YOGURT CAKE (one-bowl)

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Who doesn’t love a simple and delicious yogurt cake that’s so easy to prepare and involves hardly any cleaning up? All you have to do is mix a few ingredients, all in one bowl, and bake.

The result? A moist and mouth-watering cake loaded with yogurt and with hints of lemon and fruit jam.

This cake is a must, not only is it good, low sugar, and packed with nutrients, but it’s also inexpensive and easy to make. And  you know exactly what’s inside the batter!

A knife cutting a healthy yogurt cake into slices over a white background.

Friends, this is a foolproof recipe to keep in your back pocket and perfect for any occasion. I baked it thousands of times and it always turns out lovely.

Watch how to make it

 


 

What ingredients you need

  • Yogurt
  • Eggs
  • All-purpose flour or spelt flour
  • Baking powder
  • Unrefined cane or regular sugar
  • Vegetable oil
  • Lemon zest
  • Pinch of salt
  • Vanilla essence
  • Apricot or orange jam (optional)

The ingredients for this yogurt cake are arranged on a white table.

HOW TO MAKE A YOGURT CAKE

 
  • Mix eggs and sugar in one bowl
  • Stir in vegetable oil, yogurt, lemon zest, and vanilla essence
  • Whisk flour, baking powder, a pinch of salt and add to the bowl
  • Mix dry ingredients and wet ingredients until just combined

The wet ingredients and a whisk are in a glass bowl.

  • Scrape the batter into the prepared loaf pan and bake for about 35-40 minutes.
  • Brush with warm apricot or orange jam. 
  • Enjoy!

The yogurt cake batter in a loaf pan before and after baking.

WHY CLEVER?

It’s one of the simplest healthy cake you can bake for the whole family, in no time and inexpensive: less than $ 4 (8 servings)!

Added bonus? 

It’s loaded with yogurt which is highly nutritious, low on calories, and rich in calcium, great for your bones, teeth, hair, skin, nails. I love plain yogurt and try to avoid added sugar, sweeteners, flavors, and fake fruits.

It’s low sugar. I usually choose unrefined cane sugar, less processed than white sugar, but you can use any sugar you have on hand. However, the healthiest tip is reducing the amount of added sugar, whatever it is.

When it comes to cakes, expeller-pressed canola oil (or cold-pressed olive oil) is my choice. This oil is naturally produced by mechanically squeezing (pressing) the canola seeds and it doesn’t go through an insane amount of processing with chemical solvents.

A yogurt loaf cake is cut into a few slices over a light blue background.

RECIPE TIPS & FREQUENT ASKED QUESTIONS

WHAT KIND OF YOGURT CAN I USE?

Plain, low-fat, or flavored yogurt with a “pourable” consistency works well in this recipe. However, I find the real Greek yogurt is too thick and gives a denser texture.

CAN I USE GLUTEN-FREE FLOUR INSTEAD OR REGULAR FLOUR?

Yes, I tested the recipe using only rice flour and it turned out well. See notes on the recipe card.

Eggs: possibly use eggs at room temperature and make sure the yogurt is not too cold. The ingredients should be more or less at the same temperature, this is a way to avoid a curdling batter.  But if that happens, don’t worry too much and bake it anyway.

Do not overmix the batter because working flour too much can produce gluten, which creates a dense and rubbery cake.

Flavor

I love the zesty lemons, they are always in my fridge alongside my yogurt, hence if I run out of creativity or ingredients, lemon yogurt cake is what I happily end up with. But this yogurt cake is actually a blank canvas for many other delicious ingredients. You can add to this recipe dark chocolate chips, spices, orange zest or whatever you like most.

Glaze


It’s totally optional, but it’s so simple to make and I love it.
I put some apricot or orange jam into a small saucepan. I heat gently over low heat until the jam has melted, and if it looks too thick I adjust the consistency with a tiny bit of warm water. When the glaze is the consistency of runny honey, I brush the yogurt cake straight away. Easy peasy.

Leftovers

It keeps well for up 3-4 days at room temperature, in an airtight container. But do not refrigerate: refrigeration dries this cake out! It’s also freezable: wrap the cake, or slices of cake, in plastic wrap (clingfilm), store in an airtight container and freeze for up to 1 month.

