I’ve mentioned a few times that I’m still on the hunt for “the” white cake recipe.  I’m still searching for the perfect from-scratch one, but in the mean time this one is pretty darn good.  My sister sent me the recipe, and while it’s similar to other doctored cake mix recipes you’ve seen here on Our Best Bites, it stands out because you’re actually adding more bulk and flavor like flour, sugar, salt and extracts to the mix as well.  This significantly cuts the “from a box” flavor and makes them taste more home made.  This recipe makes plenty for two 8″ round pans.  I’m making cupcakes with my batch today, and the nice thing about this recipe is that it increases the standard box yield of 24 up to 36.  I often need more than the 24 cupcakes a box will make, but less than the 48 from 2 boxes so this works perfectly.  The cake overall is more dense than a boxed mix so it holds up nicely if you’re using it for the base of a decorated cake.

The prep is about as easy as it comes.  With a standard from-scratch cake it’s important to do things like alternate wet and dry ingredients, but not with our half-home-made cake.  Just whisk all of the dry ingredients together (I just use the whisk attachment on my kitchenaid and give it a whirl) and then add in all of the wet stuff.   Beat it all up and you’re set!

Fill cupcake liners 3/4 full and then pop them in the oven.

Use a toothpick to test for doneness

One thing I really like is that you get really uniform raised tops on them.  Perfectly smooth and round.

And then you can do what you please with them!  Try our favorite White Vanilla Frosting or this amazing Chocolate one.  Next week I’ll show you what I did with this batch…

Thanks Sis!

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94comments

  1. 1
    Foodessa says:

    This is a great idea of add-ins.
    As much as possible, I try to bake from scratch. But, if ever I'm stuck…this would be a great solution.
    You said you were looking for a good white cake recipe from scratch? If, I'm not mistaken…the one I have used in the past with excellent results was from Cook's Illustrated.
    Hope this was helpful ;o)
    Flavourful wishes, Claudia

  2. 2
    Kayci says:

    Those look tasty! Do you have one for chocolate?? :)

  3. 3
    Barbara says:

    Aren't you a lifesaver! I have to make rainbow cupcakes tomorrow, which, with the dividing of the batter, makes less cupcakes than 24, and I need at least that many. I was going to cheat with the cake mix, since it's for kids, who will care more about the frosting and the rainbow effect ;) But now they'll have better tasting cupcakes too! I'm excited to try this – thank you!

  4. 4
    The Double Dipped Life says:

    This sounds great! 1 question though- the cooking time is the same, even though you've added more ingredients?

    Thanks!

  5. 5
    Sara @ Our Best Bites says:

    Kayci- my sister has made this same recipe with chocolate and it's great. Even with the almond extract too! The egg whites are just for keeping the cake white, so you could also use 2 whole eggs instead of 4 whites for chocolate.

    Double Dipped Life- yup. Strangely enough the cooking time seems to be the same :)

  6. 6
    Maranda says:

    Oh those are lovely. I'll have to give them a try soon. Thanks for sharing!

  7. 7
    Debbies Doodle says:

    My daughter puts her cakes in the freezer too.. I think she will like your recipe. deb

  8. 8
    Alexis and Justin says:

    Looks dee-licious. I have a question, how do you get your cupcake batter plopped in without making a ginormous mess?

  9. 9
    Sara @ Our Best Bites says:

    Cheri- that's awesome! Thanks for sharing!

    Alexis- I use a standard cookie scoop (ya know, the kind with the spring-loaded handle) to make it both clean and even. Works like a charm!

