caramel cake
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Southern Caramel Cake with Jack Daniels Frosting

A moist, sweet caramel cake that's full of old fashioned goodness is stacked 3 layers high with a gooey pecan filling between each layer and then topped with a decadent Jack Daniels caramel frosting.
Course Dessert - Cake
Cuisine American - Southern
Keyword caramel, jack daniels, layer cake, southern
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Cooling and Assembly 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 45 minutes
Servings 10
Calories 795kcal
Author Marye Audet-White




  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup caramel sauce I used homemade from this recipe
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3-5 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla


  • ½ cup brown sugar dark is best I think
  • ¼ cup boiling water
  • cups white sugar
  • cup butter
  • 3 eggs separate and bring to room temperature
  • 3 cups cake flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¾ cup cold water
  • ¼ cup Jack Daniels
  • teaspoons vanilla

Pecan Filling

  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 cup pecans chopped
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla



  • Beat the butter, salt, and confectioner's sugar until crumbly.
  • Add the caramel, beating at medium high speed until well blended and creamy.
  • Add a little of the heavy cream and beat on high until the frosting is thick and spreadable. You may need to add a little more confectioner's or cream to get the exact consistency.


  • Preheat the oven to 350°
  • Beat the egg whites until stiff. Set aside.
  • Grease 2 8-inch round cake pans, fit a round of waxed paper or parchment paper in the bottom, grease again, then dust with flour.
  • Cook the brown sugar in a heavy saucepan over low heat, stirring often, until it is melted.
  • Add the hot water, whisking constantly.
  • Simmer until the mixture gets syrupy - about 3 to 5 minutes.
  • Cool.
  • In the bowl of your stand mixer combine white sugar and butter, creaming until light and fluffy.
  • Add the egg yolks, one at a time beating well after each.
  • Blend in the cooled water mixture.
  • Mix the flour, baking powder and salt - set aside.
  • Mix the cold water, vanilla, and Jack Daniels.
  • Add ⅓ of the flour mixture to the butter mixture, blending well.
  • Add ½ of the water mixture. Blend well.
  • Repeat with the flour, then the water, then the remaining flour mixture.
  • Fold in the egg whites gently.
  • Turn batter into prepared pans and bake for 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
  • Cool for 10 minutes - turn out of pans to finish cooling (remove the waxed paper from the bottoms!)

Pecan Filling

  • Combine sugar, flour, butter, and cream in a heavy saucepan.
  • Cook until thickened, stirring constantly
  • Add the nuts, vanilla, and salt.
  • Spoon between the layers of cooled cake.


  • Place one layer on a cake plate.
  • Add a thick layer of pecan filling.
  • Top with the other layer.
  • Frost with the buttercream.


Calories: 795kcal | Carbohydrates: 124g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 30g | Saturated Fat: 17g | Cholesterol: 75mg | Sodium: 312mg | Potassium: 194mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 86g | Vitamin A: 865IU | Calcium: 75mg | Iron: 0.7mg