Easy Vanilla Birthday Cake

It was my husband’s birthday this week and I made a really simple cake to celebrate it! He loves vanilla and this is a super easy cake that I threw together in just a few minutes. It’s a simple vanilla sponge, sandwiched with and covered in vanilla cream cheese icing.

I forgot to take a proper photo though!


For the cake:

  • 225g Margarine
  • 225g Caster sugar
  • 225g plain flour
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 large eggs

For the icing:

  • 250g cream cheese
  • 100g butter/margarine
  • 600g- 650g icing sugar (sifted)
  • 2tsp vanilla extract


  1. Grease and line two sandwich tins with parchment paper. Preheat the oven to 180’C.
  2. Sift the flour with the baking powder and add all the ingredients to a stand alone mixer. Mix on slow until all the ingredients are combined. You can use a handheld mixer, just set it to it’s lowest setting.
  3. Divide evenly between the two tins and bake for 25-30 minutes until the cakes are golden brown, risen and have come away from the sides slightly. You can check with a skewer if you like, or push down with your finger on the middle of the cake, if the cake springs back to form, it’s done.
  4. Leave to cool in the tin for about 5 minutes and then turn out onto a wire cooling rack to cool completely.
  5. Now for the icing. In a mixer (or with an electric whisk) Whisk the cream cheese, butter, vanilla and icing sugar until it’s thick and holds its form. If it’s a bit runny, add more icing sugar, if it’s a but thick, add a drop of milk.
  6. Sandwich the two cakes with a decent layer of the icing. Then place on your chosen plate and smooth the icing over the outside, using a spatula (or a palette knife if you’re fancy!)
  7. Decorate as you please, or leave it as is, it still looks lovely ( I promise, even though the photo doesn’t do it justice).

Some points to remember:

  • Use good quality, vanilla extract, not essence. It’s worth the extra few bob.
  • It’s supposed to look “rustic” so don’t try and smooth it too much.
  • You can decorate it properly, but I was in a hurry, so I just made a heart with some sweets.
  • This is an all-in-one sponge. If you take the time to cream the sugar and butter separately, then only use one teaspoon of baking powder, or just use self-raising.
  • Store this cake in the fridge, on account of the cream cheese.



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