School Dinner Cake Traybake

School Dinner Cake Traybake

School Dinner Cake Traybake is another phenomenon brought about by lockdown 3.0 in the UK. This wasn’t a ‘thing’ during my school days and not wanting to miss-out I decided to treat my family to this delicious tray bake!

Ably assisted by my 6 year old twins, it was a really simple bake. Everything is a little better with a slice of cake with icing and sprinkles.

Ingredients for 1 traybake yielding 12 portions

225gButter at room temperature
225gCaster sugar
275gSelf raising flour
1 tspBaking powder
2 tspVanilla extract
4Medium eggs
60 mlMilk
175gIcing Sugar
Boiling water


  • Pre-heat your oven to 190°C fan/400°F.
  • Take your baking tray (I used a disposable tray size 32 x 20 x 3.3cm) and grease it with a little butter.
  • Add the butter and sugar into the bowl of a mixer and take a few moments to cream them together until the butter is light and the sugar is thoroughly mixed in and the butter is light and creamy.
  • Add the eggs and milk to the mixing bowl along with the vanilla extract and mix again before adding the flour and baking powder.
  • Turn on the mixer one last time to incorporate the flour into the batter. Ideally only mix it for as long as it takes for the flour to be incorporated. If you over mix the batter, you could be left with a tough texture once baked.
  • Pour the cake batter into the baking tray, smooth it so that it’s level and put it in the oven to bake.
  • Bake initially for 25 minutes and use a skewer to check if it’s ready. If the skewer is clean your sponge is ready, however if it’s not quite done, lower the temperature to 100°C fan/210°F. and bake for a further 5-10 minutes.
  • Remove the tray from the oven and place it on a cooling rack until the sponge is completely cool to touch. To make sure the cake is properly cool, touch the bottom of the baking tray.
  • To make the icing, place the icing sugar into a bowl and add boiling water. Add 1 tablespoon to begin with and mix the icing sugar into a thick paste. After this stage add more water a tablespoon as a time to create a more spreadable icing, but take it slowly. If the icing is too runny it will give your traybake a thin icing.
  • When the traybake is topped with the icing, top it with sprinkles and leave the traybake to one side and let the icing set before you eat it.
  • Cut the traybake into cubes and enjoy!


  • Normally cake recipes will state salted or unsalted butter. I used salted but you could use unsalted.
  • The eggs were at room temperature when they were added to the batter.
  • When you add the eggs to the creamed sugar and butter you may notice the mixture splitting. Don’t worry, this is to be expected and it will be fine. Just keep following the recipe.
  • This cake will last (unless eaten quickly!) 3-4 days in a cool place but not the fridge!

Nella Foulds
Nella Foulds

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