Victoria sponge cake

victoria sponge cake
This classic Victoria sponge cake is filled with raspberry jam and dusted with caster/icing sugar to finish.
The Victoria sponge cake is made extra indulgent by whipping up some fluffy Swiss meringue buttercream for the filling and topping.
The name Victoria sponge cake as opposed to just sponge cake comes from the fact baking powder is used and that was invented in the 1843, in the Victorian period where it became very popular.
The use of baking powder allowed the Victoria sponge cake to rise more and was invented by Alfred Bird, an Englishman involved in food manufacturing. His surname is famously given to a popular brand of custard powder which he also invented. The addition of baking powder also allowed for the cake to include more fat (in the form of butter), therefore creating a richer cake.
When it comes to decoration, top the buttercream icing with some fresh strawberries.
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Resting Time 5 minutes
Total Time 6 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine British
Servings 12 slices


  • 175 g unsalted butter (at room temperature)
  • 175 g golden caster sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 eggs
  • 175 g self-raising flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • Swiss meringue buttercream
  • 4 tbsp strawberry/raspberry jam


  • a handful of fresh strawberries (hulled and halved)


  • Preheat the oven to 180°C/350F/Gas Mark 5. Grease two 18cm/7in sandwich tins with extra butter, and base-line each with baking paper.
  • Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy (Either by hand or using an electric mixer).
  • Add the vanilla extract and beat in the eggs one at a time until creamy and well combined. Sift the flour and baking powder into the mix, and fold everything together gently using a spatula or metal spoon.
  • Divide the mixture between the prepared tins and smooth the tops. Bake in the preheated oven for 18-20 minutes until they are well risen and spring back when lightly pressed.
  • Leave to cool in the tins for 5 minutes, then turn out on a wire rack and peel away the paper. Leave to cool completely.
  • Spread half the Swiss meringue buttercream on one of the cakes and spread the strawberry/raspberry jam on top of the buttercream. Place the other cake on top before spreading the remaining buttercream on top of the second cake.
  • Decorate with the strawberries to complete your Victoria sponge cake.
The Victoria sponge cake was named after Queen Victoria, who favoured a slice of the sponge cake with her afternoon tea.