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Plain & Simple Golden Cake

in quick and easy whole grain dairy free gluten free overnight guaranteed classic

Author: PJ Hamel

Plain & Simple Golden Cake Recipe

Sometimes simplicity isn't as simple as it seems. Striking the perfect balance among flavor, texture, moistness, and appearance can be quite a challenge when you're making a plain yellow cake. But when you do achieve that balance — you're golden!

This cake is light-textured and fine-grained; relatively moist, given its light texture; and not overly sweet, making it a good candidate for any kind of filling or frosting you desire.

At a glance

one 9" round single layer or 8" square cake
Nutrition information


Choose your measure:

  • 1 1/2 cups King Arthur Unbleached Cake Flour Blend*
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon salt; your preference
  • 2 tablespoons Cake Enhancer, optional; for improved texture and moistness
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract, optional
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice, optional; for flavor
  • *See "tips," below.


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease an 8" x 2" square pan; or a 9" x 2" round pan. To assure crumble-free removal of the cake from the round pan, line the pan with parchment.
  2. Stir together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and Cake Enhancer in a medium-sized mixing bowl.
  3. Cut the butter into pats, and add it to the bowl. Mix at low speed until the mixture is evenly crumbly.
  4. In a small bowl or measuring cup, whisk together the milk, eggs, vanilla, and almond.
  5. Add half the milk/egg mixture to the flour in the bowl. Beat just to combine, then add the remaining milk/egg mixture, beating just to combine.
  6. Stir in the lemon juice.
  7. Beat the batter at high speed for 15 seconds, to make sure everything is totally combined.
  8. Scoop the batter into the prepared pan, smoothing the top with a spatula.
  9. Bake the cake on your oven's middle rack for 35 to 38 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, and the center of the top springs back when pressed lightly with your finger.
  10. Remove the cake from the oven, and place it on a rack. After 10 to 15 minutes, loosen its edges with a table knife or spatula; and carefully turn it out onto a rack. Peel off the parchment, and turn it right side up. Let the cake cool completely before serving. Serve plain; sprinkled with confectioners' sugar, or spread with your favorite icing.
  11. Yield: one 9" round single layer or 8" square cake, 12 to 16 servings.

Nutrition Information

  • Serving Size 1 piece (61g)
  • Servings Per Batch 12
Amount Per Serving:
  • Calories 200
  • Calories from Fat 60
  • Total Fat 7g
  • Saturated Fat 4g
  • Trans Fat 0g
  • Cholesterol 45mg
  • Sodium 125mg
  • Total Carbohydrate 31g
  • Dietary Fiber 0g
  • Sugars 17g
  • Protein 3g

* The nutrition information provided for this recipe is determined by the ESHA Genesis R&D software program. Substituting any ingredients may change the posted nutrition information.