Madeira Cake Recipe with Cake Pan Conversions

Madeira Cake Recipe with cake Pan Conversions
Madeira Rainbow Cake

Madeira Cake is easy, basic, buttery-ish, and great for cake decorating with fondant or sugarpaste because of its sturdy nature. But it’s perfect for dunking too!

Estimated reading time: 7 minutes

It’s one of my favourite plain cakes. I love using Madeira Cakes for celebration cakes because its dense texture makes it easier to handle and it lasts for up to 2 weeks. Not only does it last a long time, its dense texture makes it the perfect cake for decorating with buttercream and fondant (sugar paste).

You’ll find handy hints on baking and cake pan sizes below.

Madeira Cake Tips

As Madeira cakes have a dome shape when baked, you could try scooping out the middle of the batter and leaving a little hole in the middle before placing in the oven. This does help produce a flatter top but I don’t bother.

However, you could try placing a flower nail in the middle of your cake pan. I find that this does reduce the dome dramatically.

To level the cake, once you’ve released it from the cake tin, put a saucer in the cake tin and place the cake on top of it. You could then just slice off the dome using the top of the cake tin as a marker.

How long does Madeira Cake Last?

The cake will easily last a week (even 2) if kept in an airtight container, to stop it drying out. This means that if you are decorating it, you can take a couple of days for complicated ideas! Just remember to use a milk free buttercream icing!

Rainbow Madeira Cake

For a rainbow look when you slice the cake, just divide the batter up into 2 or 3 portions and colour with food colouring of your choice.

My granny used to do this with her butter cakes and we grew up calling them rainbow cakes. I like to do this for girls’ birthday cakes and always get a reaction.

Greasing and Lining Cake Pans

In reply to a question posed by a reader, how to know whether to line or not, as written in my recipe card:

Many cake tins used to need lining. These days though, you have the silicone sort and also non lining types. So if yours is an older style tin, grease, line, grease. The first greasing of the pan is to ensure that the baking paper sticks to the pan. Makes filling the tin with the batter so much easier, as the baking paper won’t be moving around in your tin.

Cake pans that don’t need lining will just require some light greasing. If you have just bought your cake pan, it should have instructions. If in doubt, just grease, line and grease.

Cake Pan Conversions (Scaling Up Cake Recipes)

My cake pans all have a depth of between 3 – 4 inches (about 7.5 – 10 cm). You definitely want to use a cake pan that has a minimum depth of 3″ (7.5 cm), to allow for the rise.

Starting with the above recipe, multiply by the corresponding quantity for each size.

4″/10cm – divide by 2.5 bake for about 40 minutes
6″/15cm – divide by 1.5 bake for about 45 – 50 minutes
7″/17cm – divide by 1.25 and bake for about 50 minutes
9″/23cm – x 1 and a quarter (1.25) bake for about 1 hour 10 minutes
10″/25cm – x 1.5 bake for about 1 hour 15 minutes
11″/28cm – x 2 bake for about 1 hour 20 minutes
12″/30cm – x 2.5 bake for about 1 hour 30 minutes

How to use Flower Nails for baking cakes?

For larger cakes, above 10″, I would suggest that you use flower nails when baking your cake. This is a flower nail. The reason for this is so the middle of your madeira cake will bake more evenly. As the metal flower nail heats up, it will conduct heat to the batter in the middle, so the sides don’t bake and brown way before the middle.

I much prefer using flower nails to a heating core.

Flower nails can also help to reduce the dome shape of a cake. Madeira cakes do tend to have dome shapes because of their higher moisture content.

How many you use will depend on the size of the cake. You can use more than one, placed at intervals, if necessary, especially if you are baking a long cake. This is how you do it:

  1. Grease your flower nails. I hate all specially formulated cake release, and only ever use butter for greasing.
  2. Place your nails upside down in the cake tin.
  3. Pour the batter over and bake. Remove the cake nails before slicing/decorating.
  4. Reduce the baking time by at least 10 – 20 minutes. This will depend on the size of your cake.
Baking strip
Baking strip

What are Cake Baking Strips?

