The Ultimate Raising Cake Recipe

Raising Cake

Sometimes, a cake so light and airy comes along that simply begs to be eaten. That cake today is the Vanilla Sponge Cake from Gretchen’s Bakery. As Gretchen discusses in the article preceding her recipe, getting a cake to rise to the occasion can be a challenge. It takes just the right balance of know-how and TLC to make a homemade cake a success. The whole process might sound a little tricky, but don’t let that stop you from trying this delicious slice of Heaven.

In this recipe, Gretchen goes out of her way to walk you step-by-step through the process so your Vanilla Sponge Cake turns out like a tasty breath of fresh air instead of a lead weight you might use to hold your door ajar. Without further ado, the ultimate raising cake recipe can be found below.


  • 4 Large Eggs
  • 1 ¾ cup Granulated Sugar
  • 1 cup Whole Milk
  • 1 stick Unsalted Butter 1 Stick
  • 1 tbsp. Vanilla Extract
  • 1 cup All Purpose Flour
  • 1 cup Cake Flour
  • 2 tsp. Baking Powder
  • ½ tsp. Salt


  1. Combine the eggs and sugar in the bowl of your Kitchen Aid mixer and place it in the top of a double boiler. Whisk the ingredients with a hand whisk until sugar dissolves slightly and the mixture reaches 115 degrees.
  2. Place the bowl on the mixer and whip at high speed until the mixture reaches the ribbon stage.*The ribbon stage is when you pull the beaters out of the mixture and it falls back into the bowl in ribbons that last about 3 seconds before disappearing. This takes about 5 to 7 minutes of high-speed whipping.
  3. While the eggs are whipping, combine the milk and butter in a microwave-safe bowl and heat to just shy of the boiling stage. Add the vanilla extract.
  4. When the eggs are done mixing, fold in the dry ingredients.
  5. Separate 2 cups of the cake batter into another mixing bowl. Add the milk and butter mixture and whisk vigorously with a hand whisk.
  6. Add the mixture you just created back into the original cake batter.
  7. Pour the batter into two prepared cake pans and bake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees for about 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.


  • You can easily turn this into a marble sponge cake by adding ½ cup cocoa powder to half of the batter and swirling the two halves together before baking.
  • The ribbon stage step is the most important step to getting perfect light and airy results. If you don’t whip the egg/sugar mixture enough or if you beat it too much, the cake will turn out heavy and dense.
  • Most recipes double easily, but this one does not double well. This is because the extra ingredients do not give the eggs enough room to increase enough in volume during the whipping stage. If you wish to make more than two cake layers, repeat this recipe rather than doubling it.


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