  10. 10
    becca says:

    Wow, you got that up fast :)
    A note on flavors: ANY flavor cake mix turns out great with this. The almond is a must, even if it seems weird (like in carrot cake). The great thing is that even with the chocolate mix, you don't need to add any extra chocolate flavor.
    This is my favorite way to start a cake and I don't consider it a doctored cake mix… I just consider the cake mix one of the ingredients :D

  11. 11
    CinnamonAndSass says:

    This looks great! Just wanted to mention that the hands-down best from-scratch recipe I've ever tried is the Betty Crocker Silver White Cake recipe that is in their 1969 cookbook. :)

    -Katie

  12. 12
    Elisabeth says:

    Ok, I just might have to actually give this a try! I am SO anti-cake-mix it's not even funny! But, you've given me hope. :)

    Also, I'm with Katie (above comment)… we love, love, LOVE the Betty Crocker silver white cake!! I make it for my little boy every year. It's my go-to for white cake. Give it a try.

  13. 13
    WASHINGTON SOUTHWORTHS says:

    Grrr… My sister (Elisabeth) was still signed in. The above comment was from me (Jennifer)!

  14. 14
    Coleene says:

    I love this idea and I am going to try it.
    but one question.
    when I send anything to school with my kids it has to be "nut free"…….so that would include no almond extract (which I personally love).

    Can I substitute extra vanilla extract?? will they still turn out??

    Coleene – in Canada (where the nut free thing in schools has gotten out of control/excessive in my opinion)

  15. 15
    Sara @ Our Best Bites says:

    Coleen- yes you can substitute any flavoring you want. I actually used lemon and vanilla in the batch pictured. Just replace the almond with vanilla and you're set. :)

  16. 16
    Coleene says:

    if anyone would be willing to share the Silver White Cake recipe I would love to have it!!
    either on here as a comment or email to me at wpgmomto2@gmail.com

    thanks
    Coleene

  17. 17
    simply.food says:

    Lovely cakes and I like the sound of white cakes.But do they not brown when you bake them or do you remove from oven before they brown???

  18. 18
    WASHINGTON SOUTHWORTHS says:

    Silver White Cake [from Betty Crocker]
    * 2 1/4 cups flour (or 2 1/2 cups cake flour)
    * 1 2/3 cups sugar
    * 2/3 cup shortening
    * 1 1/4 cups milk
    * 3 1/2 tsp. baking powder
    * 1 tsp. salt
    * 1 tsp. vanilla (or almond extract)
    * 5 large egg whites

    1. Heat oven to 350 deg. Grease bottom/sides of 13×9 pan or 2 9in round pans w/ shortening and lightly flour.
    2. Beat all ingredients except egg whites in large bowl with electric mixer on low speed for 30 seconds, scraping bowl constantly. Beat on high speed 2 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally.
    3. Beat in egg whites on high speed 2 minutes, scraping bowl occasionally. Pour into pan(s).
    4. Bake rectangle 40-45 minutes and rounds 30-35 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean or until cake springs back when touched lightly in center. Cool rectangle in pan on wire rack. Cool rounds 10 minutes; remove from pans to wire rack. Cool completely, about 1 hour.
    5. Frost w/ your favorite frosting!

    • 18.1
      Steph says:

      Hi
      i just tried your recipe and the cupcakes came out of the oven looking great but they are very fragile. and soft is that normal?
      Thanks x

  19. 19
    Sara @ Our Best Bites says:

    Simply.Food- They just get barely brown around the edges. The top of the cake stays perfectly white so make sure to keep an eye on them when they are nearing the end of baking time!

    Southworths- thanks for sharing the recipe!

  20. 20
    Memória says:

    I'm so shocked that you haven't found a good white cake recipe. Please try this one: http://www.crumblycookie.net/2009/07/01/white-cake-comparison-2/

    It is my go-to white cake recipe, and she did the extra work of comparing three white-cake recipes.

  21. 21
    Krista says:

    hmm… now i'm not sure whether to try this recipe or go with a recipe i've been tweaking for the 3 tiered 50th wedding anniversary cake i'm making this weekend… i'm a little nervous cause this one's a 'paying' client… what to do, what to do…

  22. 22
    Sara @ Our Best Bites says:

    Krista- unless you have time to test it out first, I definitely wouldn't try a new recipe for a paying client. But that's just me!

