Hello Eat Live Run readers!
My name’s Angharad and I write the blog Eating for England, where you’ll find delicious recipes and tales of my food experiences growing up in England and living, as I do now, in the United States.
The recipe I’m going to share with you today is a classic British cake, the Victoria sponge. It’s named after Queen Victoria and is often served at afternoon teas in England. If hosting afternoon tea isn’t on your typical weekend agenda, fear not; this is an excellent every day cake.
It’s light and airy making it dangerously easy to eat a huge slice of. The layers of jam and cream sandwiched between the two cake layers make it perfectly sweet.
The Victoria Sponge is often overlooked for flashier cakes these days but I love it for its simplicity and elegance. It’s modest, sweet, and quintessentially British. I hope you enjoy it!
Victoria Sponge Cake
makes 2 cake layers to yield one sandwich cake
knob of butter, melted
1 cup (8oz) butter, softened
1 cup (8oz) sugar
4 large free-range eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup (8oz) all-purpose flour, sifted (you may need a bit extra)
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
For the filling:
1 cup heavy whipping cream, lightly whipped
powdered sugar, for dusting
Preheat the oven to 350F. Gently heat the knob of butter in a pan and brush two 8 inch cake tins with the melted butter. Line the bottom of the two cake tins with a circle of greaseproof paper.
In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until pale and creamy, using an electric whisk or a wooden spoon. Beat well to ensure you get lots of air into the mixture.
Beat in the eggs one at a time. You want to avoid the mixture curdling, so that it stays airy. If it does curdle, add a tbsp of flour.
Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt. Fold the flour mixture into the wet ingredients using a large metal spoon (this will cut into the mixture better than a wooden spoon). Be careful not to over-mix it. Pour the mixture equally between the two cake tins and level.
Place in the oven and bake for about 20-25 minutes, or until the cakes are well-risen, spring back when pressed gently with a finger and a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Remove from the oven and set aside for 5 minutes, then remove from the tin and peel off the paper. Place onto a wire rack and let cool completely, about an hour.
Sandwich the cakes together with the jam and whipped cream. Dust with powdered sugar and serve.
Liv @ The Salty n' SweetMay 10, 2011 at 5:42 am
This sounds (and looks) right up my alley! It reminds me of a jelly roll, though I don’t know if they’d taste the same.
Thanks for the recipe 🙂
Estela @ Weekly BiteMay 10, 2011 at 5:54 am
This cake looks perfect for summer! Yum 🙂
Stacie @ Imperfectly HealthyMay 10, 2011 at 5:57 am
Mmmm…that looks pretty incredible!
Jenny @ Fitness Health and FoodMay 10, 2011 at 6:03 am
ohhh I love how light and airy it looks!
perfect cake that won’t sit like a brick in my tummy! thanks so much for sharing! 🙂
Angela @ Eat Spin Run RepeatMay 10, 2011 at 6:05 am
Ooh yummy! It reminds me a bit of a great big Jammy Dodger, but in cake form!
Baking 'n' BooksMay 10, 2011 at 6:06 am
This is all kinds of lovely…but I’m not sure that waking up to cake on my screen is the best thing for me….;)
megan @ whatmegansmakingMay 10, 2011 at 6:08 am
I love traditional foods from other countries. This cake looks wonderful 🙂
AmandaMay 10, 2011 at 6:12 am
I’m making my own dessert bar for our wedding and have been searching out recipes. This looks like one I’ll have to try!
amy walters, aDESIGNdockMay 10, 2011 at 6:13 am
Lovely photos. And come on….jam, cream and cake?! Yum, great recipe 😉
Holly @ The Runny EggMay 10, 2011 at 6:14 am
I love how the filling just oozes out — like a big jelly donut 🙂
RuthMay 10, 2011 at 6:21 am
Hooray for another British gal! And a truly classic cake!
ElizabethMay 10, 2011 at 6:33 am
Everyday cake? You’ve sold me. =)
ElenaMay 10, 2011 at 6:36 am
This looks fantastic! Thanks for sharing! I love cakes with jam.
hollyMay 10, 2011 at 6:42 am
what a lovely surprise to see my friend angharad pop up in the reader of another blog i love. this cake looks lovely my friend – save me a slice for when i am in MN next weekend?!?
