How to Make a Cake from Scratch (Step-by-Step Instructions)

Are you ready to experiment with homemade cake baking? Do not be afraid. You can accomplish it, and when you do, you will be so proud of yourself! This article is a step-by-step tutorial on how to make a cake from scratch.

I wanted to create a step-by-step tutorial for making a scratch cake. This article contains a wealth of advice and information. It may seem daunting at first, but just break it down and examine each component one at a time.

I’ve also included links to some of the supplies I use that work incredibly well, as well as connections to other blog entries where I go into more depth about certain topics.

When you’re ready, I’ve included several traditional scratch cake recipes at the end of this piece for you to try.

Ok, lets get started!

There are affiliate links in this post. I earn money as an Amazon Associate by making qualifying purchases.

Now, I realize you probably want to get straight to the baking, but it’s critical to do things perfectly before you get there. Preparation is essential.

I’d also want to point out that scratch cake making is not like cooking, where you can simply swap ingredients in and out, add and subtract components, and so on.

The proportions of fat, liquid, dry ingredients, and so on must be correct or your cake may fall, come out dry, not rise, have a thick texture, and cause a slew of other issues. The mixing procedure also makes a difference, and it is critical to follow the mixing directions, which we will discuss later in this piece.


Check that you have all of the ingredients and that they are at the proper temperature. Follow the directions on the recipe. You don’t always have to have your ingredients at room temperature, but make sure you stick to the recipe.

What is the significance of this? Because the components will combine better if you utilize them at the proper temperature. Using super-cold ingredients may cause the cake batter to congeal and have an odd texture.

Personally, I believe that the two most critical components to have at room temperature are butter and eggs.

Use the proper butter at the proper temperature. If a recipe calls for unsalted butter, use that unless it clearly states to use salted butter.

Is it necessary to let the butter to get to room temperature before mixing? If the recipe directs you to do so, be sure you do it. You can warm up your butter quicker if you chop it up on a platter.

Before baking, I normally chop up my butter and place it on a dish on my counter for approximately an hour. It is critical not to microwave your butter in order to get it to room temperature. It will not be uniformly heated, and there will be hot areas.

Make no substitutes. Okay, occasionally you can, but if you’re just starting off baking from scratch, you shouldn’t. Some components just cannot be substituted.

Substituting components such as cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and other kinds of flour may make a significant impact. You can’t swap certain items without making additional adjustments, so keep that in mind.

Here are a couple posts about substitutions:

  • What kind of cocoa powder should I use? (What Is the Distinction?)
  • When baking cakes, what is the difference between baking soda and baking powder?
  • Salted vs. Unsalted ButterWhat is the best butter to use for making cakes?)

Make sure you have all of your ingredients prepared. Just make sure you have all of the ingredients and that they are all ready to go.


Of course, you want to be certain that you’re utilizing the proper materials. You do not need to purchase expensive equipment. But first, let’s get to the crucial stuff.

Pans: Of course, baking pans are required. You should absolutely use the correct pans and decent pans (not too dark and coated). You should also use the correct pan size specified by the cake recipe.

Wilton cake pans or Magic Line pans are my favorites. Magic Line Pans are my absolute favorite because they ensure that the cake bakes tall and level.

Here are some good pan options for you:

Wilton 8 inch Round Cake Pans

Magic Line 8 inch Cake Pans

Other equipment and tools: You should also have some other useful items on hand, including as mixers, rubber spatulas, and bowls. You don’t have to go all out and buy a stand mixer. They’re great, but you don’t need one to make a nice scratch cake.

Here are some good options for other supplies:

KitchenAid 7 Speed Hand Mixer

KitchenAid Stand Mixer Classic

Rubber Spatula Set

Set of 3 White Mixing Bowls

You may get many more suggestions for superb cake making equipment here: Tools You Must Have When Baking Amazing Cakes

Prepare all of your baking equipment and utensils. Once you’ve gathered all of the necessary stuff, just lay it all out and get ready to begin.


Okay, this is a huge one. You may do everything else correctly, but if you don’t prepare the pans, your cake will break apart on you when you attempt to take it out.

You may prepare your pans in a variety of ways, including: You may oil them, spray them, grease and flour them, use the pan release procedure, or use parchment paper.

I find that greasing my pans with vegetable shortening and then flouring them yields the greatest results, or I’ll simply use the pan release recipe (which is equal parts vegetable shortening, vegetable oil, and flour mixed together, then used to coat the pans).

I’ve also discovered that exceptionally moist cakes need their pans to be floured as well.

I am aware that many bakers like to use parchment paper (rather than wax paper) in their pans. The best thing to do is experiment and figure out what works best for you.

