Whether it's a tiered tower or a little loaf, or basically a vehicle for frosting, cake is a wonderful way to celebrate someone. And on June 16, we're celebrating dads.
Maybe your dad was the one who brought you to school, taught you how to flip a pancake, or that life's OK if you lose a basketball game. Or he's the guy who told you ghost stories while camping or texts you silly jokes when you're blue. Maybe he's not even your dad at all, but a grandfather or uncle or mentor who always showed up. Father figures are worth celebrating.
Now, not all dads love cake. And not everyone who loves cake are dads. But I'm willing to bet there's a healthy overlap between the two. Take a look through some of our very best recipes below. You're bound to find a favorite.
The best Father's Day cake recipes
The simple, fruity, ricotta-laced cake that's launched a thousand ovens. No wonder it's our site's most popular cake recipe. We like it with a dusting of powdered sugar, but no one's going to stop you from dolloping more ricotta on top.
2. Food-Processor Pistachio Cake eith Raspberry Cream
Don't want to do a lot of work? Don't! This pistachio-dense cake comes together entirely in a food processor and topping, while optional, is as easy as mashing up some raspberries and folding them into soft cream.
A childhood snack of peaches with milk, sprinkled with sugar and a dusting of nutmeg, in cake form. Best served on a warm, sunny day.
4. Sam's Favorite Chocolate Cake
This chocolate-cherry cake has a sweet backstory: It helped bridge a 40-year gap between father and daughter.
5. "World's Best Cake" with Banana and Coconut
Yes, "World's Best" is a lofty claim from this towering cake — but it's got a pretty clever trick to create such puffy, golden layers.
6. Yellowest Yellow Cake with Fudgy Chocolate Frosting
Inspired by boxed yellow cake mix, this layer cake is very fluffy and very moist. Chocolate frosting is a classic combo, but feel free to swap in your dad's favorite — say, vanilla buttercream or penuche.
A ring of deep, dark, fudgy goodness is the perfect way to show someone they're alright. The secret to this cake's tender, moist crumb is not one, not two, but three liquids: black coffee, vegetable oil, and sour milk (feel free to substitute buttermilk).
8. Blueberry Snack Cake with Toasted Pecan Topping
If your dad drives you a little nutty, then bake up this simple snack cake. (Forgive the dad joke, please.) It's got fresh blueberries, pecans (or walnuts or really any nut you love), and a hint of lemon zest.
9. Almond Cake with Orange-Flower Water Syrup
Bake a cake that can do dinner or breakfast. (Psst — that's this one!) It joined our site back in 2010, when the editors wrote: "Almond meal lends the cake a hearty texture yet it remains light and sweet. It would pair nicely with tea and a dollop of crème fraîche or unsweetened whipped cream."
10. Rye and Rhubarb Anytime Cake
What started as improv transformed into a tart, warm cake you'll probably want at least two slices of. The compote is one-of-a-kind with golden raisins, orange zest, and white wine. (That means this cake is good with white wine, too, right?)
11. The Snake Bite
Inspired by the bright-yet-complex snakebite cocktail — equal parts lager and cider — this cake combines a chocolatey stout cake with fermented pear cider frosting for an unforgettable dessert.
If your dad doesn't like flour (or just loves pecans), this is the cake for him. All you need are pecans, brown sugar, eggs, and a pinch of salt, and you're ready to go.
The olive oil cake that will ruin you for all others. And to make it even more decadent, top it with Michelle Polzine's slow-roasted strawberries.
14. Melissa Clark's Instant Pot Chocolate-Bourbon Lava Cakes
This boozy chocolate cake recipe can be made entirely in everyone's favorite multicooker. The combination of rich chocolate and smoky-sweet bourbon will be beloved by the patriarch in your family.
15. Citrus Cake from Yasmin Khan
This cake looks and tastes like pure sunshine. And since Dad never wants you to lift a finger, he'll be happy to know that it is so easy — it comes together in one bowl with just one step.
16. Key Lime Cake from Isabel Coss
Sadly for Dad, he's not getting a vacation to St. Lucia for Father's Day this year. The closest I can get is this tropically-inspired cake, which has a hint of aromatherapy from a eucalyptus-infused water bath, which the cake bakes in for extra moisture.
Hands down, this is the most fun cake we've ever laid hands (and lips) on. It's essentially a giant donut — minus the frying — that's completely covered in confectioners' sugar.
Do you have an indecisive dad too? I get it, and that's why this versatile cake batter comes in such handy. You can use any fruit Dad likes, but we recommend stone fruit or berries, both of which are in season during June.
This isn't exactly a cake, but it's not not a cake. It's Dad's new favorite dessert, featuring a whole lot of blueberries, which are at their peak around Father's Day.
20. Naturally-Dyed Red Velvet Cake with Beets and Cream Cheese Frosting
Instead of artificial red food coloring, the batter for this red velvet cake is dyed using red beets.