How to make Madeira cake
Cake Recipes

How to make Madeira cake – 6 easy steps

If you are planning to make a fondant cake or a royal-icing covered cake, the Madeira cake is your best bet. And today, I am going to share the exact steps on how to make Madeira cake at home.

The Madeira cake is dense and yet still light in texture. Compared with the Victoria cake, the recipes of Madeira cake has included more flour, making it firmer and is able to stand up to the weight of heavy icing. It is also a great option if your project requires you to shape the sponge before icing it.

The origin of the name of the Madeira cake is sometimes mistakenly believed that it originates from the Madeira Islands, but instead, it is called a Madeira cake because traditionally it was often served with a glass of Madeira wine, which is a Portuguese wine from the islands.

Here I have listed the simple steps of how to make Madeira cake. Enjoy!

How to make Madeira cake – Ingredients

  • 170g of unsalted butter (softened)
  • 170g of caster sugar
  • 3 large free-range eggs (at room temperature)
  • 40g of self-raising flour
  • 130g of plain flour
  • 1 tbs of whole milk
  • Few drops of vanilla extract

Reminder: Always use


  • Loaf tin – 23 x 13 x 7 cm / 9 x 5 x 3”
  • Baking parchment
  • Stand mixer/hand mixer
  • Sieve
  • Spatula
  • Skewer

Click here to find out more basic baking tools you need

Preparation time

20 minutes

Cooking time

55 minutes

How to make Madeira cake – Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 170°C / 150°C fan / 340°F / Gas 3. Grease the loaf tin and line with baking parchment.
  2. Place the softened butter and caster sugar in a mixing bowl and start beating by using a stand mixer or a hand mixer until the mixture is pale and creamy. This will take about five minutes.
  3. Beat in the eggs one at a time. Make sure that the egg is well-combined before adding another.
  4. Add your sifted flour into the mixing bowl and continue to beat. To avoid splashes, gently fold in flour before you turn on your mixer on a high speed. Stop beating once all the flours are fully incorporated, as over-beating might remove the air you added earlier.
  5. Incorporate the milk and vanilla extract into the mixture.
  6. Spoon the mixture into the loaf tin and smooth the top before placing it into the pre-heated oven. Bake for 55 minutes or until the skewer comes out clean.

Video tutorial

Here I have also attached a useful tutorial for you to get a clearer idea of how to make a Madeira cake! Feel free to check this out.

Two ways to give your cake a lift

Ground almonds – You may substitute 50g of flour with the ground almonds to add more texture to your Madeira cake. If you prefer a firmer cake, simply include a 50g of ground almonds in your recipe.

Lemon zest and blueberry – For an enriched taste, you may add lemon zest and 75g of blueberries in the last step.

What do you think?

Now you have your Madeira cake readily baked! I hope you have enjoyed this guide on how to make Madeira cake.

Just to remember, leave your cake to cool for 15 minutes before you slice it. The loaf will keep well in an airtight container for three days.

Like always, if you have any question or would like to share your thoughts, please leave it in the comment.:)



  • Karin

    Great post. Thank you for the detailed instructions and explanation of what this cake is. For a person like me, who does not cook or bake often, these detailed instructions are perfect.

  • Frederick Patterson

    Great explanation, the article itself makes you feel like you have already eaten the cake and loved it!

  • Jacob

    This maderia cake looks exquisite! I will be baking a cake soon and this sounds like a great choice!

    I like how easy it is to make and how beautiful it should look when it’s done.

    I like lemon a lot and I like the sound of adding that too!

  • Rachel Moore

    I really liked your article I have never tried this cake before. Actually I havnt even heard of it either but it sounds delicious. My father’s birthday is coming up and it sounds like something I might try making. My dad loves pineapple is there a way to incorporate it into this cake?

    • Crystal

      Yes, you can! I haven’t tried it personally but I have heard that the enzymes in the pineapple act as a tenderizer and can give you a moister cake. The only thing I think you should take note is that if you are planning to cover your cake with fondant then you should be aware that your Madeira cake might be too soft to deal with the weight of icing if you include pineapple in your recipe. But if you are not planning to use fondant, this would be an awesome idea!

  • joanna

    Hi, Thank you so much for this recipe. I would definitely try this one out and place a lot of almond grounds. My daughter would really love this.

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