The Perfect {Bakery Style} White cake is a beautiful, moist, and light cake with the perfect texture that I topped with my whipped vanilla buttercream. Try this White Cake Recipe if you are looking for more of a snack cake.

The Perfect {Bakery Style} White Cake

I have been searching for this cake for about two years now. In my experience, making a White Cake at home is just never as good as the bakery. (Sorry!  I know some of you just cringed reading that.) Until now. I am not kidding when I tell you that this recipe is it.  The flavor is fantastic and the texture is truly perfect. Even the-pickiest-dessert-eater-ever, aka my hubby, loved it.

The Perfect White Cake

White Cake Recipe

I found this cake on Epicurious who got it from Cooks Illustrated.  I have never been led astray with either of those sources so I am confident you will find the same success I did!

One major adaptation I did was using 8-in cake pans.  The original recipe calls for 9-in and about 5 minutes less cooking time.  If you plan on using 9-in plans please do consult the original recipe.  The first time I made it I used 8-in cake pans with no time adaptation and was not as successful. And, if you live at a higher altitude, be sure to check out my High Altitude Baking Tips.

The Perfect Homemade White Cake

How to Make The Perfect White Cake

To get started making this cake, first, pour the milk, egg whites, and both extracts into a bowl. Blend the ingredients with a fork. Next, in the bowl of a stand mixer, mix the cake flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. (If you don’t have cake flour, here is how to make homemade cake flour to use.)

Add the cubed butter to the flour mixture and continue to beat on low speed for a couple more minutes. Then, add all but 1/2 cup of the milk mixture to the flour mixture. Beat at medium speed for a minute and a half before adding the remaining milk mixture to beat for one additional minute.

Pour the batter into the prepared pans. Bake for 27-30 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out with a few crumbs, but no wet batter. Let the cakes cool in the pans for about 5 minutes before flipping them onto a wire rack to cool to room temperature.

The Best Homemade White Cake


I used my famous Whipped Vanilla Buttercream recipe to frost this cake. (You can see a video of me decorating a cake with this design here) This is the BEST buttercream (American version) that I have ever tried. FOR AN EXTRA VELVETY TEXTURE: try subbing sour cream for the butter. You would use 3/4 cup for this recipe. I have made this cake more times than I can count!  It works every time and tastes bright and fresh.

Partial Frosting of White Cake

How do you get a Truly White cake?

  1. Egg whites in the recipe. There should not be egg yolks in a white cake recipe.
  2. Butter color. I try to use pale butter. There are many brands of butter that have the most glorious, rich, and vibrant yellow tones. I don’t use those when trying to make my cake white. You can also whip the butter on its own for 3-5 minutes to lighten its color.
  3. Imitation clear extract. Vanilla can add a dark tinge to your batter, taking away from a vibrant white. Imitation clear vanilla extract helps to keep the batter colorless.

The Perfect White Cake

Can I make this Cake into Cupcakes?

Yes… kind of. You will need to adjust cooking times dramatically. Start checking at 15 minutes; you want to cupcakes to no longer appear “wet” in the center and to spring back when touched. If the edges are brown(dark) the cupcakes may be overdone.

Do not fill the cupcake liners more than 2/3 full; the cupcakes do not create a big dome, they will be a bit flatter. If you want the PERFECT WHITE CUPCAKE, I recommend my Elegant Cupcake Recipe.


Looking for More Cake Recipes?

The Perfect Chocolate Cake

Homemade Yellow Cake Mix

Cream Cheese Pound Cake

Ooey Gooey Butter Cake Recipe

4.38 from 37 votes

White Cake Recipe

Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 40 mins
Making a white cake at home is never as good as a bakery...until now!


  • 1 cup (245g) whole milk, room temperature
  • 6 large (197g) egg whites, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons almond extract
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • cups (261g) cake flour
  • cups (350g) granulated sugar
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¾ cup (1½ sticks or 169g) unsalted butter, softened but still cool, cut into cubes


  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Prepare two 8-inch cake pans. (Use butter and flour, line with parchment paper, or spread GOOP.)
  • Pour milk, egg whites, and extracts into a medium bowl. Stir with a fork until blended.
  • In the bowl of a stand mixer, mix cake flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Mix on low speed (just to sift and incorporate ingredients). Add butter, cut into cubes, and continue beating on low for about 1-2 minutes.
  • Add all but ½ cup of the milk mixture to the flour mixture and beat at medium speed for 1½ minutes. Add the remaining ½ cup of the milk mixture and beat for about 1 minute.
  • Pour batter evenly between two prepared cake pans (approximately 2¾ liquid cups or 612 grams per pan).
  • Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a few crumbs and has no wet batter clinging to it, about 27 to 30 minutes.
  • Allow cake to cool in pan about 5 minutes then carefully flip onto a cooling rack to cool to room temperature.
  • Frost cakes with your favorite frosting.


