Chai Tea Spice Cake

Chai Tea Spice Cake

All my favorites spices are here. I was sure I would not be disappointed in the end result. The cake turned to be moist, buttery, very fragrant. This is a lovely treat especially during such dank weather outside.

The recipe is from Carol Bloom’s “The Essential Baker”.

Makes one 8-inch round cake, about 12 servings


  • 6 chai tea bags
  • ½ cup boiling water
  • 4 oz (8 tbsp, 1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • ½ cup granulated sugar, divided
  • ½ cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • ¼ cup unflavored vegetable oil
  • 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp ground cardamom
  • 1 tsp ground cloves
  • ½ tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 large egg whites, at room temperature
  • ½ tsp cream of tartar
  • Confectioners’ sugar for garnish


Center a rack in the oven and preheat it to 350 F.

Butter the inside of the cake pan, dust with flour. Place a circle of parchment paper into the bottom of the pan.

Place the tea bags in a medium bowl. Pour the boiling water over the tea bags and leave to steep for 5 minutes.

Remove the tea bags, squeezing them to release as much liquid as possible. Cool the tea in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Put the butter in the large bowl. Using electric beaters beat the butter until fluffy, about 2 minutes. Gradually add ¼ cup granulated sugar and all brown sugar, cream together well. Add the oil and the cooled tea to the butter mixture and blend thoroughly. Scrape occasionally the sides of the bowl.

Sift together the flour, spices, baking soda, and salt.

Alternately add the dry ingredients with the buttermilk to the butter mixture in 4 stages, starting and ending with dry ingredients.

Place the egg whites in the grease-free bowl of an electric mixer. Whip the egg whites on medium speed until frothy. Add the cream of tartar and whip until soft peaks form. Gradually, working on medium-high speed add the rest ¼ cup sugar, beating well after each addition. Whip until the whites hold glossy and firm, but not stiff, peaks.

Gently fold the whipped whites into the batter in 3 to 4 stages.

Transfer the cake batter to the prepared pan. Using a rubber spatula even the top. Bake for 1hr 5 to 1hr 15 minutes, until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove the cake from the oven. Cool on a rack in the pan for 15 minutes, unmold the cake and cool completely on the rack. Lightly dust the top of the cake with confectioners’ sugar before serving.

Chai Tea Spice Cake Slice

You might also like:

Page copy protected against web site content infringement by Copyscape

Print this recipe...

Bookmark and Share       AddThis Feed Button

23 Responses to “Chai Tea Spice Cake”

  1. Lovely and amazing! I’ve been searching for a chai masala spice cake. This may well be just the thing. A couple of questions, if I may: how assertive are the spices? Also, how did you manage that gorgeous design on the top of the cake?

  2. Hi, Rachel, thank you for your comment.
    The combination of spices is not assertive at all, it’s harmonious and subtle.
    Design on the top of the cake is very easy to make. This one particularly is made with a store-bought stencil, I just covered some cut-outs with a masking tape since their design seemed too busy to me. But usually I make stencils by myself cutting any pattern in a regular printer paper by using a sharp craft knife. I attach a couple of “handles” from masking tape to remove the stencil easier. Or you can just cut straight or waved stripes of paper, lay them on top of the cake in parallel or criss-cross pattern, dust with icing sugar, then carefully lift them out.
    During the holiday season, I dust gingerbreads using snowflakes which my little son makes in abundance ))

  3. Oh my! This cake looks amazing… I was looking for pictures of a cake to use as a flashcard and this came up in the image search.

    I too am obsessed with baking, but I would never have thought of using chai tea in a cake…. now I am drooling so much that I shall HAVE to make it… Thanks!

  4. I made this cake into a layer cake for a friend’s birthday and it was a huge hit. Hope you don’t mind if I reprint the recipe:

  5. Laura, sure, I don’t mind! I’m so glad you and your friends liked it!

  6. Oh chai cake sounds so good. I am going to have to make it asap.

  7. I made them into cupcakes for my Christmas Party. I gave my guests all the fixings to decorate the little cakes themselves. Was fun and of course delicious!!!!! I have requests for next year already!

