If you want to make an impressive and show-stopping birthday cake for your kids, then you’ve got to try this zebra cake! Everybody is familiar with this chocolate and vanilla cake, either made in zebra or marbled style, the taste of it reminds of childhood probably for many of us. It’s a modern take on the classic marble cake, with a grown-up spin. Still a bit warm, along with a cold cup of milk, zebra cake always makes a delicious treat.
This show-stopping Zebra Cake is so easy to make and will melt in your mouth. You can serve this zebra cake as it is with milk or coffee or can also make a chocolate glaze on top for a more sophisticated look.
4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 stick unsalted butter, melted
2 1/2 cups granulated sugar
3 large eggs, separated, plus 4 more whites
1/2 cup safflower oil
2 cups whole milk
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
For The Frosting
1 1/2 teaspoons instant espresso powder
2/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 1/2 sticks unsalted butter
1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup hot water
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
10 ounces semisweet chocolate, melted and cooled
3 tablespoons light corn syrup
Grease and line with parchment paper two 9-inch round cake pans. Preheat the oven at 180 (350 F).
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt until thoroughly combined. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl whisk together egg whites and granulated sugar about 2 minutes until light, opaque, and foamy.
Add 1 1/2 cups milk, butter, oil, and vanilla, whisk until smooth. Whisk in flour mixture until combined.
Whisk together egg yolks, 1/3 cup milk, and cocoa in another large bowl.
Add 3 1/4 cups of vanilla batter to the cocoa mixture and whisk until smooth. Whisk remaining scant 3 tablespoons milk into remaining vanilla batter.
Place a large spoonful of vanilla batter in the center of each cake pan. Place a large spoonful of chocolate batter in the center of the vanilla batter. Continue alternating spoonfuls of batter until all of the batters are used. Gently tap the pans on the counter to spread the batter to the edges of the pans, if needed.
Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until a wooden pick inserted into the center comes out with a few moist crumbs. Let the cakes cool in the pan for 20 minutes. Carefully remove and cool completely on a wire rack.
For The Frosting
Whisk together cocoa, espresso powder, salt, hot water, and vanilla until a smooth paste forms.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, butter and confectioners’ sugar on medium-high speed until smooth and creamy.
Beat in chocolate, then cocoa mixture and corn syrup until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.
For the Assembly
Trim the tops of the cakes to create level layers, if needed. Place one cake layer on a cake stand or plate. Spread about 3/4 cup frosting over the top. Place the other cake layer on top. Spread the remaining frosting all over the top and sides of the cake. Chill for at least 1 hour or until ready to serve.