Kirbie's Cravings

4 Ingredient Birthday Cake (No Eggs, Butter or Milk)

This easy cake is perfect for a birthday or any occasion. The basic white cake is only 4 ingredients and doesn’t need eggs, butter or milk. It can be enjoyed as is or you can easily make other flavors. This cake is so soft and fluffy. You only need one bowl and a whisk to make the batter.
a slice of cake on a plate.

If you’re like me, March and April are filled with birthday celebrations. So, I have had birthday cakes on my mind. I really want to create a cake that was eggless and dairy-free because those are common allergens with kids and I don’t want them missing out on birthday cake. I also love that this cake is so versatile and can be made for just about anyone. You can make it as is, or add sprinkles for a funfetti cake, or even bake multiple ones for a fancier layered cake. You can also easily create other flavors.

Ingredients

  • Self-Rising Flour
  • Granulated White Sugar
  • Vegetable or Canola Oil
  • Water

The basic white cake is just 4 ingredients. You can enjoy it as is, or you can easily add one or two ingredients to change the flavor. I share more ideas in this post.

Self-Rising Flour: If you don’t have self-rising flour in your pantry, you can easily make your own using all purpose flour, baking powder and salt. I list the exact quantities in the recipe card notes. Self-rising flour already has baking powder and salt added which saves a few steps and ingredients to be added to your cake.

Granulated White Sugar: This cake is sweetened with regular granulated white sugar.

Oil: You can use either vegetable or canola oil.

Cake Texture

Even though this cake doesn’t contain any eggs, you won’t miss them at all. The cake comes out soft and fluffy, just like regular cake.

This cake is inspired by crazy cake, a depression era cake made without eggs, butter or milk. I previously shared a chocolate crazy cake which I love, but when I tried making the vanilla recipe it just didn’t taste right to me. The texture of the vanilla crazy cake that has been passed around turned out gummy for me. So I kept tweaking the amounts and I finally created a version I love. I don’t miss the eggs or butter at all in this cake.
a slice of frosted birthday cake.

Variations

Vanilla: To turn this into a vanilla cake, add 1 tsp of vanilla to the cake batter.

Funfetti: For a funfetti cake (also known as confetti cake), stir in 1/4 cup of sprinkles after you are finished making the basic white cake batter. You can also add in vanilla.

Chocolate: For a chocolate version, add 1/2 cup of cocoa powder, decrease flour to 1 1/2 cups and increase sugar to 1 cup.

Of course, these are not all the variations out there. You can add some lemon juice and grated lemon for a lemon version, add espresso powder or replace part of the water with coffee for a coffee version, and more.
overhead shot of the cake slices lined up.

More Easy Cake Recipes

4 Ingredient Birthday Cake

Servings: 12 slices
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
This easy cake is just 4 ingredients and doesn't contain eggs, butter or milk. It makes a basic white cake but you can easily customize it to create other flavors. This cake is perfect for a birthday cake or any other occasion.
5 from 13 votes

Ingredients

  • 1 3/4 cups (230 g) self-rising flour
  • 3/4 cup (148 g) granulated white sugar
  • 1/3 cup (2.7 oz/72 g) vegetable oil
  • 1 cup (8 oz) water

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line an 8 x 8 inch baking pan with parchment paper.
  • Add flour and sugar to a large mixing bowl. Whisk until evenly combined. Sift mixture. To do this, move your whisk back and forth rapidly through the flour mixture until it becomes light and powdery and no clumps remain. It is important to do this before adding the wet ingredients because otherwise you will have little lumps of flour in your cake batter.
  • Add in oil and half of the water. Whisk batter. Add in remaining water. Whisk until batter is smooth. Batter will be very thin. If you are adding in sprinkles, stir them in now.
  • Pour batter into prepared cake pan. Bake for about 30 minutes or until toothpick inserted comes out clean. The top of the cake will stay very light in color and will not brown. Let cake cool before decorating and cutting and serving.

Notes

  • To make your own self-rising flour, whisk together 2 cups all purpose flour, 3 tsp baking powder and 1/2 tsp salt to a bowl. Measure out 1 3/4 cups for the recipe.
  • Ounce measurements are liquid volume not weight.
  • This recipe makes a basic white cake. You can use it as is, you can add a few ingredients to change the flavor, or you can also use it to make a layered cake.
  • To make a vanilla version, add 1 tsp of vanilla when you add in the wet ingredients. 
  • To make a chocolate version, use the following dry ingredients: 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, 1 1/2 cups self-rising flour, 1 cup sugar. Wet ingredients remain the same.
  • To make a funfetti version, stir in 1/4 cup of sprinkles after you are done making the batter. You can also add 1 tsp of vanilla to the wet ingredients.
  • I frosted the cake with a simple whipped cream frosting. To make whipped cream frosting, add 1 cup of cold heavy cream and 3 tbsp of granular sugar into a mixing bowl. Beat on high speed until stiff peaks form. If you need a dairy-free version, you can also make a coconut whipped cream using coconut cream. 

