Favorite Matcha Cake Recipe

Tea bar green tea cake by Sugar and SparrowPhoto by the ever incredible Candace Molatore

I’ve got a major business crush on Tea Bar for a few reasons: their tea is organic and ethically sourced, the drinks they make with it are innovative (and delicious!), and their entire team is made up of strong, inspiring women. They’ve made a mark on the Portland tea market but I can easily see them taking over the world. After all, who doesn’t love a good cup of golden milk or a matcha latte? If you’re a Portlander and have never been, give them a try next time you want to meet up with a friend!

In addition to selling their fabulous teas online for drinking at home, Tea Bar offers Culinary Grade Matcha for baking that’s organic, hand picked, stone ground, and sourced from a tiny family farm in Uji, Japan. I was so intrigued that I had to try it in a cake recipe. I am so glad I did, because the results were mind-blowing! The cake itself is light and fluffy, and the Matcha powder makes it flavorful and aromatic without being over the top. Oh, and it’s pretty to look at. 

Matcha cake layers from scratch

I chose to pair the Matcha cake with this raspberry buttercream as filling, then topped it with an eye catching vanilla-matcha buttercream ombre and white chocolate geometric shapes. These flavors ended up being very complimentary. It was a hit with the Tea Bar ladies, and I’m sure this cake will impress all of your Matcha-loving friends!

Tea Bar Matcha cake recipe by sugar and sparrow

Photo by Candace Molatore

Matcha raspberry white chocolate cake by sugar and sparrow

Photo by Candace Molatore

You can use any Culinary Grade Matcha in this recipe, but I can say from experience that not all Matcha powders are made (or taste) alike. If you want try using Tea Bar’s, you can purchase it on their website and they’ll ship it right to your door. And if you use my promo code SUGAR10 you’ll get 10% off your order! It’s so worth it. PS: This is not a sponsored post, Tea Bar really is my favorite Culinary Grade Matcha and they were kind enough to give me a promo code for you to experience it at a discount! 

Favorite Matcha Cake

A light and airy matcha cake filled with raspberry buttercream and topped with a vanilla-matcha buttercream ombre. Makes enough for a triple layer 6-inch cake. 

Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 25 minutes
Servings 15 slices

Ingredients

Matcha Cake Recipe

  • 3 3/4 cups (398g) cake flour, sifted before measuring
  • 3 Tbsp culinary grade Matcha powder
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/8 cup (254g) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 1/2 cups (513g) granulated sugar
  • 5 eggs, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (112g) sour cream, room temperature
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups (360ml) whole milk, room temperature

Raspberry Buttercream Filling

  • 1/2 cup (113g) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup (5-6g) freeze dried raspberries
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp (22ml) whole milk, room temperature
  • 2 cups (240g) powdered sugar
  • 1/8 tsp kosher salt

Vanilla-Matcha Buttercream

  • 1 1/2 cups (339g) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 5 cups (600g) powdered sugar
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • 3 Tbsp (45ml) whole milk, room temperature
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 Tbsp culinary grade Matcha powder

Instructions

Make The Matcha Cake

  1. Preheat oven to 350º and prepare three 6-inch cake pans by spraying the sides with baking spray and placing a pre-cut wax or parchment paper circle to fit the bottom.

  2. Whisk together sifted cake flour, Matcha powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.

  3. Cream butter on med-high for one minute. Scrape down bowl and paddle. Add sugar and beat on high for 2-3 minutes, until light and fluffy, scraping down bowl and paddle as needed. 

  4. Turn the mixer down to low and add the eggs one by one. Scrape down bowl, turn the mixer on med-high and beat for about 2 minutes. Add the sour cream and vanilla, continue beating for 1 minute.

  5. Add all of the dry ingredients at once with the mixer on low speed until just combined, then add the milk all at once with the mixer still on low. Scrape down the bowl and paddle and mix on low until it all just comes together. You might need to hand whisk at the end to get rid of some lumps, but be careful not to overmix.

  6. Fill prepared cake pans ⅔ full and bake for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.

Make The Raspberry Buttercream Filling

  1. With a food processor, grind the raspberries into a fine powder. Sift out the seeds (if a few seeds end up in the powder that is totally ok) and set the powder aside.

  2. Whip the butter using a stand mixer with a paddle attachment on medium speed until it’s creamy and light in color (5-10 minutes). Add vanilla, milk, and raspberry powder and continue to mix on medium for 3 minutes.

  3. Add powdered sugar one cup at a time, scraping down the bowl and paddle after each addition. Add a pinch of salt (I like about an eighth of a teaspoon) and mix on low for another 30 seconds.

Make The Vanilla-Matcha Buttercream

  1. With a hand mixer or paddle attachment on your stand mixer, cream the butter on medium-high until it’s creamy and light (almost white) in color. About 7 minutes. 