Here’s a complete post on how to prepare pans: How to Get Your Cakes to Come Out of Their Pans


As a child, I used to believe that this was unimportant. I’d simply make my cake, put it in the oven, and turn it on. What’s the big deal? I wondered.

Oh my gosh, this is huge! If you do not preheat your oven, your cake will not rise properly. It’ll be thick and maybe dry. You will also have to bake it for a longer period of time since you did not raise the temperature.

There is a reason for that, so be sure to preheat your oven. Just turn it on as you enter into the kitchen, before you begin mixing your cake mixture.

Another option is to get an oven thermometer (which is rather affordable) and hang it in your oven. That way, you’ll know whether your oven is working properly and can make any necessary adjustments.


You may be measuring your components incorrectly and be unaware of it. Do you reach into the flour container and scoop it out, then add it to the bowl? That is not something you want to do.

If you do this, the flour will be packed into your measuring cup, adding too much to the batter. If you use too much flour, your cake will be considerably drier than you planned.

Did you realize there are separate measuring cups for dry and liquid ingredients? If you suspect you’re measuring ingredients incorrectly, I’ve compiled all of my measurement suggestions in one piece, along with a video, here: Baking Cake Ingredients Measuring

In the store, you can get these lovely rose gold measuring spoons!

Click here to see them


Make careful to adhere to the mixing procedure indicated in the recipe. It makes no difference whether you use the creaming approach, the reverse creaming method, or anything else.

Why? It important because, depending on the technique used, it will either assist the ingredients emulsify better, integrate more air to aid in rising, or prevent the gluten from getting overdeveloped, preventing the cake from becoming tough. There are reasons why the recipe instructs you to combine it in a certain manner.

Here, I go through multiple sorts of mixing procedures, what they’re used for, and the various types of flour used in making cakes: Flour Types for Baking Cakes, as well as Mixing Methods

Be careful not to over-mix the batter. This is one of the most critical points, as well as the most common error I notice. Most people believe that you should keep mixing until the batter is completely smooth and free of particles.

They mix and mix because, honestly, it makes sense to want to mix everything thoroughly rather than under-mixing, right? But it is precisely what you do not want to do.

You want to blend it until the components are thoroughly incorporated, but once they are, stop mixing. If you over-mix your cake batter, your cake will be thick and difficult, it will not rise correctly, and you will have a slew of other issues.

Why? The scientific reason is that the gluten will be overdeveloped, causing the cake to be thick, rubbery, or have other issues. You will not get a soft textured cake.

Now, don’t go too far and not mix it enough, since it can bring difficulties as well. The materials must be well combined.

I wrote a piece on how to correctly mix cake batter, and there’s even a video showing you how to do it in real time with two different mixing methods: How to Make Cake Batter in Real Time

You also don’t mix it up and then not bake it.Bake it immediately away for the best results, and allow yourself plenty of time!


Let’s move on to some pointers for when you eventually have your cake in the oven.

Bake your cake layers on the proper rack and don’t overcrowd them. Unless the recipe specifies differently, bake cakes on the middle rack. Try not to overcrowd your cake pans. You want air to circulate around the pans.

Keep the oven closed until the time specified in the recipe. Don’t constantly opening the oven to check on it since you’ll lose heat each time. You should keep your oven closed until your time is nearly done.

When you open the oven door to check on the cake, be careful not to slam it shut. Close it slowly or you may startle the cake and burst all the small air bubbles that have helped it rise. As a result, your cake may tumble and sink in the center.

The traditional toothpick test isn’t necessarily the best technique to determine doneness. There are a few things you can look for to see if your cake is done, and I personally prefer there to be a few moist crumbs on the toothpick when I perform the toothpick test (you know, sticking a toothpick into the centre of the cake and pulling it out).

Waiting until there are no crumbs on the toothpick might result in a little underbaked cake. Obviously, you don’t want raw batter on the toothpick, but I find that if it comes out with a few wet crumbs on it, I take it out of the oven.

You’ll want to pick up one of these handy reusable cake testers in the store!

Click here to grab one!

Simply know that the baking time is not fixed in stone. Understand what to look for. If you take it out too soon, the cake may sink.

There are additional things you may check for to see whether a cake is finished or almost finished, and I’m spilling the beans on my approach in this post: How to Tell if a Cake is Ready


Allow the cooked cake to cool completely. Do not attempt to remove the cakes from the pans immediately after removing them from the oven. They’ll just fall apart on you.

I’ve also discovered that you don’t want to let them cool entirely in the pans. They might be stubborn at times.

