The Most Delicious Cream Cheese Danish Cake

This Cream Cheese Danish Cake is unlike anything you’ve ever had before! Imagine putting the flavors and textures of a cheesecake and a cheese Danish pastry into a cake. The result is this delicious cake with cream cheese cake layers, cream cheese filling and cream cheese frosting.

Cream Cheese Danish Cake

It might sound like an odd name for a cake, but I truly couldn’t think of a better way to describe the flavor of this cake. After a recent trip to St. George, where Avery and I tried nearly all of the pastries from The Farmstead , I just had to create this cake.

What is a Cheese Danish?

A cheese Danish is a type of pastry made with a buttery, flaky dough that is similar to croissant dough. It is typically shaped into a round or oval shape and has a well in the center filled with a sweet and tangy cheese filling. The filling is usually made with cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla for flavor. The pastry is baked until golden brown and crisp, and it may be topped with a light dusting of powdered sugar or a drizzle of icing for added sweetness.

The cheese Danish from Farmstead, however, is unlike any cheese Danish I’ve ever had! This one had a light and fluffy cheese filling inside a kouign amann-like pastry, and topped with cream cheese frosting. Heaven! Pure heaven!

A cheese danish.

Look at that!

It was glorious!

While I cheered Avery on at her dance competition, I was simultaneously thinking about how I could turn this into a cake — and I got started on it the day we got home!

Cream cheese frosting covered cake on a cake stand with plates next to it.

What is a Cream Cheese Danish Cake?

Great question! Let’s talk about what I did to create this Cream Cheese Danish Cake (which could also be called a Cheesecake Cake – very similar flavors).

Cream Cheese Cake

For the cake layers, I knew I wanted to use my cream cheese cake layers from my Cherry Cheese Pie Cake. These layers are slightly more dense than a typical vanilla cake, but they’re still fluffy and tender. We’re using a stick of cream cheese and adding a full tablespoon of vanilla bean paste. The flavor is to-die-for!

A slice of a four layer cake on a floral designed plate.
How to Bake a Moist Cake From Scratch

If you’re unfamiliar with making cakes from scratch, THIS blog post is a must-read!

A quick overview:

  • Use real butter
  • Measure flour correctly
  • Add fat
  • Don’t over bake
  • Know your oven
  • Use light metal pans
  • Serve your cake at room temperature
A slice of a four layer cheese danish cake on a plate.

Cream Cheese Filling

This cream cheese filling is essentially just cream cheese. We’re adding just a little sweetened condensed milk for sweetness. It’s not a lot because we want the cheese flavor to stand out here.

Cream Cheese Frosting

To top off this cake, I’ve made my cream cheese frosting with some vanilla bean paste. Remember, cream cheese frosting is not as stable as regular buttercream, so I don’t recommend trying to pipe with it. You can see I opted for a rustic look with this cake. Trying to smooth cream cheese frosting with a scraper can be tricky because the “cheese” element is sticky.

A cake on a pink cake stand.

Other Favorite Cake Recipes You’ll Love

Cheese Danish Cake

Cream cheese cake layers, cheesecake filling, and vanilla bean cream cheese frosting
4.98 from 118 votes
Course Dessert
Cuisine Cake
Servings 20

Ingredients
  

FOR THE CREAM CHEESE CAKE

  • 3 cups (360 g) all-purpose flour
  • 3 tsp (12 g) baking powder
  • 1 tsp (5.6 g) salt
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 cup (218 g) grapeseed oil
  • 1 3/4 cups (350 g) granulated sugar
  • 1 tbsp (13 g) vanilla bean paste
  • 3 eggs, room temperature
  • 1 cup (240 g) buttermilk, at room temperature

FOR THE CHEESECAKE FILLING

  • 8 ounces cream cheese
  • 1/4 cup sweetened condensed milk, I use the Eagle brand