Cake baking strips are insulating strips that are place around a cake pan to stop the edges of the cake from baking too quickly, and therefore browning too much. Cakes with a high liquid content, tend to brown quicker, especially eggless cakes.

So baking strips are perfect for eggless cakes.

If you are baking large cakes, whether madeira cake or not, these baking strips also come in handy, you can use them on their own, or in conjunction with flower nails.

Converting round to square cake pans

Move down in number by 1 inch. For e.g.:

8″ round cake pan = 7″ square cake pan

9″ round cake pan = 8″ square cake pan

Other Cake Pan Shapes

Round cake tins = Petal tins (i.e., same measurements)

8″ round tin = 8″ petal tin

Square cake tins = Hexagonal tins

8″ square cake tin = 8″ hexagonal cake tin

For more design ideas, check out the Cake Decorating Page.

You’ll also find lots of helpful tutorials like how to ice and fill a cake and how to cover a cake with fondant or sugarpaste icing.

Here are some cakes on LinsFood that use the Madeira Cake:

More Cake Recipes on LinsFood

Madeira Cake Recipe with cake Pan Conversions

Madeira Cake Recipe

Madeira Cake recipe, easy, basic, buttery-ish, and great for cake decorating with fondant or sugarpaste because of its sturdy nature.
5 from 4 votes
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Course: Cakes
Cuisine: British
Keyword: cakes
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
Servings: 12 (Makes an 8in/20cm round cake)
Calories: 305kcal
Author: Azlin Bloor


  • 220 g regular salted butter
  • 220 g caster sugar superfine sugar (not powdered/icing)
  • 250 g AP flour
  • 2 Tbsp evaporated milk
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla paste or extract


  • Preheat oven to 160˚C (fan 140˚C)/320˚F.
  • Line and grease your cake tin as required.
  • Sift the flour and baking powder.
  • Place the butter and sugar into a deep mixing bowl (tabletop mixer is great) and beat until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes.
  • Add the milk and vanilla and beat to mix thoroughly.
  • Add the eggs, one at a time, adding a tbsp of flour with each one and beat for a minute, until well incorporated, before adding the next one. The flour will stop your batter from curdling.
  • Add the flour and mix on the lowest speed until just combined. Don’t over mix.
  • Pour the cake batter into the prepared tin. I like to lift the tin and firmly tap the base on a firm surface, to level and pop a few bubbles.
  • Bake for 1 hour. Insert a skewer in the middle of the cake, if it comes out clean, it’s done.
  • Let cool before taking out.


Nutritional information is for the plain cake, without any icing added.


Calories: 305kcal | Carbohydrates: 35g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 95mg | Sodium: 155mg | Potassium: 89mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 19g | Vitamin A: 543IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 37mg | Iron: 1mg
Did you make this recipe?Mention @azlinbloor and tag #linsfood!
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109 thoughts on “Madeira Cake Recipe with Cake Pan Conversions”

  1. 5 stars
    Made this today in an 8″ square cake pan by following your instructions and multiplying the recipe by 1.25. It turned out great – it’s a really yummy, solid cake that’s currently being frozen so it’s ready for fondant in a few days’! Thanks so much for your recipe, all of the pan-size adjustments and also your super helpful replies to people in the comments. It’s really appreciated :o)

    1. Hi Natalie, thank you so much for your lovely words. I’m glad you found the recipe useful. If you are on Instagram or Facebook, I’d love to see a picture of the decorated cake! Just tag me @azlinbloor.

  2. Hi Azlin. Thanks for this recipe and most especially the conversation . I have a baking tin like Alan Silverwood multisize 12″ X 4″ deep tin which allows me to bake 4, 6″ cakes at a time. I am hoping to make a single batter , divide it and add different flavour to each quater ( chocolate, orange, banana, vanilla)
    Do you think this Idea would work ?
    Would it be safe to use the standard 12″ square recipe , considering my other additions ?
    If not, what would be the right measurements to use and the cooking time ?
    Thanks a lot

    1. Hi Emily, sorry for the late reply. If you are still looking for an answer, splitting the recipe into 4, then adding the flavouring is fine, as long as the adds are just those extracts that come out of little bottles. Like vanilla and food colouring. Adding a little cocoa powder should also be fine. But not a mashed banana or orange juice, that will interfere with the integrity of the batter.

