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Magic Custard Cake Recipe

This is called a magic custard cake recipe for good reason – one batter, baked in one pan, transforms into a 3-layer cake. No torting or frosting required. Magic.

Magic Custard Cake Recipe

My initial goal was to bake a traditional Filipino custard cake. But reading the recipe already exhausted me because it was 3 pages long and took something like 5 hours to make.

No energy for complicated endeavours at the moment.

Then I saw this magic custard cake recipe. Not only was it custard (which was what I was originally gunning for), it was magic. Now who wouldn’t want that?

No layer cake recipe can be simpler than this magic custard cake recipe

Magic Custard Cake Recipe

This is how it goes: you work with one batter. You pour it into one pan. In about an hour you end up with a 3-layer cake, no torting necessary.

I don’t know how or why. And I don’t need to. All I know is that it’s stress-free to make.

Magic Custard Cake Recipe

The best thing about it is it doesn’t look easy to make at all. It looks like it took you hours to bake. It looks like it takes great technique. It doesn’t!

But is it good?

Magic Custard Cake Recipe

Absolutely. It does not taste like the custard cake I was craving for but it’s delightful nonetheless.

The bottom layer has the texture of gelatine. But firmer. The middle layer is your custard – rich and creamy. The top layer is your cake – light and airy.

Interesting, right? Sprinkle with confectioner’s sugar and you have a cake that tastes as good as it looks.

A whole world of magic cakes

Magic Custard Cake Recipe

This is the first time I’ve heard of magic cakes but apparently there is a lot of variations you can do.

I think Jo Cooks is the definitive magic cake expert and just looking at all the magic cakes she’s done, you just want to try each one and never bake a non-magic cake ever again.

Go and start with this one. It’s quick, easy and fool-proof. Who says muggles can’t do magic? (Who says I’m a muggle?)

Magic Custard Cake Recipe

Magic Custard Cake Recipe

Author: Jolina
A cake that magically transforms into 3 layers. Just mix, pour and bake. Even muggles can do this!
5 from 7 votes
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 1 hr
Chill Time 8 hrs
Total Time 9 hrs 30 mins
Course Dessert
Cuisine North American
Servings 16 servings
Calories 129 kcal


  • 4 pcs egg yolks from large eggs room temperature
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup butter melted (you can use salted or unsalted)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup all purpose flour
  • 2 cups milk microwave in increments of 30 seconds until lukewarm (not hot)
  • 4 pcs egg whites from large eggs room temperature
  • confectioner's sugar for dusting


  • Preheat oven to 325F and lightly grease an 8×8 inch baking pan. Set aside.
  • Using a handheld electric mixer or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the 4 egg yolks and the ¾ cup sugar on medium-high speed until the mixture turns light yellow (about 2 minutes).
  • Add ½ cup butter and 1 teaspoon vanilla and continue to beat until combined (another 2 minutes).
  • Add ¾ cup flour and mix well.
  • Gradually add the 2 cups milk and continue to mix until everything is fully incorporated. Set this batter aside.
  • In a separate bowl, using an electric mixer (you can also do this by hand if you’re so inclined), beat the egg whites until you reach stiff peak.
  • Add your egg whites into your batter a third a time, gently whisking by hand each time, until the batter is smooth and no significant egg white streaks or lumps remain. Do not over-whisk.
  • Transfer the cake batter into your prepared pan and bake for 40-60 minutes or until the top of the cake turns golden brown.
  • Take the cake out of the oven, cool slightly then refrigerate overnight to chill and set completely.
  • Let the cake sit in room temperature for about 10 minutes before serving. Cut into squares, sprinkle with confectioner’s sugar and enjoy.


The cake will look puffy straight out of the oven but will deflate accordingly as it cools.


Calories: 129kcalCarbohydrates: 15gProtein: 2gFat: 7gSaturated Fat: 4gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 21mgSodium: 65mgPotassium: 49mgFiber: 1gSugar: 11gVitamin A: 230IUCalcium: 38mgIron: 1mg

Nutritional information are estimates only.

Keyword Easy, Make-Ahead Dessert, Party Food
Tried this recipe?Tag @iamtheunlikelybaker I’d love to see your creations!

Happy baking, muggle!

Did you try this magic custard cake recipe? Tell me about it in the comments section below. I’d love to hear all about it.

Rate the Recipe


Thursday 22nd of July 2021

I love this just tried them! Perfect sweetness! I made mine in 2 batches cause i thought it was gonna overflow so they’re not too thick but the layers are there


Tuesday 27th of July 2021

Glad you liked them Jess!


Sunday 1st of May 2016

Just made it and everyone loved it! Perfect amount of sweetness. My Dad now wants to try to make it with coconut sport. Thanks for the recipe!


Sunday 1st of May 2016

Hi Iris! I am so happy to hear that! And yes, this lovely cake is not too sweet - thats one of the things I like about it too. Coconut is a good choice :) Let me know how your experiment goes. Happy Sunday!


Thursday 28th of April 2016

I have always fancied magic cake, the name makes you go crazy and feels like a scientist creation instead of a baker. Look beautiful.


Thursday 28th of April 2016

A magic cake?! I'm intrigued! This looks so delicious! It basically has everything you could want, all within one cake. I need to try this.


Sunday 1st of May 2016

Hi Natanja! It really is quite mysterious isn't it? Give it a try...I had my doubts too but when it came out of the oven I was really impressed...there's really 3 layers :)


Thursday 28th of April 2016

Wow! This Muggle never heard of a Magic Cake before. I am sooo glad you told me about it. I want to bake one now but I guess I should finish that Berry Bread Pudding first. Tomorrow! LOL Thanks, Jolina!!


Sunday 1st of May 2016

LOL! Yes there's always tomorrow :) Thanks MJ! Let me know how it goes.