The Best White Cake Recipe {Ever}

Okay, you asked for it. I’ve gotten so many emails and comments asking for “The Best White Cake Recipe” since I posted my The Best Chocolate Cake Recipe {Ever} a while back. Believe me, I wasn’t ignoring you.

White Cake Recipe | ©addapinch.com

You see, I had my Grandmother’s recipe for a Vanilla Cake and I had the recipe for my Butter Cake, so, I started working on trying to take the best of those two recipes while making the cake decidedly white and perfect for birthdays, anniversaries, and yep, even weddings, if you’d like.

 

My son declared this white cake recipe as “perfect” while the Mister said, “Now, that’s cake.”

Umm, from him, that’s a good thing. I think.

My brother-in-law called me to tell me that this was to be his birthday cake every single year until the year he dies. We had a good laugh at that one, but I have to remember each June to make sure not to make him another version of cake on his birthday from this point forward. That’s pressure, because the older I get, the less I seem to remember. Heh.

My white cake recipe is a sturdy recipe. Tender, yet moist and holds together well from cooling to frosting to slicing and serving. It just works.

While many white cake recipes use only egg whites, I decided (after lots and lots of trying, mind you) that I preferred the flavor that the whole egg lends to the cake. While the cake isn’t stark white, it is still white.

Make sense?

 

White Cake Recipe | ©addapinch.com

 

I used my Fluffy White Buttercream frosting, which I doubled, when I frosted the cake, but you can really use whatever frosting is your favorite on this cake. Strawberry Buttercream Frosting, Cream Cheese Frosting, Espresso Chocolate Buttercream Frosting? Any would be fabulous!

So, the next time you need a white cake recipe, give this one a try. I think you’ll love it!

Here’s my White Cake Recipe. My family calls it the best. Ever.

4.4 from 231 reviews
The Best White Cake Recipe {ever}
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
This White Cake Recipe will quickly become your favorite for so many celebrations and events. This simple white cake recipe is easy to follow and yields a moist, tender white cake you'll love.
Author:
Serves: 12
Ingredients
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
  • ½ cup vegetable shortening
  • 3 cups granulated sugar
  • 5 eggs, room temperature
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup whole milk, room temperature
  • ½ cup buttermilk, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350º F. Prepare three 9-inch round cake pans with nonstick baking spray or coated well with shortening or butter and floured, taking care to remove all excess flour.
  2. Cream together butter and shortening until light and fluffy with an electric mixer. Slowly add sugar one cup at a time, making sure to fully incorporate each cup before adding another. Add eggs one at a time, making sure to fully incorporate each egg before adding another.
  3. Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt. Pour milks and vanilla into measuring cup and whisk together with a fork. Add to butter and shortening mixture alternately with milk mixture, beginning and ending with dry ingredients.
  4. Gently stir all ingredients until well combined. Stop mixer and scrape down sides and bottom of bowl, making sure to have all ingredients mixed well.
  5. Evenly distribute cake batter between cake pans and place pans into oven. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick or cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove and allow to cool slightly in cake pans for about 5 minutes, then cool completely on a wire rack.
  6. Frost cake as desired.
Notes
- This recipe makes approximately 24 cupcakes when cupcake tin is filled more than ¾ full. When filled ½ full, this recipe makes approximately 36 cupcakes. Bake approximately 18 minutes.
- If you preferred the original white cake recipe, it used ½ teaspoon baking powder and 1 cup buttermilk with no whole milk.

 

Here’s to good cake! Love ya bunches!
Robyn xo

 

Update: Due to varying results with the cake rising, I have updated the recipe to increase the amount of baking powder. As with any recipe using baking powder, you’ll want to make sure it is fresh and double acting. Additionally, I’ve changed the method of how the cake is beaten (step 3) after eggs have been added to the cake as some were having issues with a crust forming on the outside of the cake. This was due to beating the cake batter on high speed before baking which in turned caused a meringue type crust to form on the outside of the cake.

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Comments

    • 932

      Crystal says

      I just made this recipe and used two 9 inch pans. I baked them for about 41 minutes but checked them after 30, 35, and 40 minutes. They came out perfect.

    • 933

      Anne Vanderwalde says

      Do Not use 2 9″ as it will overflow. I just tried it and it is a mess. will try to salvage the cake once it is cooked.

  1. 934

    says

    Hi Robyn, what’s the difference if i use butter instead of shortening? Would it affect the results much? I live in Italy and its difficult to get some ingredients. Love love love your recipes by the way, thank you!

