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Italian Sponge Cake (Pan di Spagna)

Sponge cake on a black plate with a hand whisk on background

5 from 37 reviews

Follow this simple sponge cake recipe and master the art of the classic Italian sponge cake (pan di Spagna). You will love this light, airy and delicious cake that is fat and dairy-free. Enjoy it plain with a cup of tea or coffee or upgrade it to a celebration cake.  



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  1. Preheat the oven to 355 degrees F/180 degrees C. Generously butter and flour an 8-inch/20 cm round cake pan and set aside. Place eggs and granulated sugar in a large bowl and slightly beat with a hand whisk

  2. Continue to whisk and bring the bowl over a bain-marie/water bath to warm the mixture up to 104 degrees F/40 degrees C (warm to the touch). Remove the bowl from the bain-marie/water bath and beat the eggs/sugar mixture with an electric mixer until the volume is doubled for about 12 to 15 minutes. Add sifted flour and mix with a rubber spatula

  3. Pour the dough into the prepared pan and bake in the preheated oven for 20 to 25 minutes. Check the readiness of the biscuit with a toothpick or a cake tester: once it comes out clean out of the sponge, the biscuit is ready.

  4. Let it cool for 10 minutes in the oven off (keep the door slightly open using a wooden spoon) to prevent deflating the sponge cake. Next, remove the sponge from the oven, let it cool for the other ten minutes. Then remove it from the pan by flipping it upside down and cool on a cooling rack, also known as a wire rack.


  1. Do not over whip the egg and sugar mixture; otherwise, the sponge cake will crumble while cutting.
  2. Do not open the oven door until the baking is finished, otherwise, the cake will deflate.
  3. Adjust the baking time if the cake is too dark outside but still not perfectly cooked inside.
  4. Make the cake one day in advance if you plan to cut and decorate it. Wrap it in a plastic film and keep at room temperature or refrigerate till the next day.


Keywords: Italian sponge cake, sponge cake, sponge cake recipe, Pan di Spagna




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