Earl grey lavender cake

Meet us for high tea with a slice of this earl grey lavender cake. This is an easy recipe for delicious earl grey infused sponge tea cake with splendid floral lavender buttercream.

close up photo of cake with slice cut out to show layers inside

why you'll love this recipe:

  • Earl grey tea and lavender pair beautifully together
  • The recipe is adaptable, you can experiment with other tea flavors if you choose
  • The cake is moist and flavorful, you can really taste the earl grey tea
  • It's perfect for the tea lover in your life
  • It's perfect for tea parties and special occasions
overhead shot of lavender earl grey cake on a white wooden rustic background topped with peonies flowers and eucalyptus

Sipping a cup of earl grey tea with a slice of this cake is a dream. Perfect for a spring soiree, baby shower, floral bridal shower, Mother's Day, easter - or any occasion that deserves something elevated. The beauty of this cake is that even those who may fear trying floral flavors will find themselves swooning. There's something truly special about the way lavender flowers taste in a small, soft, moist earl grey tea cake. Lavender and earl grey pair so well together. And while you're baking, whip up some of our Earl grey scones.

What is earl grey tea?

Earl Grey tea is a tea blend which has been flavored with the oil of bergamot. My sweet daughter drinks a cup each morning with her breakfast and it's special to my heart. I enjoy my cup mid morning with a splash of lavender milk. The flavors pair so well together that I knew they would translate into a dreamy cake. I wanted to make an earl grey cake, and decided lavender buttercream would be a perfect match here.

image of small layered cake with pink flower on top with vase with pink flowers in background

Cake:

  • 2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon earl grey tea, loose, finely ground*
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs room temperature
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup milk room temperature

*If you have tea bags, simply measure our 1 tablespoon of tea and grind it if it's not finely processed.

Lavender honey buttercream frosting:

  • 3 sticks (1 and 1/2 cups) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 5 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream or buttermilk at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon dried lavender, processed to be ultra fine.
slice of cake cut out of earl grey cake on plate with vase with flowers in background

Step by step how to make it:

Cake:

  • Preheat oven to 350F. Grease and flour three 6 inch cake rounds and line the bottom of the pan with a piece of round parchment paper.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk flour, baking powder, and salt until well combined. Set aside.
  • Using a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment or a hand mixer, cream butter, earl grey tea and sugar on med-high until pale and fluffy - this usually takes 2-3 minutes. Reduce the speed of your mixer and add eggs one at a time fully incorporating after each addition. Add in your vanilla.
  • Turn off mixer and slowly add in your flour and milk to your creamed earl grey butter, fully incorporating the mixture before adding more.
  • Bake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out mostly clean. If it's not clean, continue to bake in five minute increments, checking each time. I've never had to bake this cake longer than 35 minutes.
  • Place cakes on wire rack to cool for 10mins then turn out onto wire rack. Allow cakes to cool completely.

Buttercream:

  1. Finely grind your lavender in a food processor or mortar and pestle.
  2. Add the butter and one cup of the powdered sugar to the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Beat on low just to blend, then beat on high for 3 minutes, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl a few times.
  3. Add the heavy cream and another cup of powdered sugar. Beat on low speed to blend, then on high speed for another two minutes, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl a few times.
  4. Add two more cups of powdered sugar and the salt and extract. Beat on low to combine, then on high for about 1 minute, until the buttercream is completely smooth.
  5. Add in your honey and fine lavender.
  6. Check the consistency and beat in more powdered sugar if the buttercream is too thin. Taste, and add more salt, vanilla if desired.

Assembly:

  • Place one layer of cake on a cake stand or serving plate.
  • Top with approximately 2/3 cup of buttercream and spread evenly. Repeat with remaining layers. Frost and smooth the outside with a thin crumb coat. Chill for 20 mins.
  • After chilling, frost the remaining buttercream and smooth until you have clean, smooth lines.
close up image of small cake frosted with white buttercream and topped with a large pink flower

Frequently asked questions:

Can I make this cake in advance?

Prepare cakes and frosting 1 day in advance. Keep cakes at room temperature, covered tightly. Refrigerate prepared frosting in an airtight container until ready to use. Bring frosting to room temperature before spreading as it will be quite stiff after refrigerating. (Add a splash of cream or milk to thin, if needed.)

How long does this cake last after baking and assembling?