  2. 936

    Linda says

    I made this cake two days ago for my son’s birthday. It was absolutely delicious. Mine looked more like yellow cake, but so what, it’s all about the taste. It was so good I only kept one piece and made my son take the rest home. I didn’t think I could control myself around it. The frosting was delicious too. Thanks for sharing. Next, I’ll be trying your apple cobbler.

  3. 938

    Miranda says

    This cake tastes delicious, but I’ve made it twice, and both times my centers have been concave. I’m using the magi strips. Maybe I should take them off so that the middle will rise more? I also split the recipe across a 6″, 8″ and 10″ cake pan. Could that be the issue? Otherwise, I’m following the instructions to a tee. Help!

    • 939

      Miranda says

      The top and sides of the cake also have a very crisp crust. I’m making this for a wedding on Saturday. Time is of the essence. Another possible issues may have been that I mixed it on medium on a kitchenaid mixer. Is that too fast? Also, I hit the pans on the counter before putting them in the oven. Could that have made a difference? Feedback appreciated!!

      • 940

        says

        Hi Miranda,
        It would depend on the wattage of your Kitchenaid. Later models are very high powered and I usually stay between 1 and 3 when mixing my cakes. Higher than that tends to overmix the cake for me. I hope that helps!

    • 941

      says

      Hi Miranda,
      I’ve never had to use the magic strips on the cake before and it bakes very level for me. I’m in Georgia and use White Lily flour, which is a soft, 100% winter wheat flour.

    • 942

      Miranda says

      Hi Robyn,
      I just mixed up a new batch. I took off the magi strips, mixed it by hand to ensure that I don’t overmix, and I used regular granulated sugar instead of superfine sugar. I’m using Swan’s Down Cake Flour. Do you see any problem with spreading it between differently sized cake pans? Specifically a 6″, 8″ and 10″ ? If so, how would you recommend using this recipe for a tiered cake?
      Thanks!

    • 943

      Anne Vanderwalde says

      Hi Jen
      I am waiting for my cake to finish baking and I am noticing that my cakes are also concave in the center. I am hoping that corrects itself as it continues baking. I did not use magic strips and I have been baking for over 40 years so I have no idea why this is happening.
      Anne

  4. 944

    Jayde George says

    Oh my gosh!!! My best friend and I made this cake for her daughters 1st birthday tomorrow. We baked it in a large rectangular pan and cut out a teddy bear. After eating the off cuts we are in love. This is the yummiest cake I have ever eaten. After years of baking cakes for people finally a cake that is moist and delicious. Thank you so much for sharing this recipe

    • 945

      Jayde George says

      We’re is South Australia so we had to adapt a few ingredients but still no issues. Can’t wait for the party tomorrow. If only I could share a photo with you.

    • 947

      Debra A Peterson says

      I wonder if it’s possible that the oven temperature is a tad too high. Rising too fast on the edges and not in the middle – suggest 345 on oven temp and see if that helps?

  5. 948

    Anne Vanderwalde says

    Ok just salvaged cakes that should not have been in 2 9″ pans. Will definetly use 3 9″ next time. I also got the crispy outaide but do not care as I will be frosting the cake. It did however take just under 50 minutes to bake (for the center to rise fully) The taste is wonderful however as I took a piece off the side to test.(again this will be hidden by frosting) It,s my own birthday cake that I am baking so I can do what I want. Thank you Robyn

  6. 950

    Christina says

    I’ve made this as a cake and as cupcakes. Both turned out perfect. Now I’m wondering how to add a lemon flavor without using extracts. I was thinking lemon zest, but I am wondering if substituting any of the liquid with lemon juice would affect the integrity of the crumb?

    • 952

      Andrea says

      Hello! I just made this cake this morning in a 13x9x2 pan. I lowered the temp to 325 degrees and it took about 50 minutes to bake. I kept checking it every 5-10 minutes after the 25 minute mark. I filled the pan halfway – thank goodness I did! The cake is up to the top of the pan.

      I had a little extra batter so I made 4 cupcakes. They rose really high and then stuck to the top of the pan. Messy but yummy!

      I just took the cake out of the oven and it looks good – although the edges and top have a crunchy crust. This is my first time baking a cake from scratch, so maybe this is normal? Enjoy! Andrea

  7. 953

    Jen says

    I am thinking of using this recipe in a piecake (A pie baked in a cake). I’ve done a piecake using a spice cake recipe with some success; but I have two questions about this recipe. 1. How high does it rise? I want to leave enough margin in the cake pan to make sure there is no spillage. 2. How thick is the batter?