  23. 23
    Kaitlyn says:

    Thanks for this great recipe. I made this over the weekend for birthday and the cake turned out great! Nice & moist and without that "out of the box" flavor.

    Thanks for another awesome recipe!

  24. 24
    The future Mrs. Heim says:

    YUM!! I just made these – they are delicious! The vanilla and almond extracts really make the flavor. I am using them to make your Tres Leches cupcakes…but I don't need them until Friday. I want to store the plain cupcakes and add the "tres leches" on Thursday night. Is it best to freeze them for a few days, or store them in a container on the counter at room temp?

  25. 25
    Kate @ Our Best Bites says:

    Future Mrs. Heim–I'm so glad they were yummy! I'd definitely freeze them until you need them.

    Hope that helps! :)

  26. 26
    Allie says:

    I tried this with a chocolate cake mix and put it in a 6"X3" pan and a 10"x3" pan (i'm testing it for a wedding cake i'm doing) but the middle keeps sinking in. Is there something i'm doing wrong or any way to prevent that?

  27. 27
    Sara @ Our Best Bites says:

    I'm not sure Allie, but a lot of times it's the brand of cake mix. If you're testing things out, I might test it with a different brand and see how that works.

  28. 28
    Maxine says:

    I know I'm late in the line-up of comments, but I wanted to tell you that I made this cake and it was really, really marvelous. It was so light and fluffy. I made it in 2 8-in. pans and put one layer in the freezer. I thawed it about two weeks later and it was still light, fluffy and delicious. I did change a couple of things–I used cake flour instead of all purpose because I had it and needed to use it up and I left out the almond flavoring because I didn't have any. I know it would have been just as good exactly as written.
    I'll keep watching your blog to see if you come up with a chocolate version. Thanks for the recipe.

  29. 29
    Shauna says:

    I was so impressed and thankful for your Breadstick recipe, that I wanted to share my most fav Vanilla cupcakes and Vanilla Layer Cake recipe:
    Very Vanilla Cupcakes:
    2 1/4 cup flour
    1 1/4 cup sugar
    3 tsp baking powder
    1/2 tsp salt
    1/2 cup veg. oil
    1 cup milk
    2 eggs
    3 tsp vanilla (artificial)use less if using pure extract
    Bake 350 for approx. 16 min. using Lg cupcake wrappers

    White Layer Cake: For 2 9"rounds
    (I have been playing around with the ingredient amts because I like a sweeter cake, and a bit denser so easier to icing)
    3 cups sugar
    3/4 cup veg oil
    4 eggs
    3 tsp vanilla (artificial)
    1 cup milk (I use skim)
    1 cup sourcream
    2 3/4 cup flour (approx)
    2 1/4 tsp baking powder
    Bake 350 for 30-40 min (usually 34 min)
    Enjoy, and thanks again! I am so glad I stumbled upon your site :)

  30. 30
    Kate D. says:

    I recently used this recipe to make a 5 tier wedding cake. It got RAVE reviews from all. Thank you SO much for a delicious and user-friendly recipe!

  31. 31
    Emily says:

    This looks great, but I am curious: Are there any alterations needed for yellow cake? Other than using two eggs instead of four egg whites?

  32. 32
    Sara @ Our Best Bites says:

    No other alterations needed Emily (or so my sister tells me!) Go ahead and do the two eggs and it should work out great.

  33. 33
    Delina says:

    Love this recipe!! Thank you soo much!!! Now I am the one asked to make the cakes:) LOVE you SITE!!!

    Delina

  34. 34
    Panter Family says:

    So dumbest question of the year! You always say to cool things on a wire rack, does that mean in the pan still or do you need to take it out to cool?

  35. 35
    Loni says:

    I learned a handy cake trick from the teacher of my cake decorating class at Michaels. I happen to love cake mixes because they’re just so easy, but they often are really crumbly and kind of flat on taste. So her trick to, of course use Duncan Hines, then add an extra egg and a quarter cup of the powdered, dry coffee creamer. The egg makes is more dense and the coffee creamer just gives an extra punch of flavor. You can play around and try mixing up the cake mixes and the creamers. Such as doing a chocolate cake with hazelnut coffee creamer. My favorite though is just a plain vanilla cake mix with french vanilla creamer. Yum!

