Vanilla Bean Angel Food Cake

11.01.2018

Angel Food Cake is a must have cake recipe! When you make it at home it’s so much better. It’s light and fluffy as a cloud, it has the perfect vanilla bean flavor, and it’s the perfect base to your favorite sauces and toppings. 

Vanilla Bean Angel Food Cake | Cooking Classy

The Perfect Angel Food Cake Recipe!

Here is a tried and trusted recipe I have been using for years that I absolutely love. The past few years I’ve used this Angel Food Cake recipe to make cupcakes flavored different ways and just recently I decided it was finally time to invest in a good angel food cake pan and make a full cake.

I’m really not a fan of the incredibly dry angel food cakes from the grocery store and this recipe is easily a thousand times better. Believe it or not it’s an angel food cake that is not dry!

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Vanilla Bean Angel Food Cake | Cooking Classy

Before I’d have to have my grocery store bought angel food cakes drowning in some kind of sauce, this one doesn’t even need anything – although a sweet, rich, vanilla bean whipped cream never hurt anyone either :).

I kept going into the kitchen the two days this lasted slicing off sliver after sliver, and any time anyone else would catch me they had to have one too.

This cake really is totally irresistible, which isn’t really a typical way to describe an angel food cake – but this one is totally worthy of your recipe book.

Vanilla Bean Angel Food Cake | Cooking Classy

How to Make Angel Food Cake

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • Pulse sugar in food processor and until super fine.
  • In a mixing bowl, sift together half of the sugar, the cake flour and the salt.
  • In a mixing bowl whisk together egg whites, water, vanilla beans, vanilla extract and cream of tartar.
  • Switch to a hand mixer and whip mixture on medium speed while slowly adding remaining sugar to mixture, until medium peaks form**.
  • Sift in a thin layer of flour mixture and gently fold, repeat until all flour has been mixed in.
  • Spoon the batter evenly into an ungreased angel food cake pan.
  • Bake until set.
  • Remove cake from oven and cool upside down on a wire rack.

Vanilla Bean Angel Food Cake | Cooking Classy

Tips for This Recipe

  • I recommend using a heavy, dark coated angel food cake pan for this recipe as it will give the cake the nice golden brown crust and will retain heat and help the cake cook evenly. I bought and used this pan here for this recipe.
  • Pulse the flour and sugar for a fine texture.
  • Make sure there’s not a drop of egg yolk in the whites. I like to crack each one separately into a bowl case a yolk breaks.
  • Don’t grease the cake pan.
  • Turn the pan immediately after removing from oven so cake doesn’t deflate.

Do I Have to Use Vanilla Bean?

Vanilla beans can be so expensive lately so you can just up the vanilla to 1 1/2 tsp if desired. It’s also delicious with 1/2 tsp almond extract.

Vanilla Bean Angel Food Cake | Cooking Classy

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Vanilla Bean Angel Food Cake

A must have cake recipe! Homemade angel food cake is much better than store-bought or mixes. It's light and fluffy as a cloud, it has the perfect vanilla bean flavor, and it's the perfect base to your favorite sauces and toppings. 

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Angel Food Cake
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 10 minutes
Servings: 12
Calories: 175 kcal
Author: Jaclyn

Ingredients

  • 1 3/4 cups (360g) granulated sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 cup (126g) cake flour, sifted
  • 12 (430g) large egg whites, at room temperature*
  • 1/3 cup (80ml) warm water
  • Seeds of 1 - 2 vanilla beans (or another 1 tsp vanilla)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 tsp cream of tartar
  • Sweetened whipped cream and sliced or macerated strawberries, for serving

