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Hi Bold Bakers!
There are some baked goods we all know and love but we have never made at home. Bigger Bolder Baking is all about mastering baking, taking things that seem difficult, and breaking them down into go-to recipes we can come back to time and time again.
My recipe for classic Angel Food Cake is one of those staple recipes every great baker should have in their repertoire. While this might be something you’ve never made before, there is no reason to go out and buy it as it is so simple you would not believe it!
What Makes Angel Food Cake So Light And Airy?
If you’ve seen my Bold Baking Basics video on how to make Swiss Meringue Buttercream Frosting you know the wonders that can be done with whipped egg whites. My cake starts off with the most beautiful fluffy meringue. The air whipped into the meringue is what gives this cake its light fluffy texture. With the addition of flour, powdered sugar, and corn starch, this batter is transformed into the light and fluffy favorite cake we all know and love.
What Is The Flavor Of Angel Food Cake?
If you have never had it before, you are in for a treat! The vanilla and almond extracts that flavor this makes it a really unique and sweet cake. The flavor is really versatile which is why it lends itself to so many different kinds of fruity toppings.
What Is The Difference Between A Sponge Cake And Angel Food Cake?
This cake bakes up to be golden brown on the outside and bright white on the inside, which is why they put the word “angel” in the name.
The main difference between a sponge cake and Angel Food Cake is that the leavening agent in Angel Food is really the meringue. Sponge cake is made with raising agents, a fat, and whole eggs. The result is still a tender light crumb but overall, sponge cake has a heavier texture.
What You’ll Need To Make Angel Food Cake
- Medium bowl
- Stand mixer with the whisk attachment
- Angel food cake pan
- Wire rack
How To Make Angel Food Cake
Ready to go to cake heaven? This recipe is easier than you’d think — here’s how you make this light and airy cake (and don’t forget to get the full recipe, with measurements, down below).
- Preheat oven.
- Sift together powdered sugar, flour, and cornstarch in a medium bowl.
- Beat egg white, cream of tartar, and salt using a stand mixer with the whisk attachment until soft peaks form.
- Increase the speed to medium-high. Sprinkle in sugar, extracts. Beat until stiff peaks form.
- Sprinkle half of the flour mixture over whipped eggs. Fold gently with a spatula.
- Sprinkle the remaining half and fold.
- Transfer batter into an ungreased angel food cake pan.
- Bake for 40 to 50 minutes.
- Allow the cake to cool on a wire rack.
Can You Substitute The Eggs?
Since the egg whites are super important to the texture and look of this cake, there is no substitute for eggs in this recipe.
Angel Food Cake Toppings
This angelic treat is perfect for so many occasions as it’s a beautifully simple blank canvas. Instead of using an angel food cake frosting, I love to top this the classic way with fresh strawberries and whipped cream on top — what more could you want out of a cake? You can even make your whipped cream in a jar.
Is Angel Food Cake Gluten-Free?
Since this recipe uses white flour, it is not gluten-free. For gluten-free angel food cakes, there are plenty of other types of flour you can use as a substitute, including almond flour, brown rice flour, and oat flour to name a few. Check out my gluten-free flours guide.
BUT, this cake is completely oil-free and made with very little flour… so it’s slightly healthier than other cakes!
Can You Freeze Angel Food Cake?
You can freeze this cake for 4 to 6 months. I’d recommend covering the slices individually in plastic wrap or aluminum foil before freezing though.
Tips and Tricks to Making Angel Food Cake
- Always start with room temperature eggs when making a meringue as they whip up so much better
- Make sure your mixing bowl is super clean as any dust or oil that may collect in the bowl can keep your meringue from whipping up nice and stiff
- For every 1/2 teaspoon of cream of tartar in the recipe, you can use 1 teaspoon lemon juice or white vinegar instead.
- Add the sugar 1 tablespoon at a time and allow it about 30 seconds to 1 minute to dissolve into the egg whites before adding more. This will help the meringue to be rich and stiff!
- Do not skip sifting the dry ingredients as this also helps the cake to be nice and light
- If you cannot find almond extract you can make it at home using my Homemade Almond Extract recipe.
Make More Cake!
- Pound Cake With Sprinkles
- Citrus Olive Oil Cake
- Best-Ever Chocolate Cake with Whipped Dark Chocolate Ganache
- Best-Ever Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
- Swiss-Meringue Buttercream Frosting
And don’t forget to buy my Bigger Bolder Baking Cookbook!
Full (and printable) recipe below!
Angel Food Cake Recipe
- Preheat the oven to 325°F (160°C). Set aside an angel food cake pan. There is no need to grease or line it.
- In a medium bowl, sift together powdered sugar, flour, and cornstarch. Set aside.
- In a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment beat egg whites, cream of tartar, and salt until you've reached frothy soft peaks.
- Increase the speed to medium-high and gradually sprinkle in sugar, then extracts, beating until stiff peaks form (just as if you were making meringue).
- Sprinkle half of the flour mixture over the whipped egg whites and fold gently with a spatula until just combined. Sprinkle over the remaining half of the flour mixture and gently fold until no streaks remain.
- Transfer the batter into a prepared cake pan and bake until top of cake springs back when touched, 40–50 minutes. Transfer the angel food cake to a rack and let cool.
- Store at room temperature for up to 3 days. To serve top with whipped cream and fresh seasonal berries.