If you remember having this cake at school, you must make this as soon as possible. I promise you won’t be disappointed.
Now I’m not sure if this is a local thing or national but if you went to school in the UK, you might recognise this. This recipe has been around for quite some time, a lot of people who went to school in the 70s, 80s, 90s or 00s should remember this! It’s super simple to make and doesn’t take that long either – what’s not to like?
This cake is just one of the few old school favourites I remember being offered when I was back in primary school – others include chocolate concrete & pink custard, cornflake tart and chocolate hedgehogs.
This recipe is my take on the traditional version of the old school traybake, it’s a really quick, easy and cheap recipe to make and will go down well with many who get to try it. If you’re not sure what this cake is, I’ll give you a quick run down.
This cake is a basic sponge cake which is topped with a even simpler glacé icing and best of all, it can be made and finished within 60 minutes – what’s not to love?
For the cake, I used the all in one method (which isn’t as preferred as the creaming method), place all of your ingredients into a bowl and mix them until a cake batter has formed.
Compared to the creaming method, which starts with you creaming the butter and sugar together, then gradually adding the egg then the dry ingredients. You can use either method, they will both work well and usually I would use the creaming method for cakes.
The icing is a simple glacé icing or water icing, which is just icing sugar and water. It makes for a sweet and crisp icing the works remarkably well with this cake in particular.
You pour this in the centre of your fully baked and cooled cake, then spread it out using a cranked/offset spatula or the back of a spoon to spread and level the icing as best you can and finish it with the sprinkles – this cake is so simple, you don’t need to be a master baker or anything.
At school this cake would be served with custard, which is a welcome addition.
220g Plain flour
1 tsp Baking powder
Pinch of salt.
220g Granulated sugar.
2 tbsp Milk.
1 tsp Vanilla extract.
400g Icing sugar.
Water (work a teaspoon at a time, until its perfectly spreadable).
Start by doing some prep work. Preheat your oven to 180˚c/350˚f, weighing up all your ingredients and preparing your tray with butter and flour, which is either 8×12 inches. (These can be found in the supermarket 6 trays for £3 or so).
Start by placing all your ingredients into a large mixing bowl and mix together on a low-medium speed to start with. Working your way up to a medium-high speed until everything is combined and a clear dough has formed (there shouldn’t be a trace of a single ingredient).
If you find that your cake batter is a little too thick, add in your milk, a little a time until the cake batter is slightly more spreadable.
Give the bowl a good scraping down, then mix in any ingredients that haven’t been fully worked in – trying your best not to over-mix the mixture (otherwise the cake will be tougher in texture).
Add the cake batter into the tray and level it out as best you possibly can using a small offset/cranked palette knife and then place into the oven and allow to bake for around 25-30 minutes (or until a tester comes out clean).
Once out the oven, allow to cool completely before finishing.
Into a medium size bowl, place in the icing sugar and a teaspoon of water/milk, mixing well. Keep adding a teaspoon at a time until you get to a thick but loose enough to spread.
Take your cooled down cake and place the icing into the middle of the cake then spread it out as evenly as possible using a offset/cranked palette knife. Try to give the cake as level coating as possible.
Once you’ve got your icing spread out, sprinkle a generous amount of rainbow sprinkles onto the top.
That’s all you need to do to make this cake, its quick, easy and cheap – what’s not to love? I hope you get to make this soon!
(Video tutorial if you’d like that over reading or want to read and watch, haha).
Thank you so much for sharing this recipe. I took a packed lunch to school but I was in the Brownies and every time there was a party, someone made one of these and it always went down a storm. As this recipe did with my Danish family. They enjoyed a little piece of British nostalgia! 🙂
Hi Sarah, thank you for taking the time to visit my blog. I’m really glad you you got to try the recipe – I also remember having this at plenty of occasions. The simplicity of the cake is unbeatable – I can’t believe the recipe reached Denmark! If you have any other recipes you’d like to see, feel free to let me know – have a good evening! 🙂
What a lovely comment, thank you for replying. If I should think of anything, I will drop you a line. ‘See you’ on youtube and happy baking!
Hi thank you for the recipe my grandson will love this cake when he gets home from school,he wants to share it with my eldest grandson so thank you
Hey there – thank you for the comment, it means so much to me! I hope you enjoy the recipe!
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Thanks so much for this, Elliott! I’m following you on you tube and making my way through your channel, bit by bit. I’ll be making this school sponge in a couple of days, and then I’ll try something else. I’m from Adelaide in South Australia, but grew up in Surrey UK and this was one of my old school dinner puds. Thanks again. Happy baking!
Hello Maureen, thank you so much for your kind comment. I’m glad you found my channel and blog, it honestly means a lot! I’m glad you remember the old school dinner puddings, they’re one of the simplest yet tasty treats going, haha. You’ll have to let me know once you’ve made it, if you have any other puddings you remember that I haven’t done already, feel free to let me know!
Have a great day/night,
i absoltely loed making this cake it is sooo delicious and a very good accurate recipe!
Thank you so much Sara – that honestly means so much to me!
Hi amazing recipe What sprinkles do you use as I find UK shops sprinkles aren’t very good quality?
Good evening Holly! I just picked these sprinkles up in my local Sainsbury’s but I agree, the sprinkles available in the UK aren’t great!