  3. Hello Azlin,

    I’m in a bit of a pickle regarding resizing the amounts from your recipe for a Christmas Tree shaped tin!

    Measurements are (roughly):
    1 1/4 inches depth
    9 1/2 inches length
    1 inch at the smallest width
    6 3/4 inches at the widest width

    Any ideas as to how to figure out how much to adjust your recipe by? I’ve been searching the internet but everything I find is just mind boggling!

    1. Hi Danielle, best thing to do with such an irregular tin is to measure its volume by filling it up by water. Then using the tin that has the nearest capacity. This is what you need to do:

      Pour some water into your Xmas tree tin, just shy of the top, roughly where you’d like your cake to rise to. 1 1/4 inch isn’t very high for a cake.
      Empty your jug and pour the water back into your tin to get the exact volume (unless you know how much you poured in).
      Use the recipe for a cake pan that has the same or nearest to, volume.

      8″ (20cm), 2″ high cake pan = 1.5 litre (6 cups)
      6″ (15/16cm) 2″ high = 1 litre (4 cups)
      I think yours might be around the 6″ round cake pan mark. Let me know if you need anymore help. The conversions for the recipe are above.

      1. Thank you for your help. By my measure my tin holds 700ml – so less than a 6inch cake. Would perhaps the measurements for a 4inch cake ingredients be the best choice? (Or a 5inch one if I divide the above recipe by 2?)

  4. Hi Azlin,
    I really do need your help please. I am a complete novice when it comes to baking & decorating cakes and I really want to have a go, as my daughter has asked
    me if I could bake a birthday cake for my grandson’s 2nd birthday in December. I just need your advice on how I go about making a fairly standard size layer cake. I would like to try your Madeira cake recipe for this. Please could you tell me what size cake tins I need & quantities.
    Kind regards
    Anne S

    1. Hi Anne, firstly, you need to decide how many the cake is going to feed. A “standard size” is usually an 8″ or 9″ round cake tin.
      The 8″ should feed 12 people, and the 9″, 16, in small portions. If you can just imagine, first you quarter the cake, then you slice each quarter into 3 or 4 slices.

      When you say layer cake, you mean, just filled with icing and jam, don’t you? You are not talking about 2 cakes placed on top of each other, which would be a tiered cake.

      Whatever size tin you go for, bake the cake according to the recipe above (which is for an 8″ cake). I give the conversions on this page for each size. Let me know if you need help with that.

      Then you let the cake cool (I always bake the cake the day before), and fill it. Here are the pages you need for that:

      Icing and Filling Cakes with Buttercream:

      If you want to cover the cake with fondant (ready rolled works):

      You’ll find a gallery of cakes, if you fancy some ideas, half of them are pictures, with no tutorials:

      Let me know what other help/information you need.

  5. Hi, please can you tell me do you use granulated or caster sugar? About to make my first Madeira cake thanks

  6. Sandi Johnson

    Hi Azlin.
    Not sure if my first message got to you. I have been asked to bake a 12″ square Madeira cake with height of about 4″. Could you tell me what measure of ingredients I need, and how long for baking. Also should I use a flower nail? Would really appreciate your help, as other sites state different amounts for a 12″ square cake. So confused!!!!!

    1. Hi Sandi
      12″ square = 13″ round
      So, just multiply all the ingredients by 3.
      My cakes are all about 3″ in height. As you are planning to fill in with icing and jam, you will definitely be able to get the 4″ in height.
      As it is a big cake, I would certainly recommend using a flower nail in the middle of the cake pan.
      Good luck!

      1. Sandi Johnson

        Thanks Azlin. Will I need to x3 for butter icing ingredients too? Will be putting a crumb coating over cake before covering with ready roll icing, as well as filling cake with jam and butter icing. X

  7. Modele Elejofi

    I need to bake a 16″ x 10″ Madeira cake (130cm) and need help with calculating the quantity of ingredients required. In the past, I have just estimated, sometimes good, sometimes not so good. Can you help please?

