Neapolitan Cake


Christmas has come, there is still wrapping paper on the floor and presents strewn about.  Christmas cookies abound, and yet, here we are thinking about the next holiday already: New Years!

My family keeps things pretty low key at New Years.   Most years, we sing for an evening mass since New Year's Day is a Holy Day.  After that, we come home and put our pajamas on.  Then, we either make up pizzas or a ton of appetizers and settle down to watch Star Wars.  If you look online, you’ll find that people have figured out exactly what time you need to start the movie for the Death Star to explode precisely at midnight!  It is a very fun and relaxing tradition.

However, if I were to leave my house and attend a party, I’d probably bring a cake like this one. 

My neighbor ordered this gorgeous Neapolitan cake for a family birthday.  I don’t have a picture of the inside, but the 3-layer cake under the frosting matches the colors and flavors of the frosting!  The best part?  This whole cake is possible with just 1 doctored cake mix!

Want more New Year's inspiration? Look no more:

Neapolitan Cake


1 box vanilla cake mix

¾ cup water

8 ounces sour cream

¾ cup canola oil

4 eggs

2 tablespoons instant vanilla pudding mix

2-3 tablespoons cocoa powder

2 tablespoons strawberry jell-o mix


2 cups vegetable shortening

2 pounds (about 7 ½ cups) powdered sugar

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Dash of salt

6-8 tablespoons water

2 tablespoons cocoa powder

2 tablespoons strawberry jell-o mix

Chocolate candy melts

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F and line three 6-inch cake pans with a parchment circle.

Place the cake mix, water, sour cream, and oil in the bowl of a stand mixer and mix until well blended.

Divide the batter equally between three bowls.  Stir the vanilla pudding mix into one bowl, the strawberry jell-o mix into the second, and the cocoa powder into the third until well combined.  Pour the batter from each bowl into its own cake pan.  

Bake in the preheated oven for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Cool in pans for 10 minutes, then invert to remove and cool completely.

To make the frosting, place the shortening, powdered sugar, vanilla, and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer.  Add half the water and start mixing.  Continue adding water until the desired consistency is formed.  Divide the frosting into 3 bowls.  Stir the cocoa powder into one bowl and the strawberry jell-o mix (with a few drops of water) into another bowl.  Place the frostings into separate icing bags fitted with a Wilton 2D icing tip.  Use the frosting to decorate the cake as desired.


  1. It's a beautiful cake Amy and sounds like a perfect way to end the year.


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