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Jam Filled Cake

Sweet, moist jam filled cake is an old-fashioned winner of a recipe. Fruity jam seeps into feathery cake layers just enough to lightly infuse it with flavor, with whipped cream being an absolute must as an accompaniment.

Every year around this time I begin longing for spring, and this week the longing is particularly excruciating because San Francisco is experiencing a warm spell that teases and tantalizes its residents with memories of long August nights and the odd September weekend during which the temperature breaks records and dusty, little-used fans.

But a cold front is expected to snap down on the coast in a few days, and I will almost welcome it because now is not spring! There are months and months to go before the time changes! I am almost used to running in the dark (and waking in the dark, and going home in the dark) and roasting things in the oven for proper winter meals! I have even contemplated baking bread! People here in l’office are bandying about “global warming” as if the concept is no big deal. But it is! I believe it! And I haven’t even seen the Al Gore movie yet!

[I must confess I am warm-weather lover of sunshine and clear skies. I will not move to Southern California. But I have contemplated New Mexico, or Arizona.]

I’d rather have things be in their right order, and while I adore the sun I worry a a bit about the looming summer if there is not enough rain this winter. These stolen days of bright warmth will probably come with a price — which is, conversely, why they are so special.

Regardless, last night needed something to celebrate the 63-degree day. I decided after I did my grocery shopping at lunch that I wanted to bake a simple cake; for it I needed almond and lemon extracts, vanilla, milk, and powdered sugar. (My pantry was lacking, clearly.) I was loathe to go to the store again, but I kept thinking about it and thinking about it — and I knew it would be delicious to have a buttery, jammy cake for dessert after the healthy dinner we had planned (tofu; broccoli; caramelized onions; a big salad). So back to the store it was for me.

I came across this recipe for a jam filled cake from 2004; the headline for the story reads “Jam Fills Sublime Butter Cake.” It’s not summertime, so I had to use a store-bought (organic, though) strawberry jam but yes: “sublime” is just the word for it. The cake is simple, fresh, and gently laced with lemon, vanilla, and almond extracts. It was all I could do to pile the batter into my trusty springform pan (bought years ago to make angel-food cakes, among, of course, many other things) and slide it into the oven — I wanted to eat it all up, fast and furious because it smelled, looked and (yes) tasted so good. (I did lick the bowl and spatula smooth.)

As soon as I sunk my fork into its feathery layers I knew I’d hit on something good, and when I tasted it, I knew the recipe was a keeper. The sweet jam seeps into the moist layers just enough, and the whipped cream is an absolute must as an accompaniment. “Jam filled cake” is certainly the way to describe it.

I know this is a cake that Ann-with-an-e Shirley would have made once she mastered the art of baking, perhaps proferred guiltily to Marilla after getting into one of her habitual scrapes. It’s not the first time I’ve wished I could have a chat with Lucy Maude, but oh, how nice to imagine us sipping tea on the wraparound porch of a white clapboard house on P.E.I., looking contentedly upon her beloved, shining sea, sharing a delicious slice of cake and comfortable conversation.

Jam Filled Cake

Nicole Spiridakis
Sweet, moist butter and jam cake is an old-fashioned winner of a recipe with ruity jam, feathery cake, and plenty of whipped cream.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 8 servings
Calories 325 kcal


  • 1 ¾ cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
  • ½ cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ½ teaspoon lemon extract , optional
  • ½ teaspoon pure almond extract
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup whole milk
  • 1 cup jam of choice , such as apricot, plum or strawberry
  • Powdered sugar , for dusting


  • Bring all ingredients to room temperature. Adjust rack to lower third of oven; preheat oven to 350℉. Grease and flour a 9-inch round springform pan; insert a round of parchment or waxed paper in bottom of pan.
  • Sift flour, baking powder and salt onto a sheet of waxed paper; set aside.
  • Using an electric mixer, preferably with paddle attachment, beat the butter in a large bowl at medium speed until it is smooth and creamy.
  • Maintaining the same speed, add the sugar in a steady stream. When all the sugar is added, stop the machine and scrape the mixture clinging to the sides of the bowl into the center of the bowl. Continue to cream at the same speed for 3 minutes, or until the mixture is light in color and fluffy in appearance. Add the extracts in the final moments of beating the butter and sugar.
  • With the mixer still on medium speed, add the eggs, one at a time, incorporating each one thoroughly into the mixture before adding the next. When the mixture appears fluffy, reduce the mixer speed to low. Add the flour mixture in three additions alternately with the milk in two additions. Scrape the sides of the bowl occasionally, and mix until smooth after each addition. Spoon the batter evenly into the pan.
  • Bake for about 40 to 45 minutes, or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out free of wet batter. Place the pan on a wire rack to cool for 10 minutes. Carefully release the springform and remove the metal ring from around the cake. Cool completely before removing the cake from the metal form.
  • Using a long serrated knife, cut the cake layer in half horizontally. Set the bottom cake layer on a serving plate and spread the jam over the cut surface. Place the top portion of the cake cut-side down on the jam-covered layer.
  • To decorate, sift powdered sugar over the top.


Calories: 325kcalCarbohydrates: 47gProtein: 5gFat: 13gSaturated Fat: 8gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 4gTrans Fat: 0.5gCholesterol: 73mgSodium: 150mgPotassium: 72mgFiber: 1gSugar: 26gVitamin A: 439IUCalcium: 62mgIron: 2mg
Did you make this recipe?Let me know in the comments how it went!

To decorate, sift powdered sugar over the top.

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