Cakes are often reserved for special occasions, like birthdays and anniversaries, but where’s the joy in that? If you ask us, Wednesday is as good a reason as any other. So turn on the oven, pick a recipe, any recipe, and treat yourself. (And save us a slice while you’re at it.) Here are 41 of our favorite cake recipes in the world.
1. Calabrian Walnut Cake
Walnuts, eggs, and sugar make up the bulk of this dense, flourless cake, native to Italy.
2. Flourless Pecan Cake
Inspired by the walnut cake above, this pecan–brown sugar number needs nothing more than a hot cup of coffee alongside.
3. Food-Processor Pistachio Cake
A food processor does all the heavy lifting in this recipe. In lieu of pistachio paste, almond paste works great, too.
4. Peanut Butter Sheet Cake With Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting
“I made this not long ago as a sheet cake and it slayed,” one community member writes. Slayed!
5. Tahini Cake With Blueberry Swirl
A plush tahini cake with a jammy blueberry swirl and crackling sesame seed crust.
6. Nigella Lawson’s Dense Chocolate Loaf Cake
If you’ve been using your loaf pan for banana bread or, you know, bread bread, Nigella Lawson has an even better idea.
7. Chocolate Dump-It Cake
This family-famous chocolate cake (with a sour cream–chocolate frosting!) comes by way of our co-founder Amanda Hesser.
8. The Chocolate Cake That Changed Everything
Grain-free and dairy-free and still highly craveable? Oh yes.
9. Chocolate Mochi Snack Cake
Glutinous rice flour is what gives this chocolate cake its distinctive squidgy, springy texture.
10. Chocolate Tres Leches
A tender chocolate cake gets drenched in a mixture of evaporated milk, condensed milk, and heavy cream—then topped with condensed milk whipped cream for good measure.
11. Extra-Fudgy Flourless Chocolate Cake
Whipped cream is a default topping for a flourless chocolate cake. So why not fold some into the batter, too?
12. Paula Shoyer’s Chocolate Quinoa Cake
Quinoa often gets pulled out of the cabinet for dinner. But in this cake, it’s the star ingredient.
13. Vegan Chocolate Birthday Cake
The secret to this cake’s exceptional fudginess? Okay, we’ll tell you: avocado.
14. Funfetti Cake
Like the box, from better—this recipe was dreamed up by blogger and Food Network star Molly Yeh.
15. Maida Heatter’s Budapest Coffee Cake
Two cups of sour cream ensure this coffee cake is anything but dry.
16. Salted Egg Yolk Pound Cake
“Cured egg yolks provide a rich saltiness that heightens the sweetness—and deepens the savoriness—of pound cake,” writes Associate Editor Coral Lee.
17. Tangy Tres Leches
Instead of milk, this tres leches calls in buttermilk for a zingy brightness, wonderful for summer.
18. Effortless Angel Food Cake
Traditional meringue is finicky. Stella Parks’ is not.
19. Grown-Up Birthday Cake
Olive oil and white wine in a yellow layer cake? Why not, right?
20. Louisa’s Cake
Ricotta, grated apple, and zingy lemon zest add up to one of our community’s most popular cakes of all time.
21. Maialino’s Olive Oil Cake
“Olive oil cake at its best has a crackling crust and an aromatic oil-rich middle, which, if it held any more moisture, would be pudding,” writes our resident Genius Kristen Miglore.
22. Faith Durand’s Dark Molasses Gingerbread Cake
Blackstrap molasses, brown sugar, and a smidge of cocoa powder give this cake loads of depth.
23. Saffron & Chocolate Tea Cake
Saffron gives an otherwise vanilla tea cake a glowy golden color.
24. Maida Heatter’s Lemon Buttermilk Cake
This powerfully puckery cake doesn’t hold back on the lemon, just how we like it.
25. Marian Burros’ Plum Torte
“For the handful of you who may not already be familiar with Marian Burros’s iconic cake, it is arguably the most famous recipe ever to grace the pages of The New York Times,” writes our co-founder Merrill Stubbs.
26. Teddie’s Apple Cake
This sturdy apple cake, chock-full of walnuts and raisins, has never let us down.
27. Erin McDowell’s Strawberry Not-So-Shortcake
Shortcakes are often just that: short. This Genius one—with three layers of cake, berries, and cream each—from Erin McDowell is not.
28. Banana Cake With Penuche Frosting
“This is our family celebration cake, on seven occasions now,” reports one community member. “It’s been a layer cake, a tube pan cake and cupcakes.”
29. Sunset’s Whole Orange Cake
How to get the brightest flavor from fresh oranges? Just throw the entire fruit in the food processor.
30. ‘World’s Best Cake’ With Banana & Coconut
The name speaks for itself, does it not?
31. Caramelized Banana Upside-Down Cake
A contest-winning, sorta tangy, and incredibly moist upside-down cake.
32. Tomato Soup Cake
“This was my grandmother Ruthie’s recipe, a technique that Irish immigrants apparently relied on when short on money and fresh ingredients,” writes Marian Bull.
33. Charlotte Druckman’s Olive (Oil) Cake
Both olives and olive oil yield a cake that’s just as savory as sweet (i.e., perfect for an afternoon snack).
34. Roberta’s Parsley Cake
Parsley? Cake? Wait, what?
35. Our Best Carrot Cake
Okay, okay, carrot cake we’ve heard of. And this one’s the best.
36. Parsnip Cake With Blood Orange Buttercream
Think of parsnips like carrots: a grateable root vegetable with a sweet disposition.
37. Spiced Parsnip Cake
Yep, another parsnip cake—this recipe is all about the warm spices, like cinnamon and ginger.
38. Pumpkin Cake With Cream Cheese Icing & Caramelized Pumpkin Seeds
Caramelize pumpkin seeds and you get a better-than-sprinkles topping for cakes of all kinds.
39. Chocolate Olive Oil Mug Cake
Not feeling olive oil? Swap in a more neutral pick, like canola or grapeseed.
40. White Chocolate Raspberry Mug Cake
As soon as raspberries are in season, make this fluffy cake in a matter of minutes.
41. Peanut Butter Jelly Mug Cake
Like a sandwich but way, way better.