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a food processor, pulse sugar until super fine, about 2 minutes.
  2.  In a mixing bowl, sift together half of the sugar, the cake flour and the salt.
  3. In a separate large mixing bowl, whisk together egg whites, water, vanilla beans, vanilla extract and cream of tartar until well combined, about 2 minutes (the vanilla beans may not separate but that's fine, once sugar is added they should separate). 
  4. Switch to a hand mixer and whip mixture on medium speed while slowly adding remaining sugar to mixture, until medium peaks form**. 
  5. Sift just enough of the flour mixture in to evenly dust the top of the egg white mixture and using a spatula gently fold flour layer into egg white mixture and continue this process until all of the flour mixture has been incorporated (be sure to work gently with batter so it doesn't deflate and add small amounts of flour mixture at a time).
  6. Gently spoon the batter evenly into an ungreased angel food cake pan (do NOT grease the pan, the cake won't rise properly if you do. If you are looking for a good angel food cake pan I have this one here). 
  7. After 35 minutes begin to check for doneness by inserting a wooden chopstick or skewer halfway down through the cake, it should come out clean*** (mine took 40 minutes). 

  8. Remove cake from oven and cool upside down on a wire rack (do not leave it upright, it will start to deflate like mine did a little while I was taking pictures. If the pan has feet no need to use the wire rack). 
  9. Cool at least 1 hour before removing from pan (I ran a sharp knife around the edge to loosen). Cut into slices and serve with whipped cream and strawberries (or fruit sauce, chocolate sauce or topping of choice).

Recipe Notes

  • *Whites and yolks will separate better with fresher eggs. I separated the whites from the yolks while still cold (because warmer eggs are harder to separate) then let them rest in a bowl, covered to come to room temperature (about 30 minutes). Work with one egg at a time separating and dropping into a small bowl first to make sure that egg didn't get any bit of yolk in it - then dump it into the main bowl. This just helps ensure you won't ruin it from one drop of yolk. If one of the yolks does break on one of them then reserve it for a different use.
  • *Be sure to use clean bowls and mixing equipment as an oily bowl could ruin the batter. Also don't use the whites in the carton for this recipe. And if you live in a climate with high humidity you may want to cut back on the water a 1 - 2 tablespoons just to ensure you'll be able to whip up the whites properly.
  • **If you aren't sure quite what "medium peaks" refers to this picture will you give an idea. You want peaks that stand but droop. Be patient with them they do take quite some time to whip up.
  • ***If you find the top is browning too much you can place one of the oven racks above the cake, without letting it touch the top, and lay a sheet of foil over the rack just above the cake, not directly on the cake or it will stick. 
  • Nutrition is for cake only, no toppings included.
  • Recipe source: adapted from Alton Brown via Food Network
Nutrition Facts
Vanilla Bean Angel Food Cake
Amount Per Serving
Calories 175
% Daily Value*
Sodium 108mg 5%
Potassium 130mg 4%
Total Carbohydrates 38g 13%
Sugars 30g
Protein 5g 10%
Calcium 0.4%
Iron 0.7%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
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19 comments

  • Gwen: This is one of my favorite dessert recipes now! Thanks for all of the lovely recipes. :) November 13, 2016 at 5:15pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: I’m glad you love it! Thanks for taking the time to comment Gwen. November 16, 2016 at 11:08am Reply

  • Emh: I just pulled this out of my oven and inverted it, and the cake fell out of the pan and fell apart all over my stove. ???? I’ve never had that happen before with an angel food cake before. Any ideas of what went wrong? September 18, 2016 at 11:19am Reply

  • Nira: Hey ^^ I dont get it one thing. Can you explain me ?

    1 3/4 cups (360g) granulated sugar
    1 1/2 tsp cream of tartar

    What is this mean 1 3/4 ? 1 + 3/4 or something like that ? ı couldn’t get it :/ August 7, 2016 at 1:24pm Reply

    • Patricia Kaufman: 1 3/4 = 1cup plus 3/4 cup. This is one quarter cup less than two cups. Same explanation for teaspoons (tsp) September 2, 2016 at 3:07pm Reply

  • astrid natania: Yummy yummmm recipe, can’t wait for ur next recipe March 26, 2016 at 12:14pm Reply

  • Kayle (The Cooking Actress): I looove angel food cake and the vanilla bean flecks in here are gorgeous! pinning! March 3, 2016 at 5:37pm Reply

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