    Then for cupcakes, I learned a trick from the cook books, “Hello Cupcake” and “What’s New Cupcake?”. I use buttermilk instead of the water so the ingredients are cake mix, 1 cup buttermilk, 4 eggs, the amount of oil on the box, and then I usually add in the quarter cup of coffee creamer. It’s easy and tastes good, I think. If you try it, let me know what you think!

  36. 36
    Angela says:

    So, I was just looking in the book that came with my Kitchen aid mixer and noticed there’s a White Cake recipe in there…. have you ever tried that one?? Just wondering….

  37. 37
    LisaEesa says:

    It’s a little late, but his recipe is fantastic! I used it in a 12 week cupcake experiment. I substituted the almond for mint extract and added mini chocolate chips. A thin layer of mint cream and a thick piping of Andes Mint frosting on top and they were in the top three of everyone’s favorites! I’m making them again tonight!

  38. 38
    Kirstie says:

    This is now my go to white cake recipe! It’s so good and I have gotten great reviews with it.I did a lemon filling using 2C heavy whipping cream and folded in 1 can of lemon pie filing. So good!

  39. 39
    Linda says:

    Do you think this will bake up ‘nice-sized’ 9″ cake layers?

  40. 40
    Myla says:

    I just made these as cupcakes using lemon extract. The best non chocolate cupcake ever!! I can’t wait to make these again. And thank you so much for your great tips for filling them, super easy and everyone was so impressed!

  41. 41
    Shanade says:

    These were delicious! I made mini cupcakes for a baby shower and my son’s birthday and everyone loved them, even those who don’t like cake. Thanks for sharing.

  42. 42
    Lisa says:

    These are by far the most DELICIOUS white cupcakes I have ever made! We are making them as part of a dessert bar for our parent’s 50th wedding anniversary in Lake Tahoe this coming weekend. I am wondering if you would suggest adding anything to this recipe due to making these in the altitude….it is about 8,000 elevation. Should we add extra flour?? Thanks for your help!

  43. 43
    Angela says:

    I want to make chocolate cupcakes for my son’s Birthday party on Saturday. Should I follow this recipe exactly, except use chocolate cake mix instead of white? Should I still add the almond extract? Thanks for your help!

    • 43.1
      Darcy Lynne says:

      Angela, I made the recipe with chocolate cake instead. You use 2 whole eggs instead of 4 egg whites. This is only because, when you make the white cake version, you’re trying to preserve the pure white color of the cake (hence no egg yolks). With chocolate, it doesn’t matter!

      The first time I made the chocolate version, I used almond extract. It still tasted delicious, but almond isn’t my preference. I used vanilla instead the second go-around, and I loved it even more. But depending on your tastes, either almond or vanilla is fine!

  44. 44
    Bake a cake says:

    Hi there, I discovered your site by way of Google at the same time as searching for a similar topic, your web site came up, it seems to be good. I have bookmarked it in my google bookmarks.

  45. 45
    Meg says:

    I made this using a chocolate cake recipe for my son’s birthday cake yesterday, and wrapped in plastic wrap after only five minutes of cooling, just like you said. I was totally afraid the plastic wrap would melt, and that after I froze it that the plastic wrap wouldn’t come off, or that it would tear the cake. WELL, I never should have doubted an Our Best Bites recipe, because the results were BEAUTIFUL! Wrapping up the hot cake truly kept the moisture in, and then today when I unwrapped the frozen cakes, the plastic wrap came right off, not tearing any cake, and I got my first taste of delicious, moist, not-boxy tasting cake! Thanks for another fabulous, go-to recipe! I LOVE LOVE LOVE your recipes!!!