Nutrition

Serving: 1slice, Calories: 161kcal, Carbohydrates: 25g, Protein: 1g, Fat: 6g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 205mg, Sugar: 12g, NET CARBS: 25g

The nutrition information provided are only estimates based on an online nutritional calculator. I am not a certified nutritionist. Please consult a professional nutritionist or doctor for accurate information and any dietary restrictions and concerns you may have.

Did you make this recipe?I'd love to see it! Mention @KirbieCravings and tag #kirbiecravings!

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113 comments on “4 Ingredient Birthday Cake (No Eggs, Butter or Milk)”

  1. Very moist, simple cake without a lot of fat and calories. This really satisfies my cake cravings (I made the vanilla version and added chocolate frosting). Have you ever tested making this into a lemon cake? If so, how much lemon and/or lemon zest would you add to give it a light lemon flavor? Thank you for this recipe!

    • We haven’t tried this as a lemon cake yet so can’t say how much you will need. Glad you enjoyed this version!

  2. What sugar free replacement do you think would work best on this.  And can I also sub unsweetened applesauce for the oil.  Need to sub For Health issues  

  3. Thank you so much for this great recipe! We don’t eat eggs at home and hence am always looking out for a good eggless cake recipe. All of us in my family loved this recipe when I made it. Please keep posting such minimum ingredient recipes. Appreciate them.

  4. Love your recipes. I’m celiac. Can’t have any gluten. So I just sub all my gluten free sugars, flours, everything from yours to me. It’s been working great so far. And I love the ease of only 3 or 4 ingredients. I’m always outa something. Thank you ?

  5. I have been waiting to make this cake and today I finally did. Its in the oven now!! I added a couple drops of almond extract a couple drops of vanilla extract and sprinkles to the batter. Me and my 3 year old could not stop from licking the bowl clean. If just the batter is that good I know the cake will be too. I’m using a vanilla marshmallow frosting from Pillsbury so this cake is officially vegan. Can’t wait to have my vegan cousin try it!!!

  6. Thank you for posting this. I love it!
    People with dairy and egg allergies can now enjoy cake.

  7. Hi. Would I be able to double this recipe for a x 9×13 baking pan?

    • We haven’t tested it so can’t say for sure how it will turn out. If you do, be sure to adjust the baking time.

      • I made this cake two weeks ago since I had unexpected guests over and didn’t have many ingredients on hand. Used gluten free flour and added one egg at the end and it turned out awesome. Honestly I didn’t have big expectations since it has so little ingredients but to my surprise it tasted really nice. Today I craved something sweet again so I just finished the batter and the cake’s in the oven right now. The only part that went a little bit wrong is that the confetti melted during the baking process but nevertheless the cake tasted awesome and I can’t wait till I take it out of the oven lol. Thanks 😛

      • We’re so glad you’re loving the recipe!

      • Yes i have doubles the recipe exactly for a 13 × 9 pan and it turns out wonderful. This is the best recipe I now have for a cake. So easy to make into Any flavor.

      • Thanks for letting us know!

  8. I have been looking for ” the water.cake” recipe for years and.now I have.it!! Thank you I love this cake it’s delicious!!

  9. I’m excited to make this, thanks for sharing! AND, you are a gem for politely answering the frosting question so many times. ?

  10. Will this work in a high altitude? I live in Denver (the Mile High city). Thank you.

    • We haven’t tested it at high-altitude – normally, high altitude baking requires a little more flour, but without testing it we can’t say how you will need to adjust it.

  11. Looks very nice and fluffy. Interesting in baking this as l cook for vegan and vegetarian children and others with many dietary needs. May l ask what is the soft looking white icing topping made from?

    • It is a whipped cream frosting. If you need a vegan alternative, you can make a coconut whipped cream frosting.

  12. This cake sounds wonderful, however, have you tried a sugar substitute? 

  13. Its nice i luv it

  14. Please send me the cookie receipes and cakes receipes without eggs..you can send any easy receipes  too.

  15. Hi there – could you tell me how/what goes into the cake frosting please?

  16. How can I make the cream/icing?

    • The instructions are in the recipe card – please see the notes section, the frosting ingredients and directions are the last in the list.

  17. I would love to try this recipe

  18. Thank you my first time ever having cake .

  19. Looks so yummy! I love white cake! Making this today!
    Do you have an easy icing, buttercream, or other icing recipe to share?

    Thank you so much!

    • Yes, please see the recipe notes in the card at the end of the post. We explain how to make the frosting in the notes section.

  20. I understand that your recipes are simple
    at the same time looks like
    giving a try.looks delicious too!
    Hence I request you to send other recipes whenever you post it.

  21. My daughter loves simple. Recipes.shes learning how to cook

  22. Can’t wait to try some of these recipes, they look amazing!!

  23. Looks like it will be used alot

  24. Wow it worked, Kirby you’re the mother of all recipies???

  25. Love your idea ,having no eggs,butter or milk in the recipe. Some people that I know will love this.Thankyou

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