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This buttercream flower hat box cake will make a gorgeous centerpiece for an elegant celebration.  It's the perfect cake to celebrate Mother's Day, a birthday, teatime or anytime, no occasion needed :) 

Buttercream Flower Hat Box Cake

Most flower hat box cakes with this style are mostly made with fondant.  The "lid" in the bottom is usually made with fondant.

In this tutorial I want to show you how to make it in buttercream, flowers, lid and all. It's not as hard as you think! 

Buttercream Flower Hat Box Cake

For this cake, I was inspired with the flavours of the popular drink, mimosa, a cocktail of orange juice with a splash of champagne or for some people champagne with a splash of orange juice (no judgements here).

A mimosa usually accompanies breakfast or brunch and a good excuse to start imbibing alcohol early 😁  

I used one recipe of  The Ultimate Vanilla Cupcake and added some orange zest in the batter and baked it in two 6" round pans. 

I have to sneak in some champagne in there so I added it in the simple syrup.  Simple syrups are a great way to add flavours into the cake.  You can use rhum, cognac or even just vanilla. And of course it also adds moisture to the cake.  

To make the the orange flavour more pronounced I added marmalade into some buttercream for the filling. 

I love how the flavours came together and it really is a great cake to bring to a brunch or afternoon tea.  

Watch the video below on how to make the buttercream flower hat box cake

flower hat box cake tutorial


Two 6” cakes 
Simple syrup (equal parts sugar and water boiled for one minute)
1 recipe Italian Meringue Buttercream

Cake board
Cake Decorating Turntable
Serrated knife
Offset spatula
Bench scraper
Pastry tip 104
Pastry bag
Flower nail
Wilton Pink gel color
Wilton Peach gel color
Wilton Moss gel color
Mini offset spatula
Wax Paper

Building the Flower HAT BOX Cake

First, cut of the domes of the cakes using a serrated knife and set the domes aside (to be used later for the top of the cake).  Cut both cakes in half horizontally.

cutting dome of cake with serrated knife
cutting cake in half with serrated knife

Place a cake cut side up on the cake board or serving platter.  Put some buttercream in a pastry bag with the coupler and pipe a dam of buttercream all around the cake.  Sprinkle the cake with simple syrup. 

buttercream dam
adding simple syrup to cake

Add in the filling and spread evenly to cover the top of the cake.  Place another cake on top and do the process a couple more times ending with a layer of cake on top. 

spread filling
topping with cake

Using an offset spatula spread and cover the top of the cake with an even mount of buttercream. Cover the sides as well and make it smooth using a bench scraper. 

frosting top of cake with buttercream
frosting sides of cake with buttercream

Use the offset spatula to smoothen the top of the cake.  Chill the cake in the ridge while you make the buttercream roses next. 

smoothing the frosting
smooth cake

Pipe the Buttercream ROse

For the roses I wanted it to have different tones of peach colour so I used three shades of buttercream - uncolored, light peach and peach mixed with some pink. I added all three shades in the pastry bag fitted with a pastry tip 104

Using all three shades at the same time will pipe roses of different colours and this is exactly the effect we are going for so that there will be some dimension to the flowers.  

piping peach buttercream rose

I piped mostly large roses for this cake but I also piped e few medium sized ones and small ones too.  Putting the flowers together on the cake is sometimes like a puzzle, and you need to plug in just the right size of flower in the space. 

I keep the buttercream roses at room temperature; I find that it's easier to push in the flowers together as they are soft and so there's less spaces between the flowers. 

Some people may find doing it this way hard but you can also chill the flowers. Chilling the flowers so they get hard and easier to pick up and place on the cake maybe easier for some.  But the spaces between the flowers maybe bigger.  You can just pipe some leaves to cover up the spaces. 

peach buttercream roses

Piping the leaves

For the leaves I used moss green gel colour and made different shades as well and placed them all together in the bag.  I used the tip 104 and piped it into a closed v shape on top of a piece of wax paper. 

piping buttercream leaves

I made a few piped leaves and place them on board to put in the freezer.  I like to freeze them solid so I could just easily peel them off the wax paper and place directly on the cake. 

freeze buttercream leaves

adding the Flowers on the hat box cake

Now back to the cake.  We need to make the top of the cake appear fuller and we can do this in a couple of ways.

We can add more buttercream on top and shape it like a dome.  To be honest, I'm not too crazy doing it this way coz once we add the flowers there's like a TON of buttercream on top of the cake.  But sometimes we just do this if we have to.   

Or even better yet use the cake domes that we cut and saved earlier and place that on top of the cake.  

Make sure the dome is slightly smaller than the cake to create sort of a ledge on the side. Having that ledge will ensure that the flowers will sit on it and not slide on the sides of the cake. 

Place one dome, cover it with an even layer of buttercream then stack the second dome.

making top of hatbox cake

Cover the entire top with a thin layer of buttercream. It doesn't need to be thick as this part will be covered with flowers (again it will have tons of buttercream after the adding the flowers).  

dome of hatbox cake

With a flower lifter, carefully place the flowers on top of the dome.  I started with the lighter shade roses on top of the cake.

adding flower on top of the cake

Then added the darker shades after.

Don't be afraid to push up the flowers with each other. 

adding flower on top of the cake

Pipe more flowers as needed.  Pipe the size that you need to plug into the space. 

bouquet of buttercream roses

Take the leaves out of the freezer and start inserting it all around the cake.  Make sure you work fast so it doesn't start melting while you are handling it.  Pop back in the freezer if it starts getting soft. 

And make sure the flowers are soft so you can insert the leaves.  

Alternatively you can also just pipe the leaves directly on the cake using a leaf tip like a #352.

adding leaves to the bouquet of buttercream flowers

Making the Hat box Lid

Time to make the lid at the bottom of the cake.  In hindsight I should have done this part first before adding the flowers and the leaves, as I was hitting some of the leaves while I was adding the lid with a spatula.  Oh well, you live and learn. 

making buttercream lid

First, cut strips of 1" wax paper.  Add a strip at the bottom (this will act as a spacer) then add another strip on tip of the first one.  Then carefully peel off the bottom strips of paper to reveal 1" of space.

Make sure the top strip is snug and secure on the cake. 

making buttercream lid for hatbox cake

With a small offset spatula, spread a different coloured buttercream all around the cake.  Make sure that it goes above the strip of wax paper.  Try to make it an even layer about 1/4" as it needs to look substantial like a lid. 

spreading buttercream for lid

When you have finished smoothing  all around, carefully peel off the strip of wax paper on top. This should create a nice straight line of buttercream for the lid. 

Making a buttercream lid for cake

And there you go - a buttercream flower hatbox cake. 

Buttercream Flower Hat Box Cake Tutorial


Mimosa Cake

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial. Til next time!

Cheers from my kitchen,



Now, if you want to learn more on how to make beautiful buttercream flowers, check out my online class Make Fabulous Buttercream Flowers!  


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