FOR THE CREAM CHEESE FROSTING

  • 2 cups (452 g) unsalted butter, slightly cold
  • 6 ounces cream cheese, slightly cold
  • 6 cups (750 g) powdered sugar, measured then sifted
  • 1 tbsp (13g) vanilla bean paste
  • pinch of salt

Instructions
 

FOR THE CREAM CHEESE CAKE

  • Preheat your oven to 325 degrees.
  • Spray two 8-inch round cake pans with nonstick spray, line the bottom with parchment paper, and spray again. Set aside.
  • In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer beat the cream cheese until smooth cream cheese. Add the grapeseed oil and sugar and continue to beat on medium-high speed for 2-3 minutes.
  • With the mixer on medium, add the vanilla bean paste, followed by the eggs, one at a time, making sure to scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl between each addition. Once all of the eggs are added, turn the mixer to mediump-high speed and beat for an additional 2 miniutes.
  • With the mixer on low, alternately add the flour mixture and the buttermilk in three additions, starting and finishing with the flour. Combine until incorporated, about 20 to 30 seconds.
  • Evenly distribute the batter among the two cake pans (about 27 ounces of batter in each pan) and bake for 40 to 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out with just a few moist crumbs.
  • Let cool in pans 5-10 minutes before inverting onto a wire rack to cool completely. Once cooled completely, cut the cakes in half horizontally (this is called "torting" the cake). You can cover with plastic wrap and store in the freezer for several weeks.

FOR THE CHEESECAKE FILLING

  • In a medium size mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese and sweetened condensed milk.
  • Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

FOR THE CREAM CHEESE FROSTING

  • In a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and cream cheese on medium-high speed for about two minutes.
  • With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the sifted powdered sugar until incorporated. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and continue to mix for another minute.
  • Add vanilla bean paste and pinch of salt. Increase the speed to medium-high and beat the buttercream for 3 to 5 minutes.
  • Use a spoon to mix the frosting by hand, which will push out the air pockets created by the electric mixer.

ASSEMBLY

  • Place the first cake layer, top side up, on a cake board or cake plate. Spread about ½ cup frosting over the first cake layer. Using a piping bag, pipe a rim of frosting around the edge of the cake.
  • Fill the cake with ½ – ¾ cup cheesecake filling.
  • Place the second cake layer on top and repeat step two. Repeat these steps until you get to the final cake layer (remember, you have four layers now. Place the final cake layer, top side down.
  • Apply a thin layer of frosting around the entire. Freeze the cake for about 10 to 15 minutes to set crumb coat.
  • Finish frosting the cake with the remaining frosting
Keyword cheesecake, cream cheese, cream cheese cake, cream cheese frosting, cream cheese icing
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Courtney Rich

I’m a self-taught baker, obsessed with cake.

I long ago ditched box mixes in pursuit of melt-in-your-mouth, to-die-for flavor combinations, fillings and textures. I believe cake must be decadent, life-changing and worthy of celebration! And I believe anyone should be able to bake that kind of cake – and I’m here to teach you just that!

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Recipe Rating




Comments

  1. Hi Courtney

    I love all your cakes!! Can I bake this cake and cover it with fondant? Will it hold?

    1. With this filling and frosting, no it won’t hold well under fondant. But if you just do the cake layers with another, more stable, buttercream, it will work great.

  2. Hi Courtney
    This cake sounds and looks so delicious I can’t wait to try it.
    Can I swap out the grape seed oil with canola oil? I’ve never baked with grape seed oil before.
    Thank you!
    Liz

    1. Yes, the texture will be a tad denser but it will still be great. Grape seed oil is a lighter oil is all.

    2. 5 stars
      I made this cake and it was amazing!! I followed the recipe for the filling and didn’t end up with very much to put between all the layers. Your pictures look like there is much more filling than the recipe makes?

  3. 5 stars
    Wonderful recipe and easy to follow can’t wait to try it!! If I don’t have Vanilla bean paste can I substitute with Vanilla extract?

