Vanilla Dream Cake

Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Additional Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
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This moist and tender Vanilla Dream Cake may only be 2 layers, but it’s so soft and fluffy, it’ll send you to cloud 9. The simplicity of this cake makes it the perfect light dessert to serve after a filling meal.

Fluffy Vanilla Cake With Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

This vanilla dream cake really is the perfect dessert for any occasion. The airy, delicate texture of the layers and the subtle, elegant flavor of the vanilla make this a great cake for more formal events like graduations and fundraisers. But with its smooth vanilla buttercream, it’s also a yummy, uncomplicated crowd-pleaser. It fits in just as well at fun and playful events like birthdays and barbecues.

Dream cakes are known for their pillowy softness and moist layers, and this cake is the perfect example. The vanilla flavor in the batter and the buttercream frosting is sweet, subtle and simple. It’s everything a vanilla cake should be.

A slice of yellow cake on a plate with two layers separated by white frosting

What is the Difference Between White Cake and Vanilla Cake?

All white cakes are vanilla cakes, but not all vanilla cakes can be called white cakes. This is because of a simple change in just one ingredient: eggs. A white cake is specifically a vanilla cake where the egg whites are used but the egg yolks are left out. This small change can make the color of your cake a purer white, but there’s also a subtle difference in the texture and flavor.

Since dream cake is meant to be moist and flavorful, leaving the egg yolks in is a must. It’s also true that white cakes often use oil instead of butter to keep the cake whiter, which further affects the taste and texture. You’ll notice that this dream cake uses both. The egg yolks and butter keep the layers wonderfully moist, fluffy, and flavorful.

A slice of vanilla dream cake on a plate in front of the whole cake with a slice missing

Ingredients You’ll Need

With this classic cake, vanilla is the headliner, but there are a few other important ingredients to pull together. You can find the amounts for everything by scrolling down to the recipe card.

For the Cake

  • Flour: Use all-purpose.
  • Baking Powder
  • Baking Soda: Yes, you need both! Never substitute one for the other.
  • Salt
  • Water: To dissolve the sugar and make the cake fluffier.
  • Sugar
  • Butter: Use unsalted. Changing the ratio of salt to baking soda can mess with the taste and texture.
  • Vegetable Oil
  • Vanilla Extract: Use clear vanilla for a whiter cake. Just note that the clear extract is a little less flavorful.
  • Vanilla Bean: Open the pod to scrape out the seeds. This is where the flavor comes from.
  • Eggs: Keep the yolks in.

For the Buttercream

  • Butter: Let it sit until it reaches room temperature.
  • Powdered Sugar
  • Vanilla Extract
  • Milk

Which Vanilla is Best for Cake?

Clear or imitation vanilla extract can keep your cake and frosting whiter, but using it means sacrificing something in the taste department. Imitation vanilla works just as well in recipes where vanilla is only a small and subtle part of a more complex flavor profile. In this cake though, vanilla is the star of the show, and using the imitation instead of the real thing can make the experience a little lackluster.

Vanilla beans are pretty pricey, so if you don’t have any on hand, don’t worry. You can skip the vanilla bean and still end up with a moist and delicious cake. Just remember, if you’re not using the vanilla bean, it’s even more important that you use a good-quality natural vanilla extract.

A frosted and decorated Vanilla Dream Cake on a cake stand

How to Make Vanilla Cake From Scratch

This simple cake is easy to make, and whipping up the buttercream while it’s baking can help you save time. Follow these steps for a perfectly sweet and tender vanilla cake.

Make the Cake Layers

  1. Prep Your Materials: Preheat your oven to 350°F. Spread butter or cooking spray on the inside of two round 8-inch cake pans. Set the pans aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  2. Dissolve Sugar and Butter: In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the water and sugar. Bring the water to a simmer and stir until the sugar dissolves, which should take about 1 minute. Remove the pot from the heat and add your butter, stirring until it melts.
  3. Whisk It All Together: Let the water, sugar and butter mixture cool completely. This takes about 20 minutes in the fridge. Then whisk in vegetable oil, vanilla extract and the scrapings from the vanilla bean. Beat in the eggs. Whisk in the dry ingredients until the mixture is smooth.
  4. Bake: Divide the batter evenly between the greased pans and bake both layers for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  5. Let It Cool: Let both layers cool in pans until they feel cool to the touch. Make sure they’re cooled through before you start to frost.

Mix Up the Buttercream

  1. Mix: In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, cream the butter until it reaches a light and fluffy texture. Add the powdered sugar 1 cup at a time and mix thoroughly after each addition.
  2. Beat in Vanilla and Milk: Increase the speed of your mixer to medium and add the vanilla extract. Add 2 tablespoons of milk and beat for 3 minutes. If your frosting is too thick, add the remaining 1 tablespoon of milk.

assemble the Cake

  1. Stack: Put the first layer on a cake plate or another large, flat dish and spread a thick layer of frosting on top. Stack the second layer on top of the first and apply a thin crumb coat on the top and sides. Pop the cake into the freezer for about 10 minutes, or until the crumb coat hardens.
  2. Frost: Apply one final thick and even layer of buttercream around the outside of the cake.

Can I Make It Ahead of Time?

This cake is really easy to make in advance. Just wait for both layers of the cake to cool completely before wrapping them in plastic wrap and keeping them in the fridge along with the frosting. That way, when you’re ready to make the cake, all you have to do is stack, frost and serve!

Close-up of a white frosted cake with multicolored sugar sprinkles decorating the edge

Tips for Success

Making this cake is a breeze! Follow these quick tips to reach light, fluffy perfection.

  • Temperature Matters: Be sure to leave your milk, eggs and butter out on the counter for half an hour or so before baking. You want everything to be at room temperature before it’s added. This is because baking is a chemical reaction. Ingredients that are too hot or cold can speed that reaction up or slow it down, which messes with your cake’s taste and texture.
  • Spoon Out Your Flour: Too much flour can leave your cake dense and flat. Use a spoon to add flour to your measuring cups instead of scooping it up directly. That way, it doesn’t get packed down and overfilled. Level it off by sliding the back of a knife gently across the top.
  • Check Your Baking Powder: The baking powder is what helps this cake to rise. If the batter doesn’t rise, then the cake will never reach its tender, fluffy potential. Make sure you check the expiration date of your baking powder before you use it.

Variation Ideas

One of the best things about this cake is its simplicity. Still, shaking things up can be exciting! Try some of these ideas to put your own twist on it.

  • Experiment With Flavors: If you wanted to have some fun, you could always add a flavored fruit filling or put some almond extract into the buttercream. You could also switch it up and try another flavor or kind of frosting. Adding a flavored simple syrup to the tops of your cake layers can help them stay moist for longer and add a fun new element in the process.
  • Dress It Up: Be creative! The cake in the images here has been bedazzled with confetti-colored sparkling sugar around the edges. More challenging ways to decorate include frosting flowers, honey or syrup drizzles, mirror glazes, and fun patterns made with scoring or piping tips. You can even use freshly cut flowers if you want something really fancy.

Storage Instructions

When wrapped in plastic wrap and kept in a sealable container, this cake can be kept at room temperature for up to 3 days unless it’s hot enough where you live that the frosting starts to melt. If you still have some left over after that, you can stick it in the fridge for another 3 days.

Keep the cake as whole as possible to lock the moisture in. Cold cake can taste dry, so make sure to leave the cake out on the counter to return to room temperature before you serve it again.

Does This Freeze Well?

Yes, it does! When wrapped tightly in plastic wrap and kept in a sealable freezer-safe container, this cake will last for up to 3 months. You can freeze the unfrosted cake layers, the whole cake, or even individual cake slices. Let them thaw on the counter overnight and then serve them when they reach room temperature.

A slice of vanilla dream cake on a plate in front of the whole cake with a slice missing
4.5 from 458 votes
Print Pin Recipe
Yield: 10

Vanilla Dream Cake

This moist and tender Vanilla Dream Cake may only be 2 layers, but it's so soft and fluffy, it'll send you to cloud 9. The simplicity of this cake makes it the perfect light dessert to serve after a filling meal.
Prep Time25 minutes
Cook Time25 minutes
Additional Time30 minutes
Total Time1 hour 20 minutes


For the Vanilla Dream Cake

  • 2 ¼ cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 vanilla bean, scraped
  • 2 large eggs

For the Vanilla Buttercream

  • 1 cup 2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • up to 3 tablespoons milk


Make the Cake Layers

  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter two 8 inch round cake pans. Set aside.In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
  • In a medium saucepan over medium high heat, combine water and sugar. Bring to a simmer and stir until sugar dissolves, about 1 minute. Remove from heat and add butter, stirring until melted.
  • Let cool completely (about 20 minutes in the fridge) and then whisk in vegetable oil, vanilla extract and the scrapings from the vanilla bean. Beat in eggs. Whisk in dry ingredients, until smooth.
  • Divide batter evenly between prepared pans and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  • Let cakes cool in pans until cool to the touch – then frost.

Make the Buttercream

  • In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, cream butter until light and fluffy. Add powdered sugar 1 cup at a time, mixing thoroughly after each addition.
  • Increase speed to medium and add vanilla extract. Add 2 tablespoons of milk and beat for 3 minutes. If your frosting is too thick, add remaining 1 tablespoon of milk.

Assemble the Cake

  • Assemble the 2 layers with a thick layer of frosting in between the layers. Then apply a thin crumb coat on the top and sides. Pop the cake into the freezer to harden the crumb coat for about 10 minutes.
  • Apply one final thick and even layer around the outside of the cake. Store in the fridge if not serving within the next couple of hours. Let cake come to room temperature before serving (let cake sit on counter for about 30 minutes before serving to warm up!).


To Store: Wrap cake in plastic wrap and keep in a sealable container at room temperature for up to 3 days. Can be transferred to the fridge for another 3 days of storage. Keep as whole as possible to lock moisture in. Return to room temperature before serving.
To Freeze: Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and freeze in a sealable freezer-safe container for up to 3 months. Freeze the unfrosted cake layers, the whole cake, or individual cake slices. Let thaw on counter overnight and serve at room temperature.


Serving: 1, Calories: 548kcal, Carbohydrates: 101g, Protein: 5g, Fat: 14g, Saturated Fat: 6g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 7g, Cholesterol: 66mg, Sodium: 504mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 77g


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306 Responses
  1. Jessica

    Could I add sprinkles to the batter for funfetti or is it too thin to hold them throughout? This looks amazing. I have been looking for a vanilla cake recipe with water as the chocolate one I have with water always comes out perfect but I never could figure out what to exchange the cocoa for.

  2. The Toy Box

    I use cake flour as opposed to all purpose flour. Would I still use the same amount of flour that you use with all purpose?

    1. The Toy Box

      Never mind. I think I found a good ratio. I used 2 1/4 cups cake flour PLUS an additional 8 tablespoons. Baked at 375 for 14 minutes – WOW! What a flavor! Yes, the batter was still very soupy, and I was very skeptic, but they turned out great. Going to let them cool, and see if the fluffy moist consistency stays. Also have another batch in the oven going for 20 minutes on 350. Will update with what my final outcome is. As of now though, great recipe!

      1. The Toy Box

        350 for 20 minutes seems the better option. At 375 I got the volcano effect that others mentioned. At 350 I got perfectly rounded tops. Going to see how they hold up in the moist department overnight. BUT, I will say this – While these are good, they have a very similar flavor and mouth feel to that of cornbread.

        1. The Toy Box

          I feel like I’ve taken over this post….

          After sitting over night, the cupcakes definitely firmed up, and got a little dense – Just a little. They retained their moistness though.

          The very noticeable thing about these is that they definitely smell like vanilla – In fact, they’re almost a little too strong in the scent department. I dare say you could leave a dozen out in your house in lieu of an air freshener.

          In handing out a dozen around the office, everyone commented how good they were – Which is the most important thing out of all of this. If they don’t taste good, it doesn’t matter what they smell like.

