Heavy on the butter and nutmeg, this cake has all the flavors of your favorite cake donut in a convenient square shape—no frying necessary! Just take my word for it, and don’t wear a black shirt when you eat it. You are definitely going to get confectioners’ sugar all over yourself with every bite, and you're going to love it.
How to use another pan: For a Bundt, double the recipe for the cake and bake in a prepared 15-cup Bundt pan until puffed and golden, and a tester inserted into the center comes out clean, which should take 50 to 60 minutes. Let the cake cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then invert it onto a wire rack and let cool completely. Brush the warm cake with 4 tablespoons (65 grams) melted unsalted butter and dust with a generous amount of confectioners’ sugar. For a loaf, bake in a 9-by-5-by-3-inch loaf pan until puffed and golden, and a tester inserted into the center comes out clean; this should take 40 to 50 minutes. For a round, bake in a 9-inch round pan until puffed and golden, and a tester inserted into the center comes out clean, which should take 25 to 35 minutes.
Browned Butter Donut Cake: Brown ½ cup (113 grams) unsalted butter (here's how to do it), then proceed with the recipe as written.
Cinnamon-Sugar Donut Cake: Brush the cake with the melted butter, then sprinkle a combination of 2 tablespoons granulated sugar and 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon over the top instead of the confectioners’ sugar.
Reprinted with permission from Snacking Cakes by Yossy Arefi, copyright © 2020. Photographs by Yossy Arefi. Published by Clarkson Potter, a division of Penguin Random House, LLC. —Yossy Arefi
- Prep time 20 minutes
- Cook time 35 minutes
- Serves 1 (8-inch) square cake
- Donut Cake
(150 grams) granulated sugar
(220 grams) sour cream
(113 grams) unsalted butter, melted
1 1/4 teaspoons
freshly grated nutmeg
1 1/2 cups
(190 grams) all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons
unsalted butter, melted
- Place a rack in the center of the oven; heat to 350°F. Butter or coat an 8-inch square baking pan with nonstick spray. Line the pan with a strip of parchment paper that hangs over two of the edges.
- Make the Cake: In a large bowl, whisk the eggs and granulated sugar for about 1 minute, until pale and foamy. Add the sour cream, butter, nutmeg, vanilla, and salt. Whisk until smooth and emulsified.
- Add the flour, baking powder, and baking soda. Whisk until well combined and smooth.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 25 to 35 minutes, until puffed and golden, and a tester inserted into the center comes out clean. Set the pan on a wire rack to cool for about 15 minutes. Using the parchment overhang, lift the cake out of the pan and set on the wire rack to cool almost completely.
- Finish the Cake: While the cake is just warm to the touch, brush the top with the butter and dust with the confectioners’ sugar. You should have a nice thick layer of confectioners' sugar—more than you think might be necessary.
- Do Ahead: The cake can be made 3 days ahead. Store, covered, at room temperature. The cake will absorb the sugar on top, so it might need a fresh dusting of confectioners’ sugar after the second day.