  4. Hi Courtney! I am going to need to make this cake immediately! There seems to be some sort of odd buttermilk shortage in my area and all I can find is low-fat buttermilk. Would that totally ruin things? Or do you have a recommendation on a substitute? Thank you so much for sharing your amazing recipes!

    Ashley

  5. Hi Courtney!
    Any particular reason you used all-purpose flour instead of cake flour in this recipe?

    1. I used AP to get a slightly more dense texture, as well as to hold up with all the oil, cream cheese and buttermilk.

  6. 4 stars
    Made this cake for Mothers Day dinner. It was very good. It was even better the day after. I did over bake my cake. My oven will only cook evenly with one layer at a time and I didn’t think to reduce the time and checking it earlier for the first layer. With all the moisture in it though it still was moist, just the outside was a little brown. Thank you Courtney! It was fun as always.

  7. Courtney! So pumped to try this cake! Just a quick question, though. I love me some cold cake…is there a reason you say to serve this at room temperature in your blog post? Will the textures be off or something if served cold?

  8. 5 stars
    We went to Farmstead bakery a few weeks ago and absolutely loved the cheese danish so of course I had to make this cake. It lives up to its name and is literally a cheese danish in cake form!!!! My husband who is usually a chocolate only kind of guy even loved it!

  9. 5 stars
    I saw your IG post of you and your mom tasting this cake and I knew I had to make it. WOW! This cake was I N C R E D I B L E. I have to make room for it in my Top 5 Fav Cakes. I sliced up some strawbs to serve with it and I didn’t use any. It was too good on it’s own. I already can’t wait to make this cake again!

  10. Hi Courtney, I love your cakes! I’m making this one and the layers are sliding. i decided to freeze for a little while so hopefully it holds – fingers crossed! First, is that ok that I freezed in hopes it stays? AND, lol, I am serving tomorrow for an event. Once the icing is set, Should I leave in the freezer or refrigerator overnight until slightly before the event?? Thank you so much for your advice

    1. Sorry to hear about the sliding around – I hope the freezer worked well to set it. Next time, use a little less of the softer filling and see if that helps. Yes, you can store in the refrigerator overnight, just make sure it’s covered well.

  11. 5 stars
    Hi Courtney! I made this cake for my family last weekend and everyone absolutely LOVED it. I only had two 9″ cake pans so I reduced the cooking time to 30 minutes instead of 40 (some basic math after Google-ing the difference between 8″ and 9″ pans…25 PERCENT!!!! More than I realized.) Anyway, wanted to share a few things:
    1. Two layers worked beautifully (although my heart wanted 3 so I’m going to invest in 3 8″ pans for next time), but there was leftover frosting. All good, I froze it 🙂
    2. Even though there was leftover buttercream (and I was still very generous on 2 layers), I DID use up all the cream cheese + sweetened condensed milk filling. WOW. So good.
    3. Had a leftover slice 3 days later and it was still divine. Froze the remaining slices because this cake was too good to waste.
    4. I couldn’t find vanilla bean paste at the local Harris Teeter and used Vanilla Extract instead. Will order the paste online to amplify the flavor for the next recipe!

    My sister-in-law recently showed me your blog and I just wanna add I am now a huge fan! Thank you for your passion and attention to detail. Can’t wait to bake my way through your recipes 🙂

  12. Hi Courtney,

    I only have six inch pans. Would you recommend the same baking time for six inch pans as well?

  13. 5 stars
    Another fantastic cake! I haven’t been disappointed by any of your recipes yet. I made it with gluten-free flour and it had a beautiful texture.

  14. 5 stars
    WOW!!! I just made it for my family’s 4th of July party and it. Was. DELICIOUS.
    A few things:
    I frosted the cake heavily and still had about a third of the frosting left over in case you don’t have enough butter or something
    When mixing the cream cheese, sugar, and grape seed oil, it looked like a green Flubber initially 😂 but with a few minutes of mixing and adding the other ingredients, it didn’t end weird. SO! In case you’re there and have a miniature panic moment, rest assured mine looked gross, too, and turned out fine
    Lastly, giving the cakes a chill overnight after cooking made cutting them in half much easier than other cakes I’ve made, and the four sections looked very impressive when cut into 🙂
    What a tasty, moist cake!

