Make Heart-Shaped Cakes for Valentine’s Day

I’ve received several comments and e-mails asking about the cake recipe I used to make the little heart shaped cakes featured in last week’s Tablescape Thursday.  They were made with a cake recipe given to me by my mother-in-law many years ago. It’s a basic cake recipe called a 1234 Cake, and it’s the same recipe I use when I make a coconut cake each year at Christmastime.  You’ll find a printable version of the recipe at the end of this post.

Heart Cakes for Valentine's Day


I found my heart pan at the Base Exchange on a local Air Force base, but it’s also available here: Heart Cake Pan

Wilton Heart Cake Pan

I always grease my pans with shortening because that really seems to work best for making sure a cake doesn’t stick to the pan.   It was really tricky getting it down into all the grooves…but the cakes came out very easily so it was worth the effort. A cooking spray would probably work,  but I just prefer to use shortening from the can because I know it works. Update: I didn’t flour my pan the last time I made these and they were really hard to get out, so I recommend flouring the pan after greasing it well with a shortening like Crisco.

Heart Cakes for Valentine's Day


Next, I sprinkled them with sifted, powdered sugar and added Raspberry Preserves to the center where the little cakes are hollowed out. They were yummy!

Printable recipe for 1 2 3 4 Cake

Raspberry Heart Cakes

Cook Time30 minutes
Total Time30 minutes
Course: Dessert
Author: Susan (Between Naps on the Porch)


  • 1 2 3 4 Cake
  • Ingredients:
  • 1 cup butter
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Powdered Sugar
  • Raspberry preserves for filling


  • Cream butter until fluffy.
  • Add sugar and cream well.
  • Add eggs one at a time.
  • Beat well.
  • Sift flour, baking powder and salt together.
  • Add milk and flour mixture into the butter mixture, alternating the two and ending with flour
  • Beat on low speed
  • Add vanilla extract
  • Grease and flour the pan, I use Crisco shortening
  • Fill each heart-shaped cup or muffin tin about 2/3rds full.
  • Bake at 350 for 30 minutes...test with a toothpick to see if it's done.
  • Once cakes have completely cooled, sprinkle powdered sugar over them, then fill with Raspberry or Strawberry Preserves.
  • If the little heart cakes expand above the level of the pan while cooking, using a large knife, slice off the part sticking up so the cakes will sit flat on the plate.
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  1. Edie Marie's Attic says

    Hi Susan!

    Oh how delicious! They are so adorable and I've got to find one of those pans – I'll be checking at Michaels. It makes a very special dessert. As the Barefoot Contessa says "your guests will never what you served for dinner but they'll always remember the dessert"!

    Love your Mary Frances purse on your previous post – scrumptious!

    Happy Valentines Day! hugs, Sherry

  2. Love Being a Nonny says

    I LOVE these!! I might buy the pan and give them a try!

  3. Oh, wow. Those are gorgeous cakes. Wonder if they'd be easier than the heart-shaped linzer cookies i was just googling recipes for? Hmmm….

  4. Richie's 2ts Inspires says

    TY a mill…

    Hope you enjoy celebrating Heart's Day.

    Greetings from snowy Stockholm.

  5. Oh how beautiful, thank you so much for the recipe and hint where to get the pan. I want to try these. Love your blog.

    glitter and roses

  6. I'm not big on novelty pans but those cakes are wonderful . . . I may just have to add that to Linderhof's pan collection!

  7. Susan,
    Thanks for sharing the cake recipe and tips for the darling heart shaped cakes. Yum! Gonna try these.
    Have a Happy Valentine's Day.

  8. Happy Valentine, your little cakes look so beautiful and yummy. Have a wonderful day. I must checkout that recipe. Thanks

  9. Kendra @ Domestic Princess in Training says

    Uhhh…yum, these looks delish and so fancy!
    Happy Valentine’s Day to ya. Hope it’s filled with lots of love and warm fuzzies.


  10. Those are so pretty… almost too pretty to eat.

    Happy Valentine's Day!!

  11. They look so special. I have some mini bundt pans and the cakes come out fine but the clean up takes forever, getting in all the grooves.
    Happy Valentine's Day! Hope it is a good one.

