We are big fans of the classic cakes and use them often. We have our favorite recipes here in one place to make it easy to find. These are the recipes we use often and they are ever-popular with our readers. We hope that you will use them again and again for special occasions or simply on a Tuesday night! Carrot cake, white cake, pound cake, and chocolate cake are what we consider the classics but if we've missed your favorite classic let us know... we'd love to make it!
This basic cake recipe is for a traditional white cake. Nothing fancy. But incredibly delicious. White cake pairs well with either cream cheese or chocolate frosting (both recipes below). For more complete instructions, head to the white cake recipe post.
Homemade White Cake
- 4 egg whites let stand at room temperature for 20 minutes
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup shortening
- 1 ¾ cups sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla I use clear
- 1 ⅓ cups buttermilk
- Grease & flour pans (1 - 9 by 13 or 2 - 9 inch round).
- Mix flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in medium bowl and set aside.
- Beat shortening with an electric mixer for about 30 seconds on medium speed in large bowl.
- Add sugar and vanilla. Beat until combined.
- Add egg whites and beat for about 30 seconds.
- Add flour mixture and buttermilk. Beat until combined.
- Beat on high for an additional 30 seconds.
- Spread batter into the pan (s)
- Bake in 350 degree oven for 20 to 25 minutes (30-35 for 9 by 13 pan).
This basic cake recipe is for a KILLER chocolate cake. Seriously yummy! And you will absolutely want to pair this chocolate cake with the chocolate frosting recipe below. If you want more detailed instructions and a video, head over to the chocolate cake recipe post.
Homemade Chocolate Cake
- ¾ cup soft butter
- 3 eggs at room temperature
- 2 c. flour
- ¾ cup cocoa
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ¾ tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp salt
- 2 cup sugar
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 1 ½ cup milk
- grease bottom of pan (I use 2 round pans or 1 9 by 13). preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- Beat butter for 30 seconds or so. slowly add sugar.
- Add eggs 1 at a time beating after each one. Beat in vanilla.
- Add dry ingredients beating after each addition.
- Add ½ of the milk, beat. Then add the other ½. Beat just until everything is combined nicely.
- Spread batter evenly into pans.
- Bake for 30-35 minutes for round pans, 5 min longer or so for the 9 by 13 pan. Watch it though! a knife coming out clean from the center means it is done.
This basic cake recipe is for a fairly traditional carrot cake. Yes, you will need to shred carrots for this cake (annoying, we know). But carrot cake really is a fabulous winter dessert and this particular recipe is incredibly easy. No great baking skills necessary! Go to the carrot cake post for more info.
- 4 eggs allow to stand at room temp for 30 min
- 2 cups flour
- 2 cups sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 3 cups grated carrots
- ¾ cup oil
- Grease & flour two 9 inch round pans (one 9 by 13 works too!)
- In large mixing bowl ,stir together wet ingredients.
- Stir well.
- Add dry ingredients.
- Stir just until combined.
- Stir in carrots and stir just until combined.
- Pour batter into pans, dividing evenly.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.
This recipe isn't quite a basic cake...but we really wanted to include a recipe that didn't have refined sugars. This recipe is a much healthier version of cake, and still tastes fabulous! Get the full tutorial here.
Butternut Squash Cake
- ⅔ c. olive oil
- ¾ c. maple syrup use local, or real!
- 3 eggs
- 2 tablespoons of Greek yogurt
- 1 ¾ cups of flour
- 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 tablespoon cinnamon
- ¾ tablespoon nutmeg
- 1 cup cooked & mashed butternut squash or can of pumpkin puree
- Turn the oven to 350 degrees.
- Beat the oil and syrup together.
- Add eggs and yogurt,beat well.
- Stir the flour, baking soda, and baking powder in. Stir gently.
- Add spices and squash. Stir just until mixed.
- Spray (or line with parchment paper) a 9inch pan.
- Pour the batter into the pan.
- Bake 40-45 min.
Pound cake is one of the most classic of basic cakes. It uses the fewest ingredients, and is a simple and delicious choice for any snack or dessert. Our version is on the lighter side. Click here for more info and the orange glaze recipe.
Easy Chocolate Frosting
- 2 sticks softened butter
- ¼ cup cocoa
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- beat ingredients until smooth.