Baileys coffee and walnut cake.

Baileys Coffee And Walnut Cake


Baileys Coffee And Walnut Cake is the ultimate combination of flavours and textures combined in an exquisite and easy to make sponge cake. There is nothing low key about this cake, except how easy it is to make. Bailey’s Irish Cream is in both the sponge and mascarpone frosting and it is delicious. So delicious in fact, this is the cake you need to make if you, or someone you love are true coffee lovers.

Baileys coffee cake covered in mascarpone frosting and decorated with walnuts.

For the past few years I have baked a  Coffee and Walnut Cake for my Father in law’s birthday. Since that is his favourite cake. While I have created some cakes such as Coffee Pecan Glazed Bundt Cake and Maple Syrup Iced Coffee Bundt Cake, a traditional Coffee and Walnut Cake has always been his favourite.

Sadly, this year my wonderful and much loved Father in law passed away. So, in remembrance of him, on what would have been his birthday, I wanted to bake one more cake that I hope he would have enjoyed. This delicious Baileys Coffee And Walnut Cake.

A Twist On A Classic Coffee Cake

Rather than baking my classic coffee and walnut cake, I decided to switch things up. I enjoy the challenge of creating new recipes and as we love Baileys Irish Cream Liqueur as a family, using it in a coffee cake recipe ticked all the right boxes! And my intuition proved right. Since the unmistakable flavour of Baileys comes through in both the sponge and frosting of this cake.

A slice of Baileys coffee cake on a pretty plate.

A deliciously flavoured coffee and Baileys light sponge cake, covered in whipped, Baileys mascarpone frosting and decorated with walnuts. While this cake is beautiful it is also easy to make. Especially as I have included step by step photos for every stage of the recipe. So, let’s get baking!

Recipe: Baileys Coffee And Walnut Cake – serves 8-10 (generously!)

For The Cake:

2 x 20cm (8inch) sandwich cake tins

225g/8oz Unsalted Butter – at room temperature

1/4tsp Salt – I use Maldon 

225g/8oz Caster Sugar

4 Large Free Range Eggs

75ml/5tbsp Bailey’s Irish Cream Liqueur

1/2tsp Instant Coffee – dissolved in 2tsp hot water

225g/8oz Plain Flour

1.5tsp Baking Powder

For The Frosting And Decoration:

500g/1lb 2oz Mascarpone Cheese

50g/2oz Icing Sugar

1tsp Vanilla Bean Paste – alternatively use vanilla extract

60ml/4tbsp Bailey’s Irish Cream Liqueur

16 Walnut Halves

150g/5oz Chopped Walnuts

To Make The Baileys Coffee Cake Sponges:

Preheat the oven to 180C/160C fan, 350F, gas mark 4
  • First of all grease both cake tins and line the base with baking parchment.
  • Add the butter, sugar and salt to a large bowl. Whisk together until light and creamy.
  • Next, add the eggs, coffee and Bailey’s to the bowl.
  • Sift the flour and baking powder into the bowl.
  • Slowly whisk all of the ingredients together until the batter mix is smooth. Take care not to over mix as this can cause the cake to become dense and heavy.

The stages of mixing up a cake batter.

  • Spoon the cake batter into the prepared tins, dividing evenly between the two.
  • Smooth the surface of the cake batter using the back of a spoon.
  • Place the tins in the centre of a preheated oven.
  • Leave to bake for 35-40 minutes, the cakes are baked when they are golden and when lightly pressed in the centre spring back.
  • As soon as the cakes are baked remove from the oven.
  • Allow the cakes to cool for 10 minutes before turning them out and placing on a cooling rack.

Before and after baking a coffee sponge.

Making The Baileys Mascarpone Frosting:

  • Into a large bowl add the mascarpone cheese, sifted icing sugar, vanilla paste and Bailey’s.
  • Whisk together until the mixture is smooth and free from lumps.

Frosting The Cake:

  • Place the base sponge flat side up onto a plate or cake board.
  • Spoon some of the mascarpone frosting onto the cake. Don’t overdo it, you can always add more!
  • Use a pallet knife to smooth the frosting evenly over the sponge, taking it almost to the edge. Otherwise, too much frosting will ooze out when the top sponge is added.

Showing how to fill and cover a cake in mascarpone frosting.

  • Place the top sponge, flat side down, evenly on to the base.
  • Spoon a generous amount of mascarpone frosting on to the top of the cake.
  • Use a pallet knife to roughly cover the cake top with frosting while also pushing the frosting over the side of the cake. See the images below for guidance.
  • Work around the cake gently easing the frosting to cover the side of the cake.
  • Once the side of the cake is roughly covered scrape the pallet knife on the top of the frosting bowl and wipe clean. I use a clean tea towel.
  • Smooth the top of the cake so that it’s smooth and even.
  • Clean the pallet knife as before and place it flat, against the side of the cake.
  • Rotate the cake plate, keeping the knife in place, so the frosting forms an even layer that completely covers the side of the cake.
  • Repeat the last step (as many times as needed), adding frosting where needed, until the side of the cake is evenly covered all the way round.

Creating a smooth finish ready to decorate with walnuts.

Decorating The Cake With Walnuts:

  • First of all place the weighed walnuts, (setting the 16 walnut halves to one side) on to a board a chop roughly so that they are about the same size. See the picture below for guidance. Set to one side.
  • Take a small handful of chopped walnuts and press them to the side of the cake. Don’t worry about nuts that fall on to the plate or small gaps, since we will use them in a bit.
  • Continue placing nuts on to the side of the cake until it is covered.
  • Place a large sharp knife under the fallen nuts. Turn the knife vertically to press the nuts into the frosting. See the image above.
  • Continue this last step, working around the cake until all of the nuts are pressed on to the cake.
  • Finally, if there are any chopped nuts left use them to plug any large gaps.
  • Place the 16 walnut halves evenly on the cake top.
  • Refrigerate the cake for at least one hour before serving. As this allows the frosting to set.

The finished baileys coffee and walnut cake.

Is this a cake or gateaux? One thing’s for sure, it is utterly delicious.

Reading back through recipe posts on this blog is almost like reading a diary. Whether I mention family events, special occasions, or the weather, it always brings back memories. And because I am quite a sentimental person, each recipe is special to me. Likewise when someone makes a recipe of mine it always brings me joy. So thank you to everyone who reads, cooks and bakes using this blog.

Whatever you are making, baking and creating in your kitchens, have fun preparing your feast.

Sammie x

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Hi, I'm Sammie and I’m passionate about creating tasty recipes, both sweet and savoury that you can make at home. Every recipe is easy and fun to make and should taste like a feast without the fuss!

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