Best mug cake recipe, two ways!

Not a soggy bottom in sight...

Best mug cake recipe, two ways!
by Natalie Keeler

Sometimes, we crave homemade cake. But who has time to stir up a showstopper? Not us. So, we asked mum and food writer Caroline Morrish to create a recipe that we can whip up in minutes.

This recipe makes two flavours of sponge – rainbow vanilla and gooey chocolate – but you could use any extra fillings you like, such as raisins, dried cranberries, mini Smarties, or some lemon zest and a little lemon juice. Divide the mixture into four to give four mini cakes if you prefer smaller servings.

You can, of course, make two chocolate cakes, or two rainbow cakes. Just double the amount of sprinkles or chocolate ingredients given.

Ingredients (makes two cakes)

  • 5 tbsp sunflower or vegetable oil
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tbsp semi-skimmed milk
  • ½ tbsp vanilla extract
  • 4 tbsp caster sugar
  • 8 tbsp self-raising flour
  • Pinch of salt

To make one rainbow vanilla cake, just add...

  • 2 tsp hundreds and thousands or rainbow sprinkles

To make one gooey chocolate mug cake, just add...

  • 2 tsp cocoa powder
  • 2 tsp semi-skimmed milk
  • 2 tsp chocolate chips


Step 1

Pour the oil into a mixing bowl, then beat in the egg, milk and vanilla extract until well combined. Add the sugar and flour and pinch of salt, and beat until smooth.

Step 2

Divide the mixture evenly between the two medium-sized cups.

Step 3

In one cup, stir in the sprinkles or hundreds and thousands, adding a few more to the top, to make a rainbow cake. In the second cup, make the chocolate cake. Stir in the cocoa powder and milk until well combined and smooth, then stir in 1 tsp chocolate chips, sprinkling a few extra on top.

Step 4

Microwave each mug cake for 2 mins and 15 secs at 800W until it has finished rising and is cooked through.

Step 5

Allow to cool a little, then serve the mug cakes with a few more sprinkles or a spoonful of whipped cream or Greek yogurt, if you like.

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Learning guide

Did you know that following a recipe – regardless of how simple it is – teaches your child a ton of important skills, including problem solving and reading instructions? They'll also be witnessing the science of heating up different ingredients as your cake bakes in the microwave, and what happens to cake batter as it cooks. Weighing out the ingredients helps them practise their maths skills too!