          This recipe is definitely going into my rotation. The one thing I’m considering is adding half a cup of vanilla pudding in place of 1/2 a cup of flour. Perhaps this will help them stay light and fluffy.

  3. Brandi

    Wondering what kind of texture is the cake supposed to have? Dense or light and fluffy? Most cakes with all purpose flour tend to be a bit more dense. Thanks.

  4. Melinda

    Hello Jessica, Kathy Pollack from Noble Pig blog, posted your beautiful cake today. I live in England so I need to know if the all purpose flour you were using was bleached flour or unbleached flour. ( we don’t have any bleached flour here…banned in 1997. I have ways around it though.)
    I can see this is quite the controversial cake from the comments ( Let the criticism roll off your back.. No one has paid to get your recipe!) I am willing to gamble a few ingredients to see if I can recreate the dream cake. I admire your curiosity and tenacity to experiment with cake baking. Consider yourself a baking explorer!

  5. Celyn

    Is the batter supposed to be runny and soupy? I followed the recipe to a T and it came out badly. Hopefully, you’re able to answer my question.

  6. Valerie Walker

    Very disappointed with this recipe. It is not at all fluffy as shown but sad and heavy. I followed the recipe exactly but did bake for another ten minutes. The batter was very thin. I have made chocolate cake this way and it was very good but I don’t think we can even eat this one.

  7. Lisa

    How would I make this cake with srf please?  I have been dying to find a fluffy moist white cake as beautiful as this and I believe that I just found it!

  8. Dee

    Eating this cake as I write this review. It really is quite dreamy, with a wonderful vanilla flavour and moist texture. I have a new go-to vanilla layer cake!

    A few things to keep in mind. The batter is quite runny – don’t be put off or add extra flour. I found it hard to get the cakes out of the pans (I buttered and floured). Using an icing spatula helped me to successfully lift the cakes out of the pans. I also found it strange that the cake didn’t rise evenly, despite rotating the pans. This has never happened before in my oven. These are small issues and they would not deter me from making this cake again. Once baked, the cake speaks for itself. 

  9. Jasmine

    Hi! I want to make this cake but I would like to know if I can substitute the all purpose flour with cake flour? And if so what are the proper measurements for the cake flour and the baking soda and baking powder to the cake flour measurements? Also how much vanilla extract should we use if we do not have vanilla beans? Thank you!

  10. Karina

    Hi, Iam so happy to find your post, Iam loving your recipe and I haven’t try it. How sweet is this cake?
    I have to do a Tres Leches Cake ( 3 milks cake ) or wet cake, do you think that if I cut the sugar to 1 1/2 cups on the cake will afecct the flavor? Tres Leches Milk is sweet and I do not want a super sweet cake. What do you recommend? 

  11. Sonya Gildred

    One more comment I think is important to make that I forgot to mention is definately use parchment to line your pan with.  I did notice the cake doesn’t completely separate from the pan when nearly cooled down.  I sprayed a metal pan with cooking butter spray and the bottom only stuck to the pan.  I was not looking this time for aesthetic appeal, so I just put the cake back into the pan and frosted the top only.  The top only was definitely enough to frost using the frosting recipe that’s given to go with the cake.  Sweetness is personal likeness, and Jessica does say she loves lots of sweetness :)  Also my website was incorrect in my first comment.  If you click on my name now in this comment you will find my family homeschool website now, hopefully ;)  The website is under construction, but if you are patient, I should have much content added to the website over time to look at, and I hope what I post will be found useful to anyone who homeschools or is thinking of homeschooling :-)

  12. Sonya Gildred

    Awesome cake!  I almost did not dare comment on my results due to the negative feedback being given, namely the comment that if I loved this recipe I was then a liar and a friend of the baker making false positive comments about this recipe. I assure you I am a complete stranger to all here, including the baker.  Anyway, I did a one layer 9×12 pan Birthday Cake for my husband.  The kids even helped out.  I gave the cake 10 extra minutes since the pan I used was larger and hence needed more baking time.  I think I will make this again using next time cornstarch.  Does anyone know what ingredient should be omitted if I use cornstarch?  I normally use pudding in my cake recipes for moistness and believe me the results are always a moist cake.  If you thought this cake smells and even tasted eggy, then completely cool the sugar water first, and try to add a few Tablespoons of premade Vanilla pudding to your mixture as one resolve to any lack of flavor you thought the recipe had.  There are actually so many different ways to alter this recipe to your liking. The only thing you probably won’t be able to most of all alter is the heaviness of the cake.  I loved this recipe, and it has become one of my favorite keepers as far as making the basic recipe, but making a few changes to it every time I go to make it, until I find the changes I prefer to make to this recipe that will eventually put my personal mark on it.  I think the best kind of bakers out there would not so quickly discard this recipe, and I encourage novices to experiment with this recipe as well. I have never used water before in a cake recipe, but it works..water evaporates during cooking, and this technique of using water really does make this cake very moist as an end result.  I used food coloring for the frosting adding 3 drops of red and 3 drops of blue to make a purple color frosting since my husbands favorite color is purple.  The cake was so good.  If anything the frosting was just too sweet and my husband and I agreed the cake was delicious without needing such a sweet frosting.  We both thought whipped topping and fruit would be a great topping for this heavy moist cake.  I Again this cake is delicious without any topping at all, and served with coffee or tea any time of the day, and to make for any kind of event.  The cake recipe without the frosting gets 5 stars in my recipe book!

  13. Katherine

    It must be a matter of taste. My daughter and I think it is gross, but my husband and son are gobbling it up.  I will be baking another cake because this week one was supposed to be for my daughter’s birthday.  Oh ours looked like a brain in the miidle too.

  14. Bree

    So Sorry, Every Sunday I make a cake this Sunday I wanted vanilla,I found this recipe after 3 hours of research,I have all the ingredients and this was different. This cake tastes like cornbread and smells like egg,I will never use a recipe off of this site again. 

  15. Deb

    Didn’t work for me either :(
    Cake looked and smelled amazing but when I cut it wasn’t baked through even though the stick came out clean.

  16. Kristin

    This cake is amazing… however, I just “buttered the cake pans” as it stated and cooled the cake in the pans as it said, but when I went to pop them out… they stuck horribly. I should have listened to my inner voice saying “parchment paper your pans!!!” Ugh.

  17. Megan

    I LOVE this cake. I’ll be making it again for my son’s 4th birthday in a couple of weeks. A Ninja Turtle will replace the beautiful sugar sprinkles, but it will still be amazing! ;)

  18. Tanya

    Yikes. I was hoping this was going to be an AMAZING vanilla cake. Tried it although I saw the disclaimer that some reviewers were having issues, and yes issues I did have. The cake is not light and fluffy at all! The consistency is more of a weird dense spongy cake. Vanilla cakes technically need the butter, and aren’t oil based cakes. Will definitely be searching for another recipe that uses full butter. This was a watery mess.

  19. Deborah

    So after making this recipe again for the 2nd time tonight. I have figured out the ratio. Add 1 cup flour if using cake flour and sift it.

    1. A woman holding a camera standing in front of some shelves.

      I have not tried cake flour, but the commenter above you has and said it worked great. Hope you enjoy the cake!

  20. Deborah

    I think I figured out the issue with the “possessed” cake. I made it with Swans Down cake flour, sifted and had to add a little more cake flour. All Purpose Flour is denser and could explain the issue. BTW, Love…… this cake recipe!

  21. Isabelle

    I’ve made this cake many times, i normally do a layer of strawberry purée and whipped cream in between the cake layers and it’s fabulous. Best vanilla cake recipe there is! A lot of work but soooo worth it.

  22. John

    I’m making this right now for my friend’s birthday tomorrow. The batter is VERY wet, which makes me a little nervous…I’m following the recipe to a T. I’ll let you know how it goes.

  23. Lorraine

    This cake looks amazing! I’m just wondering if it I can freeze the layers? Will it taste and look the same? I want to use it for a wedding cake and I’ll need to make the cake days ahead. Thanks for your great recipes!

  24. Abi

    Why would you have me preheat the oven and mix the dry ingredients first when I should be doing the sugar water with butter first? While it cools I can pre heat and then mix dry ingredients.

  25. Sarah

    Second time I have made this beautiful cake, but I can’t help notice the ads telling me to cut my belly fat while I’m lusting over this luxurious cake!!

  26. lilo

    Just tried it and it came out terrible. Not sure what I did wrong. It came out an oily mess. Just an fyi, the warning about it not working for everyone is no joke lol. Pictures of steps and how the batter should look maybe would have helped.

  27. Brittney

    So I made this cake and it was amazing! Thank you so much for posting it. I was wondering if you have ever made cake balls with this recipe? I am going to make them and was just wondering what you thought. Thanks!

    1. A woman holding a camera standing in front of some shelves.

      Glad you liked it Brittney! I have not tired making cake balls with it, however I would love to know your results if you try! :-)

  28. Jim

    This was a great cake recipe my only change if I were to make it again would be to grease and flour the pan, or use grease, flour and parchment paper.

  29. marta cubillo

    I will try making this cake tomorrow. I am making my sons wedding cake for the 19th of december and i am trying new vanilla cake recipes. i am an expert at chocolate but i have never found a recipe for vanilla yellow cake since my grandmother and i lost her book with her recipe. Yours calls for regular all purpose flour all the other ones i have come across and tried said cake flour. For the wedding cake would that make a difference with your recipe? thx marta

  30. Jamlen

    Made this recipe and everyone loved it. There’s a request to have it in the next holiday gathering. Question: Can I use a bundt pan instead, and if so, how long should it bake for? Many thanks!

  31. Audrie

    Disclaimer: I know this is meant for cake, not what I used it for.

    However, this makes some of the best mini doughnuts I’ve ever tasted! I bought a mini doughnut maker and it suggested using cake mixes as an option. I began prowling the web looking for a recipe which called for ingredients I had on hand.

    This was perfect and it made the BEST mini doughnut! I was going to put a sugar glaze on them, but didn’t think I needed it. I scarfed down the first 7 like a shark documentary. It was savage. I might have been dangerous if someone got between me and the doughnut maker at that point.

    Thankfully no one did, and nobody got hurt.

    TL:DR – this is an amazingly delicious and versatile recipe.

  32. Tasha

    This is my absolute favorite cake (I’ve been looking for a while). I now need to perfect it. When I make it, it falls. Can anyone help me with making this cake perfect for high altitude? I’m assuming that’s the problem, or maybe the seal on my oven. I’m in Denver so I’m a mile high. Thoughts?

  33. AM

    These did not come out for me and I am a baker. I own a bakery business but I like to try out other recipes. I made these into cupcakes and it was a fail. I thought the ratio of liquid to dry seemed a bit off but tried them anyway. The batter ended up just being extremely thin. They barely rose, just kinda flowed over the rim a little and then stuck to the pan. They were very moist, but almost too moist as I couldn’t get them out of the pan without smashing them. Wouldn’t even stand up on their own. Maybe would work better as a cake but I feel they would probably fall apart if I tried adding frosting. They made the house smell good though.

  34. Sharla Eley

    Hi! I’ve made this cake twice now for a recipe over at laurenslatest for strawberry layer cake. The whole thing was delicious and has become the favorite of my whole family. My 4 year old is requesting it at his birthday party, and I’m just wondering if instead of two round cake pans can I make this in a 9×13? Any idea how that would come out? Thanks!!!

    1. A woman holding a camera standing in front of some shelves.

      Hi Sharla! Glad you love it! I am sure it would bake just fine in a 9×13, however i do not have a cooking time frame for you. Just keep an eye on it and I am sure it would bake the same as it normally does! :-)

  35. Kimberly

    I made this recipe and the cake turned out great. Fantastic taste and great, moist crumb… but I did it slightly differently. I used the same ingredients, for the most part, but I didn’t heat anything on the top of the stove. I simply creamed the butter, sugar and egg (all allowed to come to room temp before creaming) in a large bowl, added the oil, salt and vanilla (I didn’t have any vanilla bean left, but I did use an excellent Madagascar double strength vanilla) and then used room temp water with dry milk added (the only ingredient different from the recipe above) alternated with the remaining dry ingredients. Had great results.

