Easy vanilla cake

Easy vanilla cake

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(116 ratings)

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Cooking time

Prep: 20 mins Cook: 1 hr, 20 mins

Skill level

Easy

Servings

Serves 12

A moist cake drenched with vanilla syrup. Use as the basis for a range of fabulous celebration cakes

Nutrition and extra info

Additional info

  • Freezable
Nutrition info

Nutrition per serving

kcalories
399
protein
6g
carbs
48g
fat
21g
saturates
12g
fibre
1g
sugar
27g
salt
0.31g

Ingredients

  • 250g pack unsalted butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
  • 250g golden caster sugar
  • seeds scraped from 1 vanilla pod or 1 tsp vanilla paste
  • 5 large eggs, cracked into a jug
  • 85g plain flour
  • 100g full-fat Greek yogurt (I used Total)
  • 250g self-raising flour
  • 3 tbsp semi-skimmed milk

For the syrup

  • 50g golden caster sugar
  • seeds ½ vanilla pod or ½ tsp vanilla paste

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Method

  1. Heat oven to 160C/140C fan/gas 3. Grease a round, deep 20cm tin, then line the base and sides with non-stick baking paper.
  2. Using electric beaters or a tabletop mixer, beat the butter, sugar, vanilla and ¼ tsp salt together until pale and fluffy, then pour in the eggs, one at a time, giving the mix a really good beating before adding the next. Add 1 tbsp of the plain flour if the mix starts to look slimy rather than fluffy. Beat in the yogurt.
  3. Mix the flours; then, using a large metal spoon, fold them into the batter, followed by the milk. Spoon the mix into the tin and bake for 1 hr 20 mins or until well risen and golden – a skewer inserted into the middle should come out clean.
  4. Meanwhile, make the syrup by gently heating 50ml water with the sugar and vanilla in a pan until the sugar dissolves. Set aside. Once the cake is out of the oven, leave to cool for 30 mins in the tin, then use a skewer to poke holes all over the cake, going right to the bottom. Pour the syrup over, letting it completely soak in after each addition. Leave to cool completely, then either wrap the cake well or fill and ice it. If you wrap it with baking parchment and cling film, the unfilled cake will keep well for up to 3 days, or in the freezer for up to a month.
  5. For ideas on how to decorate the cake and to try out some variations on this basic cake mixture, have a look at the 'Goes well with' recipes for Simple elegance wedding cake, Birthday bug cake and Summer celebration cake.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, June 2009

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Comments

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sasha25vj's picture
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Delicious! I made this for nephew's 8th birthday as he specifically asked for a vanilla cake and he absolutely loved it. Will definitely make this again and for many more occasions.

foggyamh's picture
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Beautiful, moist cake. Everybody loved it!

bextoon's picture
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Made it for my mom's birthday, everyone really liked it, it was so moist and absolutely tasty. Definitely going to use this for the next birthday.

dvousvoukis's picture

Going to try this cake tonight in my giant cupcake pans.. really been hunting for a lovely cake recipe. How do I avoid making a heavy cake.. how do I know if my butter and sugar is creamed enough? Really hope this recipe will be the last one i try...

dvousvoukis's picture

Going to try this cake tonight in my giant cupcake pans.. really been hunting for a lovely cake recipe. How do I avoid making a heavy cake.. how do I know if my butter and sugar is creamed enough? Really hope this recipe will be the last one i try...

whosforapokeyhat's picture

I've made this cake for my children's birthday cakes for several years now and it has never let me down. The quantities double easily and other than needing slightly longer in the oven the recipe is perfect.

This freezes well and is easy to mould into Star Wars characters, Littlest Pet Shop shapes or anything else you might fancy. I fill it with jam and buttercream (2 parts icing sugar to 1 part butter/Stork with plenty vanilla extract) but wait until absolutely cold and if sandwiching two cakes to create a tall one use skewers until iced because they slide with the filling.

The cake also lasts well in the fridge when iced for a week. I have made this without the syrup, simply because I forgot to add it and the cake was fine but it lasts longer with the syrup and is sticky moist. Highly recommend this one.

luisag's picture
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Made this for a celebration cake for a party. The cake was 13 x 9 (inches) and 3 layers so I used 1 x the recipe for each layer and 1 1/2 x the recipe for the base layer of the cake. It was a big cake! It turned out perfectly and everyone absolutely loved it and it was still delicious 6 days after I had made it. It was moist and very tasty. I used one of those edible photos on the top and it looked fantastic - like a professional cake. Icing a cake that size is tricky so I would suggest some practise runs first.

sabzilicious's picture

I have tried many vanilla (yellow cake recipes) this one is the best...firm enough to stack fondant cakes and yet moist enough because of the sugar syrup...i tired this with milk instead of the 100gm of yogurt ...i used 140 gm of milk...secondly when i cut the layers and added the frosting i added more sugar syrup with a pastry brush...it becomes really moist esp on the sides where its difficult to get syrup into...

greenapple's picture

I have made this cake twice before, and am going to make it again this weekend. I've made it for special occasions, and each time tripled the recipe and baked it in a 30cm square tin.

Fantastic taste. Filled and covered with a thin layer of buttercream then covered in fondant icing. Everyone was very impressed!!

jgarforth1981's picture
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Super moist cake and easy to prepare. Used it for a celebration cake and got lots of compliments. Will definately be the recipie of choice for future celebration cakes.

darkchocchick1's picture

Benjamin - see point 2!

benjamin88rr's picture

Sorry if I am being dim, but where do you use the yogurt?
Do you mix it in at the same time as the milk?

Or is it used as a topping/filler?

stellabella2000's picture
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Made this cake for my daughter-in-laws baby shower. I froze it as I had made it ten days before. I was really nervous as I had not made it before & was not sure how it would turn out. I took it out the night before I was going to decorate it. Once at room temperature I cut the cake in two using invisible cotton (someone suggested dental floss but didn't have any to hand). I filled it with butter-cream & put a thin coating on the outside. I then covered it with fondant icing & decorated with shop bought accessories & ribbon. This is the first time I have made a 'celebration' cake & like others have mentioned I also will be using this recipe in the future. Pleased to say it went down very well, in fact too well-I only had one slice! Good excuse to make another one! :-)

jaylau's picture
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Made this cake twice now an I just find it so tasty an versatile! Making my brother a guitar shaped cake for his 18th birthday using this recipe. Fingers crossed it's as tasty as I remember x

treyuk's picture

Not sure if I am reading it wrong but do you have to slice the cake into 3 slices as it shows in the picture? They do not mention any cake cutting??

hanjimani's picture
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Fantastic cake. Very easy and tasted amazing filled with buttercream and raspberry jam. Everyone at my daughter's 6th birthday party loved it. I will definitely be making it again.

coralia's picture
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covered it with pink Punchglasur from Manner and used blackberry jam, one delicious cake

stellabella2000's picture
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I'm going to make this cake for my daughter-in-law's baby shower. I want to cover it with sugar paste & decorate. Can I put the sugar paste straight on the cake. Also ready made sugar paste or make my own? Not made it before-be grateful for any advice as I want to make a good impression!

roband67's picture

What a fantastic cake, I made this for a friends 40th, I'm male & relatively new to baking and found it so simple to follow but with a great result!!!

whatsinaname7288's picture

I have made this cake (for the first time) for my sister's 50th birthday, it's now waiting to be filled and iced will let you know how it's rated once it's been eaten.

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