MORE EASY HEALTHY CAKES?

If you make this delicious and easy yogurt cake, let me know! Leave a comment, rate it, or tag a photo #theclevermeal on Instagram. I would love to hear from you!

A knife cutting a healthy yogurt cake into slices over a white background.
Print Recipe
4.87 from 84 votes

EASY YOGURT CAKE

Mix a few cheap ingredients in one bowl and bake the easiest yogurt cake ever, so delicious, moist, with hints of lemon and fruity jam. Plus, it's low sugar and packed with yogurt.
*The recipe has been updated for more deliciousness!
Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time40 minutes
Total Time45 minutes
Course: Breakfast, Dessert
Keyword: yogurt cake
Servings: 8
Calories: 287kcal
Author: Katia

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (250gr) plain yogurt
  • 2 leveled cups (250gr) all-purpose flour or light spelt flour (I mixed both)
  • 1/2 cup (100gr) white or unrefined cane sugar
  • 1/2 scant cup (approx 80gr) vegetable oil (I used canola oil)
  • 2 eggs, at room temperature
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 Tsp Vanilla essence
  • 1-2 Lemon, zest*
  • 1 pinch salt

JAM GLAZE

  • 3 Tbsp apricot or orange jam

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350F°/180C° and place the rack in the middle position.
  • Grease a 9x5x2.5 inch loaf pan with butter, cooking spray, or simply line the pan with parchment paper (in this case there's no need to grease the pan).
  • Mix eggs and sugar, then add oil, lemon zest, vanilla essence and mix again. Add yogurt (not very cold) and mix it into a smooth consistency. All in one bowl.
  • Whisk flour, baking powder and a pinch of salt together and add to the wet batter until just combined. 
  • Scrape the batter into the prepared loaf pan and smooth the top. 
  • Bake for about 35-40 minutes, until a skewer inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
  • When the cake is done, remove it from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool. 
  • You can serve it plain or brushed with some quick and easy jam glaze which adds a lovely shine and flavor.
    I glazed this cake brushing some warm orange jam on top (see notes)*. 

Video

Notes

  • Flour:  you can use white whole wheat, spelt, rice flour or all-purpose flour. Personally, I prefer mixing light spelt flour and all-purpose flour.
  • Gluten-free flour: I tested the recipe using rice flour and it turned out well. I stirred the four into the batter and mixed well until smooth, then I baked it 5 minutes longer. It had a good rise and lovely flavor. However, it might be a bit less moist than its regular version, but perfectly enjoyable and not dry.
  • Lemon flavor: add the zest of 2 large lemons if you prefer to boost the lemon flavor. 
  • Fruit glaze: put 3 tablespoons of apricot or orange jam into a small saucepan. Heat gently over low heat until the jam has melted and If it looks too thick adjust the consistency with a tiny bit of warm water. When the glaze is the consistency of runny honey, brush the yogurt cake straight away.
  • Baking the cake in a round pan rather than a loaf pan reduces the baking time (approx 30-35 minutes).
  • Keeps well for 4 days at room temperature, in an airtight container.
  • Do not refrigerate (refrigeration dries this cake out!)
  • Freezable.
NOTE: nutritional values are per serving, calculated without the jam glaze , they are estimates only.

Nutrition

Calories: 287kcal | Carbohydrates: 38g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 45mg | Sodium: 158mg | Potassium: 97mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 14g | Vitamin A: 90IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 116mg | Iron: 2mg

320 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Super easy and low sugar! I added the juice and zest of one small lemon, increased the flour by 10gm (about a tablespoon), added a handful of thawed frozen cranberries, and baked for 38mins in a 9″ spring form pan. Yum, and a great way to use up yucky Kirkland Greek Yogurt that is reminiscent of Elmer’s Glue.

    1. Wonderful! : ) So glad you enjoyed it.
      Thanks so much for sharing. x

  2. Edoardo and Carolina says:

    3 stars
    Hello, we followed the recipe with the liquid ingredients (2 eggs, 1/2 cup sugar, 1/3 cup oil, 1 cup yogurt, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract, 1 orange zest, a handful of chocolate chips) and the solid ingredients (1 cup flour, 2 teaspoons baking power and 1 pinch of salt).

