This easy sponge cake uses plain flour and oil. It’s a fluffy decadent sponge cake that you can quickly whip and mix, and be ready for you to enjoy with your cup of coffee or tea in no time.
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A versatile sponge cake that can also be dairy-free
Cakes and desserts have always been my weakness since I was young. In fact, baking cakes and cookies or making sweet desserts were my favourite things to do in the kitchen.
When I was single, I was never interested in cooking savouries or proper food. But dare me with some sweet desserts or cakes, I’d take the challenge right away.
Of all the cake recipes that I have baked, this sponge cake is my favourite one.
Simply because this cake is so easy to make. It’s a perfect recipe for when I don’t have much time messing about with all the kitchen gadgets and measuring ingredients.
And when it comes to the taste, this cake is a crowd-pleaser. It’s fluffy and spongy, it’s moist and not sickeningly sweet. It tastes so light that you won’t realize that you end up having slice after slice.
But most of all, this cake is so versatile that you can tweak the recipe fairly easily with any cake flavor you want to make. You can use the recipe for vanilla sponge cake, chocolate sponge cake, lemon sponge cake (that you can drizzle with some lemon syrup, marble sponge cake, Apple toffee cake, and Dutch spiced sponge cake.
Not only that, this recipe is so forgiving that you can make it with non-dairy ingredients. I’ve tried making it with almond milk and rice milk. Both gave me good results. Happy.
Apart from the raising agents such as bicarbonate of soda (baking soda) and baking powder, this recipe only uses the food items that most of us regularly keep in the kitchen/ pantry.
You will only need plain flour or all-purpose flour for this sponge cake. So no fancy flour that you need to buy especially.
As for the fat, it uses oil. You can pretty much use any neutral oil. But the ones that I personally have tried are canola/ rapeseed oil, olive oil (the mild one for cooking, not the extra-virgin olive oil), and sunflower oil.
And if you’re a butter mad fan who always wants butter in your cake, you can use melted butter with the exact measure as the oil in the recipe. I’ve tried it too. And it tasted better, I must say. However, if I bake the cake in the winter, I prefer using oil. The reason is because of the cold temperature, the butter makes the cake hard when it’s cooled down. Especially, after you leave it overnight.
The rest of the ingredients are eggs, salt, vanilla extract, milk, and natural plain yogurt.
If you don’t have yogurt, you can substitute it with milk. So, instead of using ¼ cup of milk as the recipe says, you use ½ cup of milk. But, add 2 teaspoons of lemon juice or white vinegar into the milk and let it rest as you get the other ingredients ready.
- Mixing bowl.
- Measuring jar.
- Handheld mixer.
- Bundt cake tin 21-22cm.
- Cooling rack.
A super easy and quick method
I’m sure you’ll love this method. Because you literally just need to put all the dry ingredients such as flour, baking powder, baking soda (bicarbonate of soda), sugar, and salt in a large mixing bowl. And give them a good stir until all is mixed well.
Then mix all the wet ingredients like eggs, oil, milk, yogurt, and vanilla extract in another mixing bowl or a jug.
When your wet ingredients are mixed, make a well in the center of your dry ingredients and pour the egg mixture into it. Using a handheld mixer, a whisk, or a handheld blender, mix both dry and wet ingredients until you get a smooth thick batter.
Lastly, pour the batter into the prepared tin and bake it at gas 3.5/ or 170° C/ 325° F (depending on your oven).
If you use bundt tin cake like I often do, the baking time is approximately 50-60 minutes. I’d say, you can check the cake after 50 minutes pass. If a skewer comes out clean, it means the cake is ready.
You can bake the cake in 2 x 7” round tins as well. If you do so, the baking time should be faster. It takes about 45-50 minutes. Again, check the cake after you bake it for 45 minutes to decide if you need to bake it longer or not.
Top tips to make a variety of flavors for this simple sponge cake recipe
- I made the cake using different types of oil, and they all came out tasty. I’ve used sunflower oil, rapeseed oil, olive oil, and canola oil. In summer or when the weather is warm, I like to use melted butter. With the exact measure as the oil. The reason I don’t use butter in winter or when the weather is cold is that the butter will make the cake hard and definitely less spongy.
