Vanilla Bean Pound Cake


Vanilla Bean Pound Cake

There's no magic here, just the right ingredients and technique and a lot of testing, resulting in a Vanilla Bean Pound Cake we consider to be perfection in its simplicity, flavor, and texture. Whether you go for a dollop of whipped cream or you glaze this baby, when you serve this cake, get ready for your crowning glory, as you’ll be dubbed The Cake Whisperer!


16 servings

Total Time

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Test Kitchen Tips

A cardinal rule with pound cakes is to use room-temperature ingredients, especially the butter — if it’s too hot or cold it’ll be too difficult to combine with the other ingredients. When it comes to mixing, this cake starts by creaming the butter and sugar at medium-low speed.

The creaming or beating process pushes the sugar crystals through the butter, creating air tunnels, which helps leaven the cake. (The small amount of baking powder is a little insurance if the mixing goes awry.) And, using lower-protein cake flour results in a more tender cake.

Resist the urge to cream this cake on high speed; it will warm the butter, a BIG no-no.


Preheat oven to 350° with rack in lower third of oven. Coat a 12- to 15-cup fluted tube (Bundt) pan with butter and flour.

Whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt.

Cream butter in the bowl of a stand mixer on medium speed until softened. With mixer running on medium-low speed, slowly add granulated sugar until all is added, about 5 minutes. Continue creaming butter and sugar until sugar is dissolved, about 6 minutes more, scraping down sides and bottom of bowl as needed. Beat in vanilla bean paste and almond extract.

Add eggs, one at a time, with mixer on low speed, beating until fully incorporated before adding another.

Beat in flour mixture, ¼ cup at a time, scraping down sides and bottom of bowl as needed, just until blended.

Transfer batter to prepared pan, smooth top; transfer pan to an insulated baking sheet (or two stacked baking sheets) and bake cake until golden and a skewer inserted all the way to the bottom of the cake comes out clean, 5055 minutes. Cool cake in pan on a rack, 15 minutes; turn out onto rack to cool completely.

Transfer cake to a serving platter; dust with powdered sugar and serve with whipped cream and mixed berries.

For Vanilla Glaze:

Heat ¾ cup water in a saucepan over medium to a boil. Combine ½ cup granulated sugar and 2 Tbsp. cornstarch; whisk into water. Cook glaze, stirring constantly, until thick; whisk in ¼ cup heavy cream. Off heat, whisk in 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter, 2 tsp. vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract, and a pinch of salt.


To incorporate the most air, slowly add the sugar with the mixer on a lower speed — a measuring cup with a spout makes it easy.


To help incorporate even more air and leaven the batter more, fully blend the eggs, one at a time, after each addition.


Baking the cake on an insulated baking sheet (or two stacked baking sheets) keeps it from developing a dark exterior.

Nutritional Facts

Nutritional Facts

Per serving

Calories: 368

% Daily Value*

Total Fat 22g 33%

Saturated Fat 13g 65%

Cholesterol 123mg 41%

Sodium 210mg 8%

Carbs 42g 14%

Protein 5g

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

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