Soft, sponge-like, melt in your mouth tender and incredibly delicious, Hot Milk Cake couldn’t be easier to make! It is a wonderful, versatile cake that is delicious on its own with a sprinkle of powdered sugar or frosted with your fave buttercream like this Chocolate Meringue Buttercream! If you love this recipe, you will also love this Pear Almond Polenta Cake, Texas Sheet Cake, Sour Cream Cake, Butter Cake and Cream Cheese Cake!
Today, I’m sharing with you a delicious Hot Milk Cake. It is a wonderful vintage recipe that is absolutely irresistible in flavor and perfectly versatile! You can make this all year round and enjoy a simple yet delightful cake.
Let’s get to baking!
WHAT IS A HOT MILK CAKE?
Hot Milk Cake is a butter sponge cake; it gets its distinctive flavor from the scalded milk that is the liquid component of the batter. In this recipe, hot milk and butter give the cake a fine-grained texture, similar to pound cake.
Though this cake is commonly known in the South, it was invented in Chicago! A recipe from Ruth Ellen Church, a former food editor for the Chicago Tribune, was published in 1955. Ruth’s recipe featured a to-die-for mocha-flavored icing but, today, the cake is typically served bare with a sprinkling of powdered sugar.
HOW TO MAKE A HOT MILK CAKE
The only thing better than a cake? A cake made in under an hour using less than 10 ingredients! If you’re a novice baker, this recipe is a great starting point. If you’re a professional, this recipe serves as a simple break from its time-consuming and extravagant cousins. Either way, this Chocolate Meringue Frosted Hot Milk Cake is a guaranteed win!
Here’s what we’ll be using today:
- Whole Milk – I used Lactaid here because it has to Artificial Growth Hormones and is lactose free but use whatever brand you want here.
- Unsalted Butter only contains trace amounts of lactose! Lactose-intolerant folks can consume up to 12 grams of butter at a time without symptoms. Cool, huh?
- All-Purpose Flour should be sifted and measured properly. I recommend using an unbleached variety.
- Baking Powder does not last forever. Because it’s sensitive to moisture and humidity, it has a shelf life of 6-12 months. Be sure to regular test and replace your baking powder!
- Kosher Salt creates balance and enhances flavor.
- Eggs serve as both a binder and a leavener. When beaten, eggs lighten a cake by incorporating air. Be sure to use room temperature eggs so they don’t stiffen when beaten.
- Granulated Sugar is used to lightly sweeten our cake. Cane sugar works as well.
- Vanilla Extract enhances flavor and adds an aromatic touch.
- Chocolate Swiss Meringue is light yet rich, subtle yet decadent and just the right amount of fudgy. This cake can be served with or without frosting but I highly recommend giving this meringue a shot.
WHAT IS SWISS MERINGUE? AND HOW DO I MAKE IT?
Not sure what swiss meringue is? Need to brush up on technique? I got you. Follow my guide on How To Make Swiss Meringue Buttercream for a foolproof plan of attack.
When it comes to cake, moisture begins to escape as soon as the first slice is cut. If you can, cover the sliced edges with more frosting to protect the cake from moisture loss. Otherwise, press a piece of plastic wrap directly onto the sliced side and make sure it sticks.
A frosted hot milk cake can be left at room temperature for a day or two. Just be sure to cover it with a cake keeper or an overturned bowl to keep away dust, pet hair, and other things in the air. Alternatively, you can refrigerate your cake and it should stay fresh for 3-4 days.
If you’ve pre-sliced the entire cake, I recommend wrapping each individual leftover piece with plastic wrap. Once tightly wrapped, place the slices in the fridge. Allow to sit out at room temperature for 15-30 minutes before consuming.
MORE GRANDBABY CAKES SOUTHERN-STYLE CAKES
If there’s one thing Southerner’s never need an excuse for, it’s a cake. Whether you choose to indulge in a fudgey Texas Sheet Cake, a Spiced Tennessee Jam Cake or even a custard-filled New Orleans Doberge Cake, you’re guaranteed a devilishly decadent dessert.
Take a little drip down South with me by whipping up a few of my BEST Southern cake recipes:
Hot Milk Cake
- 1 1/4 cup whole milk
- 10 tbsp unsalted butter
- 2 1/4 cup all purpose flour
- 2 1/4 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 4 large eggs room temperature
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Using non-stick spray or butter, grease a 13x9 pan.
- In a small saucepan, heat milk and butter, just until the butter is melted. Remove from heat and set aside.
- In a small bowl combine the flour, baking powder and salt, whisk to combine. Set aside.
- Crack the eggs into a large bowl and, using a hand-mixer at high-speed, beat the eggs until thick and light yellow (think lemon rind). Gradually add in the sugar and beat until fluffy. Add in vanilla.
- Turn the mixer down to a slow speed and slowly add in the flour mixture. Mix until smooth.
- Gradually pour in the milk and melted butter, beat just until combined.
- Pour the batter into your greased cake pan. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes back clean. Rest on a wire rack until completely cool.
- Meanwhile, prepare the Chocolate Swiss Meringue according to instructions. Spread and smooth the meringue over the top of the cake. Cut into squares and serve!