Vanilla and Chocolate Checkerboard Cake

Hello Everybody!  Happy Fiesta Friday!!

Have you ever made a checkerboard cake?  I am sure lots of you will say you have, which is the answer I would expect with all the talented bakers here attending Fiesta Friday.  I have never made a checkerboard cake and often wondered how it was done.  After a little research from Google, I found that there are several ways to make this cake.  1) You can bake the cake than cut it as directed using a template, there are several video how to’s available or 2) You can buy this neat little divider gadget that should give you the same result.   Of course I bought the divider gadget 🙂   I am not sure my cake was a 100% success …it tasted delicious, but maybe just not as pretty as the ones in the pictures.



You’ll need three round cake pans and one cake ring insert to make the checkerboard effect.


For your first two pans you want to pour the chocolate batter into the outer and center sections, filling about halfway.  Pour the vanilla batter into the middle section, filling about halfway.  These two pans will form the bottom and top layers of the cake.


Place the divider in the third pan.  Pour the vanilla batter in the outer and center sections, filling about halfway.  Pour the chocolate batter into the center section, filling about halfway.  This will form the center layer on the cake.


I had a little problem with the divider ring, it did not fit my pan properly.  The kit was an off brand called Sunny Side Up Bakery Checkerboard Cake pan set.  You would think that it would fit snugly and correctly, I guess mine was slightly defective as it did not.  When I poured the batter into the pan, some of it wanted to spread or bleed into the other areas …resulting in a slightly less than perfect pattern.  But hey, you work with what you have so onward ho!   Bake and learn 🙂   Pull the divider out …bake cakes as directed.


Cool and frost with your favorite icing and enjoy!  I used chocolate frosting for the layers and vanilla frosting for the outside of cake.  I added the coconut on top of the cake, it is optional but I love it and more importantly, I love how it hides imperfect cake decorating!

Vanilla and Chocolate Checkerboard Cake

  • Servings: 12
  • Difficulty: moderate
  • Print



Chocolate Cake

2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup cocoa powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 sticks (12 Tablespoons) unsalted butter

1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar

2 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup buttermilk

Vanilla Cake

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 3/4 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup (one stick or 8 Tablespoons) unsalted butter

1 cup white sugar

2 eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla

1/2 cup milk


To make chocolate cake, stir together dry ingredients, than add to wet ingredients. Then mix until smooth.

For vanilla cake, repeat method, stirring dry ingredients together first, than mixing into wet mixture, and then blending till smooth. Grease and dust three round cake pans with flour.

Place cake ring into first pan. Pour cake batters alternating chocolate, then vanilla, then chocolate into rings. Carefully remove insert and place cake ring into second pan. Pour cake batters alternating chocolate, then vanilla, then chocolate again. Rinse cake ring insert and wipe, then place into third pan. Pour cake batters alternating vanilla, then chocolate, then vanilla again. Place three pans on center rack in oven. Bake at 350 for 22 – 30 minutes or until done. Cool for a few minutes, then carefully turn cakes out onto plates to finish cooling completely. Then, stack cakes, alternating patterns.

Frost with your favorite icing


Happy Fiesta Friday and Happy blogging!


51 thoughts on “Vanilla and Chocolate Checkerboard Cake

  1. Your checkerboard cake came out so well! I loved how you placed the chocolate sauce in your presentation too. Thank you for sharing with FF, and have a wonderful weekend. 🙂


    1. Oh it would make a beautiful July 4th cake! So many possibilities …Easter, Memorial, July 4th ..even a St Patty’s Day cake! It would be much easier to tint the batter …next time I think that is what I will do. Thanks so much for stopping by! 🙂


  2. My grandma had one of these checkerboard molds for cakes, and she gave it to me. This recipe is really making me want to try it out. Thanks for bringing it to Fiesta Friday 🙂


  3. Your cake looks beautiful! I have done checkboards in the past, but never with the divider. I cannot believe how much easier it makes everything! Heading over to Amazon as soon as I post this comment to pick one up. Thanks for bringing such a lovely dessert to the party, Happy Fiesta Friday! 🙂


    1. Thank you so much Julianna! I have to say that I am not a patient person, but this was something different for me to try. I enjoy making new things and improving my baking skills, the problem is that once it is made someone has to eat it …I don’t want it to be me or shall I say need it to be me! 🙂


      1. Oh I know this feeling so well! I have been wanting to try a bunch of different things, but I think I will have to start taking it to work for my colleagues! They are always hungry and open to experiments! 🙂


  4. Before I saw the picture of your special baking toy/mold, I was thinking “how in the world did she ever do that!!!” Amazing and lovely addition to our Fiesta Friday party, thank you so mud for joining.


    1. Thank you so much! Yes, I saw the divider kit on line and I thought it was a cool idea. After I bought it, I saw where you can make the cake without the divider …but this is so much easier and I need easy!


      1. Arl, agreed, we all need easy as life is hard enough without good baking tools!!!!! I do hope you join us at the party next week and keep up the fun work on your blog!


  5. You’re one up on me, Arl…I’ve only “admired” checkerboard cakes. And I’m admiring yours…it’s gorgeous! Looks like the perfect accompaniment to my morning coffee. 🙂


  6. What a gorgeous impressing effect with those different colors! I’ve never seen this divider but it’s perfect.
    And your pattern is great! Much more interesting than what it would’ve been! Great cake to bring to FF.. 🙂


  7. Arl, this is so clever – as you say, what a great little gadget!
    I love that your chocolate part looks so dark – chocolate cake has to be dark and rich!
    Emma 🙂


  8. Whoo-boy what a fun cake! I’ve been eyeing those cake kits, but there just isn’t room in the cupboard! Oh dear.. 🙂 Your checkerboard cake turned out beautifully!


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