Hot Milk Cake

If you are in the mood for an old fashioned and timeless dessert, this Hot Milk Cake is exactly what you need! Made with scalded milk and a few other basic ingredients, you will be amazed by the fluffy delicate texture and depth of flavor this cake has.

If you are completely new to the baking world, this is THE recipe for you. It’s literally foolproof, and the result is a delicious cake that will have everyone asking for your recipe. Then, once you’ve got your confidence behind you, you can tackle the more involved cakes like this Eclair Cake, this amazing Italian Cream Cake, and this yummy Butter Pecan Cake.

Hot milk cake with whipped cream on top.

Cake with Hot Milk

Basically, a hot milk cake is a cake made with scalded milk. Scalded milk is when you heat up milk over the stove until you can see little bubbles form along the inside of the edge of the pan and it starts to steam, and if you want to get super technical the milk should be about 180 to 185 degrees Fahrenheit. I don’t temp my milk because it really isn’t that sensitive in this recipe. I actually melt butter first, then add my milk and vanilla and scald it all together. It’s my little secret to getting the most flavor out of those ingredients! Do not boil the milk, it doesn’t need to get that hot.

This hot milk cake is perfect served with some fresh whipped cream on top and fresh fruit. On a cold night, I love it with hot chocolate and a drizzle of caramel sauce over the top (you can drizzle that on the hot chocolate too, yum!). It’s also delicious with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, or whatever your favorite flavor is. This milk cake has a really subtle vanilla flavor that goes perfectly with whatever you want to eat with it!


This is a really basic recipe that anyone can make! I love making hot milk cake with my kids because it’s so simple and fun to make together. You can definitely add spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove if you wanted to make this a spiced cake. I love keeping it simple and serving it with whipped cream and fresh strawberries on top! You can find the measurements listed below in the recipe card.

  • Eggs: What makes this cake so much better is leaving your eggs out at room temperature for a few hours before you make it.
  • Granulated Sugar: This is to sweeten the cake.
  • All-Purpose Flour: This is the easiest to work with.
  • Baking Powder: This helps the cake rise and get nice and fluffy.
  • Salt: Salt balances out the sweetness and brings out all the delicate flavors.
  • Butter: I like to use unsalted so I can control the amount of salt in my cake.
  • Whole Milk: You will scald the milk first with the butter and vanilla.
  • Vanilla: Vanilla adds so much flavor to the cake and it’s great for baking.
  • Powdered Sugar: For dusting the top.
Process photos showing how to mix up the batter and put it in the pan.

Hot Milk Cake Recipe

This hot milk cake recipe is really simple and a great way to introduce kids to baking. It’s not as easy as a box cake mix, but it is a great cake to show your kids a few skills like beating eggs and sugar until fluffy. Scalding milk is also a great skill to have for a lot of other recipes too. You could switch this recipe up by baking the batter in small round pans and making a cake with layers.

  1. Prep: Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Spray a 9×13 baking dish with cooking spray and set aside.
  2. Beat Eggs and Sugar: Add the eggs and sugar to a large bowl and beat with the whisk attachment on a stand mixer or a hand mixer for 4-5 minutes, until very pale in color and tripled in volume.
  3. Mix Dry Ingredients: Add the flour, baking powder, and salt to a small bowl and whisk to combine.
  4. Scald Butter, Milk, and Vanilla: Add the butter to a small saucepan. Heat over medium until melted and then add the milk and vanilla. Continue to heat until just barely steaming.
  5. Add Butter to Eggs: Remove the butter mixture from the heat, turn the mixer on low and very slowly pour the butter/milk mixture into the eggs while beating.
  6. Add Dry to Wet: Once fully incorporated, add the dry ingredients to the batter in two additions, mixing on low until just combined.
  7. Bake: Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 40-45 minutes, until a toothpick comes out of the center of the cake clean.
  8. Cool and Enjoy: Let the cake cool for 10-15 minutes before serving. Top with a dusting of powdered sugar and serve with whipped cream and berries, if desired.
A piece of hot milk cake being pulled out of the cake.

Tips for Making Hot Milk Cake

This hot milk cake is made from simple ingredients, so HOW you mix this cake together is the key to a great cake! You will be amazed at the tenderness of this cake when you follow these tips.

  • Room Temperature Eggs: Use room temperature eggs to help the egg and sugar mixture whip up quicker. This will also help the eggs temper more evenly as you slowly add the hot milk to them.
  • Bundt Pan: You can bake this cake in a 10 cup bundt pan. Spray the pan well with a baking pan spray and bake for 50-60 minutes. Let the cake sit in the pan for 10-15 minutes before inverting onto a serving platter. 
  • Additional Toppings: Drizzle the cake with chocolate syrup or caramel. Serve with whipped cream, Devonshire cream, or just powdered sugar. I love it plain, but it is also next level delicious topped with fresh cream and peaches or stawberries.
A piece of hot milk cake on a plate.

Storing Leftovers

This hot milk cake is easy to make, and even easier to store! I love this cake because it stays moist and delicious for a few days, so you can make it ahead of time if you need to.

  • On the Counter: Cover leftover cake tightly with plastic wrap or transfer to an airtight container. Store at room temperature for 3-4 days. 
  • To Reheat: Reheat for 15-20 seconds if you would like to eat your leftover cake warm.