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Vanilla Bean Cotton Cake

  • Total Time: 1 hour 5 minutes
  • Yield: 8 Inch Cake 1x


This vanilla cotton cake is a soft and moist sponge cake, made using the cooked dough method. Along with water-bath baking, you will find the texture of this cake being a lighter version of Japanese cotton cheesecake. A great treat for anytime in the day!


Units Scale
  • 40 g cooking oil
  • 50 g cake or top flour
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 whole egg
  • 50 g whole milk
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 3 egg whites
  • 45 g caster sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla bean paste or extract


  1. Sift flour into a mixing bowl. Set aside. Position oven rack on the 2nd lower rack. Preheat oven to 150C. Line 8″ square cake pan.
  2. Heat oil till you see oil marks at the bottom of the pot. Off heat, pour oil immediately into the sifted flour, in a slow but steady stream. Stir constantly till well combined. Set aside to cool.
  3. When the cooked dough has cooled down, whisk in egg yolks, whole egg and vanilla extract. Add milk and whisk till well combined. It will be quite a liquid batter.
  4. In another mixing bowl, whisk egg whites till foamy with a handheld or standing mixer. Add sugar gradually in 3 batches. Whisk till firm peaks form (before stiff peaks – do not over-whip it).
  5. Take 1/3 of the meringue, add into the egg yolk batter. Using your whisk, incorporate the batter and meringue by using a “cutting” folding motion.
  6. Take another 1/3 of the meringue, fold in well using a spatula. Repeat for remaining meringue. Ensure the batter is incorporated well.
  7. Pour batter into lined cake pan. Use a skewer and run through the batter gently to get rid of air bubbles.
  8. Place the cake pan into a larger pan. Pour hot water in the larger pan to about 1cm height. Bake in preheated oven at 150C for 45 mins (2nd lower rack). Cake is ready when a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
  9. Remove cake pan carefully from oven. Place on cooling rack and remove cake from pan. Peel away the parchment paper from the sides of the cake. Cool completely before peeling away bottom part of the parchment paper.


Recipe adapted with thanks from Xing Fu Zhi Wei.

I am using a square 8″ pan (20cm x 20cm x 5cm). When lining the cake pan, ensure the parchment paper is higher than the height of the pan so you can remove easily after baking.

  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 45 minutes
  • Category: Cakes, Dessert
  • Method: Bake

Keywords: Vanilla Cotton Cake