  36. leonie

    I’m stunned at the bakers’ who’ve left negative comments. I was back and forth regarding this recipe because of those comments, as well as the ones saying there was a horrible egg taste and smell.

    Long story short, it’s the best tasting and most most vanilla cake I’ve ever had. If you just let the mixture cool, before you add the eggs you won’t have any problems. I met it sit in the fridge a lot longer than 20 minutes. I also didn’t worry about how runny it was. Mind you, I halved the recipe and made cupcakes instead. 14 minutes, at 375 like someone else said. I will definitely make this my go to recipe. Going to make a cake next. Thanks so much!!!!!

    1. A woman holding a camera standing in front of some shelves.

      So glad you enjoyed it Leonie! :-) Like I said, this is the most controversial recipe on my site. I don’t know why people get so many different results, but it works great for me every time. Happy it worked for you too!

  37. Caleb

    Okay, I am studying to be a pastry chef, and I have some answers that may help y’all out. Firstly, this recipe is basically a chocolate cake recipe without the chocolate. Many chocolate cake recipes use boiling water for extra moistness and because it brings out the chocolate flavor. Therefore, do not worry about the liquidity of the batter, it is fine. Make sure that you grease, flour, AND put a piece of parchment paper in you pan to ensure that the cake does not stick. People have said that their cake has turned out with an eggy texture, and that is because their eggs started to curdle, or cook, when they added them to the syrup. What you need to do is temper the eggs. Tempering is a way of bringing the temperature of the eggs up to that of the syrup without the eggs cooking. Pour a tiny amount of the hot syrup into the eggs while whisking the eggs vigorously. Add a little more, and then pour the eggs in with the remaining syrup. Hope this helps!

  38. Katie

    Tried it twice. Followed directions to the T…. Didn’t work. Cake tasted terrible, and had a consistency like cornbread… won’t be dreaming about this one… sorry.

  39. Melissa

    I made this recipe into cupcakes last month for my daughter’s birthday party and everyone insisted they were the best cupcakes they had ever eaten!! Upon filling the cupcake papers, I had wondered if I made a mistake with a measurement, as the batter was extremely thin, yet upon baking it, they came out absolutely perfect and amazingly delicious!!! I do not recall the exact time i left the cupcakes in the oven, but just do the toothpick test. The only difference was I used heavy cream for the buttercream, rather than milk. Make this recipe into cupcakes! You will love them!

  40. Ap

    Cake came out of the oven ok and released easily from my pans. However like more than a few people have said the cake taste eggy and acidic (baking soda flavor). I really wish I would’ve had greater success with the flavor but I’m just going to stick with good ole Betty Crocker.

  41. Ap

    After reading the comments I think what would be helpful is if you actually show your process–especially what the batter should look like. It’s obvious that whatever you’re doing is not being received by us the readers. The final product looks great but once you read the recipe and actually attempt to make the cake you see that this isn’t the normal cream butter and sugar recipe. I know that when I saw the runny batter I immediately thought I did something wrong because no where in the directions does it say ‘batter will be runny’. My cake is in the oven now and I can only hope the baking fairies are in my favor. Otherwise I’ll stick with Betty Crocker.

  42. Luana

    Hey! I was just wondering why you’ve used baking soda in this cake, if there aren’t any acidic ingredients? What gets the baking soda element producing it’s bubbles?

  43. danni

    Hi there I’m making a cake for my girl friends sons birthday and I want to do 3 layers one 13″×9″ then 8″×8″ and the third 6″×2″ I’m wondering if this will work with your dream cake it really does look amazing

  44. Erika

    This recipe was not a dream, it was a nightmare. It was just plain bad. The final product was extremely dense almost like cornbread or a pound cake and the edges were crusty – sugary or honey-like. The cakes sagged down in the middle and did not remove easily from the pans, even though the pans had been greased and floured. I am high altitude, 4700, so I don’t know if that was the problem. I won’t be trying this one again. Ever.

  45. Bianca

    The Cake looks fantastic and really delicious and i wanted to make it exactly like that.. well i just took it out of the oven and i don’t know what this is ^^ there’s like a 2 centimeter oil layer on the top and the ground is kinda fluffy but on the other side also too moist :(

    I’m very disappointed and i think i’m not going to try it again because it’s a wasting of products. But gratulation to the people who made it!:)

  46. Christy

    HI! I need to make a 1/4 sheet cake. Can this recipe be doubled/tripled? and y an chance do you know about how many cups the batter is? Thank you!

  47. Tricia

    Hi! thank you for sharing your recipe. I would love to try it out. I wonder if you have the recipe in grams? Thanks!

  48. Isabel

    Awesome moist cake. Read the recipe and follow the directions. I live at sea level. The result was amazing! The cake can be eaten without any frosting. Made my own butter cream and since it is on the sweet side, next time I’ll like to reduce the sugar content of the cake batter. Would cutting 1/4 cup of sugar alter the results?

  49. CherrieMoore

    I’ve made this dream cake three times and the chocolate version twice, and each time I’ve had the same fabulous results. The recipe is a keeper, and my non cake-eating husband is constantly requesting it. I added fresh strawberries to the frosting once with great results. Thanks for the work putting this recipe together. It is the dreamiest of dream cakes!

  50. Kay

    So it did take some time to bake, well over 40mins however, Thanks Jessica this cake came out wonderful. Waiting to ice it up, serve and eat, yum!

  51. Kay

    This cake us in the oven, im very concerned how it will turn out, I found the batter incredibly runny. Will keep you posted

  52. Brianna

    Hi! I am getting ready to make this cake for my sister-in-law’s bday tonight. I have always had the problem with homemade cake being too dense. I’ve read using cake flour helps with that. Have you made this with cake flour? Should I stick to exactly what you have in the recipe?

  53. Amber

    I have to make a cake for a camp I am helping with tomorrow. I am trying to avoid the store. Am I able to skip the vanilla beans? I am also out of unsalted butter, do you think if I skipped the salt and just added salted butter it would taste ok?

  54. John

    I have never liked Vanilla cake/cupcakes, until I get to taste this vanilla cupcakes in a wedding, and ever since them, I have tried my best to search for a recipe similar to what i have tasted, the first attempt was a fail, until I found this recipe :) and my search for a vanilla cake recipe is over.. (BTW, the cake that I have tasted was frosted with a marshmallow/boiled icing….. I had some hesitations if I’ll should give this cake a try or not because of the feedback, and I finally gave it a try and see it for myself…… and now I don’t understand why others were not successful because mine was a success and an instant hit to my friends. The only thing I didn’t follow was the frosting, I used an ermine frosting :)

    I think it really is important to cool down the sugar/water mixture before proceeding to the next step, to prevent the eggy taste. Also, we have different oven and my cakes are bake half of the time instructed. I also used parchment paper at the bottom of my pan for an easy release, and I cool down the cake completely before removing it from the pan….I have read somewhere that this cake taste even better the day after baking (I cut the top portion of the cake after cooling down and It had a strong “baking soda/powder taste” and to my surprise, the cake didn’t have that taste the following day :)

    Next project is Banana Cake :)

  55. Maria

    I can wait to make this Fabius cake! If I want to use (2) 10 inch pans…how should I alter the recipe?

  56. Julie

    Correction to my previous comment:

    In my third pointer, I said oil and vinegar. I’m so sorry! I meant to say oil and vanilla extract. :)

  57. Julie

    Just tried this recipe using gluten-free flour blend – I’m so happy to report that it was hugely successful! Thank you!!

    If anyone wants to make this a gluten-free cake, here’s what I did:
    * I used cup4cup gluten-free flour blend (1:1 ratio)
    * I let the sugar mixture simmer for about 3 minutes before taking off the heat to cool.
    * I didn’t let my water+butter cool completely – maybe 10minutes or so. It was still warm when I added oil and vinegar and started using it to temper eggs.
    * I tempered my eggs by whisking the water+butter+oil+vanilla mixture one tablespoon at a time to well-beaten eggs. This is just how I was taught to temper egg mixtures in school.
    * My cake batter was not runny. I would say it was more like a slightly runny pastry cream consistency. When the wet ingredients were thoroughly mixed in, the batter was very slightly elastic, which means the xanthan gum in the flour mix has been activated. I highly recommend that you use a gluten free flour blend that has xanthan gum in it or that you add xanthan gum in addition to your gluten free flour mix. Also, try to use one that has a higher starch content (tapioca starch, corn starch, white rice flour, potato starch, etc). I love using cup4cup brand for cakes and pastries.
    * My cake was done at 23min in 350 F – toothpick inserted came out clean at the 23min mark so I took it out of the oven to cool (but I have an oven thermometer and most ovens are off by 50 F so you might need to bake longer)
    * I also made this cake with 1/2 the amount of sugar called for – the result was still an amazingly moist cake. I’m a pastry chef who loathes sugar so my second try always gets 1/2 cut of sugar in most recipes I attempt.

    Happy baking everyone! :)

  58. Caleb

    Hi, I have been looking for a vanilla cake recipe for some time, and although i like the one i’ve been using, it hasn’t been super moist. I just finished making this recipe and it certainly is moist, so that is good. However, although i generously greased and floured the pan, the top of the cake stuck and therefore the cake broke in half upon removal from the pan. I realize this is an isolated incident, so that isn’t a major issue. My only other issue is that this cake, in my opinion, has no flavor. It just tastes bland. Maybe it’s because I didn’t use the bean, i just doubled the extract. Finally, i realize this thread is old, but I just thought I’d post my thoughts.

    1. Caleb

      A correction to my previous comment, as i just read through the more recent comments, I see other people have had the same issues. I do not recommend this recipe because of the lack of flavor and trouble of getting it out of the pan.

  59. lin

    I followed the recipe exactly and it turned out terrible. looked and tasted horrible . Wosrt cake I’ve ever made, ruined my sisters birthday :(

  60. Jane

    I read the comments and trusted that the butter would be sufficient to get the cake out of the pan. I am now stuck with a cake that has completely fallen apart and will be unsalvageable for my daughter’s 30th birthday tonight. Guess I’ll go buy one at Nothing Bundt Cakes!

  61. Kim

    Hi! I’m currently making this cake right now. Question…. I have the water and butter cooling in the fridge. Does it really have to be cooled completely? Its still warm and I’m very impatient to mix all the other ingredients together…. very busy preparing for a party!!! Is there any negative effect to mixing the rest if the water mixture is still warm?

    Can’t wait till it’s done!!!

  62. KD

    Okay, where did i go wrong? I really want to like this recipe but the cake just doesn’t taste right/feel right. I made 2 seperate batches of the batter (on the same day) and each one came out too runny. So i added an additional 1/4 cup of flour to bring the consistency a little closer to normal (i still thought it was too runny). I will say however, i used a 9″ round cake pan and i used a cake pan spray with added flour in case those are critical differences. Each cake (total of 4) tasted like they were under cooked but felt like solid bread. I had them in the oven at 350 for 30-32 minutes each… any suggestions or common errors I should keep in mind? I want to taste the dream!

  63. Cassie

    Not sure about others but from the mobile version, it’s easy to look at the amount of butter for the buttercream instead of the batter while making the batter. That may be where the issue is coming from considering it’s over twice the amount. That could cause some issues for sure. Just a thought because I made that mistake.

