Blogger Spotlight

Andrea and Hannah from The Cookery Wife Make Yellow Fluffy Layer Cake with the ATK Online Cooking School

Will they ever go back to store-bought cake mix?

Published July 24, 2017.

Learn to cook with America’s Test Kitchen’s Cooking School. With our experienced teachers and Test Kitchen-developed methods, you can become a better cook and learn new techniques along the way. Our course catalog is comprised of over 200 courses and lessons (and counting!), all broken down step-by-step, covering everything from foundational skills—including how to use your knife and how to measure ingredients—to advanced recipes for bread baking, working with chocolate, making fresh pasta, and more.


While box mixes are famous for engineering cake with ultralight texture, we created an even fluffier cake without the additives. That recipe is featured in our Cooking School’s Fluffy Yellow Layer Cake course, where we turn our attention to the mechanics of cake making to achieve relative lightness and tenderness—without all the unpronounceable ingredients that store-bought versions use. Andrea and Hannah, the bloggers behind The Cookery Wife, saw how good homemade cake can be when they joined the school.

“We've been trying out [America's] Test Kitchen's Cooking School (yay!) and I've kept coming back to this recipe,” they write. “I've heard people rave about it and to be honest, I just didn't believe that a homemade yellow cake could be any good.”

Andrea and Hannah both took the Cooking School course and made their own version of the Fluffy Layer Cake, each one giving the cake their decorative twist.

"[America's] Test Kitchen does such a good job of explaining this recipe and giving guided steps on what to do (and not do)."

Each course in the Cooking School includes step-by-step recipe guides with video lessons you can’t find anywhere else on our websites. There are more than 5,000 photos and 200+ video-based lessons in our catalog you can watch on any device, in your kitchen or on-the-go. A new interactive community feature also allows Cooking School participants to share photos with other users and connect on discussion boards.

Andrea and Hannah appreciated the thoroughness of the course: “The Cooking School was so helpful, it gave a recipe overview, a list of what you need, a list of what could go wrong and common mistakes (LOVE THIS) and then they actually share pictures and videos as they bake it themselves. I found all of this so helpful with this particular recipe, and quite honestly, I don't think it matters if you are experienced in the kitchen or a novice, guided steps and explanations are beneficial to all.”

By the end of the course, students will have learned how to adapt a chiffon technique (using a large quantity of whipped egg whites to get a high volume and light texture) to combine the ingredients from our butter cake recipe and create a light, porous cake that was hefty enough to hold the frosting’s weight.

For the chocolate frosting, a combination of milk chocolate and cocoa powder is used ensuring big flavor. Combine with the classic ingredients for a quick frosting—softened butter and confectioners’ sugar—in a food processor to create a foolproof, billowy frosting.

So will Hannah and Andrea ever go back to store-bought cake mix? Probably not: “After I made it (and took a bite) I just sat at the kitchen table and stared at it. It was fluffy! And light!”

America's Test Kitchen Online Cooking School

Our courses are created by the same experts who develop our foolproof recipes and star in our award-winning television shows. Through the Test Kitchen’s unique instructional approach, you’ll learn the hows and whys behind innovative techniques and classic recipes, all broken down step-by-step. Our classes cover everything from simple skills to advanced recipes, and we are adding more all the time.  
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What's the last cake you baked at home? Let us know in the comments! And for the recipe and the original blog post on The Cookery Wife, go here

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