Slab Sponge Cake from a 1930s Recipe

Iced Slab Sponge Cake Recipe

When looking through my vintage recipe books, sometimes it’s the really simple recipes that catch my eye. If I don’t have many ingredients to hand or just want a really quick bake a very simple cake recipe is ideal. One recipe I go back to a lot is a tray bake sponge cake from my 1936 Elizabeth Craig recipe cards. I’ve made this a lot of times and have managed to perfect the temperature and cooking times so that it bakes to perfection so I thought it was time to share this easy bake on here. I decorated it with bright blue icing and 100s and 1000s to make it look extra cute.

Elizabeth Craig Sponge Cake

Before I share the recipe I’ll just explain how I get the bake so flat. the first few times I tried this recipe it was rising more in the middle and didn’t look so nice when it was iced. First of all I reduced the baking powder in the recipe which helped a bit, after doing a little research I decided to insulate the baking tray so the sides wouldn’t cook more quickly that the middle. I bake tray bakes inside disposable baking trays from Tesco because they are the perfect size, to insulate the edges of the cake I just put they tray I was baking inside 4 other trays so that the edges would heat less quickly. This combined with reduced temperature made for the most perfect even bake so I’d definitely recommend giving this a go when trying to get a flat bake.

Tray Bake Sponge Cake Recipe


3 Eggs

1 Cup Caster Sugar

1 Cup Flour

1/2 tsp Baking Powder

Pinch of Salt

1/4 Cold Water

For Icing use icing sugar and water with gel food colouring. I don’t use exact measurements for icing, I just keep mixing until I’m happy. I used a more runny icing than I usually use for this so that I could pour it over easily. this cake would also look fantastic with a buttercream finish.

Sainsburys 100s and 1000s

How to Make:

1. Preheat oven to 140 degrees. Butter your baking tray.

2. Beat the eggs and sugar together until well mixed.

3. Mix the dry ingredients into the mixture.

4. Pour the mixture into your baking tray and bake in the oven for about 35 minutes or until cooked through.

5. Allow to cool before pouring over icing and add sprinkles or decorations of your choice.

1930s Sponge Cake Recipe

Slab Sponge Cake Recipe

This really is one of the simplest recipes I make, and it tastes absolutely amazing. I have to keep making more as Rob and Lila absolutely love it! Let me know if you give this one a go.


  1. SaraLily February 19, 2015 / 8:17 pm

    Oh my, aren’t those pieces of cake adorable? I wouldn’t want to eat them…or would I? 😉

    • vintagefrills February 20, 2015 / 9:42 am

      Aw thank you! And yes you would 😉 xxx

  2. Jessica Cangiano February 20, 2015 / 1:17 am

    Your slices of cake are so splendidly pretty and picture perfect – I feel like they should be on the cover of a cheerful cookbook full of classic recipes.

    ♥ Jessica

    • vintagefrills February 20, 2015 / 9:41 am

      Thank you Jessica. Xxx

  3. monidelatorre February 20, 2015 / 8:27 am

    Oh! I want of those pieces of cake!! <3

  4. Raelou February 21, 2015 / 12:56 pm

    I love these cake recipes. I made the multi coloured rainbow cake for my children the other week and this looks another recipe they will love! Thanks

    • vintagefrills May 2, 2015 / 8:16 am

      It’s so nice to hear that you’ve tried my recipes. My kids love all the colourful ones too!

  5. Missy Vintage September 1, 2015 / 3:32 pm

    isn’t this just so cute! Looks delicious. I’m a very simple baker…..this looks ideal! 🙂

    • vintagefrills September 21, 2015 / 9:52 pm

      Yes it’s sooo easy! One of my favourite recipes 🙂

      • Emma October 9, 2016 / 3:31 pm

        How much water do you add to the main recipe? 1/4 tsp or tbsp? Thank you!!

  6. Bee June 15, 2017 / 5:24 pm

    Do you use self raising flour or plain? Love this recipie makes me so nostalgic x

    • vintagefrills
      June 15, 2017 / 5:49 pm

      I use plain flour in this one. Xxx

      • Bee June 16, 2017 / 7:46 am

        Thanks very much! Will enjoy making it x

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