Macaron Birthday Cake

This macaron birthday cake is possibly one of my favourite birthday cakes to date and is guarentied to be a show stopping centre piece for any party table! This recipe is surprisingly easy to make, whilst letting your guests think you’ve spent hours in the kitchen creating this masterpiece! 

This recipe can be adapted for both a plant based and regular version. It begins with soft, pillowy layers of vanilla sponge cake, sandwiched together with a vanilla buttercream frosting and home made citrus and passionfruit syrup. To finish things off, the cake is coated in a layer of buttercream frosting, birthday sprinkles and of course, some delicious French macarons. 

why you should make this macaron birthday cake

  • It’s delicious! The most important factor really! 
  • This recipe can be adapted to create a fully plant based version. 
  • It’s easy to make and assemble. 
  • Perfect for birthdays of all ages and will be sure to impress! 
  • Is super light and fluffy with a tangy citrus syrup filling! 
  • Looks so pretty and perfect for summer celebrations! 

What will you need for this macaron birthday cake recipe?

  • Self raising flour: this recipe calls for self raising flour. This helps to create a really light and fluffy sponge texture with a beautiful rise! 
  • Caster sugar: this recipe used caster sugar or granulated sugar as the sweetener of choice. This does mean that this recipe isn’t refined sugar free.. but it’s a birthday cake, so who’s counting?!
  • Olive oil: something that I use in most of my recipes is light and mild olive oil. Using olive oil in place of butter helps to create a really light texture and is actually my preference over butter. Not only is it a great dairy free alternative, but using a light and mild variety means that it doesn’t effect the flavour! 
  • Vegan stick butter (or regular butter): this is essential for creating your buttercream frosting. I’ve used vegan butter to keep this recipe plant based, but you can of course switch this out if preferred. You do need to insure that you’re using a stick butter, as this will make a difference to the consistency of your buttercream. 
  • Icing sugar: the buttercream frosting also calls for icing sugar. 
  • French macarons: you can either bake your own or buy these from a store or bakery. If you do wish to make this cake completely plant based, then it would probably be easier to bake these yourself. 

How to create white buttercream frosting

Something which really used to irritate me when frosting cakes in white buttercream, was achieving the right colour. I feel like when making a plain buttercream, the colour does usually have a slight warm, yellow hue. To create more of a white colour, I find that adding a little drop of purple food colouring can neutralise this and counteract the yellow. 

Macaron birthday cake

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Baking



  • 90 ml olive oil
  • 180 g caster sugar
  • 240 ml soy milk
  • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 240 g self raising flour
  • Dash vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/3 tsp bicarb
  • pinch salt


  • 250 g vegan stick butter
  • 300 g icing sugar
  • Dash vanilla extract
  • 1-2 drops purple food colouring
  • 80 g vegan white chocolate

Passionfruit syrup

  • 1 filling from 1 passionfruit
  • 1 1/2 lemons- juiced and zested
  • 3 tbsp caster sugar


  • birthday sprinkles
  • French macarons to decorate


  • Preheat your oven to 180c and line 2 loose bottom cake tins with baking paper. I've used 20cm cake tins.
  • Add the apple cider vinegar to your soy milk and stir to combine. Set these aside for 5 minutes to allow them to thicken and create your vegan buttermilk alternative.
  • In a mixing bowl, combine the sugar and olive oil. Cream these together until pale and fluffy, then whisk through the buttermilk mixture and vanilla.
  • Sift the dry ingredients, then fold these into the wet ingredients so that you're left with a smooth, lump free batter.
  • Divide this between your two cake tins and place these into the oven for 30-35 minutes, until golden and well risen. Remove your cooked cakes from the oven and allow to cool on a wire wrack.
  • Meanwhile, to make the passionfruit syrup, combine the lemon juice, zest passionfruit and sugar in a saucepan and bring these to the boil. As the sugar dissolves, reduce the heat to a simmer and leave this for a few minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.
  • For the buttercream, beat the butter using an electric hand whisk or stand mixer until pale and fluffy. Gradually add in the icing sugar whilst mixing until fully combined. To neutralise the yellow colour, beat in a few drops of purple food colouring.
  • Once the cake has cooled, you can begin to assemble to cake. Add a layer of buttercream to one of your cake layers, creating a little dip in the centre. Add in a few spoonfuls of your passionfruit syrup, then place the second cake layer on top.
  • Use any remaining passionfruit syrup to baste the second cake layer. Coat the cake in a layer of buttercream frosting, using a cake scraper to achieve a lovely smooth finish.
  • Pop the cake into the fridge for 20 minutes to help the frosting set. Gently melt the chocolate, then drizzle this around the edge of the cake, to create a drip effect. After placing the cake into the fridge, this should allow the chocolate to set quickly.
  • Take the remaining frosting and add this into a piping bag. Pipe swirls around the edge of the cake- I love to add sprinkles around the edges here too! Decorate each spiral with a macaron and you're ready to serve!

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