This marble cake recipe is tasty and simple! A beginners level cake of marbled chocolate and vanilla batter, bakes beautifully in a loaf pan or bundt.
Check out this amazing easy orange cake.
This easy butter cake has been in my family for generations. Buttery, rich and is sure to make everyone happy. The best part is, it satisfies bother chocolate and vanilla cake lovers.
This marble cake was handed down from my late grandma and my whole family loves it. Chocolate and vanilla batter swirled into this delicious loaf so you get the best of both worlds. Very simple to put together, add some frosting and you have an amazing birthday cake.
❤️ Why You'll Love It
- An easy cake recipe for beginners, better than a box.
- Holds together very well which makes it great for potlucks.
- Has been popular in between my family and friends for decades now, tested by so many people.
Let me just start by saying this is my most requested recipe. My kids, my friends and my husband's co-workers all go crazy over this marble pound cake. It has just the right amount of sugar, very balanced and you can never go wrong with it.
Note: This is an overview of the ingredients. You'll find the full measurements and instructions in the recipe card (printable) at the bottom of the page.
- Unsalted butter.
- Granulated sugar.
- Vanilla extract.
- All purpose flour.
- Backing powder.
- Unsweetened cocoa powder.
Note: This is an overview of the instructions. The detailed instructions are in the recipe card below.
- In a large bowl, cream butter for about 1 minute on medium speed. Add sugar and continue to beat on medium for another 3-4 minutes until light pale and fluffy.
- Add eggs one at a time with vanilla extract and mix well after each egg.
- Pour milk and mix to combine .
- In a separate bowl, sift flour, baking powder and salt. Add one cup at a time to the wet ingredients and mix.
- Divide the vanilla batter into two bowls, keep one as is for the vanilla part of this cake.
- Add cocoa powder to the other half and mix.
- Divide the vanilla cake batter equally into the baking pan(s).
- Top that with the chocolate cake batter and make an "S" shape with a butter knife to reach a nice marble for your loaf.
Bake in a preheated oven until done and do not open the oven before 30 minutes.
💡 Amira's Tips
Expert tip: Do not open the oven door before 30 minutes mark.
- You will need to use room temperature ingredients to plan ahead.
- If you feel the butter is close to room temperature but not there yet, cut the butter into 1 inch cubes before beating. This speeds up the process.
- Do not over-mix the batter, this can make your cake sink in the middle.
- Do not over do it with the butter knife to marble the cake, you might end up with mixed batter that is not chocolate nor vanilla.
- If egg free baking is your style check out these vegan egg substitute for baking.
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- Handheld or a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment.
- I recommend using a nonstick cooking spray with flour such as Wilton or Baker's Joy.
- Large mixing bowl.
- Loaf pans or bundt pan.
- I've played with the recipe content of sugar, so I've decreased the sugar to 2 cups and even 1 cup. The 2 cups were really good and did not affect the texture and structure of the cake. When I reduced it to 1 cup it was too bland and we did not like it.
- My sister, on the other hand, played with the fat content. She actually made this recipe once with all vegetable oil and on another occasion with half oil and half butter. She reported it was still delicious and rich. I did try the half oil and half butter and it was ok , I am a butter girl though.
- I've baked this recipe in a bundt pan and it turned out beautiful, just adjust the baking time.
- Make your favorite chocolate frosting, fill and frost the cake for a delicious no fail birthday cake.
- Leftovers can be stored sealed in an airtight container on your countertop for up to 3 days. I do not like putting it in the fridge for over 5 days as it dries out.
- My best advice is wrapping it in plastic wrap then foil and keep it in the freezer.
⌛ Make Ahead
This cake freezes very well. Bake the cake and wait got it to cool down completely, wrap in plastic wrap then double wrap with foil and place in a zip lock bag and freeze for up to 2-3 months.
💬 Recipe FAQs
There are several reasons for sinking cakes starting from too much baking powder, not enough moisture, not the right temperature...etc. The most common two reasons that happened to me personally were a) over mixing and b) opened the oven door before 30 minutes. The latter can be easily fixed, just be patient and do not ever open the oven door before 30 minutes. For over mixing, I usually divide the dry ingredients into 4 parts, mixing the first two with the electric mixer as usual then switching to a spatula or a wooden spoon to finish of the batter.
