Madeira cake recipe

This Madeira cake is a light simple sponge.  It isn’t overly fancy but with a cup of tea or a glass of Madeira as it was traditionally served, it’s an ideal cake for a quiet afternoon with friends.

170 g / 6 oz butter
170 g / 6 oz caster sugar
3 large eggs
170 g / 6 oz self raising flour
55g / 2 oz ground almonds
2 tsp baking powder

Serves 10
Carbohydrate per serving – 30 g

2 lb loaf tin / 23 x 13 x 7 cm / 9 x 5 x 3”

1. Preheat the oven to 170°C / 150°C fan / 340°F / Gas mark 4.
2. Grease and line the cake tin.
3. In a large bowl beat the butter until it’s soft with an electric whisk, alternatively use a strong arm and a wooden spoon. Add the caster sugar and beat until it’s all combined and the mixture has turned a pale yellow colour. This may take up to a minute of beating, the aim is to get lots of air into the mixture.
4. Add an egg at a time and beat well to combine.
5. In a separate bowl combine the flour and the baking powder.
6. Sift the flour on top of the butter mixture and then add the grounds almonds. Now using a metal spoon fold the flour and almonds into the butter mixture. The moment the flour is combined stop mixing, as further mixing is likely to remove the air you added earlier.
7. Using the metal spoon, spoon the mixture into the tin. Gently smooth the top and put straight into the pre heated oven.
8. The cake will take 55 minutes – 1hr. It’s done when it’s shrunk back from the side of the tin, springs back under the weight of your finger and an inserted skewer comes out clean. Resist the temptation to open the oven door early.
9. When the cake is cooked, remove from the oven and leave in the tin for 15 minutes to cool and then remove from the tin onto a cooling rack.

This cake will keep well in an air tight container for three days.

For more tips on making sponge cakes read this blog post ‘Victoria or Madeira sponge cake?’.

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11 thoughts on “Madeira cake recipe

  1. My daughter and I just made this Madeira Cake and it is beautiful. We just had some after supper and it was so delicious and moist. And I’m a first time baker 🙂 Thank you for this great recipe.

    1. Hi Mita,

      Using some maths I think you would need a 19.5cm/ 7 1/2″ round tin. But I haven’t tried this recipe myself in a round tin, so would be interested to hear how you get on.


  2. Hi Holly
    Can I add lemon to this cake?

    I really I would like to make a lemon and blueberry cake but not sure how this would affect the cake. Do you have any tips please?

    Thank you


  3. Hi Holly
    Thanks so much for replying and for finding a suitable recipe too. I will let you know how it turns out. Thanks again for the inspiration.

    Best wishes


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