  64. Dannielle Chuppe

    Hello, My 10 year old daughter and I made this cake expecting it to be amazing. Though, after we made the cake we were pretty dissapointed. The cake was bland and had no flavor. It had the taste of a gingerbread cookie.
    We triple checked the ingredients and everything was exactly how you said to do it. The problem may be is that we have no experience in baking, Lol.
    Though the cake was not as good as expected the icing was DELICIOUS! ;)

  65. Dannielle Chuppe

    Hello, I made this cake with my 10 year old daughter. I was expecting it to be amazing, but I was dissapointed. The cake was bland and had the taste of a cookie. We double checked the ingredients and we didn’t miss anything. Although the cake wasn’t that great the icing was DELICIOUS ;)

  66. Ruli Choudhury

    Hey Jessica,

    I am pretty excited to make the vanilla dream cake . It sure looks great to me . I have tried something similar with chocolate too . That was also moist and the batter was very runny . But after I baked it , It was kinda sticky but the taste was fantastic , even the texture was decent .

    Can you tell me if I can avoid that with this cake or are there no chances of the baked cake sticking to the cake tin ?

    I am planning to make it for a friend’s birthday . And I want it to be perfect like yours turned out to be.

    Also, how much vanilla extract should I use if I dont have vanilla beans ? Does it have any major effect on the cake if I used the former ?

    Thank you for your help and your recipe . :)

  67. maria

    If you are on tight budget, do not even try this recipe. I feel so sad by how much I’ve wasted. Money on ingredients and now a huge cake which no one wants to eat. :( Honestly a good recipe should work for everyone from an amateur to a professional baker. It should not be only to selected people. :(

  68. dcuff

    Yuck! I just made this cake and its the worst cake ive ever made! While I was making it I didnt realize that the recipe called for water and no milk. When I got to that point I wondered what kind of cake is made from water but I still continued. Its a good thing I tasted the cake before I frosted it because that would have been a total waste of frosting! Im mad I wasted my other ingredients also! This cake is going straight to the garbage.

  69. ginadel

    After reading the mixed reviews, I was a bit skeptical about this cake. Took it out of the oven, frosted it and half of it is gone. Fluffy but a little dense, not to sweet and amazingly moist- my perfect yellow cake! I am so happy with this recipe. It’s delicious and beautiful! I can’t wait to try the chocolate version!

  70. Pandydo

    Made this cake today for my sisters birthday. I didnt get very thick layers but made 4 layers from two cake mixes. This allowed me to do different coloured layers rainbow cake. The cake is definitely a dream cake. Its lovely and moist and taste absolutely amazing!

  71. Wanda Buttner

    Made this cake yesterday for my birthday – served it about 5 hrs after baking it ….. while it was good I thought it had a strong baking soda or powder taste however today when I tasted it, it was much much better – the flavors had really jelled and made it a very tasty cake …. so next time I will make it the day before …..

  72. Linda

    Tried this today. Cut the recipe in half and it made 15 regular size cupcakes. The batter is definately watery but I agree with the author that it did turn into a cake. It is a spongey cake and it is moist and soft. I paired mine with chocolate buttercream frosting. Mine did not have an eggy taste but after dissolving the sugar and melting the butter I transferred to a bowl to thoroughly cool rather than leaving in the pot. I also used vanilla bean paste and the flavor was nice. Thanks for adding another vanilla recipe to my arsenal.

  73. Cheryl

    This was awesome! Took it to Easter dinner with fresh strawberries between the layers and got all compliments. I followed some of the recommendations from reviewer 177. I cooked the simple sugar for about 5 minutes, added the butter and then allowed it to cool completely before continuing. I did wrap the layers and refrigerate overnight. Frosted it today with a butter/cream cheese/powdered sugar frosting. Everyone asked for the recipe.

  74. Ashley

    My cake tasted a bit eggy too. Maybe I should have let my sugar/water mixture cool longer. I waited 10 minutes, but it was still fairly warm. The cake was very moist though. I loved the texture. I served it with strawberries and whipped cream and it was very good :)

    Thanks for sharing!

  75. Betsy

    After finding the recipe, I was so excited to make it for my daughter’s boyfriend’s birthday yesterday. As it was the first time I tried this recipe, I made sure to follow it step by step. First, the cake stuck to the pan. I figured I could easily cut it in half, then reassemble on the plate and camoflouge with the icing. However, when removing it from the pan it left behind some crumbs, which my daughter and I tried. The flavor is awful! There was virtually no vanilla flavor and it barely tasted sweet. As it was for my future son-in-law, I wanted his opinion. Both he and my daughter encouraged me to throw it away. What went wrong? The picture makes it look absolutely delicious. I was so disapointed!

  76. Betsy

    This cake looks delicious! I bought vanilla bean. I followed the directions to the letter. It was the absolute most disgusting cake I think I have ever had. My daughter and her boyfriend told me to toss it! What did I do wrong??

  77. Adriana & Diana

    Hi, Jessica:

    My mom fell in love with your awesome looking cake and we decided to give it a try for my dad’s birthday. I had a few problems with it, though, and I wondered if you could help indicate what was it that went wrong with me. It didn’t rise properly and the bottom tasted a little gamey. I used salted butter instead of unsalted, just half of a vanilla bean and an imitation vanilla extract (a dark one), which I didn’t think would make much of a difference and I was wondering if it does. I panicked a bit when the batter came out runny, but I read in the comments above that it is normal. However, my batter had tiny lumps of flour all over it. Is that also normal or was I supposed to keep mixing it until it was completely smooth? We really want to master this recipe and thank you so much for your help.

  78. Caitlin

    I’m glad I read through most of the comments to get tips for this recipe.
    Anyone who’s cake was eggy, you most likely cooked them in the sugar/water mixture. Reading the recipe part about a simmer, simmering means it’s barely hot, just wisps of steam with few bubbles. If you have bubbles it’s too hot and cooling for 5 minutes isn’t long enough and will cook your eggs.
    After that, I’m pretty excited for this cake!!!!

  79. Jill

    Success. After reading all the comments prior to making, I did make a few tweaks to the method (know this is risky in baking, but given some of the comments, I thought I had nothing to lose).

    Firstly, the method said allow the sugar to disolve in the water, about 1 min only. I let mine simmer for a good 5, continuously stirring. This evaporated some of the water and makes a runny but syrupy consistency. My batter in the end end was slightly runnier than ‘normal’ but it wasn’t AT ALL waterly and some people have said, just like a good pancake batter consistency.

    Secondly, there were many people saying their cake was really ‘eggy’. The method states to allow to sugar-water to cool for 5 min before whisking in egg. I left it for about 2hrs. To COMPLETELY cool. When I say cool I mean COOL. Egg actually cooks at quite low temps – and 5 min is not enough time for simmering sugar-water to cool down.

    Thirdly, I beat together the oil, egg and vanilla and let it sit for a while before slowly adding it to the (cool) sugar-water. I don’t actually know why, but it just felt like a good move.

    Also – I used 3 small eggs instead of two large. This worked out fine.

    The cake sure is moist. I didn’t have vanilla bean, and didn’t want to over do the vanilla extract so I just put the tablespoon plus a tiny dash – wish I added a tiny bit more, the cake is lacking ever so slightly in flavour. I don’t mind as it will be frosted with a Baileys buttercream and salted caramel popcorn which is where the flavour is at!

    Happy with the cake :) and to all those reading this that might be put off by the negative comments – don’t be! it really is a great cake. Just think logically about the method and use some common baking skills and it will be fine. Thanks!

  80. Jill

    Well this is interesting. All these varying comments! Could go for a tried and true recipe, but I’m after something nice and moist, and given the varying comments I’m just curious to see if I can make it work. Making it tonight – will let you know how it works out (I’m in Australia, so I really hope there isn’t an ‘altitude’ problem haha).

  81. Gabby Iwan

    I followed the recipe exactly twice and the cake turn out awful both times. I was extremely disappointed :(

  82. Nit

    Its a beautiful cake you have there in the picture! :) I was making a strawberry, chocolate ganache topped vanilla cake for my husband’s birthday. Unfortunaltely, my cake didn’t turn out the same way. I don’t know what I did wrong, but my cakes weren’t fluffy, it was moist and a bit sticky. :( Thankfully the strawberry filling, chocolate ganache and pocky sticks here and there covered up for the flaw in the cake. Can you think of why this could’ve happened?

  83. jen

    I’m a baker and always looking for a good vanilla or white cake. I was exited to try this one,especially after reading all the reviews,and with the water/sugar addition. I followed the recipe closely,and when I removed it from the oven it smelled eggy,but I cooled it and made a snickerdoodle icing and assembled it. Egg smell dissipated and everyone loved it,it was very moist. I don’t love love it, my quest for the perfect vanilla cake will continue,This was good,the flavor was just different,and the crumb while moist was a wet kind of moist. Hard to describe,but that’s what I found with this recipe.

  84. bri

    i made this cake and the mix was very runny. then i put it in the oven and within about 15 mins it had brown/burning bubbles on the top though i pulled the draw out and it wobbled like it was a wave. it ended up taking about 30 to 45 minuets to cook in total then i cut one of them to check that it was cooked properly (which it was) and it was brown like caramel and tasted like caramel i am in Australia but i used all the same indigents just admitted the vanilla pod. all purpose flour is the same as plain flour right?

  85. brad

    Based on great success and compliments of the banana dream and pumpkin dream cakes, I decided to try this one. Unfortunately, I wish I had read the comments first, because I agree with those who were hugely disappointed with this recipe. I followed instructions to the letter and both cakes stuck to the pan and were destroyed upon removal, but it didn’t really matter, because they tasted so awful, I threw them out anyway. The “cornbread” and “eggy” comments are spot on. I even used two vanilla beans (what a waste), and I couldn’t taste any vanilla. It was seriously the worst cake I have ever baked.

  86. Trish

    Made this cake today . It did not turn out at all. Terrible . I followed the recipe word for word . I would not make it again or recommend it to anyone else

  87. Bailee

    I just made this cake yesterday, exactly as instructed, and it turned out beautifully. I don’t know where other people are going wrong, but it was incredibly moist and delicious, lots of vanilla flavor…The readers have to be messing up somewhere. I did the same vanilla frosting, only I subbed half the butter with cream cheese. Excellent!

  88. Isabel

    My mother shared this recipe with me because she made and loved it. Mine didn’t come out right, it’s all bumpy on top and does not have a strong vanilla taste, feels kind of oily. I’m wondering if it’s because I only had salted butter and went ahead and used that? That’s the only change I made so I’m thinking that must be it.

  89. Daphne Pudnez

    Did not turn out. Tasted like nothing to be blunt. Had to throw away. Waste of ingredients.

  90. daphne

    Nothig “dreamy or fluffy” about this cake. Meant for the trash. Tasteless. DON”T WASTE YOUR INGREDIENTS!

  91. Caitlan

    This recipe is a glorified pancake. I would never recommend this, except maybe to someone I disliked. Do not waste your time.

  92. Leora


    I am looking for the perfect recipe for my daughters birthday cake. I have searched many online and this one doesn’t have any bad reviews so far.

    I wasn’t able to read ALL of them so I have a few questions.

    1. Can I used unsalted margarine instead of butter?
    2. I don’t have vanilla bean, can I just add more vanilla extract?
    3. I don’t care if its very yellow or white I’m looking for taste – can I just use regular vanilla extract? (not “pure”)?
    4. Do you suggest I bake it on convection? I usually bake everything on convection so should I lower the temp? or just use the regular oven?



  93. Natalie

    Sounds like a great cake. Can I use cake flour instead of all purpose flour?

  94. Lexi

    First off, I’m not a fan of vanilla cake. Every vanilla cake I’ve ever had or made was a MAJOR disappointment. However, I LOVE LOVE LOVE your pumpkin and chocolate dream cakes, so all the negative comments made me want to try this one. (Call me crazy?) At first I was going to half the batter and make it into cupcakes, but then I figured I wouldn’t get the same results as everyone else unless I made a layer cake. Plus what’s better than having a gorgeous layer cake sitting around? ;) So yesterday I had some spare time and decided to give it a go.

    A few things:
    I didn’t alter the recipe for the cake, I did however use my own butter cream recipe, just because it’s a tried and true. I also changed the tempering method slightly, letting the syrup cool for about 25 minutes and adding one tablespoon at a time of the syrup to the egg mixture while whisking it before I added it to the pan. I did this for two reasons. 1) This is what I was taught to be “tempering”, to slowly warm the eggs so they don’t cook immediately when dropped in hot liquid. 2) The comments about the cake being eggy made me think it was due to the eggs cooking in the hot syrup.