Here’s what I like doing: Remove the cakes from the oven and place them on cooling racks. Cool for 10-15 minutes (for layer cakes) or 20 minutes (for bundt cakes), then transfer to cooling racks to cool fully.

You can see more of that process here.

Make sure the cake layers are totally cold before applying any buttercream or frosting. They don’t have to be cold, but they should be at least room temperature so the cake doesn’t warm up the frosting.


Make use of an excellent recipe.a genuine scratch cake recipe, not a doctored cake mix recipe, since if you’re going to start baking from scratch, jump right in.

Now, I’m not dismissing doctored cake mix recipes; they’re tasty and I use them on occasion, but they’re not the same as homemade cakes. There are ingredients in cake mixes that help the cake bake up even if you make a mistake someplace.

Baking from scratch simply isn’t the same. You must get the ratios and mixing process just right. But I know you can do it, because there’s nothing like homemade cake flavoras long as you have the perfect recipe.

Here are some traditional scratch cake recipes from my website to try:

  • Favorite Vanilla Bean Cake
  • Moist White Cake
  • Chocolate Butter Cake

That was a lot of information. Please do not get overwhelmed. If you read it all, even if you think you’ve forgotten most of it, I guarantee it’s still in your head and you’ll remember a lot of it once you start baking.

I’m confident in you. Seriously, I know you can make a cake from scratch!

If you have any questions, please leave a comment on this site or send me an email at: Please contact me.

I wish to assist because I think that everyone can make homemade cakes!

Like this post? Dont forget to pin it below!


How to bake a cake step by step for beginners?

Cake Baking Instructions
Step 1: Get your baking pans ready.
Step 2: Let the ingredients come to room temperature.
Preheat the oven to 350°F.
Step 4: Combine the dry ingredients.
Step 5: Mix the butter and sugar together.
Step 6: Add one egg at a time.
Step 7: Alternately add wet and dry ingredients.
Step 8: Pour the batter into the prepared pans and bake.

What are the 10 steps of baking a cake?

How to Make a Cake in 10 Easy Steps
01 of 10. The Basics of Baking a Cake. Elaine Lemm.
02 of 10. Grease and Preheat. Elaine Lemm.
03 of 10. Prepare Your Ingredients. Elaine Lemm.
04 of 10. Whisk the Dry Mix.
05 of 10. Cream Your Butter and Sugar.
06 of 10. Add the Eggs.
07 of 10. It’s Time to Combine.
08 of 10. Pour Your Batter in Your Pan.

How do I start baking from scratch?

The BEST Baking Advice for Novices

What are the basics of baking a cake?

Follow the Recipe to Learn How to Bake the Perfect Cake. Isn’t this self-evident? …
Temperature in the room.
Take accurate measurements.
Flour for baking.
Don’t overmix or undermix.
Make use of Parchment Paper Rounds.
Don’t Turn on the Oven.
Bounce-Back Exam.

What are the 5 main ingredients in cake?

Apart from chocolate, almonds, tinned and glazed fruit, which are used in many recipes, the primary components for practically every sort of cake are wheat, sugar, eggs, oil, and leavening.

What is the simplest method of mixing cake?

The Creaming Technique

For mixing cake batter, the creaming technique is the most often used. It adds a lot of air to the dough and helps it rise, resulting in a sturdy yet delicate final product. For the best results, all components should be at room temperature.

How do you bake a cake in 7 steps?

7 Simple Steps to Baking a Cake
Make the pan. Begin by turning on your oven and preheating it to 350°F.
Cream together the butter and sugar.
Mix up the dry ingredients.
Combine all of the ingredients.
Pour the batter into the pan.
Prepare the cake.
Frosty and cool.

What are the 12 steps of baking?

Panning.SCS 019| Scaling the Twelve Steps of Bread Baking Ingredients.
Kneading and mixing.
Primary fermentation, often known as “bulk” fermentation.
Dividing by punching or “Degasing”
“Pre-forming” or “rounding”
Benching vs “Resting”
Final shaping

What are the 7 rules for baking perfect cake?

The seven rules for baking a perfect cake
Always grease and line the pan with parchment paper.
Allow the oven to completely heat up first.
Unless otherwise stated, bake in the center of the oven…
Bake in the pan size suggested.
Do not attempt to double the recipe.
Make use of fresh foods.
There will be no replacements.
Your cake is too dense.

How do you bake a guide step by step?

Follow the Recipes.
Prepare your ingredients before you begin.
Purchasing the proper equipment.
The temperature of the room is critical.
Purchase measurement equipment.
It’s all parchment paper! …
For cookies, use an ice cream scooper.
Dry ingredients should always be sifted.

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