Celebrate with a Slice of Very Vanilla Butter Cake

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Vanilla cake holds a near and dear place in my sugarcoated heart.

Learn how to bake a tasty vanilla butter cake that's better than any boxed mix: https://foodal.com/knowledge/baking/very-vanilla-cake/

For every birthday growing up as a kid, I would always request plain vanilla cake with vanilla buttercream.

I appreciated the simple, natural flavors that did not overpower the senses, but rather embraced a subtle taste experience: fragrant vanilla, creamy butter, and sweet sugar.

Fast-forward a couple decades, and this demure dessert is still my one true love.

And I’m ready to share the love with all of you, with this delicious recipe!

Looking for an easy and delicious vanilla cake to make? We share our recipe: https://foodal.com/knowledge/baking/very-vanilla-cake/

A simple vanilla butter cake is an essential kitchen staple to add to your baking (and eating!) portfolio.

Unlike a heavy, dense pound cake, this dessert is lighter and fluffier, with a more delicate crumb.

I am a firm believer that everything is indeed better with butter – it makes this dessert extra special, and super delicious. And its rich, sweet, milky quality pairs incredibly well with vanilla.

So, hands off the Crisco.

While shortening is often used in baking as the fat of choice, due to its (shockingly) infinite shelf life and soft, malleable texture, I am 100% on board the butter bus. And there’s plenty of room for more passengers!

Recipe for vanilla butter cake | Foodal.com

With a base of thick and fatty cream, butter is a more natural form of fat compared to chemically hydrogenated vegetable shortening. Needless to say, it is significantly tastier.

Experience all the buttery glory with our delicious recipe. Get it now below!

The Recipe

Perfect slice of homamde vanilla butter cake with icing | Foodal.com
The Best Vanilla Butter Cake
Votes: 11
Rating: 3.91
You: 1
Rate this recipe!
Print Recipe
Want to learn how to make a basic vanilla cake? You’ll love our recipe. It’s fluffy, buttery, and packed with delicious flavor. Get it now on Foodal.
Servings Prep Time
12 servings 15 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
40 minutes 60 minutes
Servings Prep Time
12 servings 15 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
40 minutes 60 minutes
Perfect slice of homamde vanilla butter cake with icing | Foodal.com
The Best Vanilla Butter Cake
Votes: 11
Rating: 3.91
You: 1
Rate this recipe!
Print Recipe
Want to learn how to make a basic vanilla cake? You’ll love our recipe. It’s fluffy, buttery, and packed with delicious flavor. Get it now on Foodal.
Servings Prep Time
12 servings 15 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
40 minutes 60 minutes
Servings Prep Time
12 servings 15 minutes
Cook Time Passive Time
40 minutes 60 minutes
Ingredients
  • 6 ounces (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter softened
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 18 ounces (1 pound, 2 ounces) sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 20 ounces (1 pound, 4 ounces) all purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 tablespoons baking powder
  • 16 fl. ounces whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Servings: servings
Units:
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly spray two 8- or 9-inch cake pans with nonstick cooking spray. Line the bottom of the pans with parchment paper, and lightly spray again.
  2. In a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter at medium-high speed until softened and lightly whipped. Add the salt and sugar. Beat at medium-high speed until well combined.
  3. With the mixer running on low speed, add one egg. Increase the speed to medium-high and beat until fully incorporated. Repeat with the other two eggs.
  4. Sift together the flour and baking powder in a separate bowl. Measure out the milk in a separate measuring pitcher. Measure the vanilla and mix into the milk. On low speed, add the dry ingredients and liquid mixture alternately to the butter mixture, starting and ending with the dry ingredients. Scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl after each addition, beating well until a uniform batter develops.
  5. Divide the batter equally between the two prepared pans. Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until done.
  6. Cool in the pans for 30 minutes. Turn cake out of the pans onto a cooling rack, remove the parchment paper, turn right side up, and allow to cool completely. Decorate and serve.

Nutritional Information*

Nutrition Facts
The Best Vanilla Butter Cake
Amount Per Serving
Calories 365 Calories from Fat 90
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 10g 15%
Saturated Fat 6g 30%
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.2g
Monounsaturated Fat 1g
Cholesterol 70mg 23%
Sodium 279mg 12%
Potassium 115mg 3%
Total Carbohydrates 63g 21%
Dietary Fiber 1g 4%
Sugars 35g
Protein 7g 14%
Vitamin A 8%
Vitamin C 1%
Calcium 14%
Iron 10%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Cooking by the Numbers…

Step 1 – Prepare the Oven and Pans

After setting the oven to 350°F, trace the bottom of the pans on parchment paper and cut out. Check to make sure they fit in the bottom of the pans, and set aside.

Very vanilla cake plus baking tips and tricks | Foodal.com

Lightly spray two 8- or 9-inch cake pans with nonstick cooking spray, line with the precut liners, and lightly spray again.

