Moist Yellow Cake

Have you ever made a scratch yellow/vanilla cake and have it turn out like cornbread?  Yeah, me too, all that work and you feel that you’d been better off making a cake mix.

Through the years I’ve looked to perfect this scratch vanilla cake, I have a few that I really like, but this is the easiest and most fool proof.

Things to remember with this cake.

  • This cake uses butter for fat, this will result in a firm almost dry texture when cold, straight from the fridge, it’s best served at room temperature
  • This may have a very different mix method than you are used to, trust the method, not following the method will result in VERY different results
  • Measure carefully, too much flour will make a cake dry, weighing is best, but if you are using cups, spoon lightly into cup and level off.
  • The flavor on this is a blank canvas.  Feel free adding flavorings to suit you or just stick with the vanilla.
Let’s get started.
First, in the bowl add the flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder, turn on mixer to combine.  
Now add the SOFT butter in chunks
Mix until all combined.  Depending on the softness of your butter, it’ll either come out looking like a crumbly struesel topping like mine, or a thick paste, either is OK.
Now combine the eggs, milk and vanilla, whisk to combine.
Add about 2/3 of this mixture to the flour mixture and mix about 2 minutes.
This will get you a nice light and fluffy mixture.
Now add the remainder of the liquid and mix to combine well, about 1 minute.
You’ll have a mixture that looks kinda curdled or “broken” that’s OK, this is how it should look.
Now pour into the prepared pan(s) and bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes, or until it tests done.  Let sit in pans for 10 minutes, remove and cool completely.
Moist Yellow Cake
a moist, fluffy vanilla cake from scratch.
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  1. 2 cups (14 oz.) white granulated sugar
  2. 2 1/2 cups (12.5 oz.) all purpose flour
  3. 3 teaspoons baking powder
  4. 1/2 teaspoons salt
  5. 1 cup (8 oz.) room temperature butter
  6. 1 cup (8 oz.) milk
  7. 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  8. 4 eggs
  9. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease, flour and line with parchment paper 2-8" or 9" round cake pans or 1-9x13" pan.
  10. Combine flour, sugar, salt and baking powder in the bowl of a mixer, mix to combine. With the mixer on low speed add chunks of the soft butter, about 2 tablespoons at a time until all is added. It should look like a crumbly struesel, if the butter is very very soft, it will be more of a paste, either way is OK.
  11. Whisk together eggs, milk, and vanilla. Add about 2/3 of the milk mixture to the flour mixture and mix on medium speed for 2 minutes. Add remaining milk mixture and mix until well combined, about 1 minute more.
  12. Pour into prepared pans and bake for approx. 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean or with just a few small crumbs. Be careful not to over bake.
  13. Let pans cool for 10 minutes, remove cakes from pans and cool completely before frosting.


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