  12. They look so special. I have some mini bundt pans and the cakes come out fine but the clean up takes forever, getting in all the grooves.
    Happy Valentine's Day! Hope it is a good one.

  13. They look so special. I have some mini bundt pans and the cakes come out fine but the clean up takes forever, getting in all the grooves.
    Happy Valentine's Day! Hope it is a good one.

  14. They look so special. I have some mini bundt pans and the cakes come out fine but the clean up takes forever, getting in all the grooves.
    Happy Valentine's Day! Hope it is a good one.

  15. I might just have to look for one of those pans also. We have several novelty bundt pans for pound cake but none that makes the little individual cakes. I will have to try the recipe also. Happy Valentine's Day Susan.

  16. Susan Wicker says

    Oh, Susan, your heart cakes look so festive and beautiful! Thanks for sharing the photos of them, plus, thanks for the 1234 Cake recipe. You are the best! Happy Sweetheart's Day! Sincerely, Susan from

  17. Wilton also makes a pan greaser (I can't remember the name) which you can brush on with a pastry brush- it works quite well.

  18. Susan,

    I have always admired these cakes on your pretty and looks so delicious..I'm going to have to get one of those pans! Thanks for sharing all your wonderful ideas! Happy Valentine's Day!

  19. Rustique Gallery says

    Susan, these cakes look fabulous. Thanks for including the recipe! Have a LOVEly Day! Sherry

  20. Oh Wow! I thought I was going to take a bite out of the computer screen! After being on WW for 5 weeks, those sort of make me weak. LOL
    They do look very scrumptious!

  21. The Quintessential Magpie says

    Hi, sweet girl! Thank you so much for generously sharing your family recipe with us. You are so generous to so this! And to that end, I wish one of the sweetest bloggers out there a Very Happy Valentine's Day!


    Sheila 🙂

  22. for giving so much to so many…may this day of love find you doubly blessed!

  23. beautiful and i'll bet they ARE delicious…..Anniepoo

  24. Hi Susan,

    Happy Valentin's Day. Thanks for all your help and friendship.
    Carey from Chicory Nits

  25. Susan those cakes look professional. I'm definitely purchasing a pan myself. How precious for a "ladies" lunch. Thanks!

  26. I'll be looking for that pan also.. the presentation makes you want to eat them… thank you

  27. They look so gorgeous. Nice job!

    lm. x

  28. Only commenting to say that you can sign up for (I think they call it The Knack…Michael's monthly e-newsletter), and they will send coupons by e-mail every.single.week!

  29. looks so yummie

  30. Oh, how I wish I had discovered your site earlier, Susan. Both rooms are beautiful & elegant but think I prefer the breakfast room (now the porch?) for this one. I have searched Michael’s & Wilton – both on-line & local carriers of Wilton products; all to no avail. All I can say is “Cherish your heart pan.”

    • Paula, check this out…I think that’s it and it says they are in stock:

    • I couldn’t find the heart pan at Michaels or anywhere so I just ordered it off of Can’t wait to try the recipe! How full do you fill the hearts with cake batter?

      I live in the Metro Atlanta area as well and I just LOVE your blog!!

      • Thanks so much, Debora! It has been so long since I made those, I’m having trouble remembering. Seems like there were some instructions and/or a recipe on the pan. I know I didn’t fill it all the way to the top since that would have caused it to overflow. Let me know when it comes if there are directions on the cardboard packaging. I usually just eyeball stuff like that. If you end up over filling it, don’t worry because you can just slice off the part sticking up high out of the pan because that’s going to be the bottom of your heart cakes anyway.

  31. Hi Susan,
    I did get my heart shaped pan last week and the packaging did not give specific baking instructions. It just said to follow the baking instructions on your recipe. I filled the hearts 2/3 full (like cupcakes) and had to cut a small amount off once baked. They turned out great though! I made them the same as you did, and then served them on top of cut/sugared strawberries with whipped cream around the edge. I would have attached a photo but the camera on my phone wouldn’t work….

    Thank you for having such a great blog with great ideas!

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