    I love the sound of this recipe! I hope it works!

  8. 954

    Kam says

    I used this recipe to bake a birthday cake this weekend! I frosted with whipped cream and it tasted amazing, everyone loved it!!
    I used the whole recipe to fill a square 10″ cake tin, and baked for about 1 hour (triple lined the tin)
    I made two of these and cut each layer in 2 so in total had 4 layers for a massive cake!
    I also got crusty top and sides but i just trimmed all that off and frosted without s problem!
    Cant wait to use this recipe again for future birthday cakes! Soo glad i found the perfect white cake recipe for celebration cakes!! :) :) :)

  9. 955

    Mary says

    Oh this cake is good. I would say the one thing I would do different is to but about a half cup to a full cup less sugar. It’s way way to sweet but yummy.

  10. 957

    Kate Risher says

    Robyn, when did you change the instructions for beating the eggs? I swear I used this recipe in October last year with great success but I made 2 batches last night that totally flopped (very concave middle). I just wanted to know if maybe I was following the other instructions and that worked for me. Thanks!

  11. 958

    says

    Hi, I would like to use this for one of a 3 tier Wedding Cake, I will be using fondant, which Tier should I use it for, is it strong enough for the middle Tier. Thank You Fran.

  12. 959

    MominGA says

    I like to make my kids birthday cakes and I usually make my recipes in 2 13×9 pans and make the equivalent to a quarter sheet cake. What, if anything, about this white cake recipe would I need to adjust to get it to work in the 2 13×9 pans? We always have a very large crowd so I can’t make round cakes as there is never enough to go around. Should I double this recipe and how long should I bake it? It sounds so delicious and I can’t wait to try it out!

  13. 960

    Christina says

    My mom wanted a white cake for her birthday and I used your recipe. The cake turned out amazing! It reminds me of a traditional wedding cake. My husband said it tasted like it was from a professional baker . Your recipe will be my new go to recipe for white cakes. Thanks for sharing!

  14. 962

    Kelly says

    Thanks for the amazing recipe! It really is the best ever. Made it for my sister’s 40th bday & all 14 relatives LOVED it. Thanks so much for sharing!

  15. 964

    Kari says

    I made this cake tonight, and the batter was beautiful! I made two 9″ rounds and 12 cupcakes. The cake is absolutely delicious! The cupcakes turned out okay, they’re a bit flat on top but they taste great and they’re fully cooked. I like the taste of the crispy crust, it does taste kinda like a meringue. However, the two 9″ rounds did not turn out well. I buttered and floured the pans, but the cake stuck on the bottom and fell apart when I tried to take it out. The middle fell and was not cooked, while the sides were brown and crispy (really yummy). It was ugly but delicious!

    I’m wondering what I can do to prevent the crispy edge with the uncooked middle. IF I make this again, I will butter and flour AND parchment paper so that I can be sure that the cake will come out. Not sure what to do about the sides browning before the middle was done. Any suggestions?

    Can this be turned into a 9×13? If so, what changes would I need to make to ensure that I don’t get the brown edges with the uncooked middle?

  16. 966

    Emma says

    This cake was way too dense and had way too much sugar. I cut the sugar by half and it was still to much. I love the fact that you tried to leave in the whole egg while it is still a white cake but it just was not the light, fluffy cake I was hoping for. Beautiful pictures btw and thanks anyway:)

  17. 968

    Natalie says

    Wow. I’ve never made white cake before but my boyfriend has requested it for his birthday, so today I tried out 3 recipes in cupcake portions to decide which one to make. Winner hands down. The texture is amazing, just sweet enough, delicious. I made it exactly as written although I didn’t take the time to bring the eggs to room temperature, I can’t imagine it being any better!

    • 970

      Natalie says

      Quick question Robyn…I halved the recipe and that made 12 cupcakes with some extra (probably would have made around 16-18). I’m making a double layered round cake with 6×3 pans…do you think that will be enough batter? I was thinking yes but now I’m second guessing.

  18. 971

    Jen says

    Just used this cake to make a coconut cake. AMAZING! I used extra virgin coconut oil in place of the butter/shortening and the cake tasted great with just a hint of coconut!

    The cake hardly needed the custard filling and whipped frosting (but it didn’t hurt either)

    Thank you!