- You can replace dairy milk with non-dairy milk. I’ve tried rice milk, almond milk, and soya milk. They all gave me the same result with just a subtle difference in taste.
- To make the lemon cake: put lemon zest out of one-two lemon. Reduce the milk (liquid) by about 2 tbsp and replace it with 2 ½ tbsp of lemon juice.
- For the chocolate cake: reduce the plain flour to ¼ cup (34 gr) of it and substitute with ¼ cup (34 gr) of good quality cocoa powder. Then add an extra ½ cup of white granulated sugar and ¼ + 2 tbsp of soft brown sugar. I would also reduce the milk to ¼ cup (60 ml) and replace it with a ¼ (60 ml) cup of hot dark coffee.
- As for chocolate marble cake: follow the basic recipe and when you put the batter in the tin, leave about ¼ – ⅓ cup of batter in the bowl, then add in a heaped teaspoon of cocoa powder. Mix it well and gently put it in the tin on top of the basic white batter. Then using a skewer or toothpick, carefully swirl it around the batter until you see a marble-looking pattern. But don’t overdo it.
- The Dutch spiced cake: reduce the vanilla extract to one teaspoon and add one teaspoon of five-spice. I used the Dutch Speculaas spice mix.
- Vegan option: you can simply substitute the eggs with normal vegan eggs or if you have canned chickpeas or any canned beans in your pantry, you can use the liquid from the can to substitute the eggs. This liquid is called Aquafaba which is now popular as an egg replacement. 3 tablespoons of Aquafaba is equal to 1 whole egg. So for this recipe, you will need 6 tablespoons of Aquafaba. Disclaimer: unfortunately I haven’t tried using Aquafaba for this cake recipe though.
More cake recipes
Thank you for reading this super easy sponge cake recipe. I hope you’re now intrigued to try it. When you do, it will be awesome if you could share what you think about it in the comments below (leave a reply box). I really appreciate it
Before you go, don’t forget to check my other cake recipes that you may like.
- Mary Berry’s easy apple cake recipe.
- Carrot cake loaf recipe with mascarpone cheese frosting.
- Mary Berry’s coffee and walnut cake traybake.
- Apple crumbles cake.
- Chocolate cake with chocolate mousse frosting.
- Banana bundt cake.
Thank you and all the best.
An Easy Sponge Cake With Plain Flour And Oil
- 1 ¼ cups plain flour.
- 1 ¼ teaspoons baking powder.
- ½ teaspoon baking soda bicarbonate of soda.
- ½ teaspoon salt.
- 2 large eggs
- ¾ cup granulated sugar.
- 1 ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ cup oil see the note.
- ¼ cup milk see the note.
- ¼ cup unflavored natural yogurt. plain natural yogurt or Greek-style yogurt.
- Preheat the oven to Gas 3.5 or 170° C/ 325° F (depending on your oven)
- Grease and flour your preferred cake tin (check the note on top tips). It should be able to hold around 1.5-liter liquid. I use a medium-sized cake bundt tin.
- Put all of the dry ingredients in a mixing bowl. If you want, you can sieve the flour.
- Then measure and put the wet ingredients in a measuring jug or in another mixing bowl. Give them a quick stir just until everything is well mixed.
- Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients. Using a whisk, a hand-held mixer or a hand-held blender, give the ingredients a whizz for a couple of minutes until you get a smooth batter.
- Put the batter in the prepared tin, and bake for about 45 minutes until the top springs back when you touch the cake or a skewer comes out clean when you insert it in the middle of the cake.
- You can use either olive oil, canola oil, rapeseed oil, sunflower oil, melted butter, or melted ghee.
- Although I often use whole milk, you can always use semi-skimmed milk or dairy-free milk such as almond milk, soya milk, or rice milk.
- If you don’t have yogurt, you can replace it with another ¼ cup of milk. But add 2 teaspoons of lemon juice or white vinegar into the milk and let it rest while you prep the other ingredients.
- Make sure you use unflavoured natural yogurt. You can use either plain natural yogurt or Greek-style yogurt.
Nutritional info in this recipe is only estimate using online calculator. You should refer to it as a guide only. Please verify with your own data if you seek an accurate info.