Vanilla Sponge Cake

1 9-inch-square cake

Use this vanilla sponge cake recipe to make Tiramisu Ice Cream Cake. To make our Watermelon Bombe, use a half batch of this recipe: Divide the batter between two 6-inch-round layer-cake pans, and bake for 35 minutes. Use one layer for the bombe, and freeze the second layer for later use.


  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, for pan

  • ½ cup all-purpose flour, plus more for pan

  • ½ cup cornstarch

  • 4 large eggs, separated

  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

  • ¾ cup sugar

  • Pinch of salt


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter a 9-inch square baking dish. Line bottom with parchment paper; butter parchment. Dust with flour, and tap out excess; set aside. Sift together flour and cornstarch into a small bowl; set aside.

  2. Put yolks, vanilla, and 1/2 cup sugar into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Beat on high speed until thick and pale, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl.

  3. Put egg whites and salt into the clean bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the clean whisk attachment. Beat on medium speed until soft peaks form, about 3 minutes. With mixer running, add remaining 1/4 cup sugar in a slow, steady stream. Continue beating until stiff, glossy peaks form, 2 to 3 minutes.

  4. Using a rubber spatula, fold egg white mixture into the yolk mixture. Fold in reserved flour mixture in 3 batches. Transfer batter to prepared pan; smooth top with an offset spatula.

  5. Bake until a cake tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 25 minutes. Let cool completely in pan on a wire rack. Turn out cake onto rack. Cake can be wrapped well in plastic and stored at room temperature up to 2 days.

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