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Perfect Soft and Velvety White Cake From Scratch

My Perfect Soft and Velvety White Cake has the right ingredients to get the softness of a box cake mix and the flavors of a homemade cake. Now you can make the best birthday or wedding cake ever, with this awesome recipe. 

What I learned about soft white cake from owning a cake bakery

For almost 10 years I owned and operated three cake and cupcake shops. I have to admit before I was in that position I thought most scratch-baked vanilla cakes were the same.

So I just used the vanilla cake batter that I made a signature vanilla cupcake with. ( It was called The Billy Vanilly and it was so good that I named my stores after it!)

But one thing youre never quite prepared for is the feedback from customers. They sure did let me know what they thought of those white cakes I baked in the early years.

Because I quickly found out that a great vanilla cake recipe that you use for cupcakes isn’t the same thing as a white cake batter that you use for wedding or custom cakes.

And when customers are paying top dollar, they want their cakes to look beautiful and taste amazing.

So I quickly changed my methods and started testing lots of white cakes. This recipe is what I ultimately came up with.

Thousands of happy customers have let me know how delicious they think it is. I hope you think so too!

BIlly Vanilly Cupcake
The original Billy Vanilly cupcake


What’s the difference between a white cake and a vanilla cake?

White cake and vanilla cake are similar in taste but there is one big difference. A white cake has only egg whites, while a vanilla cake has the whole egg.

Adding the whole egg changes the texture and color, creating a cake that is a little heavier and richer tasting.

Using just the egg whites. you get a cake that has a fine, velvety texture and a very light white color.

Can cakes from scratch be as moist and light as box mix cakes?

Cakes from scratch can be just as moist and soft as cake mixes, but you will need to do a few things.

Make sure you are using a good recipe

Ingredients that can help lighten the cake are oil, sour cream, and cake flour. Cakes made with oil taste moister because the oil is liquid at room temperature, and that liquid helps give a sensation of moisture. Cake flour and sour cream help to make a very fine crumb, which also adds to the light texture.

Mix the recipe correctly

Make sure that you are allowing your ingredients to come to room temperature before you start mixing. Room temperature butter and eggs will cream up lighter and help to incorporate more air into the batter, and more air means a lighter cake!

Don’t dry your cake out by over baking it

If I could wave a magic wand and fix one thing about the way most people bake cakes, it would be to forget about the toothpick as a way to test a cake for doneness. You can see when a cake is done by looking at the edges of the pan. If the cake pulls away from the sides. it’s done! Taking your cake out right when it’s done helps it hold on to more moisture.

How to make my soft and velvety white cake

The cake mixing method

This recipe is a variation of the White Velvet Cake from The Cake Bible by Rose Levy Beranbaum. The book is a classic that every baker should own. She uses this method of developing the cake structure by mixing without eggs for 2-3 minutes.

My favorite trick for pan release

The best way to keep your cakes from sticking is to prepare your pans well. My absolute favorite (and easiest!) way to do this is with My Homemade Pan Release

To hold on to more moisture,wrap and freeze immediately

My final tip is to wrap your cakes in plastic wrap while they are still a bit warm. Pop them in the freezer for 24 hours before decorating. When I go to decorate, I pull the layers from the freezer and decorate them while they are still frozen.

[lt_recipe name=”Soft and Velvety White Cake” servings=”4-6 in layers, or 3-8 in layers” prep_time=”30 M” cook_time=”30 M” total_time=”60 M” difficulty=”intermediate” summary=”This cake is soft and moist and perfect for birthdays or weddings. ” print=”yes” image=”×300.jpg” ingredients=”14 oz Cake Flour;13 oz Granulated Sugar;1 tsp salt;1 Tbsp Baking Powder;½ tsp Baking soda;5 oz Egg Whites;4 oz Vegetable Oil;3 oz Sour Cream;8 oz Buttermilk;6 oz Butter-room temp;2 tsp Vanilla;” ]Prepare cake pans with pan release.;Preheat oven to 325°;Measure buttermilk. Add ½ cup of it to a container with the oil and sour cream. ;Add egg whites and vanilla to the remaining buttermilk. ;Combine cake flour, sugar, and salt, baking powder, and baking soda in the bowl of the small mixer with the paddle attachment.;Add butter and mix with flour until it resembles wet sand. ;Add the buttermilk and oil mixture to the flour-butter mixture. Mix on medium speed for 2 minutes. Scrape sides. ;Add the egg white mixture in 3 additions. Scrape sides of bowl well. ;Place 13 oz batter per pan. ;Bake 30 minutes 325°;Let pans cool exactly 10 minutes before unmolding. ;Wrap and freeze immediately. ;[/lt_recipe]

Allyson Burns Better Baker Club

Check out these links for some of the other cakes I baked in my shop: Super Easy Carrot Cake, Red Velvet, My Money Maker Chocolate Cupcake


Tuesday 15th of June 2021

Hi, can you elaborate on the butter measurement please, it only says 6. Not sure if ounces ,tablespoons or teaspoons Also can you translate the ounces for me into either tsp, tblsp, or cups instead of the ounces for me?