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Battenberg cake

Battenberg cake
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    • Cooking time:
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  • Serves: 11 slices

This classic cake has yellow and pink squares of light sponge, stuck together with apricot jam and topped with small balls of marzipan. Take your time and keep a steady hand when cutting the cake into the famous yellow & pink squares and the result will be a stunner!


Cake body

  • 200g softened butter , plus extra for greasing
  • 200g golden caster sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 175g self-raising flour
  • 50g ground almonds
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp almond extract
  • 2 tbsp milk
  • 3 tsp red food colouring
  • ½ tsp yellow food colouring


  • 200g apricot jam
  • 750g of marzipan


  • 20cm square baking tin


Stage 1

To make this Battenberg cake, line a 20cm square tin with baking paper. Measure a double layer of foil long enough to line the base and 2 sides of the tin with a 20cm excess. Now fold a 10cm pleat in the centre. Push the foil into the tin, making sure the pleat is in the centre and the corners are nice and sharp. Line the 2 halves of the tin by putting a long strip of baking parchment in lengthways over the foil. Criss-cross another strip widthways to completely cover the foil. Repeat to line the other compartment. You now have two separate areas for pink & yellow colours.

Heat oven to 180°C/160°C fan/gas mark 4.

Stage 2

Put the butter and sugar into a bowl and, using an electric whisk, beat until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, then beat in the flour, ground almonds, baking powder and almond extract. The batter needs to be dropping consistency (it should fall slowly off a wooden spoon). If it is a little thick, add a drop of milk and continue to beat.

Halve the batter by weighing and dividing equally into separate bowls. Fold the red colouring through one and the yellow colouring through the other.

Stage 3

Tip the batters into each side of the prepared tin and bake for about 25 mins, until the sponges have risen and a skewer inserted into each sponge comes out clean. Let them cool in their tin, then remove to a wire rack to cool completely.

Stage 4

To assemble this battenberg cake, neatly trim each sponge, then sit one on top of the other and trim again so they are both the same size. Cut each sponge in half lengthways so you have 4 long rectangles. Warm the jam in a small pan, then brush along a long side of each sponge. Stick the jam sides together to create the chequerboard effect, then brush the sides and top with more jam.

Dust your work surface with icing sugar. Roll out the marzipan until it is 20cm long, then roll it so it is wide enough to wrap around the sponge. Brush the loaf all over with more apricot jam, then tightly wrap the marzipan around the sponge, trimming it where the edges meet. Smooth the marzipan over the sponge. Sit the loaf on its seam.

Use the offcuts of the remaining marzipan into 6 small balls and place on top of the battenberg cake at even intervals.

A slice of Battenberg cake on a saucer with a cup of tea in the background.

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This Battenberg cake will keep for up to 4 days in an airtight container.