Whether it's a birthday or some other special occasion, baking a cake from scratch is a great way to show how much you care. Maybe it's the fact that the alternative — a boxed cake mix — is so readily available that makes baking from scratch makes it seem like you went above and beyond.
Baking from scratch is barely any harder than baking from a mix. Yes, you have to measure the ingredients, and a digital scale will really help with that, but otherwise, you've still got to crack eggs,... mix batter, grease cake pans, and so on.
Another tip: The number-one cause of cake failures is using baking powder and/or baking soda that has gone stale. Basically, if it's been in your pantry for more than six months, it's stale, and your cake won't rise properly.
01 of 05
Sponge cake is one of the simplest cakes to make because there's no baking powder or baking soda involved in making it rise. Instead, sponge cake is leavened by whisking air into the eggs. Brush the cooled cake with simple syrup and top with whipped cream, fresh fruit and a dusting of powdered sugar.
02 of 05
This classic chocolate cake is rich, moist and chocolatey. One of the keys is that we bloom the cocoa powder in boiling water, which brings out an unbelievable chocolate flavor.
03 of 05
Besides providing a delicious carrot flavor and lovely orange hue, shredded carrots help ensure that the cake is nice and moist while giving it a pleasantly dense consistency without being too heavy. Topped with a rich, tangy cream cheese frosting, you've got yourself a classic cake.
04 of 05
Red velvet cake is made with cocoa powder along with buttermilk and vinegar, which provides extra rising power as well as flavor. The deep red color comes from red food coloring, and you need to use 1/4 cup to really get the color right. Sounds like a lot, but it's the only way to get it that red. Cream cheese frosting pulls it together perfectly.Continue to 5 of 5 below.
05 of 05
Pound cake is a rich, dense, buttery cake that got its name because it originally was made with a pound each of butter, flour, eggs and sugar. The proportions are the same in this recipe, but we only use a half pound of each. You're going to want to eat it still warm from the oven.
More Cake Recipes: • Butter Cake • White Cake • Vanilla Cake • Yellow Cake