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Meet Amanda Rettke

Amanda Rettke is the creator of I Am Baker, and the bestselling author of Surprise Inside Cakes: Amazing Cakes for Every Occasion – With a Little Something Extra Inside.Over the course of her 15+ year blogging adventure, she has been featured in and collaborated with the Food Network, New York Times, LA Times, Country Living Magazine, People Magazine, Epicurious, Brides, Romantic Homes, life:beautiful, Publishers Weekly, The Daily Mail, Star Tribune, The Globe and Mail, DailyCandy, YumSugar, The Knot, The Kitchn, and Parade, to name a few.

Reader Comments

  1. I made this recipe today and have finally found what I’m looking for in a homemade white cake. It has a delicate, tender crumb and isn’t dry. I did modify the recipe only slightly. I used all vanilla extract instead of vanilla and almond. I used buttermilk instead of regular milk.

  2. I tried your recipe today & tasted my 6 in round cakes & they were perfect! The cake held its shape, it was nice & sweet, the color was light & it tasted buttery & felt fluffy in my mouth. This will be my new white cake recipe! No need for boxed mixes anymore! Thanks!

    1. Hi there! Can you tell me how you adjusted the baking time/temp for the 6 ” cakes. I am making 3 of them tonight. Thanks!

  3. I made this cake and didn’t like it. It wasn’t even white it was brown. I followed the directions. I made 2 of these cakes and both turned brown and had an awful taste. Sorry, but I won’t be making another one of these cakes. I will stick with my original homemade white cake. Good Luck to the rest of you.

    1. Hi Iva! So sorry that something went wrong. I would say that there was definitely a mis-step if the cake turned out brown, as there are no ingredients in the recipe that would cause that. If you want to email me I would be happy to trouble-shoot with you! 🙂

      1. Amanda, I followed the directions as posted and I’m not sure why both turned out brown either. I was upset cause I made them for Father’s Day for my day and they didn’t turn out. First time ever for a recipe not to turn out for me.

        1. It could have been the vanilla. For a white cake, you would want to use a clear vanilla extract/flavoring. If you use the standard brown colored one, it will cause your cake to not be nice and white. Also, if you melted the butter on the stove, instead of allowing it get to room temperature, it’s possible the butter had started to turn a little brown, thus changing the color of the recipe. Those are two most likely reasons your cake did not turn out white for you. Also, if they did not rise properly, then I would check the baking powder. Even if it has not expired, it’s very possible it needs to be replaced. Hope this helps.

        2. It could be that baking soda was used instead of baking powder, which would cause the brown color and really off flavor.

  4. Hello I would like to try to make this cake, I have only one doubt: I do not have almond extract (in Italian supermarkets is hard to find) some advice to replace it? You can avoid putting it in the recipe?


    Un bacio a tutte

  5. Hi Amanda, I did not want to use round pans, just flat but not sure if 9×13 or 11×7. Any ideas?


  6. My late aunt made a “Prize Winner” White Cake years ago..the recipe was from a magazine and it had won a blue ribbon at a fair. Where is that recipe now?! It may have been called “Buttermilk White Cake” but I’m not certain. It contained butter and Crisco both..the liquid was buttermilk. It had vanilla extract and almond extract too, and I don’t remember the almond being too strong. It was topped with cream cheese pecan icing, ..and baked in 3 9in pans. She (my late aunt) wanted to try it with chopped cherries in the icing as well. I don’t know if she ever did. If you (or I!) ever find the recipe, give it a try. It was the most tender, delicious white cake (outside of a bakery-haha-I agree!) that I have ever tasted…hope to find the recipe someday..this may be a close second..tee hee!

  7. Hi Amanda! I am super excited to try your recipe, however I live in Denver (5280 ft). Any suggestions for high altitude? I was going to decrease baking powder from 4 teaspoons to 3 teaspoons and add some extra flour, but I also don’t want the cake to end up being too dense or anything.

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