Naked Marionberry Cake

A homemade Marionberry Cake filled with marionberry jam and frosted with marionberry buttercream! This cake is dense and delicious. Everything is made from scratch and is sure to be a summertime treat you will make over and over!

a naked marionberry cake with marionberry buttercream frosting and fresh marionberries on top
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This Marionberry Cake was a last-minute addition to my son’s birthday party for the adults. I had some extra pound cake batter from the Batman Cake and we had just picked a bunch of fresh marionberries at a local farm. So, of course, I decided to make a Naked Marionberry Cake!

up close photo of a fresh marionberry on a bush

What’s a Marionberry? It’s a berry that was created at Oregon State with 2 varieties of blueberries, the chehalem and the olallie. They look like blackberries and taste like a black-blue-raspberry, IMO. If you can’t find marionberries, you could use raspberries, blackberries, etc.

This post has recipes for the pound cake and marionberry buttercream I used. It also has a fresh marionberry jam recipe for the filling. You get a bonus recipe, marionberry jam that is a result of the jam. Of course, I put a cocktail “recipe” at the end. After all the baking I did, I needed a drink!

naked marionberry cake 2

Naked Marionberry Cake

5 from 11 votes
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Author: EmilyFabulous


Pound Cake

  • ¾ cup unsalted butter, room temp
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 large eggs, room temp
  • cups all-purpose flour
  • teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • cups milk, room temp

Marionberry Jam/Syrup

  • 2-3 cups fresh marionberries, rinsed
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ½ teaspoon cornstarch

Marionberry Frosting

  • ¼ cup unsalted butter, room temp
  • ¾ cup vegetable shortening
  • teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 pinch kosher salt
  • 4 cups powdered confectioners sugar
  • 2-3 teaspoon water
  • ¼ cup marionberry syrup


Pound Cake

  • Preheat oven to 350°F and prepare baking pan(s) with non-stick spray or butter and parchment paper. I used two 6" round pans.
  • In a bowl add flour, baking powder and salt and mix together until combined.
  • In a separate bowl, cream together butter and sugar with a mixer. Add vanilla and mix in completely. Add eggs one at a time, fully mixing in after each one.
  • Add ⅓ of the dry mixture to butter mixture and combine then add ⅓ milk and combine. Repeat until all ingredients are added and mixed in.
  • Add batter to prepared pan(s) and bake for 30 -35 minutes or until a toothpick is clean.

Marionberry Jam/Syrup

  • Add all ingredients to a pan and bring to a boil while stirring and mashing. Boil for about 1 minute and remove from heat to cool. Continue to mash the berries as the mixture cools.
  • Once cool, strain through a mesh strainer to separate the jam from the syrup.
  • Use jam for cake filling and syrup for frosting and cocktail. Syrup will keep for 7-10 days in the refrigerator in an airtight container.

Marionberry Frosting

  • Place butter and shortening in mixer and cream together on medium speed. Add in vanilla and salt and continue mixing.
  • Begin to add confectioners sugar one cup at a time, mixing on low speed until combined then med-high speed for a minute or so each time. After each cup addition, add a tablespoon of water.
  • Add marionberry syrup and fully incorporate it until nice and smooth.

How to Build the Cake

  • Take one layer of the cake and place it on a cake stand or frosting stand. Keep in place with a small dollop of frosting on the bottom. Don't worry about making wither cake layer level, the jam and flipping the second layer will take care of this. Add a thick layer of marionberry jam leaving about ¼ inch around the edge.
    marionberry jam on cake layer
  • Take the second layer of cake and flip over so that the flat bottom is now on top.
    marionberry cake layer with marionberry jam in the middle
  • Frost the cake first with a thin layer of frosting to make your crumb layer. Put the cake in the freezer for 5-10 minutes to set. This will help with crumbs in the frosting layer. Remove the cake from the freezer and frost as desired. I used a "naked effect where there was just a thin layer and you could still see some of the cake through the frosting. You can also just frost as a normal cake. Have fun with it! This was my first "naked" cake and I think it turned out pretty good.
    naked marionberry cake 1


  • This made quite a bit of frosting and since I made my cake “naked”. I would half the recipe next time. If you want a fully frosted cake, leave as it.

Any nutrition calculations are only estimates using online calculators. Please verify using your own data.

Since the Marionberry Jam resulted in a beautiful and delicious Marionberry Syrup, there was no way I was wasting that! Here is the cocktail recipe I promised…which is really just adding syrup and vodka to lemonade….but it was an AMAZING summer drink!

Marionberry Vodka Lemonade

1. Make lemonade from the can (yup, the frozen stuff you get at the grocery store) or you can make your own. There was no way I was making anything else after 2 cakes!

2. Add about ¼ cup marionberry syrup (just eyeball it, it’s fine).

3. Pour into a glass with ice and add 1-2 shots of vodka. Mix and enjoy! ?

Check out some of my other recipes below:

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Lemonade Photo by Izabelle Acheson on Unsplash.

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