Jen’s standard sponge

This is my fail-safe recipe for cake. It has never gone wrong. I’ve been meaning to put it here for a while but I never get around to taking photos of cake before it’s eaten and now I’m properly on the diet. No more cake for a while for me. But here’s the recipe!



50ml light oil- sunflower, vegetable, canola

100ml soya milk (other non dairy milks do work but the texture is stronger and springier with soy)

1 teaspoon apple cider or white wine vinegar

Few drops vanilla essence


140g self raising flour

90g caster sugar

1 teaspoon baking powder

pinch of salt


Whisk together the wet ingredients until frothy- preferably with an electric whisk and set aside.

Combine dry ingredients.

pour wet into dry and mix together.

bake in a preheated oven at 180’C for 15 minutes for cupcakes or 30 minutes for a 9 inch round cake, or until lightly browned and a cocktail stick comes out clean.


The quantities will make 12 small cupcakes. I would probably double for a good sized round cake.


There are so many variations. I make lemon drizzle cake by replacing the vanilla with the zest of one lemon and using the lemon juice with 50g caster sugar boiled up for the syrup to drizzle over.

Add chocolate chunks or blueberries and use muffin cases for muffins- the quantity given will make about 6 muffins.

Replace  30g of the flour with cocoa powder for a chocolate cake.

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