  8. Nina, it sounds like a great party idea! I’m glad you liked the cake batter. Thank you for letting me know and Merry Christmas!

  9. This was delicious……… mmmmm mmmmm. I did modify it though.

    I went ahead and did not add all the dry spice ingredients, except for a bit extra of cinnamon, cloves and freshly grated ginger… I also added 2 tbsp of vanilla because I love vanilla chai… used a 3/4c sugar, molasses and honey blend in the wet ingredients (used 1/4 c dry sugar for egg whites), brewed the tea in only 1/4 cup of water to compensate for the increase in water content, used only 4 bags… also, I went ahead and put the contents of the 4 tea bags directly into the batter. It worked out great!!!

    hopefully the website link works? It’s a pic of the remnants of the cake within a few hours after baking it :)

  10. Cecile, thank you very much for the feedback! I am glad you liked the cake.

  11. This cake looks so yummy… What about trying it with legit chai instead of chai tea bags? Sounds beast, huh?

  12. After reading this recipe and being a chai lover, I could not wait to try this cake.
    I did add walnuts and a chopped apple, but other than that followed the directions to a “T” … Once in the oven, I was disappointed that my kirchen wasn’t filled with the wafting aroma of those fabulous chai spices. Barely any spicy aroma.
    Also, it cooked in far less time, which puzzled me.
    It was a fairly labor intensive recipe and I was so excited to taste it…it was moist
    with a ‘hint’ of chai. I probably won’t make it again.
    Wonder what other bakers out there experienced with this recipe?

  13. Looks and sounds great!! Any chance this recipe can be altered to make it gluten and corn free?? (Eg. Replace flour with almond meal?)

  14. I.T., sure you can use almond meal instead. It will be denser though.

  15. Vera,

    In searching for a chai cake recipe, I found yours and absolutely, positively fell in love with not only the recipe itself, but the photo of the cake baked as well!

    As a result of which, my boyfriend and I spent the evening making it. IT IS HEAVENLY! Perfect! Just perfect!

    So, our sincerest thanks for sharing the recipe with the rest of us! And, for sharing your stencil technique!

    We cannot wait to make this cake again to share with our friends and family!!!! :)

    Thank you!

  16. Heather, so glad you liked it! Thank you very much for the feedback, I greatly appreciate it.

  17. I made this cake and froze half. It freezes nicely. I found the recipe in Carol Bloom’s book in the library, forgot to copy it, returned book and turned to the internet to hopefully find the recipe again. Thanks Vera for saving me another trip to the library. I would definitely make it again. I followed the recipe to a T but I like the idea of vanilla as an addition.

  18. Carolyn, you are very welcome! Sure, vanilla makes everything better :)

  19. This is the first recipe I tried from your website. I followed it exactly and it came out great! Looks and tastes amazing. I love the beautiful photos that go with your unique recipes and I can’t wait to try some more!

  20. I am using this recipe for my brothers wedding cake in November and I can’t thank you enough for posting the recipe!

    They suggested chai themselves because of the fall flavors and the tasting cake turned out beautifully. I used whole eggs instead of whipping whites so I could achieve a denser cake to hold up under the weight of 4 wedding cake layers. I also made a honey/ginger buttercream to frost it. VERY pleased. Thank you!

  21. My son’s birthday is next weekend. I think this fits the bill! Thanks.

  22. Has anyone doubled it and used in a sheet cake pan?

  23. I have doubled it and tripled it to use in a sheet cake pan and it still turns out beautifully. I love this recipe, especially with a vanilla bean buttercream.

Leave a Reply

Please, before posting a question, read the recipe and the comments above. It is very possible that your question has already been answered. Thank you!

Home page | About | Contact | Links | Archives | Awards | Subscribe | Artsy sweets

The whole site is protected by Copyright.
It is forbidden to reproduce any part of this site, in any form, without prior written permission from the author.

© Copyright Baking Obsession 2007-2014