JennyMay 10, 2011 at 6:58 am
mm this would have been a nice treat to make for the royal wedding 🙂
Amanda (Eating Up)May 10, 2011 at 7:06 am
This cake looks perfect for the times when I don’t want icing!
Jessica @ How SweetMay 10, 2011 at 7:10 am
This cake looks divine Angharad!
minnevilleMay 10, 2011 at 7:22 am
Sponge cake is something I love. It’s a humble cake to start with; with jam and cream, it’s posh!
AlexandraMay 10, 2011 at 8:04 am
I totally thought the first photo was of a chicken sandwich at a glance!
Heather at Heather's DishMay 10, 2011 at 8:11 am
Absolutely beautiful cake! I love how simple it is…you don’t need a ton if decoration when it’s naturally beautiful!
Kristen @ Popcorn on the StoveMay 10, 2011 at 8:21 am
This looks so yummy! I am excited to try it!!
KariMay 10, 2011 at 8:27 am
This is the kind of classy elegance I think of when I think of England. I think I’m going to work on veganizing this…
JesseMay 10, 2011 at 8:54 am
oh looks so light and fluffy, perfect for spring!
AngharadMay 10, 2011 at 9:10 am
Hi everyone! Thanks so much for all your kind comments about the Victoria sponge! I’m honoured to have guest posted for Jenna today and hope you’ll all give this recipe a go. Stop by and say hi at Eating for England some time!
Bethany @ More Fruit PleaseMay 10, 2011 at 9:33 am
I used to work in an English Tea Room years ago and the Victorian sponge cake was one of our most popular items! I had almost completely forgotten about it. Thank you so much for sharing the recipe, I can’t wait to try making my own!
Natalia - a side of simpleMay 10, 2011 at 10:22 am
Since this recipe involves jam, it is totally going on my “breakfast” list 🙂 No complaints there!
Adrianna from A Cozy KitchenMay 10, 2011 at 11:27 am
Looks beautiful. I’d love a slice of this with some afternoon tea. 😉
Sarah@The Flying ONIONMay 10, 2011 at 11:31 am
I love your blog, Angharad!! And I love this recipe. It sounds absolutely fabulous. I need a good excuse to make a cake. Or maybe I *don’t* need an excuse to make a cake. 😉
Thanks for sharing! 😀
AngharadMay 10, 2011 at 1:39 pm
Thanks so much, Sarah! I don’t think any of us need an excuse to make/eat cake. One of life’s simple pleasures, right?!
Tessa @ Amazing AssetMay 10, 2011 at 11:50 am
What a gorgeous looking dessert! And I bet it tastes just as good as it looks 🙂
Thank you for sharing the recipe!
Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga)May 10, 2011 at 12:05 pm
That sponge cake looks so spongy, perfect, and I love the middle layers! I could just go to town on the middle! 🙂
Moni'sMealsMay 10, 2011 at 12:36 pm
Hello Eating for England! I love this! Thanks for sharing.
I am dying to head over to England, I have soooo many relatives there and I just can’t wait to do it. 🙂
Thanks for this lovely recipe!
Rachel @ Rachel's Recipe ReviewsMay 10, 2011 at 12:48 pm
This looks delicious! Hubby proposed to me in London, so I have fond memories of England 🙂
AngharadMay 10, 2011 at 1:37 pm
Aww, I spy an anniversary cake…:)
Elena @ GagaForGrapefruitMay 10, 2011 at 12:48 pm
the boyf is a jam fiend and he would ADORE this cake!
Jayson JamesMay 10, 2011 at 1:03 pm
This is yummy!
I am definitely revisiting the idea of having a cheat day. A day allowing yourself to indulge to my food cravings wouldn’t really hurt me and my weight loss program. I am going to make it happen. Thanks for sharing!
Megan (The Runner's Kitchen)May 10, 2011 at 2:02 pm
A lovely, simple dish! Angharad’s recipes are always so elegant 🙂
MarisaMay 10, 2011 at 4:03 pm
I have had “make Victoria Sponge Cake” at the top of my baking list for like 5 years now! Not sure at all why it hasn’t yet happened but I think your post and beautiful photos just may get me to finally check that one off my list. It looks fabulous!
