1950s Hot Milk Sponge Cake


1950s Hot Milk Sponge Cake

Baking this vintage treat is incredibly easy. The whole family will love our hot milk sponge cake recipe.

1950s Hot Milk Sponge Cake
1950s Hot Milk Sponge Cake

Old-fashioned cake recipes are some of the best because they use simple ingredients and always turn out great. This 1950s Hot Milk Sponge Cake is a light cake recipe that has a lovely texture and flavor. It's sturdy enough to carry the frosting. If you prefer something lighter, simply top it with whipped cream and fruit. This simple cake recipe from scratch is no more work than mixing up a cake mix, yet much more delicious.

This popular vintage recipe was especially famous in the 1950s when Betty Crocker released a version of the already-popular technique. Our hot milk cake is easy to make and fantastic for newbies. Unlike other sponge cake recipes, this hot milk sponge cake does not require you to separate the eggs before beating them.

Yields8 slices

Preparation Time10 min

Cooking Time30 min


  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • Optional: Fresh fruit or powdered sugar for serving


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 9-inch round cake pan with cooking spray and line with a round of parchment paper.

  2. Measure flour, baking powder, and salt into a sifter or sieve and sift together. Heat milk in microwave for 20-25 seconds. Drop the butter into the milk to melt it.

  3. With an electric mixer on high, beath eggs 3 minutes until thick and lemon-colored. With machine running, gradually add sugar, then stir in the dry ingredients, mixing just until all dry particles are incorporated. Stir in hot milk-butter mixture and add vanilla until well blended.

  4. Bake for 25-30 minutes until cake tests done when a toothpick is inserted in the center. Remove pan to a cooling rack for 10 minutes, then turn out onto cooling rack to cool completely.

  5. Serve garnished with fresh fruit and a sprinkle of powdered sugar.

Hot Milk Cake History

What is hot milk cake?
Hot milk cake gets its name and distinct flavor from the addition of scalded milk into the traditional batter. It differs from other well-known sponge cake recipes because it contains eggs that are beaten whole (instead of whipping yolks and whites separately) and uses baking powder as leavening.

Where did it originate?
Hot milk cake has been popular for centuries at this point. Recipes for this unique recipe can be found in cookbooks from the late-nineteenth and early twentieth century. These cookbooks are often written by well-to-do upper and middle-class women who are were writing for a lower-class, inexperienced audience. Hot milk cake offered an easy way to make a sponge cake for inexperienced home cooks. It was later made famous in many homes after it appeared as a Betty Crocker recipe.

Source: Bygone Food and Recipes


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do NOT ever EVER put milk in the microwave to heat it up.... it needs to be scalding which means you need to do it on the stove... every microwave is different and if you heat it too much, your cake will NOT RISE!!!

I made this cake yesterday with my toddler. It is delicious. I love the simple vanilla flavor. I sprinkled powdered sugar and put out different jams. My slice has strawberry jam on it ). Yum!

I've never seen anything like this before. I'll have to try it!

Wow, this sponge cake looks absolutely amazing! I really like that you're bringing back a vintage recipe. A lot of trends are coming back in style, and it's interesting to think that it's not only clothes that do. I'm excited to try bake this myself!

I made this to take to work for a function that we were having. This cake disappeared almost as soon as I put it out. I had so many requests for this recipe. They were amazed to find that this only took 7 ingredients! I am adding this to my regular desserts to make for entertaining. This is definitely a crowd pleaser that is quick to make up and cook.

I've never tried a cake like this, but it looks delicious!

There's nothing better than hot cake with freshly made whipped cream and fruit...yum! I love that this isn't overly sweet and you can switch it up with many different fruit combinations if you wanted to...like fried cinnamon apples. Oh my gosh now I'm daydreaming about this cake...I'll definitely have to give this recipe a try soon.

I haven't heard of a sponge cake, either. The picture looks really good and the recipe is easy. I think I would serve it with sliced strawberries, like I serve with Angel food cake.

I've never heard of hot milk sponge cake before. Can't wait to try it!

I can't wait to try this recipe as I remember learning how to make a hot milk sponge cake with my grandmother. She would layer the cake with rasberry jam in between the layers. Has anyone tried layering this particular recipe with a preserve? I know it was a huge hit in my family growing up. I'll have to give this recipe a try!


Light and fluffy, but still full of flavor. I can see why this is a classic!

This is the perfect cake for dessert. It's not too rich and heavy. It's light and tasty. I had three slices and could've kept going.

I was surprised by how much I liked this cake. It really was one of the best sponge cakes I have ever tasted!

It surprisingly had a crunchy top that was actually quite good. Very light.

The light flavor reminded me of a pound cake, but the texture was much fluffier. It was really good!

This cake looks so elegant! It's perfect for a party or special occasion--especially served with berries and whipped cream.

This cake is the perfect amount of fluffyness. A great dessert after any meal.

I was surprised at how much I liked this cake! It was light and fluffy, but full of flavor. Two thumbs up!

Loved it. Love me some plain cake. It tasted like a slightly denser angel food cake. I'd definitely recommend this for any occasion!

This simple sponge is tasty and just the right amount of sweetness. It would taste great paired with some berries.

This cake was very good with powdered sugar on top. It tasted a lot like angel food cake, but it wasn't as fluffy.



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