Vicky Wasik.

Cake has always been my jam, ever since I was a kid watching a schoolmate pop adorable little cakes out of her Easy Bake oven. Alas, my mom refused to buy me one, insisting I crack open a Betty Crocker cookbook and learn how to use a real oven—thus setting me on the path to becoming a pastry chef. While I loved making fancy-pants creations at work, I almost always baked simple cakes at home.

Let’s face it, sometimes we just want cake, and these easy cake recipes provide ways to satisfy those cravings any time of the day or night. Many of them are one-pan deals—from streusel-topped skillet coffee cake with warm spices to Texas sheet cake with fudgy glaze and chewy, coconutty Filipino rice cake. We also have foolproof recipes for angel food and olive oil cakes that will appeal to beginners and pros alike. So, crank up those ovens and let us eat cake!

Pumpkin Skillet Coffee Cake With Streusel Topping

Serious Eats / Vicky Wasik

This one-pan ode to fall is the love child between a hearty muffin and nutty, streusel-topped coffee cake, with pumpkin pie and blondie vibes thrown in.

Chocolate Skillet Cake With Milk Chocolate Frosting

Serious Eats / Vicky Wasik

A 10″ cast iron skillet is the ideal vessel for this fudgy no-mixer-required chocolate cake slathered in milk chocolate frosting (all you Reese’s lovers can opt for peanut butter frosting instead). It’s just the right size for a small family dessert.

Hummingbird Skillet Cake

Serious Eats / Vicky Wasik

There’s no rule that says this Southern classic has to be tall layer cake. Puréed banana and pineapple gives this moist, hearty cake a tropical twist, while tangy cream cheese frosting provides an appropriate amount of richness.

Upside-Down Blueberry Muffin

Serious Eats / Vicky Wasik

What happens when you just stop fighting gravity and let the blueberries sit at the bottom? You end up with skillet-size “muffin” masquerading as gorgeous upside down cake with a bejeweled blanket of sweet juicy berries that makes a delectable breakfast treat.

Easy One-Bowl Coffee Cake

Serious Eats / Vicky Wasik

It doesn’t get any easier than Stella’s foolproof one-bowl method of achieving a perfectly buttery, tender crumble-topped cake that’s sure to have you lingering over your morning coffee.

Texas Sheet Cake

No Texas barbecue—or any large gathering for that matter—is complete without a big slab of fluffy chocolate cake gloriously drenched in a fudgy glaze and showered in toasted pecans.

Gingerbread Sheet Cake With Cream Cheese Frosting

Serious Eats / Vicky Wasik

Although deceptively simple, this tender, fluffy sheet cake has a bold flavor profile thanks to molasses and a heady mix of ginger, black pepper, Chinese five-spice powder, cloves, nutmeg, and cinnamon—deliciously offset by tangy, rich cream cream frosting.

Old-Fashioned Jelly Roll

Serious Eats / Vicky Wasik

Executing that perfect swirl of jammy filling is actually pretty easy if you follow Stella’s method for making a flavorful stable sponge that you can roll effortlessly without a hint of cracking. Once you get the technique down, any combination of cake flavors and fillings will be a snap.

Classic Chiffon Cake with Vanilla Chantilly

Serious Eats / Vicky Wasik

Classic Chiffon was the very first cake I learned how to bake from scratch as a kid, from a vintage 1950s Betty Crocker cookbook my mom bought at a garage sale. Stella’s update makes for an even lighter, airer cake that can be paired with any number of frostings and fillings, including her super-thick and fruity food processor whipped cream.

Maple Angel Food Cake

Serious Eats / Vicky Wasik

Like its cousin chiffon, angel food cake is all about simplicity, a light, airy texture, and, best of all, versatility. The technique for whipping the egg whites is the same as the one for basic angel food—here, Stella swapped out plain sugar for natural maple sugar to match the cooler seasons.

Olive Oil Cake

Serious Eats / Vicky Wasik

Olive oil takes the spotlight in this ridiculously moist and tender cake that’s so easy to make, it needs to be in every baker’s repertoire. Neutral flavorings in the cake allow you to play with different types of olive oil.

Pistachio Cake

Serious Eats / Vicky Wasik.

Adding high-quality pistachio oil elevates the basic olive oil cake, while orange zest and orange flower water enhance the pistachio aroma.

Dairy-Free Chocolate Cake

Serious Eats / Vicky Wasik

Once again olive oil is the secret ingredient that keeps this easy-to-make chocolate cake impossibly moist, while also providing fruitiness and astringency that complements the cocoa. Whole wheat flour also adds toasty notes.

Basque Cheesecake

Serious Eats / Vicky Wasik

In my opinion, this is hands down the easiest cheesecake to bake—and arguably one of the most delicious. There’s no crust to fiddle with and no water bath. You mix the batter, pour it into a parchment-lined springform pan, sprinkle on some sugar, and bake at high heat. To quote Ina Garten, “How easy is that?”

Bibingka (Filipino Rice Cake)

Serious Eats / Rezel Kealoha

Traditionally a Christmastime treat in the Philippines, Yana Gilbuena’s version of bibingka, or Filipino rice cake, is baked in a banana leaf-lined cast iron pan and topped with caramelized young coconut.

Apple Cider Doughnut Cake

Serious Eats / Fred Hardy

Want the flavors of apple cider doughnuts without all the mess and effort of frying? This buttery, warmly spiced bundt cake has all the fall apple-y, cinnamon sugar goodness and none of the hassle.

Apple-Ginger Tishpishti (Gluten-Free Almond and Walnut Cake)

Serious Eats / Vicky Wasik

For this Americanized spin on a traditional Sephardic cake, Cathy Barrow adds grated apple to the nut-based cake and soaks it with an Applejack- and ginger-infused syrup instead of the classic one flavored with rose blossom. Outside of Passover, this makes for a wonderful gluten-free dessert any time of year.

Easy Gluten-Free Chocolate Cake

Serious Eats / Elizabeth Barbone

Elizabeth Barbone offers up an easy gluten-free version of a classic chocolate bundt cake by swapping out regular flour with a combination of rice flours and tapioca starch.

Gluten-Free All-Day Lemon Cake (With a Choice of Two Toppings)

Serious Eats / Elizabeth Barbone

This not-too-sweet lemony cake has a delicate texture and brightness from plenty of lemon juice and zest. Finish it off with either a simple syrup glaze or a powdered sugar icing.

Honey-Vanilla Almond Cake

Serious Eats / Jennifer Latham

Honey replaces refined sugar in this variation on a traditional Galician tarta de Santiago. Made simply with only a few ingredients and no flour, this lovely gluten-free almond cake is a great dessert for passover, but it’s one we have no problem enjoying all year long.

Flourless Chocolate-Chestnut Torte

Serious Eats / Yvonne Ruperti

Chocolate and chestnuts are a holiday match made in heaven. Here, a touch of bourbon gives the mild chestnut flavor a boost.

Molten Chocolate Cake

Serious Eats / Nila Jones

All you need to make this gooey chocolate cake for two is a whisk and spatula. No need to unmold—just dig in with a couple of spoons.

Ozark Pudding Cake

Serious Eats / Erin Kunkel

Pears and almonds are an unbeatable combination. The cast iron gives this cake a crisp bottom and sides, while the center remains soft.

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