    1. Hi Modele, as a future reference, all you do is find the volume of your cake pan. I always assume that people are going for a depth of 3 inches, so I just calculate the area of your pan. In this instance:
      16 x 10 = 160
      The pan with the nearest area square to that is a 13″ square pan:
      13 x 13 = 169
      The equivalent round cake tin for an 13″ square tin is 14″ round.
      So all you need to do is multiply EVERYTHING by 3.5.
      770g (27 oz = 1.7 lb) regular salted butter
      770g (27 oz = 1.7 lb) sugar
      875g (7 cups) plain flour
      7 Tbsp evaporated milk
      14 large eggs
      3 1/2 tsp baking powder
      3 1/2 tsp vanilla paste
      That’s a huge cake. So I suggest that you use 2-3 flower nails inserted at intervals when baking it. This will ensure that the middle cooks as quickly as the edges. You can read more about flower nails in the article above.

      I hope that helps. x

    1. Hi Jennie, milk adds moisture, flavour and colour to cakes. It also aids structure and creates tender crumbs. I am partial to evaporated milk because of its creamier nature, like cream. It makes the madeira cake just slightly more flavoursome and soft, then if I’d used fresh milk.

  8. I am making a jack Daniels bottle cake stood up this is my first attempt I need some tips on how to stack the layers and what supports I need also how much ingredients for a Madeira cake in a tin size of 7.5cm depth and 21cm diameter thank you

    1. Hi Dawn, you’ll need the recipe for an 8″ cake, which is the recipe given in the recipe card.
      As far as tips go in stacking up the cake: I assume you are planning to cut little squares out of the cake and stacking them up that way? I’m not sure that i cake is going to be enough. My advice is to get a square cake tin that’s about 20cm – 25cm square. That way, you can just cut the cake up into 4 quarters and stack them up that way. If 3 layers are tall enough, you can use the final square to make the thinner top. Or the top can be made completely with fondant icing, hardened with a little tragacanth gum.
      Standing the cake up, and making it steady:
      1. Place some buttercream icing on the cake board to hold the cake in place.
      2. Since your cake is going to be the size of a bottle, it doesn’t need dowelling, but I would suggest pushing through 4 long wooden skewers in the 4 corners, to keep it steady. Barbecue skewers should do, or tin dowelling sticks.
      I hope that helps, and good luck.

  9. Christine Xuereb

    I have been looking for a recipe for a cake using 7 inch round tin which is about 3 inches deep …..Just wondered why you use plain flour and not self raising ….As most recipes I have found use self raising flour. Would prefer a Victoria Sponge type cake….is this suitable for a childs birthday cake and if so what quantities woukd I need …..thank you

    1. Hi Christine, to convert the above recipe for your 7″ round tin, just divide all the ingredients by 1 and a quarter (1.25) and bake for about 50 minutes.
      I grew up making this cake with my granny, and she always used plain flour. Interestingly, many, if not most of the older recipes call for plain flour, going back to Eliza Acton’s very first recipe and mention of it in the mid 19th century. The self-raising flour is, I believe, a fairly modern switch.
      I find that the plain flour gives me a better density and allows me to control the rise of the cake with the baking powder.
      It is perfect for all birthday cakes, this is the cake I have been using all these years for my kids and all clients who want a decorated cake. The cake is heavier than a Victoria Sponge, making it perfect for decorating, as it will last for days, unlike the drier Victoria.
      BBC Good Food have a good recipe for Victoria Sponge:
      It’s for an 8″/20cm cake, so again, just divide all your ingredients by 1 1/4.
      I hope that helps.

      1. Debbie Midwinter

        Hi can you please help me with the ingredients for a Madeira cake for a round 14in x 12 1/4in x 3in cake tin.
        Also do I need to use self raising and plain flour as some recipes state. Thank you Debbie

        1. I’m not sure if those measurements are right that you’ve quoted, Debbie. Do you mean a rectangular cake with those measurements? Or do you mean that’s the total height of your tiered cake?

  10. Hi ,
    please could you help me , i need to know the ingredients need for a maderia cake using a 8″x 12″ x 4″ deep tin

    1. Hi Carole, you’ll need the measurements and time for an 11″ round cake, as given above:
      11″/28cm – x 2 bake for about 1 hour 20 minutes
      So, multiply all the ingredients by 2 and bake for 1 hour 20 minutes.

