A classic white cake gets a patriotic makeover with some creative layering.
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4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tablespoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 1/4 cups sugar
3/4 cup Land O Lakes® Butter, softened
9 large Land O Lakes® Eggs (whites only)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups milk
1/2 teaspoon red gel food color
1/4 teaspoon blue gel food color
Cream Cheese Frosting
2 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup Land O Lakes® Butter, softened
2 pounds (8 cups) powdered sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 to 2 tablespoons milk
Heat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour 3 (9-inch) round cake pans; set aside.
Combine flour, baking powder and salt in bowl. Set aside.
Place sugar and 3/4 cup butter in another bowl; beat at medium speed, scraping bowl occasionally, until creamy. Add 1 egg white at a time, beating well after each addition. Add 1 teaspoon vanilla; mix well. Add flour mixture alternately with 1 1/2 cups milk, beating at low speed after each addition just until mixed.
Divide batter in half; tint one half red. Divide remaining batter in half; tint one half blue and leave other white.
Pour each batter into individual prepared pans. Bake white and blue layers 18-20 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Bake red layer 30-35 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes on cooling rack. Loosen edge of cakes by running knife around inside edge. Carefully remove cakes from pans to cooling rack; cool completely.
Combine cream cheese and 1/2 cup butter in bowl; beat at medium speed until fluffy. Slowly add powdered sugar, beating at low speed after each addition until smooth. Add 1 tablespoon vanilla and enough milk for desired spreading consistency; beat until well mixed.
Cut domed top off red cake horizontally to create flat top. Cut remaining red cake and white cake in half horizontally, creating 5 layers total.
Cut 5-inch circle from parchment paper. Cut domed top of red cake and 1 white cake layer into 5-inch circles, using parchment paper guide. Set outer rings aside. Repeat process with blue layer; set inner circle aside.
Place 1 (9-inch) red layer, cut-side up, onto cake plate. Spread with 1/2 cup frosting. Place 1 (9-inch) white cake layer on top, cut-side down. Spread with 1/2 cup frosting. Place 1 (9-inch) red layer on top, cut-side up. Spread with 1/2 cup frosting.
Place blue cake ring on top. Spread 1/4 cup frosting around inner edge of blue cake layer. Place 5-inch white cake, cut-side up, in middle of blue ring. Spread with 1/3 cup frosting. Place 5-inch red cake, cut-side down, in middle of blue ring.
Trim top red layer to create flat cake top. Spread thin layer of frosting over entire cake; refrigerate until set. Frost cake with remaining frosting.
Use leftover cake for trifle, parfaits, cake pops or another layer cake.
To bake with only 2 (9-inch) cake pans, bake white and blue layer first; store red cake batter in refrigerator until ready to use. Remove white and blue layer; let cool 10 minutes before removing from pan. Clean 1 cake pan; grease and flour. Bake red cake 30-35 minutes.
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