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a close up of dessert in a jar


3 picture perfect cake-in-a-jar recipes

By AshleyRLA 01 Jun 2021

Do you like cakes? Do you like mason jars? Well, look no further, these recipes are for you! The humble cake-in-a-jar is a simple yet beautiful recipe to make your friends on Instagram go WOW! Not only does it make your friends drool, it also makes you drool too. Due to the restrictions, these lovely recipes will give you the dance (in your mouth) in doors that you always wanted to do!

1. Chocolate Cake

a close up of cakes in a jar


  • For the Chocolate Cake:
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the Buttercream Frosting:

  • 1 (1-pound) box powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter (softened)
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F.
  2. Line a 15 x 10-inch rimmed baking sheet with non-stick foil. Spray the foil with nonstick cooking spray.
  3. In a large bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt.
  4. In another large bowl, combine the vegetable oil, buttermilk, egg, and vanilla extract. Beat until well-combined.
  5. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until combined and the cake batter is smooth.
  6. Pour the cake batter into the prepared baking sheet pan and spread it into an even layer.  Bake in a 350 degree F oven for 10 minutes. The cake is done when it begins to pull away from the sides of the pan and springs back when lightly pressed. Cool completely before cutting and layering in the jars. 
  7. While the cake is cooling, prepare the frosting. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the powdered sugar and butter. Add just enough milk to achieve the desired consistency and mix in the vanilla extract. 
  8. Fill a piping bag with the prepared frosting. 
  9. Using a 2 1/2 inch round cookie or biscuit cutter, cut out circles of the cake. Reserving remaining cake.
  10. Place one circle in the bottom of each 4-ounce canning jar. Top with a swirl of frosting. Continue layering until you reach the top of the jar. Sprinkle some of the cake scrap crumbs on top. Continue until all the jars are assembled.
  11. Top the jars with the lids and refrigerate until ready to serve. Decorate the jars with ribbons or gift tags as desired. Bring the jars to room temperature before serving.

2. Red Velvet Cake

a cake in a jar with strawberries next to them



  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar,
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbsp red gel food colouring
  • 1/2 tsp white vinegar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen strawberry 
  • 24 oz cream cheese, at room temperature (do not use a light variety)
  • 4 oz unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp rose water, optional
  • Pinch salt



  • Preheat the oven to 350 F. Line an 11x17-inch rimmed baking sheet with foil, extending up and over the sides of the sheet. Spray the foil with nonstick cooking spray.
  • In a large bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, and cocoa powder.
  • In the bowl of a large stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine the vegetable oil, buttermilk, egg, red gel food coloring, vinegar, and vanilla extract. Mix on medium-low speed until well-combined.
  • Add the dry ingredients and mix on low speed until combined. Scrape down the bottom and sides of the pan with a spatula, then mix on medium speed until the cake batter is smooth and all the lumps of flour have disappeared.
  • Pour the cake batter into the sheet pan and spread it into an even layer. (It will be a very thin layer of cake.) Bake the cake at 350 F for 10 minutes, until it pulls away from the sides and springs back when lightly pressed with your fingertips. Cool completely before using. The cake can be baked several days in advance. If making in advance, wrap the cooled cake in cling wrap and freeze until ready to use. You do not need to defrost the cake before assembling the jars.


  • Place the freeze-dried strawberries in the bowl of a food processor and process until they are ground into a powder.
  • Combine the cream cheese and butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Beat them together on medium speed until light and fluffy and free of lumps.
  • Add the powdered sugar, strawberry powder, rose water, and salt to the bowl, and beat on low speed until combined. Scrape down the bottom and sides of the bowl, then beat on medium speed until light and fluffy. Taste the frosting, and add additional sugar to taste. If the frosting seems too stiff, add a spoonful of milk or cream until it reaches your desired texture.
  • The frosting can be made in advance and kept in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week. When you're ready to use it, let it sit at room temperature for at least 20 minutes before piping it into the jars. You can also re-whip it in the mixer to loosen it up a bit if it is too stiff to pipe after being refrigerated.


  • Fit a piping bag with a large star tip, and fill the bag with some cream cheese frosting. Use a circle cookie cutter the same size as your jars, and cut circles out of the cake. (For my 2-oz jars, I used two 1 1/2" circles for each, and for my 4-oz jars, I used three 2" circles for each.)
  • Place a circle of cake in the bottom of a jar, and top it with a swirl of frosting. Keep layering cake and frosting until you reach the top of the jar. Once you put the lid on the jar, you can decorate them with ribbons, stickers, gift tags, or anything else you can dream up! Continue until all of the jars are assembled. Red Velvet Cake in a Jar can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week, and for the best taste and texture, can be brought to room temperature for about 20 minutes before serving.

3. Banana Split Parfait

cake in a jar with strawberries

Whipped cream (use premade if easier):

  • One cup heavy whipping cream (36%-40% milk fat content)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste (or 1 tsp of vanilla extract)
  • 1/2 tsp cornflour

Chocolate Sauce:

  • 3 tsp cocoa powder
  • 4 tsp milk
  • 2 tsp powdered sugar
  • Just a little bit of vanilla paste or vanilla extract


  • One cup of sliced strawberries
  • One cup of sliced bananas
  • 1/2 cup of crushed walnuts


Whipped Cream (use premade if easier):

  1. Pour the cream into an airtight container. Cut vanilla bean in half, and then slit each half down the middle to open the pod. With the dull side of a knife, scrap the tiny seeds into the container. Stir well. Finally, lay the empty vanilla pods on top of the cream, seal the container, and place in refrigerator for a few hours.
  2. Place one metal bowl and balloon whisk into freezer for 10 minutes.
  3. Remove the vanilla pods from the cream and set aside. Then pour vanilla cream into the bowl. Whisk vigorously, changing motions and directions to form bubbles on the cream. As it foams, the fat stabilizes the air bubbles, giving you twice as much volume as when you started. If the cream remains a liquid, place everything in the freezer for a few minutes and try again.
  4. Once the volume has doubled, and soft peaks have formed, it is done.


  1. In a small bowl, add cocoa powder and milk. Mix well with a spoon, until smooth. Add in vanilla paste and powdered sugar, and mix again until smooth.Layer jar with whipped cream, chocolate sauce, walnuts, strawberries, bananas, and whatever other ingredients you would like to add. To re-create the Dairy Queen banana split, add pineapple too.


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