Recipe: Red velvet & vanilla marbled Madeira cake

easy madeira cake recipe with ground almonds and red velvet swirl

Light vanilla Madeira loaf cake recipe marbled with a swirl of rich red velvet batter

I don’t know what it is about a plain vanilla sponge that is just SO appealing to me. You can keep your pavlovas and you can forget trying to tempt me with a fancy ten-layer trifle. Just give me a slab of plain old Madeira cake with a good brew and I’ll be happy as Larry. I like plain scones and plain Digestive biscuits too. Perhaps some of my tastebuds never matured past adolescence.

I know where I get it from – I get it from my mum whose flavour palate is notoriously beige so in a bid to bake her a little sweet treat after weeks of spiced banana bread and Amaretto Sour cookies, I set my sites on a fluffy Madeira sponge that wasn’t too dense or ‘doughy’. This one came up trumps but with a bit of extra Saturday morning time on my hands, I couldn’t resist spicing things up a bit with a red velvet marble. (If the swirl isn’t your cup of tea, simply leave out steps 8-10 of the method and for step 11, just pour the lot into your tin!)





(Makes a loaf with 8-10 slices)

  • 175g unsalted butter
  • 175g golden caster sugar
  • 3 whole eggs
  • 200g self raising flour
  • 50g ground almonds
  • Tsp vanilla extract
  • Tsp red food colouring
  • 1/2 tsp cocoa powder




red velvet and vanilla marble madeira cake recipe

  1. Preheat your oven to 170° / 150° fan.
  2. Bring your eggs and butter to room temperature.
  3. Cream your butter and sugar together until well combined and almost smooth.
  4. Mix in one egg at a time.
  5. Stir through the vanilla extract.
  6. Combine the flour and ground almonds together in a separate bowl.
  7. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and then mix together well.
  8. Put half of the batter into a separate bowl and set aside.
  9. Mix together the cocoa powder, red colouring and drop of water together to make a paste.
  10. Add the paste to one half of the batter and combine well – (if it’s not red enough, add a drop more colouring and mix)
  11. In a lined or greased loaf tin, put in random blobs of each batter (vanilla and red velvet) alternately.
  12. Once all the batter is in the tin, smooth over the top and swirl it around with a skewer or knife blade.
  13. Bake for 30-35 minutes (or until a knife placed through the centre comes out clean)

Do we have a red velvet junkie in our midst?

Red velvet and white chocolate chip cake recipe to make at home with easy cream cheese frosting perfect for party food or birthdayIf you love a bit of red velvet in your life and this marbled Madeira just isn’t scratching that itch then you’re going to love my Red Velvet Cake Bars with Malted Milk Cream Cheese Frosting.

They’re light, they’re fluffy and they’re studded with white chocolate chunks, then slathered with a cream cheese icing that is laced with malted flavour and sprinkled with smashed Maltesers. Heaven on a baking tray.

If you give them a go, don’t forget to share your photos with me on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram


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