  19. 973

    Debra E says

    Wow, Robyn this cake is amazing! I have seriously been searching for years for a white cake that I could actually enjoy eating and today I found it! I am a retired cake baker/decorator and have literally baked hundreds of cakes (usually using mixes) but when I bake for family and friends I always bake from scratch. I have a tasty strawberry filling that people rave about, but which I’ve never been able to fully enjoy since I have never found a white cake that made the grade. And NOW I can! Sooooo THANK YOU!! I cannot believe how pleased I am with both the flavor and texture — Thank you for sharing this delectable recipe with the world!!!

    • 977

      says

      Hi Melosa,
      The cake is sturdy, but I wouldn’t necessarily use the term dense when I describe it. It has a fine crumb and good texture. When you lightly touch the top of the cake does it spring back when baked? If not, it may be that you might want to back down your oven temperature and bake it at a lower temp for a slightly longer time. Does that make sense?

  20. 978

    Shalu says

    Hi Robyn, I googled for ‘Best White Cake Recipe’ and stumbled on to your website – so glad I did!!
    I was wondering, if I would need to alter your recipe a lot (or at all) to turn it into a sheet cake. If yes, would so appreciate the details please.

  21. 979

    Sabrina says

    Do you think this cake is ‘sturdy’ enough to support fondant? I love the buttery crispy taste. I used 2 x 10″ pans this time. I’ll have to wait until they come out of the pan to see if I need to make another layer (if it’s not tall enough). Love this recipe. Have also used your Chocolate cake recipe. Thanks for sharing! xx

  22. 980

    Ashley Flaschen says

    What temp and bake time do you suggest for a 6″, 8″ and 10″ round pan? Thanks so much!! It looks so yummy in the pics!

  23. 981

    Robyn says

    I’m looking for a dense cake recipe to make a piñata cake for my niece’s birthday. The center layer will be hollowed out and filled with candy, but I have read that if you attempt this with too soft a cake, it can cave in. Does this come out pretty firm? I plan on leaving a good 2″-2-1/2″ on the perimeter, but I still feel like I need a pretty firm cake to hold over that 4″ void in the middle.

  24. 984

    Shirly says

    I’m going to quit my job and just make this cake full time. ;) I’ve made tiered cakes, cupcakes and two-bite sized version with this recipe with consistent “how-could-they-all-be-gone-you-need-to-make-more” feedback every time. Best. Recipe. EVER.

  25. 986

    Teresa says

    Hi Robyn, I need to make my daughter a 1/2 sheet bday cake. I’d like to use your recipe. Can you tell me what to do for a 13×17.75 pan? I’m figuring on cutting the sugar a bit and oven temp to 325. Will this recipe make enough for this pan size?

  26. 987

    Kristen says

    Silly question. But first I must say that this was the BEST cake we have ever eaten! Absolutely amazing and I will never buy store bought again. I made this cake while on vacation at a cabin in disney. I only had a teaspoon and a sauce pan to prep but it totally worked fine! The only issue I had was getting the cakes out of the pans. I had prepped them with crisco and flour and let them cool for 5 minutes but they did not want to come out. Should I have used a spray or let them cool longer? My cake tasted amazing but next time I want it to look amazing too. Thanks for the recipe and the help!

  27. 988

    Hannah says

    I feel like this is a silly question, but I plan to make this cake for my father’s birthday, and I was wondering do I use salted or unsalted butter. Or does it even matter? I just know I usually buy salted and it never has noticeably effected any of my cakes before, but I’ve never made a white cake and I really don’t want to ruin it with something silly like the wrong kind of butter.

    • 989

      says

      You can use either. Most professional bakers recommend using unsalted butter to control the salt, but I generally just use salted butter for everything. :)

  28. 990

    Jenelle says

    Hello! I am looking for a white layer cake that I can cover in fondant. Would this recipe be an option? Thanks!

  29. 991

    Erin says

    I made this cake and used unsalted butter instead of the shortening. I want to thank you so much for this recipe. I have searched for years for a delicious moist vanilla cake recipe. Believe it or not I graduated from Johnson & Wales, worked in fine dining and in a few bakers and this recipe you created is the best I ever made and tasted. Congrats to you!! This is my new go to vanilla cake!!!

  30. 992

    Laura B says

    Hi, Robyn!