  46. 46
    Laura says:

    I’ve got a question about the tip for freezing the cakes. I’m so excited to use this recipe for a bday cake this weekend. I plan on making 2 9-inch rounds. I’m a newbie cake decorator and had planned to decorate the cakes the night before or of the party. So would I then freeze them, decorate once frozen then allow the decorate cake to defrost/refrigerate until used? Does this change when using a fruit filling?

  47. 47
    Amie says:

    I used this recipe for my niece’s wedding cake and everyone loved it! I made a three tier cake and this recipe was perfect in texture and flavor and was fantastic for carving and stacking. I forgot to bring the almond flavoring with me, so I doubled the vanilla. I have been hired to do another wedding cake in May and the bride wants the exact same cake flavor so I will be using your recipe again. Thank you for a great white cake!

    ps Try letting your cakes cool for five or ten minutes in the pan, then turn them out, wrap in wax paper, and let cool overnight. This holds in all the moisture as the cake cools. The cake will be super moist. YUM!

  48. 48
    jamie says:

    Do you like this recipe better than the one you used in the candy corn cupcake tutorial?

    • 48.1
      sara says:

      They’re different, so I use them for different purposes. I probably like this one for cakes and the other for cupcakes.

  49. 49
    jamie says:

    If you make cupcakes, do you still put them in the freezer?

  50. 50
    Melissa says:

    Love this recipe! I melted 8 oz of chocolate chips with a couple tablespoons of butter, then added one cup of the white cake mix and swirled that into the entire batter for a marble cake. It was amazing!

  51. 51
    Alexandria says:

    My cupcakes just came out of the oven and they are so yummy, even without frosting! But, I am at high altitude and filling the liners 3/4 full turned out a cupcake that is 3″ tall! Don’t get me wrong, I am not complaining, but I don’t know what I did wrong?!? The ones in the picture are so cute and mine are just so humongous, I don’t know how I am going to frost them?

  52. 52
    Cheryl says:

    I just made this cake last night and it is the BEST cake EVER! I really wanted to try this recipe before I made it for a work party. I used a 10 in pan (3 in high) and this was the perfect amount of batter for one cake. After I made it I realized we had only 1/3 of a can of chocolate store bought frosting so I melted the frosting in the microwave, layered the cake and drizzled the frosting between the layers, then poured the rest over the top like a ganache and it was the perfect amount of sweet for the cake as the cake is amazing all on it’s own! Thank you!

  53. 53
    Steph says:

    how much chocolate or coco powder do i add for chocolate cupcakes?
    Thanks

  54. 54
    Maila says:

    I just want to let you know that I don’t go to any websites anymore for cake and cupcake recipes except yours. I have proven many times that you have the best recipes I have ever tasted. We were eating the leftover 5 days old chocolate cake yesterday. It got so moist and chocolate frosting got so rich that it just melts in your mouth. I’m actually planning to start a small cake business with your brillant buttercream and the to die for chocolate frostings. I just got 4 different orders and I wanted to use your white cake/cupcake based recipe. I can’t wait to try it and let you know the end result.

    Thank you again for sharing your wonderful recipes!

  55. 55
    rosie says:

    this is my first time trying a cake this way. i like it already.

  56. 56
    Lucy says:

    This recipes looks like what I’ looking for. But I am wondering if it will be strong enough to cover with fondant?

  57. 57
    Kassi says:

    Wow! Used this recipe for my daughter’s Barbie doll cake today, even dyed it and made rainbow layers! Most amazing white cake EVER! Soooo moist! The almond flavoring gave it such a good flavor! Was a huge hit with th in-laws who are DIY mavens and hard to please. Glad there is some left to share with my fam for party number two, as I planned to make a chocolate cake for them. Thanks for sharing this!!!

  58. 58
    Kate says:

    I just used a red velvet mix, and made a half batch…which made a perfect dozen. (just right for my little family for valentines.) Am gonna freeze them & ice them that day.
    easy breezy. LOVE this recipe.

  59. 59
    rosanne says:

    I am making cupcakes! how long can i freeze these for? will they taste home made if i freeze for a week then frost???

