• July 23, 2015

    Moist Vanilla Cake


    I’ve had a bajillion requests, so I have finally decided to make good on my promises and have been experimenting in the kitchen to come up with a Moist Vanilla Cake to rival my ever-popular Moist Chocolate Cake.

    I think the reason that particular chocolate cake is still one of my top recipes is because, not only does it taste amazing – rich and deeply chocolatey – it is basically foolproof.  The method is very simple (mix dry ingredients, mix wet ingredients, combine the two), as opposed to the typical cake method, which requires ingredients to be at room temperature, adequately creaming of the butter and sugar, incorporating dry ingredients alternately with the liquids, etc. – basically just a lot of room for error.

    And because, contrary to popular belief, I know you love moist.

    Moist Vanilla Cake – www.foodess.com

    That chocolate cake stays SO moist, I’m convinced, in large part to the coffee that’s added. The hot liquid’s purpose is actually to bloom the cocoa, intensifying and bringing out the nuances in flavour, but it also encourages the cake to essentially steam. I wanted to keep that with my vanilla cake, so I swapped in boiling water – it worked beautifully!

    The crumb of this cake is pleasantly dense and moist, like a perfectly moist poundcake, and very similar to the texture of its beloved chocolate counterpart. If light and airy is what you’re looking for, move along.  But with very minimal baking skills required, this recipe will produce a rich vanilla cake, nary a dry forkful in sight.

    I turned it into an amazing Boston Cream Pie – recipe for which is coming soon. You don’t want to miss it – stay in touch by subscribing to new posts by email in the top menu! 🙂

    Moist Vanilla Cake – www.foodess.com

    Vanilla cake itself is quite sweet, so if not making a Boston Cream Pie, I recommend a bittersweet chocolate frosting (like this one), lightly sweetened whipped cream with berries, or a not-to-sweet meringue buttercream if you’re feeling ambitious.


    Moist Vanilla Cake

    This moist vanilla cake is pretty much foolproof, using the easiest method and employing a secret trick to produce rich, moist results every time.

    Course Dessert
    Cuisine American
    Prep Time 15 minutes
    Cook Time 45 minutes
    Total Time 1 hour
    Servings 8
    Author Jennifer Pallian


    For Cake:

    • 3 3/4 cups 17 oz all purpose flour
    • 3 cups granulated white sugar
    • 1 tbsp baking powder
    • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
    • 1 teaspoon coarse salt or 1/2 tsp table salt
    • 3 large eggs
    • 1 ½ cup sour cream or substitute by putting 1 tbsp white vinegar in a cup then filling the rest up with milk; let stand 5 minutes until thickened
    • ¾ cup butter melted
    • 1.5 tbsp vanilla extract
    • 1 ½ cups boiling water


    For Cake:

    1. Preheat oven to 350ºF.  Grease and flour two 9x2" round cake pans, and line bottoms with circles of parchment paper.  Set aside.
    2. Add add flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt to the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the paddle/beater attachment; beat with speed on low to combine.
    3. In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs, sour cream, butter and vanilla extract.  Add to flour mixture and beat until fully incorporated.  Reduce mixer speed to low and carefully pour in boiling water. Beat until well incorporated, pausing to scrape down sides and bottom of mixer.
    4. Divide batter between the two prepared baking pans and bake for about 45 minutes, or until top is springy.  Cool completely on wire racks before filling and frosting.


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    Hi, I'm Jenn! I'm in the Foodess kitchen making a spectacular mess + something delicious, in roughly equal parts. Join me for seasonal baking punctuated by globally-inspired comfort recipes and (healthy-ish) dinspiration, plus with lots of tips and resources. So happy that you're here!


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