    I’m glad I made the chocolate dream cake before to know what you meant when you said the batter would be “watery”, or else I would have freaked out. This batter is SUPER RUNNY, like the consistency of half and half.

    When the cake came out of the oven, I was initially very disappointed. The center was dark yellow and “looked like a brain”. And it didn’t smell like vanilla at all. It smelled…eggy :( So much to the point that I went to the store to get powdered sugar and when I walked back into my apartment building, I smelled eggs. Also, after the cake cooled, there was a crunchy layer (what I can only describe as a “sugar shell”) around the edges and on top of that dark yellow center.

    I did have issues with the cakes sticking to their pans, and I buttered AND floured them. It was only in the bottom center though, so I can only assume it was from the flour being pushed aside when I poured the batter in. I don’t consider sticking cake a deal breaker though, you can always fix that with some parchment.

    The entire time I was layering and frosting the cake, I was really concerned about the eggy smell. I really didn’t think it was going to taste good. But I finished and put it in the fridge anyway…

    And boy am I glad I did! I cut a slice for myself after work today and this cake is SERIOUSLY SO GOOD. It doesn’t taste eggy at all. It does kind of taste like a sugar cookie, but in all the best ways. This cake is everything I was hoping it would be and more, light and fluffy but moist at the same time. You’ve done it again Jessica, this is definitely a recipe I’ll be pulling out again and again. Great job! :)

  95. Kate

    I really wanted this to work out… honestly I cannot understand all of the rave reviews. It doesn’t make sense to, although there are just as many not-so-rave reviews either… Like others, the cake was way too dense, kind of wet. Also, the taste just wasn’t great, kind of hard to explain, almost eggy as others have described it. I definitely let the water, sugar, butter mixture cool plenty before adding the eggs. No high altitude here, no baker inexperience, I simply don’t know what the issue is. Sorry it didn’t work out, but I feel I have to write an honest review.

  96. Anise

    this cake look so beautiful!

    Unfortunately when i made it it didn’t look as pretty but it taste good nevertheless! :D I use your rexipe to make my husband his favourite cookie dough cake (yellow cake, chocolate chip cookie dough eggs and toasted cooked flour) with cookie dough buttercream. Not pretty but taste good!

    Im glad your recipe didn’t make a sinkhole! Major glad! :D (usually i try other recipe they will leave a collapse middle. Eventhough the batter was more to the watery side unlike other cake recipe which are thicker) it didnt collapse…yay!

    Love your website, shall try pumpkin dream cake soon! thank youuuu

  97. Kim

    I am sorry to say that this is not a great cake. The texture is wonderful but the taste is overwhelmingly eggy. I am happy I tried it out before I made it as a birthday cake as I would have been horribly embarrassed to serve this.

  98. Laura

    I wanted to try this recipe out but it definitely did not come out as I hoped it would. I bake a lot and I thought I’d try this recipe for a change, but the batter was very liquidy…which was weird for me, but I didn’t change anything. And during the baking process, the cakes did not rise very much. I have not actually eaten the cakes yet, but it’s just weird for me to see that the cakes barely rose!

  99. Aaliyah

    I just tried this recipe out today and I followed the measurements and procedure to a T.. After cutting into this cake and taking a bite, an overwhelming eggy flavor arrived in my mouth, it wasn’t pleasant at all, now I’ll say this: The moistness of the cake is present, it didn’t taste sweet at all though, and i used the amount of sugar given in the recipe and tempered the eggs into the liquid. I was so upset that I had to throw this cake away, I really was expecting this cake to be delicious..

  100. Michelle

    Hey thanks for the recipe I tried it last night :) It tastes fantastic and I want to make it again although I found that the it turned out a little too dense is there something I could do to combat this for next time?

  101. Amber

    Ok, I just found this post and I have been looking for a new cake recipe. I read through a lot of the comments, but am making it anyway. It is in the oven right now, but I can already see a problem. One of the other posts on here said that their cake looked like a brain in the middle, and so does mine. I am hoping that I will be able to just scrape/cut the top off and use it as planned. My searching showed a few different reasons for the bubbles, so I am getting new baking powder and soda for next time, and also going to make sure I don’t beat it too long. Hoping that it is at least edible…

  102. Amber A

    This cake was such a DREAM! I really enjoyed making this and it turned out PERFECTLY for me! I love to bake and strongly consider this to be one of my FAVORITE recipes hands down! If you can follow directions, you can make this cake! :)

  103. Silvia

    I was wondering if I used just one tsp of baking powder and soda if it would be OK? I justtried this recipe this weekend, had my mother tell me she could really taste the baking soda.. Thank you in advance

  104. amira

    WOW this THE most perfect moist vanilla cake I’ve tried, and I’ve tried plenty. Thank you so much. AMAZING

  105. Ann

    I would live to make this cake with a chocolate swirl through it. Is there any way I can take part of this batter and make it chocolate to swirl through it?

  106. Janna Kirby

    I am not a baker. In fact, I am terrible. My mother in-law is a great baker and so my husband is always asking me to bake for him. He loves vanilla with vanilla frosting. This cake was very easy to make and turned out delicious. Let me tell you what took place in my kitchen that may have made a difference: After making the simple syrup I realized I was out of eggs. So, I took the syrup off the stove and ran to the store. I returned twenty minutes later to finish making the cake. My syrup cooled for a while and so I didn’t run into the egg issues. Maybe that is it?
    Anyway, if you follow this cake to the letter, it turns out exactly as described. Thanks for the recipe. :)

  107. Norkeita

    I’ve tried this recipe twice and it’s very good. The only problem I run into is the part with adding the egg. No matter how much I whisk, I can still see little pieces of egg in the finished cake/cupcake. Any tips?

  108. Carrie

    This cake looks delicious & I’m super excited to make it this weekend, but one question – what kind of sprinkles did you use & how did you apply them? They look so perfect and not just thrown on all over like i would normally do…

  109. amanda

    Tried this cake and I didn’t read all the comments only first few having high hopes it world torn out yummy. It had a greasy weird texture. The cake had a horrible bitter flavor and tasted awful. I tried to eat it but couldn’t do it. Was so excited to surprise my husband with this but it will be thrown away instead! I suggest finding another recipe, I followed the recipe exact and it was a waste of ingredients and time.

  110. Baker

    Hi when I read all the comments I was a bit afraid to try the cake as my cakes turn out dry …. But i did try it out and it turned out really nice .super soft .but there was a bit eggy and soda smell to it I do not know why I do wish if u can help me out with this … But in few words it’s a great recipie .my husband tho loved it thanks

  111. Michelle

    Can anyone tell me how I would have to alter the recipe if I make a sheet cake using a 12×8 inch pan with about a 2 in depth and I would make 2 of these sheets so I can later the cake. Thanks in advance!

  112. Tanner

    Wow to this cake. I was so absolutely impressed, I have never pulled off a vanilla cake as good as this one. It’s delicious, it’s unbelievably moist. It holds up very well, too. A fun little plus, I’ve never made a cake this way before, on the stove sort of. It was pretty fun! Five stars! Thank you for sharing!

  113. Dianne

    Do not make this cake. She is not kidding when she says this does not work for everyone. It works for no one! I followed it to the letter, am not at high altitude. It is gummy, sticks to the pan and it is just a poor recipe Don’t waste your time or ingredients, these “DREAM CAKES” are a nightmare…..Don’t do it!!!

  114. aurelia

    could the milk be replaced with buttermilk????? or the call for water: could half be water and the other 1/2 buttermilk.?
    Thank you!

  115. Pam

    I made this cake for my friend’s daughter’s birthday today. There were eight at her birthday dinner and only one person manage a good comment regarding this cake. The birthday girl looked at me and said, “I could barely swallow it, it tastes like raw sugar cookie dough.” It turns out as a heavy, wet, sweet, eggy tasting blob.

  116. Vicky

    I thought this cake had an amazing texture and the flavor was wonderful. I tend to like my desserts on the less sweet side and reduced the sugar from 2 cups to 1.5 cups and used a relatively sweet filling and frosting which was perfect. First vanilla cake I’ve made from scratch that I really did like WAY more than box cake!

  117. Rachel

    I was excited to try this cake because I have had trouble getting my vanilla cakes moist and fluffy. This cake was very moist, but tasted kind of eggy. That’s the best way I can describe it. It didn’t taste like a vanilla cake. It’s not horrible, but not the best.

  118. mitali

    Sorry Jessica……feeling bad for my comment but i am really dissapointed the way it turned out……….the worst tasted cake I have ever made :(

  119. mitali

    Even i tried the recipe …………….was very excited to bake it coz the pic shown here looks so moist n fluffy but the recipe just did not turn out good for me…………the cake was very wet , dense,oily n not at all tasted like vanilla :(

  120. Tricia

    Ok. . . So I read the reviews and was skeptical but decided to try this recipe as I LOVE LOVE cake! The cake texture was great however, as other reviewers stated the cake had a very bitter aluminum taste. Is was inedible. I used a new box of baking soda and baking powder. Not sure how to fix the taste. I’ll try again another day.

  121. Katie

    Absolutely fabulous! It far exceeded my expectations! Very moist and great flavor! We all loved it. I was a little nervous because it felt so different from any other cake I’ve made and the batter looked different. All of my fears, though, have been allayed. This is a total keeper! Thank you so much!

  122. Kelly

    I’ve been experimenting my way through about 6 different recipes trying to get a vanilla cake I like, so I’ve made this one with just a few little tweaks in terms of what I like in a cake (milk instead of water, and I’ve halved the recipe, and tried to simplify the instructions a bit…
    I’m so terrified by how runny the batter is….but it tastes terrific, so now I’m waiting for them to bake up (cupcakes!) and see what happens. I’m hoping to be one of the people who has good luck with this! ;)

    *update* Tense moments at about the 12th minute: they’ve all bumped up in the middle and are bubbling away like little volcanos, occasionally running over.

    *second update* they’re done at 18 minutes, and while the tops are a bit bumpy, they look good…besides, I’m going to cover them with frosting anyway.

    **and the real test** they taste really good….but the texture is weird. Mine are super light and fluffy, but only from the centres up…the bottoms are…gluten-ey? You can actually see long vertical lines in the crumb, like they’ve been stretched upward! So they turned out a bit odd for me, but I still really appreciate this recipe, it’s given me some interesting ideas.

  123. Liz

    Hi, I made this cake tonight and the texture was absolutely PERFECT! But… It had a bit of an overpowering taste of baking soda. Is there anything I can do about this? From reading the comments I guess I’m the only person who encountered this. I did double the recipe however I just doubled everything exactly.

  124. Wendy

    I am baking this cake now. I used only 1 1/2 cups of sugar but that’s my taste. It did seem runny but that’s what it’s supposed to be like. I sifted the flour and also did not overbeat my batter, I left a few lumps in it. The first cake came out of the oven and it looked springy but heavy compared to box cake recipes. I’m cooling it so that I can have a taste. Ok so I have cooled and chilled the cake. It seems a little too dense. The flavor is good, maybe a little floury but still tasty, a little too greasy for me but great buttery flavor. I wonder if cake flour makes a difference. Still all in all, taste good.

  125. Rocio

    I have my cake in the oven right now, not expecting a good result because it looks too liquid to me, I think might be I didn’t use all purpouse flour and that flour absorbs more water than the one I normally use for cakes. We will see…
    I will let you know the result.

  126. Renee

    Such a beautiful cake! I have made this 4 times over the past weekend in preparation for a large layer cake for a friend.

    That being said, my first cake wasn’t without troubles, turning out nearly pancake flat. Tips for overcoming a (super) flat cake:

    1. Check your baking powder. It doesn’t last forever and the reactivity of it decreases with time. If you’re going to make this cake, buy fresh baking powder!