  11. Hi, thanks for recipes. I need to bake 8′ and using both flavours vanilla and lemon. Is it possible?

    1. Hi Emmy, using vanilla and lemon in the cake together will definitely work. Add 1 Tbsp of lemon juice to the batter, along with the vanilla. You can also use lemon and vanilla buttercream to ice it.

  12. Hello, thank you for such helpful tips and a lovely recipe. I bake for family and have been asked to make a 3 tier semi naked wedding cake. The tiers need to be deep. Please could you tell me how deep your cake recipe should be. Many thanks

    1. Hi Phyllis, the recipe here will give cakes with a depth of about 3 inches before filling in the middle. I hope that helps. You can always use 2 cakes for each tier to get really deep tiers. x

  13. Julie Turner

    I need to make 3 chocolate madeira cakes to stack up to make one tier of a wedding cake. Each layer needs to be 3cm deep and 25cm in diameter.
    Do you have a suggestion for quantities of ingredients I need to use and baking times?

    1. Hi Julie, when I need a chocolate madeira cake, I use the above recipe, but substitute a little of the flour with unsweetened cocoa powder.
      A 25cm tin will be a 10″ tin, so that’s 1.5 x the recipe for the standard 8″ tin above. Converted recipe below, with the cocoa powder added. Bake for about 1 hour 15 minutes.

      330g salted butter
      330g sugar
      315g plain flour
      60g unsweetened cocoa powder
      3 Tbsp evaporated milk
      6 large eggs
      1.5 tsp baking powder
      1.5 tsp vanilla paste

      That’s a pretty big first tier, 3 cakes on top of each other? Don’t forget to use dowels to support the cakes. Sorry if you know that already!

      You’ll find links to icing recipes, dowelling cakes, etc on the Cake Decorating 101 page:

      I hope that helps. x

  14. Sandi Johnson

    Hi Azlin. Want to make a Madeira cake in a 25cm square tin. What measure of ingredients will I need and baking temp and time. Thanks in advance Sandi.

    1. Hi Sandi,
      25cm=10″ (rounded up)
      10″ square tin will have the same measurements as an 11″ round tin.
      Multiply the recipe by 2 and bake for about 1 hour 20 minutes.
      If your oven runs hot, I’d check at the 1 hour 10 minute mark.

          1. Sandi Johnson

            Hi Azlin. The last recipe for 10″ worked out perfectly. Now I am being asked to bake one in a 12″ square tin. What will ingredient quantities be for this. Wish to slice and fill it with butter cream and jam. Thanks in advance x

  15. I’m a big fan of cakes, and this cake just went to the top of my to do cakes because its definitely different that what I’m used to. That’s what I love about food blogging.

  16. this looks so pretty, and I bet it taste amazing, the colors are awesome and it would be so fun for a party. I wonder if I could sub gluten free flour.

  17. First of all, it’s great that you take the time to give us all the times and sizes. I personally often get lost while baking because I use different formats. Second, this cake sounds lovely, moist and fun! I’ll definitely give it a try soon!

  18. I was expecting Madeira wine in this cake. The recipe looks similar to a basic pound cake. A standard cake recipe is something everyone needs at their finger tips.

  19. Hi, I have a 14×9 inch numerical and alphabetical cake tin and would like to know the cake conversion to make the Madeira Cake mixture please.

    1. Hi Jackie, you’ll need the recipe for a 7″ cake.
      176g (6 1/3 oz) salted butter
      176g (6 1/3 oz) sugar
      200g (7 oz) plain flour
      1.5 Tbsp evaporated milk
      3 large eggs
      1 tsp baking powder
      1 tsp vanilla paste
      Bake for about 50 minutes.

  20. I’ve just followed your recipe for an 11″ round cake and the middle has risen to about 3.8″ but the edges are only 2″. It’s for birthday cake that I plan to cover in fondant icing so once I cut it flat it will only be 2″ high! What could I have done wrong when making it?