Rebecca @ How the Cookies CrumbleMay 10, 2011 at 4:33 pm
This looks amazing! I love sponge cake! Can’t wait to try this!!
Lindsey@ LindseliciousMay 10, 2011 at 4:46 pm
Yum, I love strawberry and cream cakes (any type)! The BF loves strawberries in cake too, I should practice this for his bday coming up.
The Healthy AppleMay 10, 2011 at 8:03 pm
Dreaming of sinking my lil’ teeth into this baby right now. Yum, Jenna.
Megan@Dirty Dishes DailyMay 10, 2011 at 8:16 pm
Afternoon tea, breakfast, lunch, dinner…I would eat that anytime.
KatrinaMay 10, 2011 at 8:53 pm
Beautiful cake! This recipe is classy 🙂
KRISTYMay 11, 2011 at 4:54 am
A SPONGE CAKE THAT IS NOT MADE WITH A MERINGUE? INTERESTING!
The Food HoundMay 11, 2011 at 5:07 am
Not that I ever needed an excuse to host a tea… but this is the perfect one! The strawberries… the cream… so British! So fabulous!!
JudithMay 11, 2011 at 11:23 am
This look delicious.
Can you tell me what “Fairy Cake” is?
As a reader of all things Brtish, I see it often mentioned in literature.
MikaelaMay 12, 2011 at 3:37 pm
I’ve never had this kind of cake before so I decided to put on my baker’s cap and make it. I’m not much of a baker so I just follow directions to a tee; the directions didn’t say when to add the vanilla. By the time I got the cakes in the oven and started cleaning up, I was scratching my head wondering why the vanilla was on the counter. HA!! Here’s hoping they still come out as delicious as these look!!!!
ChristaMay 14, 2011 at 9:10 pm
Hi! I am wondering what the trick is to get the cake so fluffy. It looks thick, airy and amazing in the photos. I just made it twice, and both times it came out thicker and more dense. It’s definitely delicious, but not the airy cake like yours looks like. Any tips? If it helps, I used a kitchen-aid mixer w/ whisk attachment to make it. Any tips would be great. Thank you!!! 🙂
ShelleyMay 17, 2011 at 12:27 pm
my goodness this looks amazing! If only I wasn’t stuck in Iraq, I’d be making this right now!
Linda @ Lemon DropMay 17, 2011 at 5:36 pm
One of my fave cakes of all time! this looks delicious !
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mayaNovember 4, 2011 at 8:02 pm
I had tried this recipe to made victoria sponge cake it was very simple recipe but sooo delicious and i love this cake very much, thx a lot …
Water Rolls UphillDecember 7, 2011 at 6:24 pm
I will be blogging about my attempt at this recipe soon. I am making it for a co-operative class that I co-teach for my daughter’s homeschooling group. We are currently studying Victorian England.
CarrieFebruary 11, 2012 at 7:13 am
I tried making this for a girls’s night Dinner and a Movie: The Calendar Girls. The flavors were delicious, but my sponge was not “light and airy.” I should have taken a hint from the movie and bought mine at Marks and Spencer! I’m not sure what I did wrong. No matter, we all had a good laugh and ate 3/4 of the cake!
AimeeApril 22, 2012 at 3:41 pm
I didn’t see where to add the vanilla??
CaitlinMay 9, 2012 at 2:37 pm
I just made this exactly according to the instructions and it came out dense, crumbly, and greasy. What happened?
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DissaJune 2, 2012 at 7:49 am
This recipe is incomplete. It doesn’t say when to add the vanilla… and it isn’t enough for two cakes, barely one. Sad that you can post this without making it first.
L ButlerAugust 27, 2012 at 11:14 am
Sounds delicious but as I was making the sponge cake I realized there was no mention of the vanilla in the instructions. I’m going to assume you add it when you add the eggs. Can’t wait to try it!
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AvrilFebruary 7, 2014 at 9:58 am
I’m British too and this is my go to when I am craving British stuff. I love making american cookies and lots of other things but sometimes only something that reminds you of home will do.
TrudyJune 21, 2014 at 7:57 am
Only the batter should be “light and airy”! The cake itself is rather dense; holds up nicely to the jam and cream. I added the vanilla after the eggs, as that is where it usually goes in with cakes.