How to Bake a Cake from Scratch

Baking cakes from scratch is not just for your grandmother. Anyone can learn how to bake a cake even if they only pour oil and cracked eggs into a boxed cake mix. First, find a simple recipe that is easy to follow. Check your pantry for all the ingredients and be sure your baking powder and baking soda are less than six months old. Preheat the oven for at the right temperature and then start mixing your cake batter.

Preheat your oven to 350 degree Fahrenheit. Grease your cake pan. One easy method is to unwrap your butter, place it on a plate and use the wrapper to grease the pan.

Sift the flour, baking soda and salt with a flour sifter. Be sure to sift into a bowl and set aside. Do not mix the dry ingredients with a spoon after sifting. You want to keep the air in the mixture.

Place the butter into a mixing bowl and cream with a hand mixer at a medium-high setting. Add the sugar and continue to mix until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time, beating thoroughly between eggs.

Add half the flour mixture into the wet ingredients. Add half the milk. Mix with the hand mixer for two minutes at a medium setting. Then add the rest of the flour, milk and vanilla. Mix until just combined.

Pour the cake batter into the greased pan. Tap the pan gently on the counter to release any air bubbles in the batter. Bake for 40 minutes or until a toothpick comes out of the centre clean.


Be sure your oven has been preheated for at least 20 minutes before putting your cake in. This ensures it is the right temperature. Use a scraper to scrape all the batter from the bowl into the cake pan. Start checking your cake's doneness after 25 minutes to be sure you do not overbake you cake.


Use oven gloves when handling hot pans. Frost your cake after it has cooled or the frosting will slide off.

Things You'll Need

  • 9-by-13 inch cake pan
  • 1/2 cup butter, at room temperature
  • Plate
  • 2 mixing bowls
  • Flour sifter
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • Hand mixer
  • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
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About the Author

Charong Chow has been writing professionally since 1995. Her work has appeared in magazines such as "Zing" and "Ocean Drive." Chow graduated from the University of Miami with a Bachelor of Arts in philosophy. She also received a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the California Institute of the Arts.