What Flavor Is Yellow Cake?

Sure pie is good, and puddings and custard are interesting, but nothing beats a nice slice of cake. There are two cakes at opposite ends of the spectrum that really stand out: chocolate cake and yellow cake. We can all guess that chocolate cake is going to taste like chocolate, but what is yellow cake? And no not I’m not talking about yellow cake uranium, that’s a completely different thing. Don’t ask about that again. I mean those cakes that can be covered in whatever color of icing, but when you slice into them, they have a nice, rich fluffy yellow inside. What is the flavor of yellow cake? Is yellow a flavor? Let’s slice off some food facts.

What flavor is yellow cake?

Yellow cake flavor is vanilla. Yep, yellow cake is a vanilla cake. But is it really that simple? Let’s break it down: To really get to what flavor is yellow cake, you have to know what yellow cake is not. Yellow cake is similar to white cake and vanilla cake. Yellow cake and white cake are both vanilla flavored, but the process of making them is different. In order to get a nice white color for a white cake, those recipes only call for egg whites. Some may even require using clear vanilla flavoring in order to keep that white color sparkling. Yellow cakes, on the other hand, call for the whole egg, including the yolk. While most cake recipes call for a mixture of shortening and butter for their fat, some yellow cakes go the all butter route. Yellow cake gets that cool yellow hue from egg yolks and butter. So what is the flavor of yellow cake? While yellow cake and white cake are both vanilla flavored, yellow cake tends to be much richer and moist because of the full eggs and butter combo. 

Now there is also vanilla cake. Sometimes you see a box for vanilla cake mix or a nice vanilla cake in a bakery. How is that different from white cake or yellow cake? To put it simply, it’s not. When you see plain old vanilla cake, it’s probably going to be a white cake or a yellow cake. They just decided to call the cake by its flavor, rather than by the color.

Yellow cake is the classic American cake. The best birthday cakes are yellow cakes, oftentimes served with a chocolatey frosting on top. But yellow cake can be an everyday cake as well. My grandparents called it “prescription cake.” It was the cake they always picked up at the grocery store when they went to pick up their prescriptions. Yellow cake can have different names but the most important thing about yellow cake is that you must save a slice for me.

About the Author

Will Morgan

Will Morgan, a freelance contributor to Sporked, is an L.A. based writer, actor, and sketch comedy guy. Originally from Houston, TX, he strongly believes in the superiority of breakfast tacos to breakfast burritos. Will traveled the world as one of those people that did yoyo shows at elementary school assemblies, always making a point to find local and regional foods to explore in whatever place he was, even in rinky-dink towns like Tilsonberg, ON. Will spends his birthdays at Benihana’s. Let him know if can make it.

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