    1. Gosh, that’s a huge rise in the middle, isn’t it?
      Are you planning to also fill it with jam and icing? As that would give it at least an additional half and inch. Then the fondant on top of that too. I know that still means there isn’t much cake itself.

      The rise isn’t because of something you did or didn’t do.
      One of the risks of baking a large cake is that you end up with a higher dome than usual. As the edges of the cake get heated up quickly, the batter on the edges set quicker and stop rising, while the middle continues to do so.

      To offset this, any of the following:
      1. Reduce the oven temperature by 10˚C, as a start, if your oven tends to run hot, by 20˚C.
      2. Reduce the leavening agent, in this instance, the baking powder. I would suggest using 1 tsp instead of 2, so half the amount for the 11″.

      Unfortunately, there is no way of knowing sometimes, until you’ve baked it once.
      I use the exact same recipe above for 12″ cakes for clients, and have yet to encounter what happened to you.
      I hope that helps and the cake is still a success.

      1. Thank you! I’m a novice an idiot! I’ve realised exactly what the problem is! I had the oven too high. I had it at 160 and my oven is a fan oven so it should have been 140 degrees! 2nd attempt is now in the oven! I have also made a well in the middle this time. Fingers crossed! If this one is as flat as the other at least I will potentially have 4 sections of cake to pile on top of each other!

      2. 2nd attempt a huge success! Perfectly flat and a good height. Thanks again for all your advice.

  21. Vicky moorfield

    Hello, I need to make 2 x 20cm ball (sphere) cakes and 2 x 16cm ball (sphere) cakes.Can you advise what conversions I would use.
    Any advice would be greatly appreciated
    Kind regards

    1. Hi Vicky, sphere cakes are always a little tricky as they are so much thicker in the middle. Bake them in hemispheres, ie half tins.
      If you want to use my recipe above, for the 16cm sphere cake, we’ll use the conversions for a 9″/23cm cake pan:
      275g regular salted butter
      275g sugar
      310g plain flour
      2.5 Tbsp evaporated milk
      5 eggs
      1.25 (quarter) tsp baking powder
      1.25 tsp vanilla paste
      Bake for about 1 hour 30 minutes at 150˚C, but at the halfway mark, cover the cake tops with baking paper, inserting two cocktail sticks/skewers in to hold the paper down, and bake for another 30 – 45 minutes until the middle is done or the sides are coming away from the pan.
      For the 20cm pan, you’ll need to double up on the quantities. We convert cake pans by the volume:
      a cake pan with a 16cm diameter will have a volume of 2144 cubic cm
      a cake pan with a 20cm diameter will have a volume of 4188 cubic cm
      The volume of the 20 is practically double that of the 16.
      Any extra batter? Just make cupcakes.
      I hope that helps.

  22. Help I am making a 12in 3in deep madeira cake I don’t know how much ingredients I’ve got to use need it to be very moist

    1. Hi Jenni, if you take a look at the conversions above, to bake a 12″ cake, multiply all the ingredients by 2.5 (2 and a half) and bake for about 1 and a half hours.
      My recipe above will give you a moist and dense cake, perfect for decorating. I assume that you will be icing and filling. That will also help towards getting a moist cake.
      For a 12″ moist cake:
      550g (1 lb 4 oz) regular salted butter (i.e. not unsalted or slightly salted, just butter!)
      550g (1 lb 4 oz) sugar
      625g (5 cups) plain flour
      5 Tbsp evaporated milk
      10 eggs
      2.5 tsp baking powder
      2.5 tsp vanilla paste

  23. Hi, I need to make a 12 X 10 inch Madeira cake, 3 and 1/2 to 4 inches deep. I wondered if you could please advise on quantities and baking time please. Thank you.

    1. Hi Mags. Let me know if you need the measurements in metric.
      Butter – 1 lb 4oz
      Sugar – 1 lb 4oz
      Flour – 1 lb 6oz
      Milk – 6 Tbsp
      Eggs – 12
      Baking powder – 3 Tbsp
      Vanilla – 3 Tbsp

      Bake for about 1 hour 30 minutes but check for done-ness at 1 hour 20 minutes.
      Let me know if you have anymore questions.

