Jan 21

Yin Yang Cake

by Hannah Holt »


Two years ago, twin girls joined our family.

Now my wee girls are busy toddlers.

On the outside, my girls are mirror copies of each other. They look so much alike that they still don’t “know” their own names (People are always mixing them up, so they get a lot of name confusion.)

However, they don’t need to know their names to know who they are. They’ve always had distinct personalities. One of my twins likes to walk around the house with me, chatting away in her half-speak. My other girl prefers to sit and look at the pictures in books. Give her a chunky puzzle and she’ll be entertained for most the morning. Of course both my girls love being read to, played with, and taken on walks. But watch them for more than thirty seconds, and it’s not difficult to figure out who is who.

If having twins has taught me anything, it’s this– genes may shape a person, but they don’t make one.

So for their second birthday, I couldn’t decide if I wanted to make them separate cakes or one cake. I mean, two cakes is a lot of cake! In the end, I decided to make two separate but connected cakes. I call it the yin yang cake:

1. I took this recipe for marble cake, but instead of marbling it, I poured the chocolate and vanilla batter into separate nine-inch cake pans. I also adjusted the baking time from 50 minutes to 25 minutes.

2. After the cakes cooled on a wire rack, I cut each cake into the yin-yang shape. I did this by tracing the bottom of the cake pan onto paper, folding the paper in half, and making sure my yin and yang signs were well balanced.

3. I made one batch of vanilla butter cream frosting, divided it into two bowls, and mixed 1/2 cup of unsweetened cocoa into one bowl of frosting. I ended up with one bowl of vanilla frosting and one bowl of chocolate frosting. I stacked and frosted each side of the cake separately.

4. Then I brought the two cakes together (using spatulas) to have one yin yang cake.

It’s a cake with something for everyone. You could have a slice of vanilla cake or a slice of chocolate cake… or a little of both!



  1. Heather Newman

    Wow! What an awesome idea, Hannah! Happy birthday to your beautiful girls.

  2. Catherine Johnson

    You are so clever and thoughtful, Hannah! That looks beautiful as do yuor twins.

  3. Renee LaTulippe (@ReneeMLaTulippe)

    You always do the cleverest things! My boys don’t look alike AND they have completely different personalities, so maybe this is the perfect cake for them in March. But I may go for yellow and blue frosting. :)

    Your girls are so darn cute!

  4. Joanna

    How cool, and so appropriate! And happy birthday to your gorgeous and unique twin girls!

  5. grandma weight

    I laughed and laughed over the cake–probably because it was such a clever idea and your description of the girls was so perfect!! I’m abasolutely dying to be with them!

  6. Gramma Holt

    What a wonderful celebration of two distinct personalities born on the same day! Like Gramma Weight, I am so anxious to spend some time with them. Meanwhile, thank you for keeping us connected through blogs like this. I say again: Love the cake!

  7. Julie Rowan-Zoch

    Happy birthday, Ying and Yang! I’m abasolutely dying for a piece o’ that cake!

  8. Erik - This Kid Reviews Books

    Coool! I want cake! Today is Josie’s birthday. We’re having cupcakes (I suggested brownie cupcakes, but Josie vetoed it. :( She wanted plain ol’ cupcakes).

    • Hannah Holt

      Happy birthday to Josie, too!

  9. Tara Oliver

    you are amazing, Hannah!! what a great idea! happy birthday, babies! I mean little girls!

  10. Susanna Leonard Hill

    Happy Birthday to your girls, Hannah – so sweet :) And what a clever and perfect idea for a cake! Love it!

  11. Carrie F

    What a lovely cake, and what a nice mom you are! There could be a book in there… Happy birthday to your girls!

  12. Lori Mozdzierz

    Happy Birthday to your little loves!!
    They are so adorable.

    Hanna, their birthday cake design is perfect. 😀

  13. Jess

    I’m a bit behind, but happy birthday to the girls and the big golden one too. We’re not absolutely sure, but we’re planning on coming out to that part of the country in July… ya’ll going to be around? Can we visit? We’ll have another little boy in our family by then as well.
    Love ya and talk to ya’ll later. -J

    • Hannah Holt

      Hi Jess, Congratulations on the new baby! We should be around for most of July. Let me know when you will be in town. We would love to have you visit!

  14. Hannah Holt

    Thanks everyone for the birthday wishes for the girls! :)