Basic Sponge Cake

Updated: 3 hours ago

A basic sponge is one recipe every baker has to know. So simple to make, so versatile and so delicious. You can literally add any flavouring (nutmeg, cinnamon etc), any grated or chopped fruit, even freshly squeezed fruit juice to change the flavour completely.

Most sponge recipes use butter or margarine, but this recipe calls for vegetable or olive oil. Personally I prefer the flavour and texture of an oil based cake, not to mention the ease of making.


200g self raising flour

4 medium eggs

200g oil. You can use olive, sunflower or vegetable.

200g caster sugar

Vanilla flavouring. You can use extract, paste, pod or even just flavouring, it all depends on availability and budget.


Pre heat your fan oven to 165 degrees c. In a bowl, whisk the eggs for about 30 seconds till smooth, then add in the flour, sugar and oil. Whisk the mix, slowly at first, until a smooth batter is achieved. Finally whisk in your vanilla flavour, just a small amount, and pour the mix into a parchment lined baking tray measuring 10” by 8”. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes. To test if the cake is baked, poke a skewer or sharp knife into the cake, and slowly pull out. If it comes out dry, with no cake batter on it, it is cooked. If still a bit wet, bake for just a couple minutes more.

Leave to cool at room temperature, and store wrapped in clingfilm. Your sponge will last for a week covered, or you can freeze down for later use.


For a chocolate cake, substitute 50g of flour with 50g cocoa powder.

If adding chopped fruit, sultanas etc add approximately one handful.

For zest, the zest of one lemon or orange will be enough.

For cinnamon or nutmeg, one heaped teaspoon will do.