    We mixed the liquid ingredients thoroughly, we did not mix the solid ingredients. Then we mixed the liquid and solid ingredients for about 3 minutes (still dense, not too liquidy).

    We put the batter in the oven for 45 mins at 350 F and an additional 40 mins at 325 F.

    After the 45 mins, the cake was clearly not finished, we poked with a knife. That is why we extended the cooking time. After 1 hour in the oven, the cake deflated, but it was still undercooked. When we took it out after 1hr 25 mins, the cake was undercooked, deflated, soggy, smelled like baking powder, and also tasted like baking powder.
    We have attempted the recipe 3 times. All the above happen every time. Please, do you have any suggestions on how to improve? Thank you.

    1. Hi Edoardo and Carolina! Sorry to hear the recipe didn’t work for you guys, but pointing out a couple of mistakes might help here.
      The recipe calls for 2 cups of flour, not 1 (the right amount of flour and liquid is EVERYTHING when baking cakes). Also, liquid and dry ingredients should be mixed JUST until combined, I mean seconds, not 3 minutes.
      Please, check out the recipe and notes, I’m sure next time it will turn out delicious. Cheers : )

  3. 5 stars
    OMG! What a wonderful recipe my husband loved, is perfect if you are trying to consume less sugar. The taste is amazing

    1. That’s awesome, Laura! I’m so glad you guys loved it. : )
      Thanks for sharing. x

    2. Josephine says:

      First time making it, I followed the recipe, even had it in the oven for 30 minutes longer, but while cooling the cake deflated/collapsed… The taste was great, and the low amount of sugar is definitely a plus, so I decided to make it again. This time I added up to an hour to the baking time (maybe even more) and it still collapsed while cooling. I did bake the cake in a round cakepan, but that would normally mean I could decrease the baking time, not increase – and definitely not by that much… Don’t know what Im doing wrong…

    3. I’m sorry the recipe didn’t work for you, Josephine! I think the flour to liquid is off here.
      How did you measure the flour? Was the batter too runny? x

  4. 5 stars
    I varied the recipe with clementine zest, olive oil and fat-free greek yogurt. I did decrease the greek yogurt by a tablespoon and added a tablespoon honey with the greek yogurt. It turned out great! I only had a very tart orange marmalade on hand so I added a tablespoon of orange blossom honey to the marmalade to sweeten it up for the glaze. Next time, I want to try it exactly as you suggested when I have the right ingredients on hand. My husband is requesting a second slice so it’s a winner. Thank you!

    1. Wonderful, I love the orange notes and I’m glad it turned out great!
      Thanks for sharing your feedback, Rose. x

  5. 5 stars
    This is lovely. Not too sweet. I added frozen blueberries which worked well.

    1. Great! I’m so pleased you loved this cake recipe, thanks so much for sharing, Harriet. x

  6. Hi Elaine, do you use medium or large for the eggs for the recipe? Also, can I make the cake in an 8-inch round tin?

    1. Hi! A large egg works better for the batter, and if using a 8-inch round tin make sure you check the doneness before turning the oven off. x

    2. Thank you so much, Katia! I can’t wait to try the recipe, for the 8-inch pan shall I double up on the cake mixture?

    3. I used a 9” round pan and decreased the time. I did not have to double the recipe.

  7. 5 stars
    So delicious! I made this twice this week already because my kids couldn’t get enough of it! I used homemade soy yogurt and it came out perfect!

    1. That’s great to hear, Alex! Thanks for sharing your feedback. x

  8. Elaine Gould says:

    If I am using a greased pan rather than parchment lining, I am assuming I am letting cake cool in the pan placed on the rack. If using parchment, does that apply or should warm cake in its paper be pulled out of pan and then cooled. Clarification would also help on this point on the recipe.

    1. Hello Elain, leave the cake to cool in the pan also if using parchment paper. That’s easier and doesn’t affect the end result. x

  9. What is the best fat content for the plain yogurt? Should modify recipe for better guidance for the reader.

    1. Hi Elaine, I would say between 1% and 3% fat contents perfectly fine. x

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