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Best Angel Food Cake

For our daughter's wedding, a friend made this lovely, angel food cake from a recipe she's used for decades. It really is one of the best angel food cake recipes I've found. Serve slices plain or dress them up with fresh fruit. —Marilyn Niemeyer, Doon, Iowa
  • Total Time
    Prep: 15 min. Bake: 35 min. + cooling
  • Makes
    16 servings


  • 1-1/4 cups large egg whites (about 9)
  • 1-1/2 cups sugar, divided
  • 1 cup cake flour
  • 1-1/4 teaspoons cream of tartar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt


  • Place egg whites in a large bowl; let stand at room temperature 30 minutes. Sift 1/2 cup sugar and flour together twice; set aside.
  • Place oven rack in the lowest position. Preheat oven to 350°. Add cream of tartar, extracts and salt to egg whites; beat on medium speed until soft peaks form. Gradually add remaining sugar, about 2 tablespoons at a time, beating on high until stiff peaks form. Gradually fold in flour mixture, about 1/2 cup at a time.
  • Gently spoon into an ungreased 10-in. tube pan. Cut through batter with a knife to remove air pockets. Bake until lightly browned and entire top appears dry, 35-40 minutes. Immediately invert pan; cool completely, about 1 hour.
  • Run a knife around side and center tube of pan. Remove cake to a serving plate.

Angel Food Cake Tips

Can you make angel food cake without a tube pan?

It’s recommended to always use a tube pan when making any angel food cake recipe. The delicate egg batter needs the tall sides of the pan to cling to or else it will collapse. Another way to keep your cake from collapsing is to slowly add the sugar to the egg whites. Going slowly allows a beautiful foam to build. Adding too much sugar at one time can deflate the air you've worked so hard to incorporate. Read our ultimate cake baking guide for more tips!

How do I know when angel food cake is done?

Angel food cake is done when the cake is golden brown and the top springs back when pressed firmly. If you leave an indentation on the cake, it needs to be baked for longer. Learn more about this cake doneness test.

Why is it called angel food cake?

Angel food cake likely got its name because of its light, white and fluffy texture. To make your angel food cake even more heavenly, stir in the seeds of a vanilla bean or a bit of vanilla bean paste.
Nutrition Facts
1 slice: 115 calories, 0 fat (0 saturated fat), 0 cholesterol, 68mg sodium, 26g carbohydrate (19g sugars, 0 fiber), 3g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 1-1/2 starch.


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  • Holly
    Dec 17, 2020

    Excellent cake! The best! Perfect. I used Moreno sugar which is a courser, mexican sugar, sifted twice with cake flour & turned out perfect. So easy to make, too!

  • Katie
    Oct 21, 2020

    Great recipe! Super easy and came out delicious. The almond flavor was a little strong for me so I’m going to do about half next time. Also I used regular AP flour in lieu of pastry flour since I’m not even sure where to get that here, and I used bakers sugar instead of regular sugar because it’s much more fine. The result was perfection!

  • Dreamskape
    Jun 7, 2020

    We are at altitude 4200 ft. Do I need to make adjustments?

  • Brenna
    Jun 6, 2020

    I made this cake with gluten-free flour 1 to 1 mix, and I used two loaf pans. I turned them upside down to cool so they wouldn’t collapse. It was perfect!

  • MSGTwifeUSMC
    Mar 24, 2020

    I loved this cake. It came out exactly the same way as my grandmas angel food cakes did. It has a nice texture, and amazing flavor.

  • Ayodele
    Jan 15, 2020

    Can I make this in a sheet pan?

  • Jolene
    May 14, 2018

    first ever angel food cake I have ever made. Easy and yummy!

  • Still Proceeding
    Mar 30, 2018

    This is a wonderful recipe for angle food cake. It is a little stickier then some other recipes but the batter had no trouble reaching that lofty angle food cake texture. I was concerned after reading some other reviews since I used turbinado sugar so I put the sugar and flour in the vitamix to give it a finer consistence. I also use a little more almond and a little less vanilla because I am using this cake in a trifle. Great recipe, I would make it again.

  • tammycookblogsbooks
    Mar 5, 2018

    This cake is delicious. It turned out perfect the first time I made it. No need for boxed cake mix when this recipe is so easy.

  • Jenifer
    Feb 27, 2018

    I've made this recipe 3 times, its been perfect every time. I've served it with strawberries and whipped cream, yum, not a crumb left??