frosting, the sprinkles – amazing Look at all those layers! And I love that the frosting has some protein added. Pinning this one!

  8. Ala

    This looks like a Me Party just waiting to happen….it took me most of the post before I realized how a single slice of cake could be made without a really weirdly-shaped baking pan. Is that slow of me? It’s pretty slow of me. LOVE the metaphors for love–I can just hear the English major noggin at work in all that waxing poetic! Pinned!!

  9. laurasmess

    My husband hates Valentines day. HATES it. He keeps going on about how it’s some commercialized event created by stores to make more money (which it kinda is, but… well, I like it anyway) so he refuses to celebrate it. For a few years, I got him presents and tried to make an event of it… but as I got nothing in exchange I kinda gave up after a while *sob*. Anyway, enough about me. I’m glad that at least you’ve got a gorgeously romantic boyfriend! Rose petals? Awww! I do think he’s pretty lucky to have you though. Cos you’re kinda awesome and gorgeous and talented! Some evidence of which is this cake. Looks gorgeous, lean or no lean! :) Happy Valentines to you and Erik x

  10. Lianna

    I think you are so brilliant for coming up with the single slice cake idea. When I first saw the chocolate one you posted way back when I was like dang this is genius. Plus I have problems with not being able to stop with just one slice of anything, so if there’s only one “slice” to begin with I can’t cake binge! I also love the idea of the Greek yogurt frosting, you always find a way to make things healthy but still really tasty, yummah

  11. Lena

    This is such a great idea, Erika! I obviously haven’t seen this before, but I really like/hate this because now I would be able to just make myself a slice of cake without actually making cake for a whole group of people as I usually would (hate because this is dangerously easy). I’d go for the chocolate on chocolate version though, chocolate is my favorite.

  12. The Vegan 8

    Oh this looks SO BEAUTIFUL Erika!!! So gorgeous and of course, I bet delicious. SO perfect for Valentine’s Day. I wouldn’t mind if the first cake was messy like that, I have had those flops in the kitchen too and I will still gladly eat them,haha! I love all the pretty icing and heart sprinkles on top!!

  13. cynthia

    Ohhhh my gosh. This cake looks so moist and fluffy I just want to go headfirst into it and eat it with my FACE. And I love that it’s single serving! Need to make this ASAP.


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