    2. Swap the all purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt for self raising flour. It worked beautifully and gave a consistent height cake.

  127. randi fournier

    umm so i’ve made this cake and it’s Delicious, however, can i substitute the vanilla for a raspberry extract?

  128. Belineht

    I took it out of the oven and right now there is nothing left of the cake, everyone love the spongee texture and the balance of sweetness! Thanks for the recipe.

  129. anna

    Pretty awful, unfortunately. I was really excited about this while it was baking and now I’m sad I wasted ingredients. It looks more like a vanilla muffin and tastes nothing of vanilla. My kids ate it Because it’s cake and they’re kids. So duh there. But I won’t be makibg it again.

  130. Belineht

    I already have it in the oven to see if the results are like yours since I have been looking for a very moist vanilla cake for a long time and this recipe is absolutely different to the others I’ve tried, I will let you know the results.

  131. Libby

    Sorry, this cake was not a dream at all. I went looking for a good recipe for Father’s Day. It did not rise at all with fresh powder and soda. When it came out, it was moist, but completely flavorless.

    I bake cookies, brownies and bread regularly, so i know how fresh my ingredients are. I will not be trying this again.

  132. Audra

    I tried this cake and it came out delicious, but not light and fluffy. It was very dense. I think I followed the directions exactly. I don’t usually boil the wet ingredients first when making cakes, so that was new to me. I generally have nice fluffy most cakes. I just thought I would try something new. Do you have any ideas on what might have gone wrong?

  133. Andi

    I made this cake this past weekend and we all loved it………….I had no problems at all. I even posted it on my blog I hope you can come over and take a look. This is a keeper for sure so a big thank you for sharing this recipe with us. I wonder what happened with the other negative comments that people made and the cake just didn’t come out correct. Love it and thanks for allowing me to share this cake Andi W

  134. joanna

    its baking right now! im 14 and im making this for mothers day! XD my mom doesnt like things too sugary so i used 1 and 1/4 cup of sugar. i tasted the batter (shhhh) and it was still a very sweet. so excited for this come out of the oven!

  135. Elaine

    What a delicious cake! I used your recipe for my son’s pirate-ship birthday cake, and it was moist, dense, and infused with a lovely vanilla flavor (I used Trader Joe’s bourbon vanilla extract, but you have also inspired me to try to make my own vanilla extract!). I would definitely use this recipe again! Thank you so much :)

  136. Amirah

    I have these cakes in the oven right now. I got really nervous because it was runny. I needed to make half vanilla and half chocolate and it kind of ran together but I’m baking it any way. I’ll let you know what happens.

  137. Danielle

    Uh oh, mine didn’t come out right. I was nervous when the batter tasted like crepe batter. I made the recipe as cupcakes and when my husband ate one, he said it tasted like a pancake. I think I’m going to whip up some of the maple cream cheese frosting from the pumpkin dream cake recipe (which is FANTASTIC and comes out right every time) and pass these off at work as Breakfast Cupcakes. :)

  138. Irene

    I made this for my daughters 3rd birthday and it turned out perfect. I covered it with marshmallow fondant and it held up really well. I’ll admit I was a little nervous after reading some of the posts. All the kids at the party as well as the parents devoured it! All compliments to the creator of this fabulous recipe. I even took a little of the batter and make two cupcakes for my kids to try before the party and they were perfect baked at 375 F for 14 min. Thanks again! I’m excited to try your pumpkin dream cake for my husbands birthday, he’s crazy about pumpkin so I think it will be perfect! :)

  139. riaze jubokawa

    please can I get this recipe in terms of grams rather than in terms of cup because it will be much easier for me to try it,thanks in advance

  140. Noora

    This recipe looks great and I m hoping to try it out today though I have a query. About the two cups of water, does it have to be hot water or room temperature? Thank you.

  141. Donna from So IL

    This cake is in the oven as I type. I thought it would look nice coming from a bunt pan so I’m keeping my finger crossed it will work.

  142. Joshua Eason

    This is the moistest, most delicious vanilla cake I have ever made or tasted! I made them into cupcakes, and even my brother who doesn’t like cake was asking for more and even took some home with him.

    I’m just not sure how to scale it up to 3 layers. I want to make a 3 layer strawberry bavarian cake, so I’m finding the different components, so I can put them all together later.

    Could the measurements used in this recipe make 3 layers?

    1. A woman holding a camera standing in front of some shelves.

      Glad you liked it Josh! Yup, 3 layers are fine too. Just divide it evenly among the three pans and watch your baking time! :-)

  143. lydia

    hi hows the cup size s’posed to be.cos there are different measuring cups(and normal cups too) i’ve always longed for a moist cake wouldn’t want to mess it up cos i’m poor with measurements.thanks.

  144. Sabrina

    I just got finished making this cake! I have made other chocolate cakes with water and they came out fabulously moist! So I decided to ignore all the negative comments and give this a try! So far, it’s pretty great! I have tried a few pieces while trimming off the top of the bottom layer of the cake to frost it. When I first pulled it out of the oven, I was a bit worried because it didn’t smell as ‘flavorful’ as I thought it would, and it had a bit of a ‘wet’ish feeling to it. But now that it’s cooling, I am really loving it! I think as long as my fiancé loves this cake, I will def make again! Thanks for the recipe! It’s so hard finding a simple, moist vanilla cake without using cake mix!

  145. gloria

    I feel using cups and tablespoons etc leaves room for error. Is it possible to list your recipe using weight instead.

  146. Amy

    ok…so I would have sworn you had an orange version…oh well! Maybe I’ll come up with an orange icing for the dark chocolate cake…

  147. Amy

    I made this cake for my niece’s bday this weekend without reading any comments. And so glad I did! It turned out perfectly delicious and received rave reviews from kids and adults alike. I can’t wait to try the orange dream cake for my mom’s birthday. She loves any orange and dark chocolate combo so I’m thinking a ganache. Suggestions?

    1. A woman holding a camera standing in front of some shelves.

      Ha! I’m glad you liked it Amy!

      I’m not sure which Orange cake you are talking about. I did make a Pumpkin Dream Cake which is bright orange…which is probably what you are thinking of. ;-)

  148. kena

    hi!! i think i neve wrote you back to thank your email abouth answering my question of a carrot cake recipe. THNKS!!! i’m still waitting to read in your blog this recipe but until then today i accidently found this one, probably it hlps to you.. seams to ve delicios and i wil try it!! :D but ofcourse i will keep waithing for yours :D

  149. Katie

    Made this cake for my family and was disappointed because 1. While making the cake the batter was very lumpy and runny, 2. All the lumpy bits in the batter came to the middle while baking as commented by one reader and resembled a brain, 3. After baking the cake for 30 minutes the middle was raw, 4. The cake was VERY dense and eggy not tasting the way a white cake should, and 5. The cake had an unpleasant bitter after taste.
    P.S. Sorry, I really hate to post negative comments but I felt that other readers should be aware. I also appreciate that you had put a cautionary warning on your post.

  150. Martha

    When I read all the drama around this cake, I dicieded to make it. I have to say I’m a professional baker.
    It turn out pretty good, even thow if I make it again I probably would change water for milk, other than that it’s good.
    Use partchment paper
    Cool the syrup with the mixer
    Whisk with a fork your eggs before adding them to the syrup. Keep your mixer running when you add it.
    Don’t open your oven until it looks light golden brown.

  151. Mike

    I am reposting from Comment #93 – I made this cake last Friday and was super excited about it. The crumbs I tasted mixed with the buttercream icing were delicious.


    We only ate (forced down) two slices of the cake. Bummer. The cake had a really strong oder to it..despite looking exacty like the pictures posted on this page! It tasted like a mix of flour and baking soda/powder….no flavor at all…which I am assuming is because of the 2 cups of water. I do feel the cake was moist..just the taste and smell were overwhelminly disappointing. I wouldn’t recommend making this cake…unless you are adventurous like myself. Happy Baking! :)

  152. Jessica

    I made this cake this afternoon for my nephews Birthday, and it is by far the best vanilla cake I have ever made. I used white chocolate ganache between the layers instead of the buttercream and it was perfect. I also did the same recipe using gluten free flour and dairy free marg, as some of us are gluten and diary free and it was just as good! Definitely saved this one :-)

  153. BB

    Another sad baker from Australia commenting:
    This cake tasted like baking soda and had the texture and appearance of a kitchen sponge. Thick, bitter and ridden with holes. I followed the recipe exactly as written and was more than disappointed! Perhaps our ingredients are different down here, but it was more nightmare than dream.

  154. Mike B

    My review:
    I have been searching (searching!) for a moist vanilla cake that I could make from scratch. Jessica’s recipe was actually one of the first recipes that I found upon my google search, and after comparing recipes against this Vanilla Dream Cake… I decided to give this one a whirl. I literally just made and iced the cake…so I have to admit, I’m kind of tired. But! Believe me… follow the recipe (and use some baking knowledge of your own) and make this cake! I haven’t actually eaten a piece of it… yet… but I’ve had crumbs (that I cut off to make the layers even) mixed with the vanilla buttercream icing… and it’s DELICIOUS! I cannot wait to eat a slice later tonight after dinner.

    TIPS: Take your eggs out of the fridge when you take your butter out for the buttercream frosting (room temp is important for both the butter for the frosting and the eggs for the cake ingredients); Vanilla Bean – let it marinade in the Vanilla Extract / Veg Oil while you’re SIFTING all of your dry ingredients; USE a really good Non-Stick Baking Spray – I recommend Bak-Klene ZT from William Sonoma–my cake did not stick to the pans after they cooled.

    WHAT ELSE? Oh yea… stop being such negative nancy’s…it’s a cake afterall!

  155. Diane

    I just made the cake and it’s in the oven as I type this. I really hope it’s supposed to be this runny!! I’m so scared it won’t turn out as I have only a few hours to make this cake. Kinda last minute request and wanted a moist vanilla bean cake. Because it was too runny I added 1/4 cup of flour!! Yikes. Then I read the comments about it being runny. Should’ve read more before adding the flour! See how it turns out.

  156. Sammi

    I am so sad to say that this cake didn’t work out for me. It looks so beautiful in the pictures and I was hoping for the same result. It came out eggy, tasted of butter and was rather dense. Such a pity.

  157. funkymonkey

    Sadly this recipe did not work for me, I was very disappointed because it was for my daughter’s birthday and also because a vanilla bean was wasted. My question is “does altitude affect the rise?”. The skewer came out clean and the tops were browned and the cakes even popped right out but they were flat, flat, flat and very wet/gummy on the inside. I live in Australia and followed the recipe to a tee, so not sure what went wrong. Will try again with fresher baking soda and powder but not sure that is the problem because my other replacement white cake was just fine.

  158. Diane

    I made this cake for my daughter’s birthday. She wanted a vanilla cake that was 3 layers and vanilla cream cheese frosting. I searched high and low for a recipe and this is the one that I ended up going with. My husband doesn’t like homemade cakes because they aren’t moist like the box cake mixes. I had about 16 people at the party and the cake was a hit. The cake is very moist and has good flavor. My sister told me I can make a chocolate one just like this one for her birthday. This recipe is not hard to make, it is a different way of making a cake though. I was very nervous about mixing in the eggs correctly without them cooking but I did figure out a way to do it. Thank you very much for the recipe and always have fun baking.

  159. Maureen

    Hi, I tried this recipe but the batter turned out very watery, i then took a little batter and bake it in a cupcake case to test how it would turn out, and when it’s done the texture of the cake was quite alright but it was very eggy in flavour, not very nice. I’m just wondering what did I do wrong here? I tried your pumpkin dream cake and it was wonderful…so I’m very curious here :). I did reduce the amount of sugar from 2cups to 1.5cups because I like my cake to be less sweet. Was it because of that?