  2. Add the sifted powdered sugar, one cup at a time, scraping down after each addition and making sure each cup is fully incorporated before adding the next one. 

  3. Add vanilla, milk, and salt and mix on medium-low for another two minutes until fully incorporated. Hold off on adding the Matcha powder until you get to the assembly instructions. 

Assembly

  1. Starting with your first cake layer, pipe a ring of vanilla buttercream around each layer’s edge to create a buttercream dam. Fill the middle of your vanilla buttercream ring with raspberry buttercream until it’s the same height as the vanilla ring. Level the filling with an offset spatula and place the next layer of cake on top. Repeat the vanilla ring and raspberry filling before placing the third and final cake layer on top. 

  2. Divide vanilla buttercream evenly into two bowls. In one bowl, add the matcha powder to the buttercream and mix until combined. Grab a third bowl and mix together a third of the matcha buttercream and a third of the vanilla buttercream until you get a nice in-between shade.

  3. Starting at the bottom of the cake, frost with the darkest matcha buttercream until you get a third of the way up the side of the cake. Continue frosting with the lighter colored matcha buttercream mixture until you get to two thirds up the side of the cake. Frost the vanilla buttercream on the top third of the cake, including the top. Smooth the cake until you achieve the perfect finish.

  4. To decorate, I’ve chosen to stick some white chocolate geometric shapes (made by melting white chocolate onto parchment, sprinkling with matcha powder, and cutting out shapes with a hot knife) into the top of the buttercream cake in any pattern you desire. I also piped a few open stars using leftover matcha buttercream. Feel free to let your creativity flow with this!

Recipe Notes

*DIY Cake Flour Recipe: To make your own cake flour, spoon and level one cup of all-purpose flour and remove 2 Tbsp. Add 2 Tbsp of cornstarch. Repeat per the amount of cake flour you need, then sift the flour and cornstarch mixture 4 times (don't skip that step!)After sifting, spoon and level to re-measure the amount of cake flour you need. 

Make ahead tips: These cakes can be baked, cooled, wrapped in plastic wrap, and left out at room temperature up to two days ahead of decorating. Unfrosted cake layers can be wrapped tightly in plastic wrap and stored in the freezer for up to two months before thawing and frosting. 

The buttercream recipes can be made ahead and stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to two weeks. When you're ready to use, bring back to room temperature and re-whip with your stand mixer. Add whole milk, 1 tsp at a time, if it needs to be thinned to the right consistency.

 

16 Comments

  1. Hi there! How should I change the amount of ingredients if I want to make a 4″ cake instead of 6″? Thanks!

    • Hi Rosa! For a 4″ cake with 3 cake layers, you’d need to divide the recipe in half and use 2 eggs. Let me know if you have any more questions on that!

    • To thaw frozen cakes, I always take the plastic wrap off of the cake layer, set it on a baking sheet, and leave it out at room temperature for at least an hour.

  2. Pingback: Reflecting On My Cake Journey + Lessons Learned - Sugar & Sparrow

  3. I don’t eat eggs, which egg substitute do you reccomend I use in this cake! Looks yummy!!

    • Hi there! I have never substituted eggs with anything before so I have no idea! It sounds like there are some alternatives out there like mashed banana, applesauce, etc but since I haven’t tried any of those things before I can’t recommend them in confidence that the cake will turn out. What do you usually substitute for eggs in baked goods?

  4. Hi there, I’m excited to try this recipe out! One question: this recipe looks like your vanilla cake recipe (which I love) but multiplied by 1.5 – and of course the added matcha. However, the only ingredient that looks like it’s not 1.5x’ed is the sour cream. Is that intentional? Thank you!

    • Hi Rachel! You’re right, it is my vanilla cake recipe x 1.5 with Matcha added, and the sour cream amount is intentional. It’s perfectly moist with the same amount of sour cream 🙂

  5. Hi I really want to try this out but I need to make a 3 layer 9 inch cake instead (same height ) and I would like to lessen the butter and sugar amounts. Do you have any recommendations on how to do that while still maintaining the texture and flavor of the cake?

    • Hi Abby! This recipe is the same as my vanilla cake recipe, only with Matcha Powder added. To get the amount of batter you’ll need, I recommend doubling this recipe: https://sugarandsparrow.com/vanilla-cake-recipe/ and adding 4 total teaspoons of Matcha Powder in with the dry ingredients. I can’t recommend decreasing the amount of butter because I’ve never tried that before, but you can decrease the amount of sugar to a total of 3 cups instead of 3.5. Hope that helps!

    • Hi Bel! This recipe can totally be used for cupcakes! Just fill the cupcake tins no more than 2/3 full and bake for 17 minutes at 350.

  6. I love this matcha cake recipe. the cake is so delicious, moist and matcha taste is great. Highly recommended

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