  15. 5 stars
    Hi Courtney- This cake was out of this world delicious. I love this cake, and I love your Graham Slam Cake. I’m wondering, I’ve made your Confetti Cake a few times and really would like to make it as dense as this cream cheese danish cake. Would that be possible without adding cream cheese? What would I need to modify in the Confetti Cake ingredients? I tried using all purpose flour instead of cake flour, but that didn’t get me the magical texture/moisture of this cake. Thanks in advance!

  16. 4 stars
    This cake is delicious and rich! The recipe itself is simple and easy to follow! I ran into a problem baking where I needed to bake this cake for considerably more time than it called for. Not sure if it was my oven or what. other than that, no problems and super yummy!

  17. 5 stars
    It is heavenly! Such a different cake than most but it was so delicious. The cheesecake filling did taste like the filling of a cheese danish by itself but in the cake it tasted more like cheesecake. I cut the cake recipe by 1/3 to make in 2 6 inch pans and it was perfect.

  18. This looks and sounds delicious. I’m wondering how you might incorporate some berries, or other fruit into this cake. Danish often times has a cherry type filling. Would you add it into the filling, frosting, cake… or a combo of either??

  19. 5 stars
    Best tasting cake I have made to date! So much flavor and beautiful texture. (And it turned out super cute too!!) Not too sweet but flavorful and creamy. Thank you for sharing your recipes! I have a new standard for cake flavors now. 😉

  20. 5 stars
    Haven’t finished baking it yet but the batter is delicious. I didn’t have Grapeseed oil (who does?) So I used a melted stick of butter and canola to make 1 cup. And of course I didn’t have baking powder so I used equal parts cream of tartar and baking soda. Also I didn’t have buttermilk so I used a combination of two substitutes… sour cream and milk with cream of tartar to thin it to the consistency of buttermilk. Again. The batter is delicious. I actually bought cream cheese frosting before I found your recipe so I’m going to use it to make the filling and whip it up for the frosting.

  21. Can you use another oil other than grapeseed? It’s the first time I’ve ever seen a cake with that type of oil. Is there a reason that is used over vegetable or canola?

  22. Is there a reason why you “torte” the two cake layers before refrigerating or freezing until ready to ice VERSUS just wrapping the two cake layers and refrigerate for a few days, then “torte” when ready to fill and ice?

    1. I like to do it before I freeze them, so I’m not waiting for the layers to thaw completely because I like to stack and decorate my layers while the cake is slightly chilled still.

    1. Yes you can use something else. I just like that grapeseed oil offers a little lighter texutre.

  23. 5 stars
    This was most the most delicious cake I have ever made. Just awesome all around and yes it tastes very much like a cheese danish.

  24. 5 stars
    This cake is so delicious. The mixture of all of the flavors and textures give an almost brown butter vanilla cream cheese taste.
    The only adjustment I made was handing some extra cream cheese to the frosting and a little bit of lemon juice.

  25. Just curious why grapeseed oil is used and if avocado oil would work in its place or if you had another substitute you would recommend. Also, does souring your own milk with lemon juice or vinegar work as well as buttermilk?

  26. Hi Mary this looks terrific but 4 sticks of butter for the frosting seems like a lot. Is it because the cake is super huge? We are not even putting this in the middle layers?
    Please let me know your thinking on the why of this. Thanks, Beth

    1. Actually, you will be using it between the layers. You’ll use about a 1/2 cup on the cake layer and then you’ll pipe a rim of the buttercream around the edge of the cake before you fill it with the softer filling.

  27. 5 stars
    My gosh this was delicious!! I added a strawberry compote to each layer,,
    added fresh strawberries on top, then cut up and gave to all my neighbors for Mother’s Day. It was a HUGE hit!