Victoria Sponge

The weather has just been beautiful recently, I haven’t wanted to spend any time at all in the kitchen. I would much rather be lazing in the park, with a picnic and a glass of pimms than baking in front of a hot oven! But in the end my love of baking always drags me back to the kitchen. I wanted to give my boyfriend, Matt a baking lesson so decided to teach him how to make one of his favourites, the classic Victoria Sponge. Its a cake that reminds me of holidays in Devon, full of soft whipped cream and plenty of jam, its just a perfect summertime cake. It’s one of the simplest cakes around so if you would rather be outside enjoying the weather then is the perfect choice, minimum effort with scrummy results.

Victoria Sponge
225g self-raising flour
2 tsp baking powder
225g unsalted butter, room temperature
225g caster sugar
4 large eggs, lightly beaten
120g raspberry jam
150ml double cream, whipped to soft peaks

Preheat the oven to 180C/350F. Lightly grease two 8-inch round cake pans and line with parchment paper, greasing the parchment too.

Sieve the flour and baking soda together into a medium bowl, set aside.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add the egg a little at a time beating until fully combined. Add the flour mixture in three additions mixing on low only until just combined.

You want the cake batter to be ‘dropping consistency’ which means that if you take a spoonful of batter out of the bowl it should be soft enough to fall from the spoon in a couple of seconds. If the batter is sticking to the spoon for too long mix in a tblsp or two of milk to soften the batter.

Divide the cake batter evenly between the two prepared cake pans and gently level out. Bake in the preheated oven for 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the middle of a cake come out clean. The cake should also be golden brown and be coming away from the edge of the tin.

Cool in the pan for ten minutes before turning out and cooling completely on a wire rack.

To assemble spread one layer of cake with the jam and top with the whipped cream. Sandwich together with the second layer of cake and sprinkle with a little icing or caster sugar.

Top Tip – Ever had a cake batter appear to curdle on you? It’s most likely down to two things. Firstly make sure you beat the butter and sugar until very light and fluffy, it needs to be almost white. Secondly make sure all your ingredients are at the room temperature. If you keep your eggs in the fridge this will increase the chance of curdling.

My first cookbook The Boy Who Bakes available to pre-order here now

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25 Responses to Victoria Sponge

  1. Crikey Edd, the Women’s Institute would have your guts for garters – cream AND jam? x

  2. mag says:

    Hi Ed, thanks for posting this. The Victoria Sponge has got to be my favourite cake to bake. However, I tend to find this 1:1:1 ratio of sugar: flour: butter a bit too sweet for our taste (and it’s not the jam cos sometimes we just eat it plain)… I did try reducing the sugar content but the cake came out quite dry…do you know if there’s any way I could make a less sweet version of this cake?
    Thanks, mag

  3. meemalee says:

    There’s a letter in this month’s delicious saying “the sponge on your cover has buttercream in it, but there’s no recipe for buttercream inside” and the editor’s reply is “Yes, well, the WI would’ve killed us”.

    But Wikipedia says this: “A traditional Victoria sponge consists of raspberry jam and whipped double cream or vanilla cream, just jam is referred to as a ‘jam sponge’ and most certainly not a Victoria sponge.”

    All I can say is jam and cream = AMAZING.

  4. Becky says:

    Glad someone else uses the same ratio that I do, definitely the best Vicky sponge!

  5. Zoe says:

    Edd how do you get your cake to rise so beautifully. I make sure the ingredients are at room temp, and I do the beating to fluffy, but alas. An expert advise would be much appreciated, Zx

  6. Dubergine says:

    My ancient Good Housekeeping cookbook does say just jam for ‘Victoria sandwich cake’ but is also happy to give variations. Anyway who wants to be in a club with such strict rules?!
    To mag, why not add grated lemon rind to the mix, then lemon curd to sandwich together?

    • To be fair to the WI, there has to be an agreed criteria for means testing and judging or before you know it, everyone’ll be trying to outdo each other with vanilla marscapone and spun sugar.

  7. Looks fantastic and I agree with some of the above comments, who cares about the WI jam + cream = deliciously decadent.

  8. Jenni says:

    Sounds light and wonderful, and since I’m not from the UK, I bet nobody would care if I slathered on cream, jam and maybe some frosting. Or glaze. :)

    One question: I don’t use a ton of self rising flour, but I know it already has leavening in it, ostensibly the perfect amount to raise batter made w/that amount of flour. Why the extra leavener? Thanks!

    • theb6256 says:

      I like the extra leavening just to get the lightest cake possible, the traditional ratio of a victoria sponge isnt the lightest so a little extra helps

  9. Mellie Buse says:

    Will it work with wheat free flour? Any tips in that department would be extremely welcome!

  10. Hey Edd, didn’t know you were spoken for, very happy for you! Must meet Matt sometime. I love Victoria Sponge Cake too, and it is a good one to remember as it calls for equal amounts for flour, butter and sugar! Lovely photography by the way!

    Luiz @ The London Foodie

  11. Fleur says:

    Mmm…looks lovely. Has inspired me to whip up a Victoria Sponge this weekend. I don’t usually add Baking powder to the self-raising flour but makes complete sense to get the lightest cake. I make mine with a buttercream and lemoncurd filling. Scandal! :-)

  12. Adam says:

    I made this recipe and the cake lasted about 2 hours in my office. I used some Smuckers Grape Jelly I got from Selfridges which was really different and went down well, and added a 1/4 tsp of vanilla extract (just because my mother always does, so I do). I was always an epic Victoria Sponge failure, but thanks Edd, I can now hold my head high at high tea!

  13. Dizzy Izzy says:

    Hi Edd, Tried making your viccy s/wich over the weekend and didn’t exactly have great success. Followed the recipe to the letter – batter was lovely soft dropping consistency but when I got the sponges out of the oven 25 mins later, they were a tad sunken in the middle (never normally one of my problems – others always have a bit of a domed effect!). Have checked, they are cooked all the way thru, golden brown on top, just a bit of a hollow in the middle. Any ideas where I went wrong please? Also, when they were baking, they did smell quite ‘eggy’ Would be really pleased to receive your feedback. Tks Iz.

    • Edd says:

      HI Iz it sounds like it could be two things. Did you open the oven during baking, if opened too early that can cause the cake to sink, it could also be too much leavening. If you use rounded tsp’s of baking powder (more likely if your using a normal tsp rather than a measuring tsp like this http://bit.ly/lfw2l6) this can lead to the cake rising then sinking whilst baking.
      Thanks Edd

      • Dizzy Izzy says:

        Cheers Edd, tks for replying to my post. You are right about how I measured out the bk pdr. Will try level tsp in future! Keep up the good work! Ta

  14. Emily says:

    Make my very first Victoria Sponge with your recipe! Very pleased with the results! Thanks a bunch!

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