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Mrs Ng Old Fashioned Butter Cake

This butter cake may be old-fashioned and traditional, but you will want to bake this rich and buttery cake again and again because they are so good.

Butter cake is like a blank canvas. It tastes great when well made, and it can be dress up with a simple whipped cream, fresh berries, your favorite fruit preserves, and all the way to frosting if need be. This Mrs Ng version is a good one and has been shared around.

I played with the original recipe a bit so I can adapt it to use only all-purpose flour instead of self-raising flour. So I present to you my version of Mrs Ng old fashioned butter cake.

Mrs Ng Old Fashioned Butter Cake

Mrs Ng Old Fashioned Butter Cake

Very simple ingredients and tools

If you bake at all, then you will notice my recipe for this butter cake calls for very basic ingredients. You need all-purpose flour, baking powder, salt, sugar, egg, butter, milk, and vanilla. Easy right?

And as for tools, an electric mixer helps tremendously. Even after so many years of baking, I only own a hand-held electric mixer, so never ever be discourage from baking and assume you need an expensive stand mixer to create marvelous and delicious baked goods.

Mrs Ng Old Fashioned Butter Cake

Mrs Ng Old Fashioned Butter Cake

To line or not to line

I always choose to line my cake pan with parchment paper. You don’t have to, but it does help tremendously when removing the cake from the pan.

If lining the entire pan is too much of a trouble, I highly recommend lining just the base at the very least , and then grease the sides really well.

The last thing any baker wants is to get a super pretty cake in the pan, and then the cake becomes not so pretty simply because it sticks to the pan!

Mrs Ng Old Fashioned Butter Cake

Mrs Ng Old Fashioned Butter Cake

Simple is best

So how do I enjoy my old fashioned butter cake? Why plain of course! With a cup of a very strong black coffee, thank you.

When I was still a little kid, our birthday cakes are usually a butter cake, sliced in two halves, and dressed with buttercream frosting. So if you want to go that route and bake a birthday cake for someone, I am sure it will be well received :)

Mrs Ng Old Fashioned Butter Cake

Mrs Ng Old Fashioned Butter Cake

A pandan variation

If you love pandan and have access to fresh/frozen pandan leaves, you may want to try my pandan coconut butter cake recipe. It is also a butter cake, but using real pandan extract, and bake with a water bath method. It has a pretty natural green color, and has a strong fragrance of pandan and coconut.

Mrs Ng Old Fashioned Butter Cake

5.0 from 14 reviews

Author: Anita Jacobson



Prep Time: 20 mins

Cook Time: 45 mins

Total Time: 1 hour 5 mins

Serves: 16


  • 180 gram (~ 1 1/2 cup) all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 stick (16 tablespoon / ~ 230 gram) unsalted butter, softened
  • 150 gram sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 4 egg whites
  • 50 gram sugar


  1. Preheat oven to 180 Celsius (350 Fahrenheit). Line an 8"x8" square cake pan with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. Whisk together all-purpose flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
  3. In a large mixing bowl, beat butter and 150 gram sugar until pale and fluffy. Add vanilla extract and egg yolks, one at a time, and beat well with each addition. Next, alternatively add half of flour and half of milk, beat well with each addition, until all flour and milk is incorporated.
  4. In another large mixing bowl, whisk egg whites until foamy, then add 50 gram sugar in 3 batches. Continue whisking until stiff peak.
  5. Fold the egg white into egg yolk batter in 3 batches with a spatula. Be extra gentle so you don't destroy all the air bubbles from the egg whites.
  6. Pour the batter into prepared cake pan, and bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean.
  7. Remove cake from oven and let it rest in the pan for 10 minutes, then gently remove the cake from pan (this is why a parchment paper helps immensely and ensuring the cake remains intact!) and let it cool completely on a wire rack.
  8. Once the cake cools to almost room temperature, cut into 16 serving slices.
Indonesian Pantry
Indonesian Kitchen


  • Clarissa edgina Clarissa edgina says:

    Hi Anita. If I want to do double recipe, what is the temperature? How long do I have to cook it? Also is it ok if I use different kind of baking pan? Thank you

    • Anita Anita says:

      Hi Clarissa, if you want to double the recipe, you can either use two 8" square pans, or one 9"x13" rectangular pan. I have never tried doubling this particular cake, but when I do double other cakes, if the thickness of the cake is kept roughly the same (which is the case if you use two 8"x8" pans, or one 9"x13" pan), I start by keeping the same temperature and the same baking time. Then check from there. Most of the time, the total baking time will be the same! And only very very rarely I need to add more time, and even then, never more than 10 minutes from the original time for the single batch. But....just a really quick disclaimer, I haven't tried with this particular recipe yet, I hope my previous experience is correct, but I cannot guarantee.

  • Priya Priya says:

    Hi anita, i would like to know if fan assisted, top and bottom heat element were used to bake this cake? If no, what temp will be right for a fan assisted oven? Tq

    • Anita Anita says:

      Hi Priya, I use a normal oven without any fan, so I cannot say what temperature and for how long the cake needs to be bake in a fan assisted oven. I am sorry if I can't help. If other readers have experience baking this particular cake in a fan assisted oven, please share your experience.

      • priya priya says:

        tq for your reply :)

  • Luci Luci says:

    This looks simple to make but so tasty. I will have to bake this soon.

  • Stephanie Stephanie says:

    Old fashioned cakes are usually the best. This looks so tender, fluffy and moist.

    • Anita Anita says:

      Agreed. And the best part is old-fashioned recipes are usually tried and tested and is definitely going to be a crowd favorite. :)

  • Luci's Morsels Luci's Morsels says:

    I've recently rediscovered the simplistic joy of butter cake, so this is great timing. And I love my stand mixer, but I've been using my hand mixer lately since it's SO much easier to clean!

    • Anita Anita says:

      Definitely know what you mean Luci. For most baking, I find that hand mixer is more than enough to handle the job. I sold my stand mixer a while ago and still don't feel the need to buy one. :)

  • Sophia Sophia says:

    What a great cake! This looks so moist and delicious! Yum!

  • Ilona Ilona says:

    This cake must be so moist and fluffy, love using butter in my cakes.

  • Irene Irene says:

    Just made this cake and it’s so moist and lovely. Added slightly more butter in mine. Then make butter icing with it. I’ll make this again.

    • Anita Anita says:

      Thanks for the feedback, Irene. I like my butter cake plain, but I can see adding icing will make the cake even more special. :)

  • Vash Vash says:

    Tried this today and it was delicious!

  • Beth Beth says:

    I love that you made this with all purpose flour because I never have self rising on hand! Such a delicious recipe!

  • Tonje Tonje says:

    I made this last night and my boyfriend declared this to be his new favourite cake. Great recipe, will be making it again for sure!

  • Alisha Rodrigues Alisha Rodrigues says:

    I've always been looking out for a good simple butter cake recipe and this one looks perfect. Love that beautiful texture it has. I'm sure its moist too

  • Angela Allison Angela Allison says:

    I love a good butter cake and this one is perfection! The flavors and textures are spot on! Thanks so much for sharing.

  • Michelle Alston Michelle Alston says:

    This is such a lovely cake, I made it yesterday and everyone loved it! Thank you for the recipe.

  • Hasna Hasna says:

    I’ve been trying few recipe of butter cakes but this one is perfect! Thank you for sharing the recipe.

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