    I stumbled on your site looking for a recipe for my daughter’s 3rd birthday in two weeks. She has asked for an Olaf (Frozen) cake and wants the inside to be blue (hence looking for a lighter cake to color). I am making it 3-D, but it’s lower- she wants it to be when he is jumbled, teeth stuck in the ice and stick arms pushing him forward. Will this recipe stack and handle light sculpting well?

    Thank you!

  31. 993

    DeboraMG says

    This cake is amazing! It is so soft that melts in the mouth. I did it for Valentine’s day today, and my husband and I loved it!

  32. 994

    karyn says

    I used coconut oil instead of shortening and it was perfect and delicious! Best white cake I’ve made or ever eaten!

  33. 995

    Brittanie says

    this cake is A.Ma.Zing!!! It really is!! AND…
    It’s the perfect density for creating fun shapes! I “constructed” a pirate ship cake for my daughters birthday and the density of this cake made it SO much easier and more “sturdy”. So thank you thank you!!! My go-to cake from now on!! *did I mention this was my firs homemade cake?? P

  34. 996

    Casey says

    What is the recommended time and temp for a 9×13 pan? I made this for the first time and use 3, 9 inch round pans and it’s tasted great I followed it word for word.

  35. 997

    Jan says

    I just made the cake. Firstly is is not at all as white as your cake seems to be. I knew that going in because of the addition of eggs using the yolk. No manner of whipping will negate the yolk here and give you a white cake. Secondly, your cake appears to be uniform in thickness. Despite using heavy gauge , straight edge pans, cake baking strips and heating cores, the caked baked up with sunken centers. I think there needs to be more eggs in this recipe and less fat. The cake is moist to the point of being oily. I am having some trouble believing that the cake in your photo is what I should have been able to create. The pans need to be lined with parchment paper as the cake sticks something fierce to the pans giving the edges a crumbly mess to try and frost. Very disappointing results considering the cost of the ingredients now lost. I’m glad I waited until the cake baked before making any frosting.

    • 999

      Jan says

      Thanks, Robyn, I did check the link. Her cake looks smaller than 9 inches and she used 4 pans, not three. Perhaps that is also an issue? Not sure…

  36. 1000

    Ella says

    Hello!
    Due to your best chocolate cake ever recipe being such a huge success with my house mates, i’m wanting to make this one for one of their birthdays next week. I’m just wondering if vegetable oil can be used in place of the shortening and if i can use regular milk OR almond milk in place of the buttermilk? Thankyou! x

  37. 1001

    Lindsey says

    Thank you for this recipe! I am an inexperienced baker and hopelessly late. I started this less than 2 hours before company arrived to celebrate my daughter’s birthday. I made a two-layer cakelet using two 4″ x 2″ pans and quartered the recipe. I had a good feeling and–hooray!!–it turned out great!! Everyone (4 adults) had seconds and the toddlers loved it too. The only modification I made is that I accidentally left the cakes cooling in the pans instead of taking them out and putting them on racks. Loved the crust of this cake. Thank you, thank you for making my baby’s first cake a success!!

  38. 1003

    Kari says

    Kari here again! So I made this cake for the second and third time, and I am VERY happy with the results. Here is what I changed. 1. Fresh baking powder – bought new since mine was a year old 2. Mixed ingredients VERY slowly once the eggs and sugar were together. This prevents the delicious crispy meringue “issue”. 3. Lined the pans with wax paper and butter so that it comes out of the pan easily.

    I just won our department cupcake competition by baking a raspberry into the cupcake. Everyone LOVES this recipe. They call it perfect, and so do I! I’m using this recipe for my sister’s baby shower. It makes a perfect 9′ round with no bump in the middle. One of the best recipes ever.

    Thank you!

  39. 1004

    Josie Hall says

    Thanks for the recipe. I need to make a cake for a decorating class I am taking. So I asked my husband what kind of a cake I should make and he said a White fluffy cake. The only one I have made is angel food cake. I checked the website and found yours. I just took out of the oven. It came out beautiful. Nice and golden, no crust on the sides, did not sink in the middles. It feels fluffy because when I touch in the middle it bounces. I am so happy. Thank you so much. I haven’t tasted it yet, but the batter taste good so I am assuming it will taste good. Now I will try to find a filling that is good for the middle. I am thinking of a glaze with fresh strawberries. Not sure never done it. Thank you again it turned out great. One thing that I did was I put in the oven one at a time. I used a 2×9′ pan. I only did 2 and the rest I saved for tomorrow. don’t know if it will be good but will try it on some cake pops. Thanks again <3 :)

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