What’s better than a light, refreshing, naked cake on a hot summer day?! Nothing! Which is why this is the perfect recipe for summer! Not to mention it’s absolutely delicious and indulgent too! I took the cake to a picnic for my friend’s birthday over the weekend and it was a huge hit! Everyone loved the cake and devoured their slices!
While there are a few steps and different components, this cake is actually pretty easy to make! You’ll impress everyone at that summer BBQ or picnic! I would definitely recommend leaving it in the fridge for as long as possible until you’re about to eat it. It tastes better cold, but I was also super worried about it melting in the heat. Haha it didn’t (not even close), but just don’t leave it out in the heat for hours before you serve it.
Mascarpone is a bit hard to come by, and expensive at that. So I made my own “mascarpone” by blending cream cheese, whipping cream, and butter. It works perfectly in this recipe!
I used strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries in my cake, but you can use whatever berries you like! Cherries, blackberries, or other kinds of fruit – ooh like peaches or nectarines – would also be so good! I always encourage you to have fun with your cakes and recipes! That’s what it’s all about! Especially in something like this where you really can’t go wrong – any kind of fresh fruit will taste delicious!
Lemon Mascarpone Cream
- 2 cups (16 oz) cream cheese
- 2.5 + 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1/4 cup butter (softened)
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup lemon curd (The Spruce Eats)
1. Make the lemon curd first and set it aside to cool. Once it’s cooled down close to room temperature, put it in the fridge to cool further while you make the rest of the cream. I made the lemon curd as soon as I put the cake in the oven, and it had enough time to cool while I did everything else.
2. Next, make your “mascarpone”. Using a stand mixer with the whisk attachment (or a hand mixer works fine too), whip together your cream cheese, 1/2 cup of the whipping cream (save the rest for the next step), and butter until everything is combined.
3. Remove your mascarpone from the bowl (or use a different bowl if you have two) and in your mixer, add the rest of the whipping cream and sugar. Turn your mixer up slowly to high and whip until stiff peaks form and you have whipped cream. Keep an eye on it while it’s mixing so not to over-mix it.
4. Take your mascarpone and fold in the lemon curd.
5. Lastly, fold in your lemon mascarpone into your whipping cream. Once combined, it should be pretty heavy/thick and be able to hold its own. It’ll be like an extra thick whipped cream.
I made my vanilla cake from Tessa’s Sweet Bake Shop cook book, but any white cake will do. Here’s a simple recipe from Martha Stewart!
To give you an idea, I used two 8″ cake pans for my cake. Once your two cakes are cooled, slice them each in half so that you have four thin cake layers to work with.
Assembling Your Naked Cake
1. Wash and dry your berries. I washed all my berries, cut the strawberries, and then lay them all out on a paper towel. You don’t want them to have excess moisture, otherwise that’ll water down your cream and your cake layers won’t hold properly.
2. Spread a bit of cream on your cake stand or plate (this serves as a glue to hold your cake in place). Place your first layer of cake.
3. Add a layer of lemon mascarpone cream. Spread your berries across the layer (below is what the inside of my layers looked like), and top them with another thin layer of cream.
4. Continue this process – adding a cake layer, cream, berries, and cream – until you’ve added all your cake layers.
5. After you’ve put your last cake layer, frost the outside of your cake. Fill in the cream layer edges on the outside of the cake so that you have a smooth exterior. Use an offset spatula to smooth the edges of your cake. Don’t add too much cream around the cake otherwise you won’t be able to see the layers and you’ll lose that naked cake look.
6. Lastly, add a final layer of lemon mascarpone cream to the top of your cake. This can be a little messy and uneven, it adds character and gives the berries some texture to stick to. Top your cake generously with berries and voila! Done! Leave your cake in the fridge until you’re ready to serve it.
Dig in and Enjoy!
If I were to make it again, I’d put a few more berries in each layer! They were so delicious and paired perfectly with the lemon mascarpone cream and vanilla cake!
A naked cake is just perfect for this time of year because no one wants a really heavy cake! You want something that feels like a refreshing treat! Now if you’re reading this in the winter, that calls for my red velvet cheesecake! 😉 But you know me, I don’t discriminate against desserts! I won’t turn down a delicious, sweet treat – doesn’t matter what season it is haha!
If you’re looking for some tips on how to decorate your cake, check out my fool-proof cake decorating tips! But again – have fun with your cake and let your creativity shine!
What’s your favourite dessert in the summer? 🙂