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neapolitan cake

Neapolitan Loaf Cake

A tri-color cake of strawberry, vanilla and chocolate baked in a loaf pan. It's fairly simple to throw together if you have a kitchen scale, a handheld mixer and three medium size bowls. This cake has a light texture and while a glaze wouldn't hurt, I think it's best served with whipped cream and fresh berries.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword Neapolitan Cake
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 8
Author Anna
Cost 5


  • 1 ½ cups cake flour (170 grams/6 oz)
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened (84 grams)
  • ¾ cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar (175 grams)
  • 1 large egg, room temperature
  • 1 ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract divided use
  • ½ cup plus 2 tablespoons whole milk (5 oz)
  • ½ tablespoon strawberry Jell-O powder
  • ¼ teaspoon strawberry extract optional
  • ½ oz semisweet chocolate, melted (14 grams)
  • 2 teaspoons extra dark unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon vegetable oil


  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease an 8 ½ by 4 ½ inch loaf pan and line with a strip of parchment.
  • Whisk or sift together flour, baking powder and salt.
  • In a large mixing bowl, beat butter and sugar at medium-high speed with an electric mixer until light and creamy. Add the egg and beat until fluffy. Scrape down sides of bowl and add 1 teaspoon of the vanilla extract.
  • With a heavy duty scraper, add flour mixture, and milk alternately, ending with flour mixture. Beat the batter with the mixer for about 30 seconds.
  • Weight out 7 oz of batter and put it in a separate bowl. Repeat with another 7 oz of batter so that you have three bowls. The original bowl will be the vanilla.
  • To one of the measured bowls, stir in melted chocolate, cocoa powder and oil to make a chocolate batter. To the other, beat in Jell-o powder and extract (if using). Add remaining ½ teaspoon of vanilla to the vanilla batter to pump the vanilla flavor.
  • Drop spoonfuls of batter into the pan, alternating colors and creating your own pattern. Repeat until you’ve used all the batter.
  • Bake the cake at 350 degrees F. for about 45 minutes or until a skewer inserted comes out with moist crumbs.
  • Let the cake cool in the pan for about 20 minutes, then carefully remove from pan and let it cool completely.