  60. 60
    jamie says:

    I’m using this recipe for a 3 tiered birthday cake next week, it’s my first big cake. Does anyone know how much batter this recipe gives or would I need to double it for a larger pan? Thanks for any and all suggestions!:)

  61. 61
    Julia says:

    is the sugar included in the wet ingredients? cause I can’t tell.

  62. 62
    Mindy says:

    I can not find Duncan Hines White cake anywhere in my town anymore. Is there another brand I can use? I love this recipe.

  63. 63
    Lindsay says:

    Made this cake for my daughter’s 4th birthday (with pink frosting, of course)–so good and so easy! I was a little concerned about how it would turn out since it was my first layer cake, but, thanks to your tip about putting it in the freezer, it turned out perfectly. Thanks again for another great recipe!

  64. 64
  65. 65

    [...] cake and the icing is butter-cream with purple food coloring. You can find the white cake recipe here and the butter-cream recipe here. I think the only thing I changed from her tutorial was not using [...]

  66. 66
    Jalene says:

    This was SOOO good! I never thought I could like a non-chocolate cupcake so much! I used this recipe with your frosting recipe, and they were definitely a big hit! My daughter, who normally only eats the frosting from cupcakes, ate the entire thing!! And she was the birthday girl, so her opinion was the most important anyway! Thank you for a delicious recipe!

  67. 67
    Alysha says:

    I had been searching for a white cake recipe that was white, moist, and fluffy. This is it. I tried it yesterday for my church with a coconut lime frosting. They were perfect. The almond extract just does something great. Thanks so much for sharing.

  68. 68
    Cherrie says:

    Would love to try this for my twins 3 rd birthday party , is the Duncan Hines Classic suitable for this? As its the only D.Hines white moist I can find on amazon ?

  69. 69
    Selina S says:

    Followed your recipe exactly, except I made half a batch. I was making rainbow mini cupcakes and was able to make 3 dozen for my client. Worked out perfectly! However, I did bake at a lower temp (325) since they were minis. The cake is moist, spongy, and that almond extract gives it a little “je ne sais quoi”. Thank you!!!

  70. 70
    corinne trow says:

    I have a question … dumb I know but why are we adding the extra flour? Hopefully you will answer fast…. I need to make the cake now :)
    Thanks!!!!

  71. 71
    Michaela says:

    This may be a dumb question-when you wrap the cake in saran wrap and freeze it, when you remove it from the freezer to frost does the saran wrap take out chunks of the cake when you remove it?

  72. 72

    oh I like that cupcake
    i love eating that’s why im too fat now :)
    but most of the time what i eat are any kind of chocolates
    like milk chocolate ,French macarons, and macarons london and so on.
    well anyway that cupcake recipe above is interesting i wanna try that at home.

  73. 73
    JHarvey says:

    I had this recipe pinned for a long time and decided to try it out since my daughter said she wanted “good” white cake for her birthday. I just tested one and OH MY! Husband and I both agree we aren’t going to look any further. Delicious! And amazing texture!

  74. 74
    Mary says:

    hey! one question can you wrap the cupcakes like you wrapped the cake (would it do the same)?? thanks for the recipe!

  75. 75

    Ashley, you can defrost it. I usually start frosting when it’s still chilled.

  76. 76
    Belle Demeure says:

    Thanks for this recipe! Will it make 2 or 3 8-9″ round cakes? I usually use a mix for two 8 or 9″ pans – wondering if the extra ingredients make it so I can get three out of it? Need to feed 16 people. Thoughts?

  77. 77
    Josie says:

    Can you make this cake in a 9 x 13 cake pan?

  78. 78
    Jean says:

    This recipe sounds perfect. Have you made it in a fluted/Bundt pan? If so, how long did you bake it?

    • 78.1
      Jean says:

      This was perfect!!! It took 10 – 15 minutes longer to bake than stated on the cake box for a Bundt cake. Nobody could believe it was a cake mix! The taste and texture were delightful:)

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