Cover leftover cake tightly and store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Can I freeze this cake?

Unfrosted cakes may be frozen up to 2 months, thaw overnight in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature if desired before making your buttercream and assembling.

vintage plate with slice of frosted cake, showing two layers with buttercream in the center and a magenta flower on top on a white wooden rustic table
close up image of a small frosted cake sliced in the middle to show tea infused layers topped with pink peonies with a pink background

Earl grey tea cake with lavender buttercream

Yield: 12 slices
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Additional Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes

Meet us for high tea with a slice of this earl grey tea cake with lavender buttercream. A delicious earl grey infused cake is simply splendid with sweet floral lavender frosting.

Ingredients

  • CAKE:
  • 2 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon earl grey tea, loose, finely ground*
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs room temperature
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup milk room temperature
  • *If you have tea bags, simply measure our 1 tablespoon of tea and grind it if it's not finely processed.
  • LAVENDER HONEY BUTTERCREAM FROSTING:
  • 3 sticks (1 and 1/2 cups) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 5 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream or buttermilk at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon dried lavender, processed to be ultra fine.

Instructions

    • CAKE:
    • Preheat oven to 350F. Grease and flour three 6 inch cake rounds and line the bottom of the pan with a piece of round parchment paper.
    • In a medium bowl, whisk flour, baking powder, and salt until well combined. Set aside.
    • Using a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment or a hand mixer, cream butter, earl grey tea and sugar on med-high until pale and fluffy - this usually takes 2-3 minutes. Reduce the speed of your mixer and add eggs one at a time fully incorporating after each addition. Add in your vanilla.
    • Turn off mixer and slowly add in your flour and milk to your creamed earl grey butter, fully incorporating the mixture before adding more.
    • Bake for 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out mostly clean. If it's not clean, continue to bake in five minute increments, checking each time. I've never had to bake this cake longer than 35 minutes.
    • Place cakes on wire rack to cool for 10mins then turn out onto wire rack. Allow cakes to cool completely.

      • BUTTERCREAM:
        Finely grind your lavender in a food processor or mortar and pestle.
      • Add the butter and one cup of the powdered sugar to the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Beat on low just to blend, then beat on high for 3 minutes, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl a few times.
      • Add the heavy cream and another cup of powdered sugar. Beat on low speed to blend, then on high speed for another two minutes, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl a few times.
      • Add two more cups of powdered sugar and the salt and extract. Beat on low to combine, then on high for about 1 minute, until the buttercream is completely smooth.
      • Add in your honey and fine lavender.
      • Check the consistency and beat in more powdered sugar if the buttercream is too thin. Taste, and add more salt, vanilla if desired.

        • ASSEMBLY:
        • Place one layer of cake on a cake stand or serving plate.
        • Top with approximately 2/3 cup of buttercream and spread evenly. Repeat with remaining layers.
        • Frost and smooth the outside with a thin crumb coat. Chill for 20mins.
        • After chilling, frost the remaining buttercream and smooth until you have clean, smooth lines.

        Notes

        Can I make this cake in advance?
        Prepare cakes and frosting 1 day in advance. Keep cakes at room temperature, covered tightly. Refrigerate prepared frosting in an airtight container until ready to use. Bring frosting to room temperature before spreading as it will be quite stiff after refrigerating. Add a teaspoon of cream or milk to thin it out, only if needed.

        How long does this cake last after baking and assembling?
        Cover leftover cake tightly and store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

        Can I freeze this cake?
        Unfrosted cakes may be frozen up to 2 months, thaw overnight in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature if desired before making your buttercream and assembling.

        Nutrition Information
        Yield 12 Serving Size 1
        Amount Per Serving Calories 312Trans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 6gFiber 1gSugar 47gProtein 6g

        Did you make this recipe?

        Please leave a comment below !

        You may also love:

        Sarah Buckley signature

        Wonderful to meet you here! I’m Sarah, the woman behind the apron and camera at frolic and fare. I love to add herbs and edible flowers to everything imaginable, and weave my magic into our meals with intention and purpose. I treasure using whole food ingredients to develop gourmet, garden inspired recipes that you will cherish for years to come. We celebrate traditions in a modern world, making our recipes approachable and enchanting. Thank you for being here, I hope you find what you're looking for.

        Learn more about me

        Reader favorites

        Leave a Comment

        Skip to Recipe