Step 2 – Cream the Fat and Sugar

With a paddle attachment, lightly whip the butter to soften and evenly distribute it in the bowl. Then add the salt and sugar.

Creaming butter and sugar for our recipe of homemade vanilla butter cake | Foodal.com

Mix until they are incorporated fully, and the mixture gets a little light and fluffy, about 5-7 minutes. Scrape down with a spatula, and mix for another 30 seconds.

Step 3 – Add the Eggs

With the mixer on low speed, drop in one egg, and increase the speed to completely mix in the egg. Do not add another egg until the previous one has been fully incorporated in the mixture.

A creamed mixture of eggs, butter, and sugar, which is all part of the process to make the best vanilla cake | Foodal.com

Once all of the eggs are in the bowl, scrape the bowl, and mix for another 30 seconds.

Step 4 – Alternate the Dry and Liquid Ingredients

Start by adding 1/4 of the sifted dry ingredients to the butter mixture, and mix slowly to incorporate. Then, add 1/3 of the liquid ingredients.

Read our post to learn how to make delicious homemade vanilla butter cake, step by step: https://foodal.com/knowledge/baking/very-vanilla-cake/

Alternate between the dry and liquid ingredients until you finish with the last remaining 1/4 of the dry ingredients.

This methodical process, though it may take some extra time, is very important to making a perfect butter cake.

It ensures that the batter is fully homogenized and will not break or curdle. A smooth, evenly incorporated batter means that your final product will be the perfect texture!

Step 5 – Bake

After dividing the batter evenly between the two prepared pans, bake in the oven for 40 to 45 minutes.

Make a perfect vanilla butter cake with our recipe and guide to basic cake baking tips and tricks: https://foodal.com/knowledge/baking/very-vanilla-cake/

You can check for doneness in two ways:

Insert a sharp knife or cake tester in the middle of the cake. If it comes out clean, or has a few dry crumbs clinging to it, it is ready! If there is wet batter covering it, keep it in for a few more minutes.

Gently press on the top of the cake with your hand. If it is too soft and easily sinks under the pressure of your hand, give it a few more minutes. If it springs back, it is ready!

Step 6 – Cool, Decorate, Serve, and Store

Allow to cool in the pans for 30 minutes. Run a small paring knife around the edge, and invert onto a cooling rack.

Baked vanilla butter cake releasing from the pan with a little help from a paring knife | Foodal.com

Remove the parchment paper on the bottom, and turn the cake over so that it is right side up. Let cool completely, for another 30-50 minutes. It should be completely cool to the touch before decorating or storing.

Decorate as you wish, and serve!

A simply decorated vanilla cake with vanilla icing | Foodal.com

Use any style of frosting – like cocoa fudge frostingAmerican-style buttercream, Swiss meringue buttercream, or chocolate ganache glaze – to add the finishing touches to this recipe when you’re ready to decorate it. The white base on both of these frostings is ideal for mixing in food coloring to add some colorful flair.

If you want to store your cake before decorating, wrap each individual round tightly in plastic wrap, being sure to not expose any cake. Freeze for up to 1 month.

A Sweet Classic

I don’t think I’ll ever stop requesting vanilla butter cake for my birthday – it’s a tasty tradition celebrating a classic dessert that will never get old!

Slice of two-layered very vanilla cake | Foodal.com

No matter if you are planning to use this recipe for a birthday party or for any other celebration, it’s definitely a treat that every cook should know how to make.

And don’t forget to check out our guide to basic cake decorating and review of the best decorating tools for our favorite tips and techniques.

Just imagine everyone’s delight when you slice into a beautifully decorated homemade dessert, covered in fluffy icing.

That sweet aroma and taste of vanilla, butter, and sugar will be irresistible – right down to the last couple of crumbs.

What is your favorite way to serve a simple vanilla cake? Be sure to let us know in the comments below!


Don’t forget to Pin It!

Want to learn how to make a basic vanilla cake? If you’re looking for a dessert that is fluffy, buttery, and packed with delicious flavor, you’ll love our recipe. Whether you’re making round layers or cupcakes, decorating it with vanilla or chocolate buttercream, you will definitely use this basic batter over and over again for so many of your desserts. Get the recipe now on Foodal.

Photos by Nikki Cervone, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details.

*Nutritional information derived from a database of known generic and branded foods and ingredients and was not compiled by a registered dietitian or submitted for lab testing. It should be viewed as an approximation.

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About Nikki Cervone

Nikki Cervone is a hungry foodie living in Pittsburgh. Nikki holds an AAS in baking/pastry from Westmoreland County Community College, a BA in Communications from Duquesne University, and an MLA in Gastronomy from Boston University. When she is not tearing through her city's best grub, Nikki enjoys a healthy dose of yoga and chocolate. Lots of chocolate.

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