This Easy One Bowl Vanilla Cake is my “go to” cake recipe. It’s moist, stack-able, and substantial with a fantastic texture.
Yes, this Easy One Bowl Vanilla Cake has a box base, but before you dismiss it completely, know that I’ve been a custom baker for 4 years and everyone that orders my vanilla cake raves about it! I have yet to find a from scratch recipe that tops what this cake has to offer. It’s so versatile! You can use it for cakes large and small, cupcakes, stacked cakes, carved cakes… the possibilities with this cake are endless! And who doesn’t like a simple white cake?!
Everyone Should Know How to Make a Birthday Cake!
Baking a Cake is a great way to tell someone that you care. That they are special. That they matter. And it doesn’t need to be anything spectacular. But it DOES need to taste GREAT!!! You know the old time saying, “it’s the thought that counts,” right? Well it’s true.
If you make a cake for someone you love and it looks like a train wreck, it honestly won’t matter as long as that cake tastes fantastic! And this Easy One Bowl Vanilla Cake will check that box EVERY. SINGLE. TIME!!!
I have nothing against a good ‘ol box cake. Box cakes are reliable. They are designed to be no-fail, easy and convenient. If you live somewhere where baking doesn’t come easy, a box base cake might be a better fit. I personally live at a very high altitude. Since moving 3 years ago from 4,370′ to 5,000′ you wouldn’t imagine the difference it made in baking my cakes! I had to adjust nearly every recipe. (I also switched from an electric to a gas oven, and I think that made a difference as well!) But one recipe that didn’t need any adjustment was this Easy One Bowl Vanilla Cake! It still bakes up perfectly each time!
So step up your game, and let’s do this! Try it out, because even people who “don’t like cake” have given positive reviews about this cake! Pair it with my Perfectly Perfect Vanilla Buttercream, or if you’re short on time, my Fluffy Cream Cheese Frosting and you’ll be the go to cake person, no question!
Lets start with the basics, Ingredients! One of the things that makes this cake so moist is the use of Sour Cream! I LOVE Sour Cream in Cake! This is what gives the cake moisture and base. I need my cakes to be stable because I often decorate them, stack them, or even carve them. But regardless, I think a good cake is one that you only need one slice of. I hate when I go to a party and the cake is so light that I don’t feel satisfied. This is due to a lower fat content in the cake itself. Let’s face it, if you are eating a piece of cake, you want it to be worth it! This Easy One Bowl Vanilla Cake is worth every single bite!
And the best part about this cake is how EASY it is to make! Throw it all in the bowl, mix and bake!!! What?!!! Seriously, it’s that easy.
Want to Add Sprinkles to your cake?
Make sure your frosting is still tacky. If you are using a crusting buttercream, like my Fluffy Cream Cheese Frosting, you will want to add sprinkles immediately after covering your cake. If you use a meringue based buttercream I recommend chilling your cake prior to adding sprinkles.
Place your cake on a cookie sheet, scatter the sprinkles around the bottom of the cake, and then use a large flat brush to help move them up the sides of the cake.
If you like the way the sprinkle placement looks on this Pink Birthday Cake, make sure to hand place a few above the line of sprinkles. It takes a little extra time and effort, but the results are worth it!
**This recipe is adapted from Rose Bakes’ White Almond Sour Cream Cake.**
Happy Baking! -Chels
One Bowl Vanilla Cake
- 4 Large Egg Whites (or 3 Whole Eggs)
- 1 Cup Sour Cream
- 2 Tbsp Vegetable Oil
- 1 Box Pillsbury White Cake Mix
- 1 Cup Granulated Sugar
- 1 1/2 Cup All-Purpose Flour
- 1 1/3 Cup Water
- 1 tsp Vanilla
- 1 tsp Almond Extract
- Preheat Oven to 325°.Grease and line with parchment paper: 4- 6" round pans, or 3- 8" round pans. Add all ingredients into the bowl of a stand mixer. Mix together on medium speed for 1-2 minutes or until fully combined. If baking in 4- 6" rounds: Fill each pan with 13 oz. of batter. Or fill about halfway if you don't have a kitchen scale. Then bake for 30-34 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the middle of each layer comes out clean or with only a few moist crumbs.If baking in 3- 8" rounds: Fill each pan with 17 oz. of batter. Or split evenly between each pan. Bake for 30-38 minutes or until toothpick inserted into the middle of each cake comes out clean or with only a few moist crumbs.For Cupcakes, line cupcake tins with Cupcake liners and fill with an Ice Cream Scoop (about 1/2 full). Bake for 16-18 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.Remove cakes from oven and let them rest in the pan for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes invert each layer onto a cooling rack to cool completely.
AMAZING!!! Simply amazing!
The best! And so easy. So glad you approve!
Jenna Miller says
Seriously the best cake ever!!! It’s been my go to cake for most events. And what makes it even better!? It’s easy! People think you’re a fancy baker because it’s so perfect!
Thank you, Jenna! You’re the best and I’m so glad you’re making cakes. It makes my heart so happy! -Chels
I make this cake twice and love it but now i want to make cupcakes. Can you help me what temperature should i use to make cupcake?
Glad you like them! Same temperature. You just need to shorten your bake time. Probably around 16-18 minutes depending on the size of your cupcakes. Until a toothpick comes out clean. 🙂
Hi! Do you think this recipe would be alright to use two 9.5 inch round pans? If so, about how long do you think the layers should bake? Thanks!
They might be a little thin, but sure. You could definitely double the recipe. You’ll have to check on them occasionally when it comes to the bake time. Usually if I have full 9″ pans they take around 45 minutes to bake. But every oven is different and it will depend on how full you fill your pans. I also always use bake strips and a heating core with pans bigger than 8″
Karen Hardy says
I’m using one 8 inch pan and one 6 inch pan, both 3 inches high. Can you please advise on amount of cake batter for each pan and approximate baking time? Thanks!
Hi Karen, I apologize for getting back to you so late. I have been moving! I very rarely use a 3″ baking pan. I know for sure you will want to use bake strips and increase your bake time. But I typically fill by pans about half full and it results in a full pan layer after baking. So with a 3″ pan, maybe go about 2/3 of the way full? In terms of bake time, I’d increase it by about 10-15 minutes and start checking when you can tell it is getting sturdy. Good luck!
Do you think I could throw rainbow sprinkles in the batter for a “funfetti” look?
100%!! It’ll be great!
Do you have to use Pillsbury cake mix or will any brand do?
Pillsbury is my preferred. You can use any brand. The results may vary slightly.
Marie-Line Bergeron says
Thanks for that great recipe! I used 4 Fat daddio’s 6 x 2” cake pans and filled them with 13 oz. of batter. I also used bake even strips. Everything was fine, but I didn’t get a full pan layer after baking. My layers were not as thick as I wish they were. Do you have any tips for me?
That’s so strange. This was a recipe I used time and time again with success. I wonder if maybe you cake mix had expired? This would affect the rise… Or possibly you left out an ingredient? Might have possibly overworked the batter by mixing for a little too long… I haven’t had this issue before. I’m sorry you did, Your pans should’ve been nearly full when baked. I hope you can figure it out as this recipe has been a great, easy one to have on hand.
Grace Duran says
Hi, can I replace the water with the same amount of butter milk? Any thoughts on if it would make any difference on taste or sturdiness (will be covering with fondant). Thank you
Hi Grace, this is a very dense cake to begin with, I would probably advise against it. If you’re wanting the buttermilk flavor maybe add buttermilk powder?