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Yuanyang Coffee Milk Tea Cake

By: Lyndsay // Coco Cake Land
Makes: 1 (6-inch 3-layer) round cake


For the coffee milk tea

  • 2 cups water
  • 4 Ceylon or English Breakfast tea bags
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup strong coffee, hot
  • 1/2 cup evaporated milk
  • 1/4 cup sweetened condensed milk

For the vanilla cake

  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 1/4 cup canola or grapeseed oil

For the coffee milk tea buttercream

  • 2 1/2 cups unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup loose ceylon or English breakfast tea leaves, or four tea bags
  • 1 cup egg whites, about 7 to 8 large eggs
  • 2 1/4 cups granulated white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure coffee extract
  • 2 tablespoons coffee milk tea mixture
  • pinch of salt


For the decoration

  • Fresh raspberries, gently washed and dried
  • Meringue kisses
  • Piping bag fitted with open star tip filled half way with coffee milk tea buttercream

Make the coffee milk tea sooak

  • Steep tea bags in 2 cups of boiling water for 10 minutes.
  • Stir in the baking soda, then the coffee.
  • Stir in the evaporated milk and the sweetened condensed milk. Add more sugar to taste, if desired.
  • Let mixture cool to room temperature.
  • Set aside 2 tablespoons of coffee milk tea for adding to the buttercream.

Make the cake

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and line three 6 inch x 2 inch round cake pans with parchment paper.
  • Sift together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt into a large bowl.
  • In a large measuring cup, whisk together the milk, eggs and vanilla.
  • Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and gently whisk to combine.
  • Pour in the melted butter and oil.
  • Gently stir everything together until the batter is smooth.
  • Divide the batter evenly into the three prepared cake pans.
  • Bake for 22-25 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the center of each cake comes out clean with only moist crumbs attached.
  • Allow cakes to cool completely before frosting.

Make the buttercream

  • In a medium sauce pan on low to medium heat, combine the butter and the loose tea leaves until the butter melts. Reduce to low heat and allow to simmer for 5 minutes.
  • Remove from the heat and let the tea steep for another 5 minutes.
  • Strain the butter through a fine-mesh-sieve set over a bowl and refrigerate until it reaches softened butter consistency – 20 to 30 minutes.
  • Place the egg whites and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer, whisking to combine.
  • Fill a medium saucepan with water and place it over medium-high heat.
  • Place the stand mixer bowl on top, creating a double-boiler effect (the bowl shouldn’t touch the water.)
  • Whisking intermittently, heat the egg mixture until it registers 160 degrees Fahrenheit (70 degrees Celsius) on a candy thermometer.
  • Carefully move the mixer bowl back to the stand mixer.
  • Using the whisk attachment, beat the egg white and sugar mixture on high speed for about 8-10 minutes until it reaches medium-stiff peaks. The mixture should have cooled down now to room temperature.
  • If making meringue kisses, fill a piping bag fitted with a star tip with up to one cup of meringue. Pipe drop stars on parchment paper lined baking sheet and bake until dried out and crisp.
  • On the stand mixer, swap out the whisk attachment for the paddle attachment.
  • With the mixer on low speed, add the vanilla paste, tea infused butter and remaining 1 cup of butter about a tablespoon at a time.
  • Once incorporated, add the coffee extract, pinch of salt, then the first tablespoon of coffee milk tea and turn the mixer to medium-high and beat to combine; add the final tablespoon and beat on medium high until buttercream is thick and lustrous.

Decorate the cake

  • Place a 7 inch round cake board or cake platter of your choice on a cake turntable. Add a dollop of buttercream, then place the first cake layer on top, levelling if need be. Using a pastry brush, soak the layer with coffee milk tea. You can be fairly generous with the soak – you don’t want it to soak so much that it loses structure, so start with one layer of soak, let it seep into the layer then add additional soak layers.
  • Once the layer has been soaked, spread a generous amount of coffee milk tea buttercream on top. Repeat with the next two layers.
  • Frost the entire exterior of the cake, using a cake bench scraper to smooth. Chill first layer of buttercream in the fridge for 20 minutes to set.
  • Remove the cake from the fridge and add a second layer of buttercream, again using scraper to smooth, if desired.
  • Fill a piping bag fitted with an open star tip with remaining buttercream (any leftovers can be used for future cupcakes!).
  • Pipe drop stars on the top of the cake, nestling fresh raspberries and meringue kisses amongst the piping, in a pattern that pleases you. Reserve additional berries and meringues for serving!


A (6-inch 3-layer) round cake serves 10 to 12
Coffee milk tea recipe from A Common Table by Cynthia Chen McTernan
Vanilla cake recipe adapted from Icing On The Cake by Tessa Huff