  160. Jess

    I haven’t made this cake but the recipe seems to have an issue. It has both baking soda and baking powder. Baking powder contains baking soda. Also, there is no acid here to react with baking soda (such as the buttermilk mentioned above) other than that found in the baking powder. Using baking soda without acid is probably the reason for the overly bitter flavor some people are reporting, as well as the flatness and lack of leavening. When making a chocolate cake, chocolate itself is acidic so you can use water instead of buttermilk, but for a vanilla cake if you include baking soda there has to be an acid for it to react with such as buttermilk or cream of tartar.

  161. Kitty

    This cake went very, very wrong for me although I’m not entirely sure why! I followed the recipe to the T but by the end of the baking process it tasted entirely bitter. I’m certain I got the proportions right! Do you have any idea what could have made a cake so bitter? The inside was also a dark yellow colour and rather gooey, as if it had not finished baking – but I put it back in the oven for 10 minutes and that did not change anything – same gooey, unappetizing texture. I may have not tempered the eggs correctly, but I can’t believe that would result in such bitterness. I had to use another vanilla cake recipe instead. Any tips would be greatly appreciated!

  162. Mis

    My kids loved it but the frosting, not so much. IMO the texture was off a bit. Not too crumbly the way I normally like it, a little heavy, but it was moist. It did have an eggy flavor but not as much as other cakes I’ve tried in the past. Definitely not vanilla or white cake tasting.

  163. Rachel

    As promised here are my final opinions. The cake tastes mainly sweet, eggy and of baking soda. The edges are crisp due to the high amount of sugar I assume. My kids enjoyed it, hubby said it’s okay, I’m not a fan unless I creatively repurpose it, and my brother, whose birthday we are celebrating Friday, ate a giant piece last night with little comment BUT it is not the cake he chose for his birthday. One last note, I would make sure to grease and flour or use parchment for all layer cakes, ever, period.

  164. Rach

    Based on the controversial comments, of course, I had to try this cake. My first attempt Just came out of the oven so my initial reaction is. 1. This cake wouldn’t be any “whiter” if you used clear vanilla. The egg yolks in the recipe are what gives it the yellow color. 2. The hot crumbs do taste very “eggy” as one person commented their entire cake tasted. It also smells quite a bit like an egg custard. 3. I might label this a butter cake or a pound cake, but I highly doubt I will title it a Vanilla cake. 4. Those whose cakes didn’t “turn” out measured something incorrectly. It definitely makes 2, 8″, large crumb, very sweet cakes. 5. One person’s “perfect or dream” vanilla cake will very differently from another’s. That’s just the way it goes. 6. Even a baking tragedy isn’t a failure if you pay attention. You can learn something each time you bake so no sense crying over spilled milk or ruined cakes as they say. For example, if this cake turns out how I expect it will, I will probably use it as the base for an eggnog cake or add a layer of bananas and a caramel or burnt butter frosting for a bananas foster cake, but it probably won’t end up as my brother’s vanilla birthday cake on Friday.
    I will post again once it has cooled, been frosted and set for at least a day in my refrigerator. I have found that the real flavor of cakes comes out best after a day or two in the fridge or after having been frozen and thawed. They seem to mellow and meld and the flavors have time to come together that way. Bye for now!

  165. sun

    Im always reluctant about the cups and grams conversion. Always converting it online but seems that sometimes it turn out wrong. Would you happen to be able to measure that on scale be it oz or grams? It would be greatly appreciated.

    1. Louise

      I wish that bloggers wound realise that their audience is international and it’s important to give weights not cups and tablespoons, which vary in size from country to country. I have no idea how much six tablespoons of butter is meant to be… And what an unreliable way to measure butter! US cups and tablespoons are different to the Australian version.

      Nevermind, I’m going to estimate it and give it a go. It looks lovely!

  166. Lisa

    Found this on I Am Bakers FB this morning and decided to make it to surprise my kids.

    It turned out just like the photos! Except I used red sprinkles since it is almost valentine’s day. This cake is SO moist! Thank you.

  167. yvette

    Yea this didnt work for me and I am a professional. I had a feeling it wouldnt work when I was finished mixing but I pressed on. It came out gummy, eggy, and just weird looking. I dont mind experimenting Im just dissapointed that I wasted my vanilla bean. uggghhh

  168. Heather

    Will this cake hold up with fondant?? This sound delicious and I’ve got a friend requesting a vanilla cake this weekend!

  169. Cat

    Hi Jessica,
    It’s snowing so I’m in the mood to bake a cake and want to try your Vanilla Dream Cake. I’ve made cakes before that required oil and found them to be a little heavier than I like. So I’ve substituted half the oil with applesauce. Do you think this will work in your recipe?

  170. Secola

    I am on the hunt for that perfect vanilla cake. Your use of 2 cups of water and a tablespoon of vanilla gets me psyched!!! I’m also generous with vanilla. Something about it.

    I’ll be making it this weekend and will report back!!!

    Thanks for sharing!

  171. Cecília

    hello! I’m going to give it a try tonight, but I was wondering…. I bake a similar chocolate recipe, but it has one cup milk and one cup water. Have you tried with this proportions?
    Also, of course, it has cocoa powder added to the flour, so it has a lot more dry ingredients. Even so, it’s a runny batter and it bakes beautifully and it’s very moist.

  172. Andrea Brown

    Looks wonderful and not dry. Could I do 3 layers and or cupcakes with this recipe? Looks like enough to do that.

  173. Rosvitha

    The perfect cake, cream and name combination makes this cake gorgeous. Delicious and tender, standing on the plate, waiting for you!

  174. Carmen

    Hola por siempre he buscado la receta perfecta para el pastel de vainilla para de ahí partir con muchos otros quiero decir tener la base, en este momento lo tengo en el horno espero que por fin la tenga. Gracias por compartir tus recetas!

  175. Marie

    Just made this cake with gluten-free flour (Pamela’s Artisan Blend for anyone wondering) and this is hands down the BEST gluten-free cake I have ever had! As an avid baker whose hobby has been limited somewhat by this dietary restriction, I just have to say thank you for an excellent recipe that made me happy to make cakes again! Will definitely be trying the chocolate next as that’s already been requested by my husband!

  176. Amanda

    I’m making these right now and my batter is pretty thin…. Is this normal consistency?

  177. CJ

    This is a fantastic recipe! Very moist and tasty. Definitely a runny batter but bakes up nicely! I have made it into a cake and cupcakes. It makes 24 cupcakes and I baked them for 17-20 minutes. I even added some chocolate chips, swirled them and the heat of the batter melted them and made a marble batter, delicious! I have been looking for a moist vanilla cake for a while, tested so many, this one is perfect. Im not sure why others have failed, but I have had numerous people ask me for the recipe, so it must be good! My taste testers never lie! Thank you for such a great recipe! :)

  178. vila

    didn’t work for me…unfortunately.. batter was very..very runny,, and i suspected it is not goona be alright….it seemed raising fine.and next i looked to cake through oven window( i never opened the door…so it coudn’t be issue) the cake fall flat back…ohhh…i was so hoping i found finally right recepie for vanila cake :-(

  179. Brigitte

    Merci Beaucoup,

    my daughter just did your cake today for her father’s birthday and it was a success with our guests. Great recipe.

  180. Baked Off

    DO NOT BAKE THIS CAKE, IT WILL NOT TURN OUT RIGHT!! YES, I’ve tried and done the exact method and used all the ingredients shown and it looked the part but when cut into.. Well, that was a BIG THUMBS DOWN!! The last comments about people having there cake turn out ‘amazing’ is lying (Yes i said it, lol) and maybe a couple of pals of hers. It would of been better to adjust the recipe, but hey.. Happy baking to the gullible. -_-

    1. A woman holding a camera standing in front of some shelves.

      As I have stated in the post above, this recipe seems to have some issues. I have left it posted because some have had great success with it and I want to leave the recipe up for them. I can’t control why some people will have great results and others won’t. All I can do, is be straight forward and honest. Which is why I leave all comments up and have also updated the post with a disclaimer.

      Hope your attitude improves. Happy Thanksgiving!

  181. Joy

    I want to try this! It look deliciously moist. How do you measure flour for your recipes–the scoop or spoon in method? Thank you so much :-)

  182. Tez

    Oh my goodness! Thank you for posting this recipe! I was on the hunt for a good vanilla cake/cupcake for my daughter’s 1st birthday party – I trialled this recipe the other day and it was a HIT! I am in love!

  183. Su

    Hi Jessica,

    I am on a hunt for a lemon cake for my brother’s birthday which also happens to be Thanksgiving – lucky him – and I came across your vanilla dream cake. I’ve made your pumpkin dream cake and it was super delicious, I third the recipe to make 1 layer and it still came out great but this time I wanted to go out all since it’s a birthday cake. I usually mix 2 intriguing recipes into one but since yours is a little different I am afraid, hah. Basically, I was wondering in order to incorporate the lemon flavor, I was thinking of subbing the vanilla bean for 1 tsp of lemon juice and rind so it’d be 1 tsp vanilla and 1 tsp lemon juice and/or maybe even adding lemon juice to the water. Will that affect the baking soda and baking powder in the recipe since lemon is an acid? I will also be adding lemon curd in between the layers for lemon flavor but wanted to add it to the cake as well. Any information would be greatly appreciated and thanks for sharing!

    1. A woman holding a camera standing in front of some shelves.

      I don’t think the lemon juice would affect the baking powder/soda. And I think what you have planned sounds delicious! Love Lemon Cakes! ;-)

  184. Lorie

    I made this cake last night for my family’s Sunday supper. I don’t know what people above are talking about, we LOVED this cake! Yes the batter was thin, but I knew it would be by the ingredients. It baked up perfect and was so delicious! Thank you for sharing the recipe.

  185. Jeannie

    Hi! My cake came over beautiful and super moist! However, I had no vanilla bean on hand, so I doubled the amt of vanilla…and it’s vanilla over kill! I used madagascar bourbon vanilla extract, how much should I have used? Also, if I make the cake in advance, can it be refrigerated if wrapped in saran wrap and still be tasty? Thanks for this amazing recipe!

    1. A woman holding a camera standing in front of some shelves.

      Next time just use half the vanilla if you are using vanilla extract. It’s a lot more powerful than a vanilla bean scraping!

      I have only made it up to one day in advance and I did exactly as you described. I wrapped the actual cake in saran wrap for 24 hours and then frosted it the day of the party. It turned out fine!

  186. Toya

    I just made this recipe and cut it in half for cupcakes. They came out moist but eggy. When I made the batter it was very running as if it needed a little more flour. I was wondering are the cups of flour packed? Or is this recipe just not meant for cupcakes?

  187. Sharon

    Hi, sorry to say as well that I also had some trouble with this cake… It baked up perfectly, I followed the recipe exactly, but it tastes very eggy to me, and I can’t taste vanilla at all. Just overpowering egg taste. I added two eggs as directed, so the only thing I can possible think I did wrong is not giving the liquid more time to cool before beating in eggs? They didn’t look cooked when I did it and my liquid was warm but not hot. I used large organic free range eggs. Maybe 5 min isn’t long enough for mine. Do you suppose that’s why it tastes.. And smells! Like eggs! I did double the vanilla because I didn’t have a bean. :( thanks anyway! I’ll have to try again sometime.

  188. thasni

    hi jessica….
    am a home baker n usually frost ma cake in rich’s whipping cream…though i have few good vanilla butter cake recipes… turns out to b dry n hard after frosting n refrigeration(am i supposed to serve it after one hour or so?) .haven’t tried out ur recipe yet.,l b trying it today…do u suggest soaking it in simple sugar syrup b4 refrigerating it or u can assure me it l b fluffy n moist straight frm fridge?have got a big bday cake to make…..can i double this recipe?

  189. Regina P

    I just made this cake and while bake, the center cooked up kind of looking like a brain! Is that supposed to happen? The outer part of the cake is a pretty golden brown but the center now looks browner?!?! Any idea on that? Or is it normal, i haven’t tried it yet, it’s still cooling :)

    1. Julia

      mine did the exact same thing!!! it also had a harder shell on the top and the bottom was more soft. Almost like the sugar cooked on the top to make a outer coating. So weird!!!

