Homemade Recipe for
Marble Cake

You will love this recipe for marble cake.  I will give you homemade marbled cake recipes from scratch including marbling combinations below.

Beautiful to look at; a slice of heaven on a fork.  Enjoy.

Easy Recipe for Marble Cake

Recipe for Marble Cake

This recipe for marble cake is the bomb, and is adapted from the cookbook, "Baking, From My Home to Yours" by Dorie Greenspan. She is so good that I wanted to pass this on to you.


Marble cakes have been magical to me and even now, hundreds of homemade marble cakes later, I still find the patterns fascinating. Although I now know how easy it is to get a beautiful dark-and-light design, it’s impossible to get the same pattern twice, which I think is part of the fun.

While a marble cake must have contrasting dark and light areas, there’s no rule that says the dark must be chocolate and the white must be vanilla.

Some of my favorite duos follow my recipe for marble cake. Just divide the batter in half and add your flavorings like spices, ground nuts, fresh or dried fruit that is finely diced for pureed; chocolate of any kind, extracts, or even food coloring. As long as you avoid the extremes - a batter that is either runny or heavy-as-dough thick - you should be fine.
The key to marbling is restraint - mix the dark and the light with abandon, and you’ll end up with a monochromatic cake and a mush of flavors.

The most effective method of marbling is the simplest: drop spoonfuls of dark and light batter randomly into the pan, and then plunge a table knife deep into the batter and zigzag the knife through the batter - making only about 6 to 8 zigs and zags. It’s so much fun that you might want to wiggle your way back - DON’T.

You could also use a fussier method with my recipe for marble cake that takes only a minute longer and usually produces a more regular pattern. This method involves spooning the batter out in long alternating rows or, if the pan is round, in rings (or piping it, if you want to be fussy).

So, for instance, you’d make a first layer of three rows or rings - light, dark, light - then a second layer on top of it - this time dark, light, dark. After the batter is spooned into the pan, you use the same squiggling motion, with perhaps fewer zigs and zags.

Then there is always the technique for the it’s-anyone’s-guess-what-you’ll-get school of marbling, in which you either pour in the dark batter and top it with the light, or make three layers of the batter, light on top and bottom, dark in between, or vice versa and then do your zigging and zagging. Another fun way to use my recipe for marble cake - have the kids help.


Here is my recipe for marble cake that just begs to be fiddled with - in fact, I created it just so I could fiddle with it. It’s a fine plain cake that gets better when you use it as the base for a two-tone, two-flavor marble cake.
2 cups plus 2 TBS flour
1-1/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1-1/2 sticks (12 tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup white sugar
4 large eggs
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup whole milk
choice of flavorings (see below)

PREHEAT oven to 325 degrees. Butter a loaf pan and dust the inside with flour; tapping to remove the excess. Place the pan on a insulated baking sheet or on two regular baking sheets stacked one on top of the other.

Mix the flour, baking powder and salt together; set aside. Beat the butter on medium for 3 minutes, add the sugar, and beat for another 3 minutes. Add the eggs, beating for 1 minute after each addition.

Don’t be concerned if the batter curdles and stays curdled - it will be fine. Now add the vanilla. Reduce to low and alternately add the flour mixture in 3 additions and the milk in 2; beginning and ending with the dry ingredients. Mix only until each addition is incorporated; do not over mix.

At this point, you are ready to divide the batter, add your selected flavorings and marble the batter (see above for tips).

Bake for 80-90 minutes, or until a thin knife inserted deep into the center comes out clean. If the cake looks like it’s getting too brown, cover loosely with a foil tent. Transfer to a cooling rack and let it sit for 15 minutes before unmolding. Cool to room temperature right side up on the rack.


Traditional Marble Loaf

Divide the batter in half and stir 4 ounces of bittersweet chocolate (melted and cooled) into one half and keep the other half plain.

Black-and-White Chocolate Marble Loaf 

Divide the batter in half and stir in 4 ounces of high quality white chocolate (melted and cooled) into one portion and 4 ounces of bittersweet chocolate (melted and cooled) into the other portion.

Peppermint Marble Loaf

Divide the batter in half and stir 4 ounces of high quality white chocolate (melted and cooled) with 1/4 teaspoon of pure peppermint extract into one portion and 4 ounces of bittersweet chocolate (melted and cooled) into the other. Because the peppermint is such a surprise, I like to leave the white batter as intact as possible my marbling the batter only a little.

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