  24. I have been asked to make a 7″ round lemon madeira cake as the top tier of the wedding cake,, today i had a trial run(normal madeira to give me an idea of size) with 6oz. marg/6oz. sugar/9oz. self raising flour/3 eggs plus milk, i made a major dip in the centre before putting in the oven(baked 50mins) but it came up high(so that would have to be cut off to level it for icing) but just wasn’t big enough for the tin, how much more of the ingredients should i use, including lemon juice?? would i also put in the rind? thanks for you help

    1. Hi Sally,
      Are you saying that you’d like a bigger cake for the tin? Is that because of the rise, or just generally?
      I notice that you used 9oz flour, that’s too much for 6oz/6oz and 3 eggs.
      I would reduce the flour to 8oz but that would not solve your problem of wanting a bigger cake.
      I’m not altogether sure of what you are asking, so here are some solutions:
      To reduce the rise:
      Reduce your oven temp to 150˚C (fan 130)/300˚F.
      Leave out the milk, as you have lemon juice as the liquid.

      Bigger Cake:
      Bake 2 x 7″ cakes and sandwich them.

      Use the juice of 1 lemon, about 2 tablespoons.
      Lemon zest – a matter of choice. It’ll enhance the lemony flavour and aroma. I don’t use the lemon zest because I don’t like “bits” in my cake.

      I hope that helps. Let me know if you have anymore questions or if I missed anything.

    1. Hi Carmel, shaped cake tin conversions can be a bit tricky, they usually come with a recipe when you buy them.
      However, let’s see if we can make it work. 13 x 8 has about the same volume as a square cake tin measuring 10″ each side.
      A 10″ square pan will take the same recipe as an 11″ round.
      Looking at the conversion chart above, we multiply the ingredients by 2, so double up on all your quantities and bake for about 1 hour 20 minutes, until the sides are coming away or a cake tester inserted in the middle comes out clean. I would check the middle of the cake at the 1 hour 10 minute mark, given its irregular shape.
      I hope that helps.

        1. You might be hearing from me again soon as I will be making a number 2 cake in February ,
          Fingers crossed
          And thank you so much for your help and advice it’s truly invaluable.

          1. I am so glad to hear that, nothing like a satisfied customer! Thank you for letting me know. Goodness me, the baby’s turning 2 already! Time flies. My youngest is hitting double digit in Feb.

          2. Hi Aslin,
            Yes it is now our darling Granddaughters 2nd birthday , and as your recipe and quantities worked so perfectly last time would you mind working this one out for me too ?
            I have a number 2 silicone mould size
            25.5 x 19.5 x5.5 cm.
            Also if I wanted to add a lemon or orange flavour to the mix when ,how and how much please ..
            Your forever grateful Carmel..x

          3. Hi Carmel, I would use the same quantities as last year, that is double the whole recipe up. But I can see that your cake tin isn’t very high. Remember to leave space for the rise, so don’t fill up more than 2/3 of the depth. You will most likely have excess batter. Be sure to have cupcake cases and a muffin tin ready and use any excess batter to make cupcakes.

          4. Oh, I forgot, for the citrus flavour: leave out the vanilla and use 2 tablespoons of juice, add it when you would the vanilla. You could also grate the lemon or orange zest for added flavour.
            For future baking fun: if you shop online, do a search for panettone aroma, and get a bottle. A couple of drops of it just transforms cakes, you don’t have to use it for panettone alone.

  25. Can I use the same quantity for a nine inch tin as an 8inch if so do I reduce the cooking time ?

    1. Hi there, ideally, with cakes, we advise keeping toe the size of the tin required for the recipe. While you could technically do what you suggested, the resulting texture may not be quite the same and you most certainly will be getting a smaller cake in terms of height, which might make sandwiching difficult. But if you do want to do that, yes, reduce cooking time by 10 minutes, although all ovens are different.
      Here is the conversion for a 9″ cake (all ingredients multiplied by 1.25):
      220 g = 275 g (9 3/4 oz)
      250 g = 312 g (11 oz)
      5 eggs
      1 tsp = 1 1/4 tsp

      I hope that helps. Let me know if you have any more questions.

