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Butter Pecan Cake

A southern delight – this butter pecan cake has toasted pecans and made from scratch with cream cheese frosting.

This butter pecan cake is a hit at potlucks, holiday dinners, and birthdays.

Indulgent Dessert

Butter Pecan Cake is known for its rich cream cheese flavor, toasted pecans, and flavorful fluffy cake.

Butter Pecan Cake with a slice cut and decorated with toasted pecans.

This cake has the addition of brown sugar to the granulated sugar making this cake richer, softer, and a more embodied flavor.

Traditional Cake

This cake is a Holiday staple in the South and it’s a flavor pairing that tastes absolutely delicious served for Thanksgiving or Christmas dessert.

Toasting the pecans for this cake maximizes the flavor of the pecans and makes this cake even more decadent.

RELATED: Blueberry Lemon Pound Cake

Slice of butter pecan cake with toasted pecans.

Made From Scratch

Sure, you can buy a boxed cake mix to skip some steps but it won’t taste like a homemade made from the heart butter pecan cake.

The family will love it and they’ll taste that amazing “homemade” taste and texture.

Slice of butter pecan cake on white dessert plate.

Homemade Cream Cheese Frosting

The recipe for this cream cheese frosting makes enough to frost the 1st layer of the cake as well as the top and sides liberally. There’s no need for scraping the bowl to get the last little bit to stretch the frosting!

Top view of butter pecan cake with a slice on a white saucer.

I used (2) 8″ round cake pans to make these cakes. I also used baking spray! If you’re not sure what the difference between baking spray and cooking spray, the baking spray has flour added into it! It makes it perfect for removing baked goods!

I use a piping bag and piping tip made for cake decorating to make this process go smoother and to get a more even frosting layer.

Yield: 12 slices

Butter Pecan Cake

slice of butter pecan cake with pecans

A southern delight - this butter pecan cake has toasted pecans and made from scratch with cream cheese frosting.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes


  • 1 cup butter, unsalted, softened
  • 1 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 cup milk
  • 3 cups pecans, chopped
  • 2 tbsp butter, unsalted

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 2 8 oz cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup butter, unsalted, softened
  • 6 cups confectioner's sugar
  • 1 ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 2-3 tbsp milk


  1. Preheat oven to 350° and grease and flour (2) 8" inch round pans. I use baking spray.
  2. Heat 2 tbsp of butter over low heat in a skillet until melted.
  3. Add the chopped pecans to the skillet and lightly toast. Stir occasionally, about 3 minutes.
  4. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
  5. In a large bowl, cream the softened butter and the sugars together.
  6. Add the eggs, one at a time.
  7. Stir in the vanilla.
  8. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
  9. Mix in half of the flour, then half of the milk.
  10. Repeat with the rest of the flour and milk.
  11. Stir in 2 cups of the toasted pecans.
  12. Pour half of the batter into one of the 8-inch rounds and repeat with the other 8-inch round pan.
  13. Bake in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes. Check the center of the cakes with a toothpick to make sure it comes out clean.
  14. Remove from the oven and allow the cake to cool for 10 minutes before removing from the pan.
  15. Allow the cakes to cool completely before frosting to prevent the icing from sliding and melting.

Cream Cheese Frosting

  1. In a large bowl, beat together the softened cream cheese and butter.
  2. Add in the vanilla extract and beat until smooth.
  3. Slowly beat in the confectioner's sugar.
  4. Add the milk 1 tbsp at a time until the frosting is smooth and the right consistency to frost the cake.


When frosting the cake, make sure both of the cakes are completely cool.  Start by frosting the top of one of the 8 inch cakes and then lay the unfrosted layer on top.  Frost the top and sides.  Garnish with toasted pecans. 

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Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:

1 slice

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 761Total Fat: 30.6gSaturated Fat: 16.9gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 125mgSodium: 237mgCarbohydrates: 115.3gFiber: 1.6gSugar: 88.7gProtein: 9.2g

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Pinterest


Thursday 30th of September 2021

Can this cake be made a day ahead and kept in the fridge?


Saturday 12th of June 2021

Wow I just realized I forgot to add milk🤦🏼‍♀️ I’m sure the cake would’ve been perfect if I would’ve added it, please disregard my previous review. Amazing recipe though, even with my mistake it was a hit!!!!


Saturday 12th of June 2021

Hi Naomi!

Thank you so much for your review and for commenting again to share your mistake, that means a lot! I'm glad that you enjoyed the recipe!! I sure have mistakenly left out ingredients myself quite a bit, lol!


Saturday 12th of June 2021

I tried the recipe and the taste turned out amazing, only complaint is that it was a bit on the dry and dense side. I followed the recipe exactly, next time I’ll change some of it up.

Pearl Watson

Wednesday 19th of May 2021

Hi there!

I have two 9” pans rather than 8. Would the measurements still work out ok or would you know what amount to increase by? I AM NOT a baker.

Thank you!


Wednesday 19th of May 2021

Hi Pearl!

The baking time will change a little bit because the cake batter will not be as thick. :) I would check the cake starting at 23 minutes. Just stick a toothpick in the center of the cake and if there are no crumbs or wetness on the cake, it is done. If it still has moistness on the toothpick allow it to bake for just a few more minutes at a time. Hope that was helpful and I hope you enjoy!


Thursday 29th of April 2021

Do you have the measurements in grams or ounces?


Thursday 29th of April 2021

@Dana, oh thank you so much. Very much appreciated, I can’t wait to make this tomorrow! Looks amazing! :)


Thursday 29th of April 2021

Hi Elizabeth,

I used a measurement converter online to find the ingredients in grams.

227g butter 180g brown sugar 200g granulated sugar 4 eggs 2 tsp vanilla extract 360g all-purpose flour 2 tsp baking powder 1/2 tsp salt 240g milk 327g pecans, chopped 28.4g butter

Cream Chesse Frosting: 16 oz cream cheese 57g butter 750g confectioner's sugar 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract 2-3 tbsp milk

Hope that helps! :)

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