  190. Tammy

    This batter never turned into a decent cake for me and I tried twice. Very runny. I followed the directions exactly. I do have a countertop stove though. Not sure if that has anything to do with it because I have had an issue before. Any suggestions on what I could be doing wrong??

    1. A woman holding a camera standing in front of some shelves.

      Hey Tammy,

      The batter is definitely supposed to be runny, but it should have baked up with no problems. I have no experience with a counter top stove, so I don’t know if that could have caused the issue. However, if it just didn’t bake up (rise) I would check to see how fresh your baking soda & powder are. Maybe that was the issue!

      I am so sorry it didn’t work out for you. I really hate wasted ingredients!

  191. Sharon Athanasiou

    Thanks Jessica!! I am going to try this! Would you know approx offhand how many cupcakes I can expect to make of these? (regular size cupcakes)

    1. A woman holding a camera standing in front of some shelves.

      Hi Sharon, I have never made them as cupcakes so don’t know for sure, but my guess would be somewhere around 30 cupcakes!

  192. Terry

    Sorry to say I had to throw the cake out…wonder if there is a typo with the amount of water or flour?

    1. A woman holding a camera standing in front of some shelves.

      Hi Terry – after reading your comment above, I can tell you your issue was adding more flour and another egg. I make this cake exactly as written above. Yes the batter is very runny (it has 2 whole cups of water in it!), but I promise it bakes up to a perfect cake!

      1. Karen

        I’ve just made this, & my cakes didn’t rise. Will have to make another cake in the morning now for my friends birthday.

  193. Terry

    I made this batter exactly as written and I agree with the last comment – it was runny like soup! I ended up adding 2 more cups flour and another egg…it’s in the oven right now, hope I have managed to salvage it…

  194. Lebo

    Hi, first of all thank you for sharing. I have a question. Is the batter suppose to be watery/ runny? How big a cake is this batter for?

    1. A woman holding a camera standing in front of some shelves.

      Hi Lebo,

      Yes it is very runny! It does bake into a cake though – I promise. ;-)

      And it makes a two layer 8 inch cake.

  195. Susie

    I made this cake for my husbands birthday today. We all LOVED it! He requested I now make all the other Dream cakes. First up – Pumpkin!

    Thanks for sharing this amazing recipe!

  196. Jennifer Williams

    ummm Dream cake noooo more like nightmare cake…….Dry and lacks flavor…taste like dry cornbread with a hint of vanilla

  197. charlene

    Your vanilla dream cake looks awesome! Can’t wait to try this. However
    when you mention in the directions to beat the eggs in quickly do you mean with a mixer or by hand?

  198. Amna

    Vanilla Dream Cake just in time for my husband’s up coming birthday! I’ve previously tried your Banana Dream Cake recipe for my own birthday and it was one of the most delicious cakes I have ever eaten! One question regarding this vanilla dream cake recipe, should I place the baked cake in the freezer right after baking as in the other Dream cake recipes? Or should I just cool it on a wire rack at room temperature?

    1. A woman holding a camera standing in front of some shelves.

      This cake doesn’t need to go into the freezer! Yay for one less step! :-) I just let it cool on a wire rack!

  199. kena

    Hi!!! i have cook almost all your dream cakes!!! LOVE THEM!!! so so so so good!!!! i’m wondering if you have a carrot cake recipe???? :D hope to have news from you!! your biggest fan from Mexico!!! :D

  200. Leslie

    Hello:) im going to make this cake today and i bought the vanilla bean, theres two in a little jar but it says it contains one vanilla bean. Do i use the scrapings from one of them or both? Thanks!:)

    1. A woman holding a camera standing in front of some shelves.

      That’s strange! I wonder why it would say 1 and have two in it? Does it look like the bean has been cut in half? If you think it has been cut in half – use both. If it appears there are two whole vanilla beans in the jar – just use one.

      Hope you enjoy the cake!

      1. Jennifer

        It is on the thinner side. I’m in CA and I just added 15 minutes cooking time. It came out perfect! And the frosting is to die for!  

  201. Randi

    Hello!!! I’m SOOOO excited to make this recipe! I have one question! I want to make a Bungalow cake with is one layer of vanilla cake and one layer or chocolate cake (fresh strawberries, bananas and whip cream and frosted in whip cream) Would I be able to take half of the batter and add cocoa powder to it or would that mess it up at all?

    Thanks Jessica!!

  202. Angela DeRubbio

    OMG…my 12 year old daughter made this yesterday for my husband’s birthday party… it was absolutely THE most moist and delicious cake we’ve ever had… rave reviews from our friends and not a crumb left to speak of…. definitely my go to recipe from now on… thanks for posting this recipe!!!

  203. Karen Feutz

    I am extremely disappointed in this cake…sorry!! I followed the directions exactly as written but the cake did not release from the pan…it stuck. You only indicated to butter the pan which I did. Should it have been floured too? You did not put that in the directions. When I am making something for the first time I follow the recipe exactly. Also, the flavor wasn’t as vanilla tasting as I thought it would be. I tasted sugar more than vanilla. Also, I felt the cake was too wet. Never thought I would say that a cake was too moist but this one is. Will not be serving this to my friend for his birthday…will go back to my trusted Vanilla Bean Poundcake.

    1. A woman holding a camera standing in front of some shelves.

      Hi Karen! I’m sorry you didn’t like it. I only buttered the pan and didn’t need flour.

      I have received some other comments below of people loving it. It must just not be for everyone!

  204. Becki

    My dream cake is in the oven as I type. Baking this lovely for my mother’s 61st birthday. I’m anxious to see how all this water business turns out. Thank you for your hard work and for sharing this sweet cake. I can tell this recipe is going to be around for awhile…

  205. Karen Feutz

    Sounds “dreamy”. Will be making this for a friends 40th birthday this weekend. Can hardly wait to taste it. I love the look of those sprinkles. Where did you find them?

  206. Jessica

    I made this cake into cupcakes for a party over the weekend and they turned out fabulous! As usual Jessica your recipe was a hit, everyone loved it. Thank you for sharing!

  207. Nikki @Seeded at the Table

    THAT’S IT!!! I’m dropping everything and making all 5 dream cakes now! (Oh, that would be a dream come true!) ;) Honestly, though, I’m ready to finally make one of them and will probably start with this!

  208. Dorothy @ Crazy for Crust

    My mouth instantly watered when I saw this!! I can almost smell it too. :)

  209. Sara

    This looks delicious!! I will definitely need to try this out. I have a question though – is a dream cake something particular or is it just what you’ve called these cakes? Google wasn’t too helpful haha

    1. A woman holding a camera standing in front of some shelves.

      It’s just something I started naming my layered cakes. To me, a “Dream Cake” is a super moist, decadent layered cake!

  210. Beth @ bethcakes

    I love all your Dream Cakes! You should have a cookbook of just those. :) This cake looks so fluffy and I love those sprinkles! Beautiful.

  211. Liz

    It looks so so moist!! I was about to comment asking if you thought the recipe would work well for cupcakes, but I see others have already asked. Great to know!

  212. Joanne

    I made that chocolate dream cake for a friend’s birthday a few weeks ago and it was out of this world good! The perfect cake. Seriously. So if this is based off of that…I need it.

  213. Abby

    I’m so curious! Why do you use water instead of milk or buttermilk for the cake?

    I’m a baker at a cupcake shop and the only way we’ve worked out a delicious straight up vanilla cake is with buttermilk (and oil of course… definitely an important ingredient for super soft cake).

    I’ve seen water lots for chocolate cakes, but never vanilla!

    1. A woman holding a camera standing in front of some shelves.

      I wish I had a really good answer for you…but to be honest? I just liked it that way. I have been working on a vanilla dream cake for over a year and I tried buttermilk and milk many times. It was just never…”right” for a dream cake.

      So I decided to give it a go using the chocolate cake method. And I was really happy with the results and overall texture – so I just went with it! ;-)

  214. Rachel @ Baked by Rachel

    So pretty!! Love the rainbow sugars! I definitely want a giant slice of this baby.

  215. Ann

    I plan to bake this tonight but have 2 questions, do I alter the amount of vanilla extract if I don’t have a vanilla bean and your frosting directions mention 3 layers not 2 . How many cake pans should I use? Thanks.

    1. A woman holding a camera standing in front of some shelves.

      Oops! Thanks for bringing that to my attention. I made it in two layers and corrected the recipe to say that. But you can make it into 3 layers if you would rather – the cake layers will just need a little less time to bake.

      And yes, I would double the amount of vanilla in the cake if you are not going to use a vanilla bean!

  216. Tina | My Life as a Mrs

    Looks AMAZING!!! Add a little raspberry filling to the center and you are speaking my language!!! I think I’ll make this for my Sis in-laws shower! :)

  217. Amanda @ Once Upon a Recipe

    Ooh, this cakes looks so amazingly…moist. Yep, I said it. And delicious too! I am a chocoholic, but I gotta say, sometimes there’s nothing like a slice of vanilla cake.

  218. Zainab

    I’m in love with all your dream cakes!! I guessed almond last night when I saw the sneak peek but vanilla sounds a lot better!! Have to try your recipe.

  219. Laura Dembowski

    This cake looks awesome! I have never made a cake using that method, but I can’t wait to try it.

  220. Lindsey

    Such a PRETTY cake! I am very tempted to make this one although I have steered away from baking cakes so far due to fear of them being dry.

  221. Erin @ The Spiffy Cookie

    I had no idea “dream cake” was an actual thing and not just a phrase about a cake being dreamy. Although from the description of what a dream cake has to be in order to be called that, I would dream about it haha.

    1. A woman holding a camera standing in front of some shelves.

      Well I don’t know about it being an actual thing, but it is here on this blog. The Banana Dream Cake started it all in motion.

      Now I’m always working on recipes for super moist layered cakes…because in this blog – that’s a Dream Cake. ;-)

  222. Vanessa

    Awesome!!! I asked you to do this in the survey and my wish was granted!!!! You are FABULOUS!! :)) I cannot wait to try it!

    1. A woman holding a camera standing in front of some shelves.

      You are one of like 10 people who asked for a Vanilla Dream Cake! Haha! This one is for all of you! ;-)

  223. Tieghan

    Dream cakes?? What!

    I am heading back through all your post to fin ever dream cake there is!! This is incredible and could not come at a better time. I am in need of the perfect birthday cake and I would say a dream cake it the one! So pretty and so dreamy!

  224. Sues

    I’m kind of just still obsessed with the idea of a dream cake. I used to have no interest in vanilla, but the older I get, the more in love with it I become. This is beautiful!

  225. Christina

    This cake is so beautiful. Heavenly. I can’t get over how fluffy and moist it looks. Wishing I had a piece for breakfast right now.

  226. mom

    Loved this cake!!! So moist and full of flavor!! Thank you for sharing with me and my co-workers!

  227. Averie @ Averie Cooks

    When I saw the title, I was like, whoa she’s at it again. Love all your dream cakes!

    I make my own homemade vanilla too but for clear vanilla, most groc stores carry it under the ‘clear imitation vanilla extract’ name right along next to all the vanillas. I’ve researched it, and studied it, and searched for it, and I’ve never seen clear REAL vanilla. It’s all imitation, which is how they get it to stay clear.s But that may save you a trip to Michael’s!


    1. A woman holding a camera standing in front of some shelves.

      I’m so glad to know that! I figured it was all imitation – but it’s good to know for sure. I will be sticking with my homemade extract…I’m all about the real vanilla flavor! ;-)

      1. Erica

        I was wondering how many cups of batter this recipe makes? I need to fill a 11×15 sheet cake 

  228. Renee @ Awesome on $20

    I think I’m going to start asking for vanilla beans for my birthday. These cake looks like a dream, for sure.


I'm a trial & error, self taught, sugar addict who thankfully learned how to survive in the kitchen! I am also a wife, mama of 3.