Surprise Butterfly Loaf Cake

Surprise cake
Surprise cake Photo: Dr. Oetker

Try your hand at this adorable hidden surprise cake. The time and effort is rewarded with the delight of your guests when you cut open this cake to reveal the surprise.

Other cookie cutter shapes could be used like a star, dinosaur, gingerbread boy/girl (think baby shower gender reveal party) 

Makes: 10 slices


For the Cake:

225g butter, softened
225g caster sugar
4 medium eggs
2½ml Queen Natural Vanilla Extract (½tsp)
300g plain flour
3 sachets Dr. Oetker Baking Powder (15g)
Dr. Oetker Gel Food Colour Bright Red
50g cocoa powder (2tbsp)
15 ml milk (1tbsp)

To Decorate:

150g icing sugar
Dr. Oetker Gel Food Colour Bright Red
Dr. Oetker Neon Sugar (Pink)
Dr. Oetker Wafer Butterflies


  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (160°C Fan). Grease and line a 900g loaf tin. For the butterfly cake, beat together half of the butter with half of the sugar until pale and creamy then beat in 2 eggs and the Natural Vanilla Extract.
  2. Sieve 150g flour and half of the Baking Powder on top. Using a large metal spoon, fold the dry ingredients into the buttery mixture until well blended. Put 2 tbsp of the mixture into a small bowl and set aside.
  3. Mix a few drops of Bright Red Gel Food Colour into the remaining mixture to make a pink shade then spoon into the prepared loaf tin. Smooth the top then make a small trench down the centre of the cake. Using a teaspoon, spoon the uncoloured mixture along the trench and smooth the top again.
  4. Bake in the oven for about 40 minutes, until risen and just firm to the touch. Cool for 5 minutes then turn on to a wire rack to cool completely. Re-grease and line the loaf tin.
  5. Remove the crusty ends from the loaf cake and then cut into 8 chunky slices. Using a butterfly cutter approximately the same dimension as the slices, stamp out a butterfly from each slice and set aside.
  6. Use the remaining cake ingredients to make up another cake mixture as above, but this time add the cocoa powder with the flour and omit the Bright Red Gel Food Colour. Add the milk to soften the mixture a little.
  7. Spoon half of the chocolate mixture into the prepared loaf tin and spread to cover the base and halfway up the sides of the tin. Arrange the sponge butterflies, upright, down the length of the tin.
  8. Carefully spoon some of the remaining chocolate mixture around the sponge butterflies using a teaspoon then spread the remaining mixture on top. Tap the tin on the work surface to help the mixture settle around the butterflies. Make sure the butterflies are completely covered in chocolate mixture to help create the surprise.
  9. Bake in the oven for about 35 minutes until lightly risen and firm to the touch. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from the tin and cooling on a wire rack.
  10. To decorate, sieve the icing sugar into a bowl. Mix in approx. 20ml (4tsp) warm water to make a smooth, soft icing. Add a few drops of Bright Red Gel Food Colour and spread over the top of the cake, allowing the icing to drizzle down the sides. Sprinkle lightly with Pink Neon Sugar and decorate with Wafer Butterflies. Leave the icing to set for a few minutes before slicing to serve.

Courtesy of Dr. Oetker
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