Did you know that Funfetti Cake is just vanilla cake with sprinkles? I know. I was shocked too. Those colorful sprinkles transform the cake from boring (at times) old vanilla cake to the classic fun and bright birthday cake. Although Funfetti Cake is a classic cake, I often feel like it can be way too sweet and lacks a little flavor. With a couple changes, the classic cake we all know and love can become the classic cake we all know and are in love with. To achieve a Funfetti Cake we can be in love with, it needs to check off a couple boxes: tender and pillow-y, moist, colorful, and it has to be sweet, but not too sweet. Luckily, this cake checks all those boxes and more!
TIPS AND INFO TO MAKE THE BEST FUNFETTI CAKE
Measuring flour - the key to any fluffy and tender baked good is accurately measuring your flour. Typically when you just scoop out the flour straight from the container, you end up measuring way too much flour. This is because when you scoop the flour straight from the container, you are packing it down too much, meaning that your measuring cup is filled with dense flour. Measuring too much flour can ruin almost any baked good, so I recommend using a kitchen food scale when possible since this will provide the most accurate results. However, if you do not have a food scale the most accurate way you can measure your flour is by spooning the flour into your measuring cup until it is full. Then with the flat side of a butter knife, swipe the excess overflowing flour off. This method is called spooning and leveling your flour.
Cornstarch - adding cornstarch to the dry ingredients helps the flour mimic cake flour. Like cake flour, cornstarch gives you a more tender cake.
Reverse creaming - you might be asking yourself, what is reverse creaming? Well, don’t worry, it is not hard. Reverse creaming is a popular cake making method. Instead of starting off by creaming together the butter and sugar, like many cake recipes, we cream together our butter, sugar, flour, and other dry ingredients until a crumbly mixture forms and then add in our wet ingredients. This method helps prevent gluten formation when the flour combines with the liquid, leading to a more tender baked good.
Oil and butter - this cake uses two different types of fat. Typically, Funfetti Cake is made using butter because it adds flavor and moisture to the cake, but to make this the best cake I could, I found that using butter and oil yields the best cake. The butter adds a ton of flavor and fluffiness, while the oil adds moisture and tenderness to the cake.
Egg-free recipe - this cake recipe is egg free. To ensure that this cake is moist and tall without eggs, we use yogurt, baking soda, baking powder, and vinegar.
Ingredient Temperature - it is important to use room temperature ingredients in this cake. This helps ensure that your ingredients combine easily and well to form a homogenous batter.
Lemon zest - your typical Funfetti Cake won’t be made with lemon zest, but I find that using a little lemon zest cuts the sweetness of the cake and adds a nice, subtle fruity, citrus flavor.
Vanilla - this cake has a whole lot of vanilla, and that’s because it’s a vanilla flavored cake. So, this means that if we want a cake with a whole lot of flavor, we simply need a tablespoon of vanilla extract to achieve this.
TOTAL TIME: 1 hour SERVINGS: 8
INGREDIENTS: 3 cups minus 2 tablespoons all purpose flour cups (345 grams)
2 tablespoons cornstarch (16 grams)
1 ½ cup granulated sugar (300 grams)
½ cup soften unsalted butter
½ cup vegetable oil
1 ¼ cup room temperature milk (preferably whole milk)
½ cup room temperature yogurt (preferably full fat)
1 ½ teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon vinegar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
½ cup rainbow sprinkles
Pinch of salt
Zest of a lemon (optional, but recommended)
Preheat your oven to 350° F and line two 8 inch round pans with parchment paper and spray the sides. Alternatively, you can use four 6 inch round pans to make a layered cake, or two 9 inch square pans.
In a bowl, combine the room temperature milk and vinegar. Set it aside to curdle and measure out the rest of your ingredients.
In your stand mixer bowl or a separate bowl, add in the sugar and lemon zest. Using your fingertips, rub the zest and sugar together. This will release the essential oils in the citrus zest and intensify the lemon flavor. Rub the sugar and zest together until the sugar resembles wet sand.
Then, add in the flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Mix until all of the dry ingredients are fully combined.
Then, add in the butter and begin to beat on low for a minute. Then, increase the speed to a medium or medium high and beat until chickpea sized crumbs begin to form.
Then, add in the oil and continue beating. At this point, it is going to look off because a dough will start to form, do not worry it will be fine.
Add in your milk, yogurt, and vanilla after the oil and beat until everything is just combined. Add in the sprinkles and mix just until you see no more lumps or flour pockets.
Evenly divide the batter into your pans and bake for 30-40 minutes.
Once it is finished baking, let it cool for at least 15 minutes before removing it from the pan. Then, let it cool completely before frosting. Click here for a classic funfetti frosting.
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