    2. Thank you for adjusting the ingredients for a 9inch cake. Have just made it and although l haven’t tasted it I have to say it’s risen well and looks and smells great ! I shall be using fondant icing so will I need to put jam underneath the icing as well as cutting it in half to put a little butter icing in between ? Sorry for all the questions ! Regards Margaret

      1. Hi Margaret, yes you’ll need to do all that. Just above the recipe card, you’ll see the links to how to fill and ice the cake. All the links are also on the Cake Decorating page, which is on the Menu, top of the page. Good luck! I hope you’re having fun!

  26. Hi not too sure if my last comment got posted, I’ll just try again. Im currently at the very first stages of baking and im keen to learn. I understand I have to use a 20cm round tin (diameter I presume) however I’m not too sure about the depth of the tin? I have noticed many recipies do not state what depth tin to use, or am I reading instructions wrong? Please help 🙂

    1. Hi Nadine! Thanks for your email, did get your other one too. You are looking at a tin that has a minimum depth of 3″ or about 7.5 cm. 4″ (10 cm) is even better. It’s definitely a lapse on our parts, not mentioning the depth, I’ll go add that to my post now.
      Yes 20 cm (or 8″) is the diameter. Many baking tins are still being sold in inches, hence the reason I use both measurements.
      I hope that helps, anymore questions, just ask. And you can also reach me at

      1. Thank you 🙂 Do the ingredient quantities remain the same if you vary the depth between 3inches or 4inches? Or is the depth of the tin just to give the cake chance to rise efficiently. Also… do cooking times vary x

        1. Sorry I’m taking a while to get back to you today, have had a big catering job.
          The depth of the time won’t affect the cooking times or the recipe. It’s the diameter of the cake pan that will determine the recipe and the cooking times.

  27. Teresa Brooks


    My son requires a gluten free diet. Have you ever made the Madeira cake with any gluten free flour mixes? Thank you very much,

    1. Hi Teresa, yes. I have a handful of clients who are gluten free and have tried a few mixes over the past and they have all turned out fine, in texture and flavour. I just used the flour mix in place of the wheat flour in this recipe. Result was pretty food, in terms of flavour and texture, but the final cake was a “shorter” cake, in terms of height. So if you are planning to sandwich it with cream and jam, I would bake 2.
      These flour mixes also tend to have their own recipes on the back which might be good to follow, as each mix is different.

      1. Teresa Brooks

        Is this more like a traditional “pound cake”…dense, short(as in lots of butter: one half pound), rich (from 4 eggs) and moist? And it is cooked in a single 8″ diam x 3” deep pan, correct?

        1. Madeira cake is very similar to the pound cake in texture and density, yes. The pound cake started off as a cake that has a pound of everything (ie butter, flour, etc), hence its name, while the Madeira cake seems to have been a derivation of that. First known recipe was by Eliza Acton in the mid 19th century.

    1. Hi Catherine, thanks for your question. For a 12″ cake, I would leave it in for 1 hour 30 minutes. At this point, it’s safe to check without ruining the cake. Use the usual methods, cake skewer or see if the sides are coming away from the edges.

  28. What do you mean, “Line and grease your cake tin as required” ?? How do I know what is required?

    1. Hi Alan, many cake tins used to need lining. These days though, you have the silicone sort and also non lining types. So if yours is an older style tin, grease, line, grease. The first greasing of the pan is to ensure that the baking paper sticks to the pan.
      Cake pans that don’t need lining will just require some light greasing. If you have just bought your cake pan, it should have instructions. If in doubt, just line and grease.
      I hope that helps.

      1. Hi Azlin
        When using the nail does the cook time need to be reduced? Ive just made a 10”round 1 1/2 recipe and had to take it out at 1hr10mins. Still a little overdone. Could I just double it and keep the time at 1hr15? Also, can I replace the vanilla with fresh lemon juice? Would it be the same quantity? Thank for you time.

        1. Hi there, using a nail will cut down on the cooking time slightly. You could double the recipe and use the same size can pan, but make sure that you have enough height on the pan. Or, you could use the same amount and check your recipe at the 55 min mark.

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