Classic Vanilla Bundt Cake

Fine-grained, high-rising, and tender, this golden cake is simplicity at its best. Baked in a Bundt pan for a touch of elegance, it's equally good served with fresh berries, ice cream, or all on its own.

Note: As a result of reader feedback, we've made some changes to this recipe to offer more consistently successful results. After several tests, we found that amending the order in which ingredients are added has a significant positive effect on the cake's texture. In addition, we've added a clear vanilla glaze to bump up its flavor. So, for any of you that may have been dissatisfied with this cake the first time around — we urge you to try it again.

Baking gluten-free? For great results, substitute King Arthur Gluten-Free Measure for Measure Flour for the all-purpose flour in this recipe; no other changes needed.

Prep
15 mins
Bake
50 mins to 1 hr
Total
1 hr 15 mins
Yield
one Bundt cake
Classic Vanilla Bundt Cake

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.

  2. Place the butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl. Beat together at medium speed until the mixture lightens in color and looks fluffy. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl.

  3. Add the baking powder and salt, mixing just to combine.

  4. Weigh out the flour, or measure it by gently spooning it into a measuring cup, sweeping off any excess with a straight edge. Set it aside.

  5. With the mixer running at medium speed, add the first three eggs to the butter/sugar mixture one at a time. Wait until each egg is absorbed into the mixture before adding the next.

  6. Add 2 tablespoons of the measured flour to the bowl after the third egg, and mix until combined. Add the fourth egg, mix until absorbed, then mix in another 2 tablespoons of flour. Continue in this fashion with the fifth and sixth eggs, alternating the addition of the egg with 2 tablespoons of the flour from the recipe.

  7. Add the vanilla (or vanilla bean paste) and almond extract (if using) to the milk.

  8. Add one-third of the remaining flour to the batter, beating gently to combine. Gently beat in half the milk. Mix in another third of the flour, then the remaining milk. Stir in the remaining flour. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl, then beat until the batter is smooth and fluffy, about 20 to 30 seconds at medium-high speed.

  9. Thoroughly grease a 10- to 12-cup Bundt pan, using non-stick vegetable oil spray or shortening (not butter; butter tends to increase sticking). Scoop the batter into the prepared pan, smoothing the top with a spatula.

  10. Bake the cake for 50 to 60 minutes, until it's starting to brown, appears set on top, and a toothpick or long skewer inserted into the center comes out clean. (If you're baking in a dark-interior pan, start checking at 45 minutes.) If the cake appears to be browning too quickly, tent it with foil for the final 15 minutes of baking.

  11. Remove the cake from the oven, and gently loosen its edges using a heatproof spatula. Turn the pan over onto a cooling rack. After 10 minutes, lift the pan off the cake, and allow it to cool completely.

  12. While the cake is cooling in the pan, make the glaze. Combine the sugar, water, and salt. Heat briefly, just to dissolve the sugar; a microwave works fine. Stir in the vanilla. Once you've turned the cake out of the pan onto a rack to cool, gently brush it all over with the glaze.

  13. Just before serving, sift a shower of confectioners' sugar over the top, if desired. A garnish of fresh berries is lovely and tasty.

  14. Store leftover cake, well wrapped, at room temperature for several days. Freeze for longer storage.

Tips from our Bakers

  • Our Gluten-Free Measure for Measure Flour makes it easy to make many of your favorite traditional recipes (like this one) gluten-free. Simply substitute Measure for Measure flour 1:1 for the flour called for in your recipe; no additional ingredients or other changes needed.
  • Want to bake different size Bundt cakes? Bake cake in a Bundt quartet pan for 30 to 35 minutes; in a Bundtlette pan for 20 to 25 minutes; or in a half-size Bundt pan for 35 to 45 minutes, tenting with foil for the last 10 minutes or so, to prevent over-browning.
  • Since baking a perfectly intact Bundt cake can be tricky, we highly recommend you read our blog post, How to prevent Bundt cakes from sticking, before baking this cake.