ArrowDownFill 1arrow-small-lineFill 1Cooking Light - EasyCooking Light - FastCooking Light - So GoodCooking Light - How-ToCooking Light - Staff FaveCooking Light Badge - Wow!GroupClose IconEmailEmpty Star IconLike Cooking Light on FacebookFull Star IconShapePage 1 Copy 3Page 1 Copy 2Grid IconHalf Star IconFollow Cooking Light on InstagramList IconMenu IconPrintSearch IconSpeech BubbleFollow Cooking Light on SnapchatFollow Cooking Light on TwitterWatch Cooking Light on YouTubeplay-iconWatch Cooking Light on Youtube

Vanilla Angel Food Cake with Chocolate Sauce

Photo: Tara Donne; Styling: Sarah Smart
Hands-on time 40 mins
Total time 1 hr, 30 mins
Yield Serves 12 (serving size: 1 cake slice and about 1 1/2 tablespoons sauce)
Here's a recipe that demonstrates the need for (and rewards of) patience. When you whip egg whites slowly--first at medium-low and building up speed gradually--you end up with the softest, creamiest, fluffiest mixture, into which you need to patiently and gradually fold flour. Try to rush things, and you'll end up with a dense cake, full of holes, that falls instead of lifts.


  • Cake:
  • 4 ounces unsifted cake flour (about 1 cup)
  • 1 1/2 cups superfine sugar, divided
  • 12 large egg whites, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • Sauce:
  • 3/4 cup whole milk
  • 1/4 cup half-and-half
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar, divided
  • Dash of salt
  • 2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

Nutrition Information

  • calories 213
  • fat 3.4 g
  • satfat 1.9 g
  • monofat 0.8 g
  • polyfat 0.2 g
  • protein 5.6 g
  • carbohydrate 41.3 g
  • fiber 0.6 g
  • cholesterol 19 mg
  • iron 1.2 mg
  • sodium 125 mg
  • calcium 31 mg

How to Make It

  1. Preheat oven to 350°.

  2. To prepare cake, weigh or lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Sift together flour and 3/4 cup superfine sugar.

  3. Place egg whites in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium-low speed until foamy (about 1 1/2 minutes). Add cream of tartar and salt; beat at medium speed until soft peaks form (about 2 minutes). Increase mixer speed to medium-high; add remaining 3/4 cup superfine sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating until medium peaks form (about 2 minutes). Do not overbeat. Add 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla, and beat just until combined.

  4. Sift 1/4 cup flour mixture over egg white mixture; gently and gradually fold in. Repeat procedure with remaining flour mixture, 1/4 cup at a time.

  5. Spoon batter into an ungreased 10-inch tube pan, spreading evenly. Bake at 350° for 40 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly touched. Invert pan over the neck of a glass bottle; cool cake completely. Loosen cake from sides of pan using a narrow metal spatula. Invert cake onto plate; invert again.

  6. To prepare sauce, pour milk and half-and-half into a small heavy saucepan; add 2 tablespoons granulated sugar, dash of salt, and chocolate. Heat milk mixture over medium heat to 180° or until tiny bubbles form around edge, stirring until chocolate melts and mixture is smooth (do not boil). Place remaining 2 tablespoons granulated sugar, cornstarch, and egg yolk in a medium bowl; stir well with a whisk. Gradually add hot milk mixture to egg mixture, stirring constantly with a whisk. Return milk mixture to pan. Cook over medium-low heat until mixture boils, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Stir in 1/4 teaspoon vanilla. Serve cake with warm sauce.