Basic Marble Cake

I started baking when I was very young. Around the age of 4. I used to help my grandmoms by just mixing the final batter at the time and ate most of it while doing so 🙂 Over time, I moved on to doing more of the work, under their supervision and saw them make different kinds of cakes in the process. Best weekend or vacation activity, I say!

For the longest time we just had basic vanilla and basic chocolate cakes. With the occasional rainbow cake for fun. Once while we were out for a meal, I saw marble cake on offer. I was amazed at this magical way that both vanilla and chocolate were part of the same cake! As far as I knew, adding chocolate to a vanilla cake made the whole thing chocolate. What was this awesomeness?

This was around the time boxed cake mixes were my go-to (yes, I had that phase) and I found this marble cake at the store. Got home, tried it and was super thrilled! From them on, this has been one of my favourites to make. Obviously, it is now made from scratch. No box mixes anymore! This is such a throwback to discovering new kinds of cake and figuring out how to make them minus my friend Google 🙂

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I have tried many versions of this recipe over the years, but think this one is by far my favourite.

It is super soft, thanks to the addition of corn starch.

It is super chocolatey, thanks to using melted chocolate and not cocoa mixed with water.

It is super moist, thanks to the butter, brown sugar, buttermilk and eggs. My standard ingredients for most cakes.

It is well balanced, thanks to the mix of two sugars plus the addition of salt. The buttermilk helps with the balance as well.

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Before mixing the melted chocolate into the batter.

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After mixing. So delicious! And luscious! *drool* It is quite a challenge not to just eat most of this in the name of testing the balance.

The layering is just so much fun to do. You can go nuts and create any patterns you like. I am not artistic so a few swirls work just fine for me.

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The final cake comes out nice and golden with a crunchy top and delicately moist, super flavourful inside. YUMMYLICIOUS.


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Try this cake. It will make you sit back and enjoy your childhood memories with a big smile on your face 🙂

Basic Marble Cake

  • Servings: 10 slices
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Print


100g softened butter

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/4 cup brown sugar

3 eggs – room temperature

1 tsp vanilla extract

1.5 cups all purpose flour

2 tsp baking powder

2 tbsp corn starch

1/2 tsp salt

2/3 cup buttermilk (can be made by mixing 2/3 cup milk with 2/3 tsp vinegar and letting it stand for 5 mins)

70g dark chocolate – melted


  1. Pre heat the oven to 175C. Butter an 8 inch round pan and dust with a little flour.
  2. Cream together butter and sugars till they are mixed well and fluffy (˜2 mins)
  3. Add the eggs, one by one, mixing after each addition.
  4. Add the vanilla extract and mix.
  5. Sift together the flour, baking powder, corn starch and salt.
  6. Alternate between the flour mix and buttermilk and add to the wet ingredients. Start and end with the flour, folding in at each addition. Be careful not to overmix so that the cake stays light and doesn’t become dense.
  7. Separate a third of the batter in a separate bowl. Add the melted chocolate and mix in.
  8. Put half the vanilla cake batter into the baking pan and spread till even. Add dollops of the chocolate cake batter on top. Then add the remaining half of the vanilla cake batter on top and smooth the top.
  9. Now with a toothpick/skewer/butter knife, make swirls in the cake so that the chocolate gets mixed in to some parts of the vanilla. Make sure not to so mix too much, else you will get a lot of just chocolate cake and not much marbling.
  10. Bake for 45-50 mins. Check with the skewer, should come out clean.
  11. Let the cake cool in the pan for 10 mins and then take it out to cool on the rack till at room temperature.
  12. Slice and serve! Enjoy 🙂


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A baker, a dancer, a marketeer. Sometimes lazy. Always up to try new food, read interesting books and meet amazing people :)

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