Both are irresistible and delicious. Mainly sponge cake is airy and made with eggs, sugar and flour. Pound cake is made with the same three ingredients but adding butter and leavening to the mixture.
Beat butter and sugar and eggs at medium speed. When you cream the butter and sugar do not do it on high speed and be careful, just used medium or lower than medium speed.
- Revani is a Greek semolina cake with simple syrup, a must try.
- This is a very easy orange cake made in a bowl with a whisk!
- Healthy carrot cake, with less sugars and a delicious honey frosting.
- Apple cinnamon crumb cake is one of the easiest and tastiest cakes you can make using in season apples.
👩🏫 My Experience
When I hear the word "grandma", I remember her sweet smile, round full white face and warm hugs. I remember the yummy smell coming out of her kitchen. Whatever she was cooking, she was doing it the right way and better than anyone else … even her daughters :). It is once said that grandmas are moms with frosting, I could not agree more.
If you have been following me long enough, you might as well know that I did not discover my passion for cooking until I came here to the USA. I was a 9-5 corporate girl, and I only cooked the basics when I was in Egypt, sometimes even less. When I had my first baby, he was so stubborn and did not eat well. One of my girlfriends suggested that I try to feed him simple plain pound cake with milk to encourage him to eat, that was of course when he was over 18 months.
Talking with my sister, she suggested that I make grandma's cake, I was so overwhelmed. I was like " WHAT?", for a girl who cooks the bare minimum, baking is a no no.
I dropped the idea thinking my sister has gone crazy and I was content with store-bought pound cakes with all its wonderful preservatives 🙄. When I came here, I had plenty of time and I thought.. ok why not try and it was a success from the first time. This is HUGE guys H U G E, I mean for a person who never baked anything before. This encouraged me a lot and I started venturing out to other baked goods.
This marble cake has never turned me down, people always get excited when they see my loaves and it is the first to disappear from the dessert table.
I hope you'll like this recipe and please if you make this recipe, snap a pic and hashtag it #amiraspantry — I love to see your creations on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter!
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If you like this recipe do not forget to give it a ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ star rating and attach a photo of your finished dish. It is always a pleasure of mine to see your photos and check your own take of the recipe. Thank you.
Marble Loaf Cake
- 2 cups unsalted butter 4 sticks/ 454g room temperature
- 2-3 cups granulated sugar 400-600 grams, check notes.
- 6 eggs room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract.
- 1 cup milk. 235ml
- 4 cups all purpose flour 528g
- 1 Tablespoon backing powder
- A dash of salt.
- 4-6 Tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder.
- Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Spray or lightly butter two 9x5" loaf pans.
Make the cake:
- Using a handheld or an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment beat the butter for about a minute until smooth and creamy.
- Add the granulated sugar and beat on high speed for 3-4 minutes until the mixture is pale yellow.
- Beat in the eggs one at a time then mix in the vanilla extract.
- Pour in milk and mix well.
- In a large mixing bowl, sift the flour, baking powder, and salt.
- Add the dry ingredients, 1 cup at a time and mixing after each addition until just incorporated.
- Divide the batter in two equal parts. Divide one of the parts into your prepared baking pans.
- Mix the cocoa powder with the other half of the batter using a wooden spoon.
- Spoon the chocolate batter equally into the two loafs, on top of the white batter.
- With a stick/wooden spoon or a butter knife make waves in the batter so as to create the marbling.
- Bake in the oven until done, will take anywhere from 35-50 minutes.
- Cake is donw when a toothpick is inserted in the middle comes out clean.
- Remove cakes from the oven and allow to cool for 30 minutes in the pan then take it out and let it cool completely.
- You will need to use room temperature ingredients so plan ahead.
- If you are short on time, cut the butter into 1 inch cubes so it comes to room temperature quicker.
- Check your cake after 30 minutes have passed. loosely cover the cakes with aluminum foil if you find the tops are browning too quickly while the center is still runny.
- I've baked this recipe in a bundt pan and it turned out beautiful, just adjust the baking time.
- Make your favorite chocolate ganache, fill and frost the cake for a delicious no fail birthday cake.
- For more tips and variations check out the post above.
- Please check the nutrition disclaimer policy.
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First published December, 2012 . Last updated August 10, 2023 with important tips, clear step by step instructions and readability.