Eton Mess Cake

4 from 11 reviews

Inspired by the classic dessert, this cake combines crisp meringues, sweetened cream, fresh berries – layered between an airy sponge cake.


For the Sponge Cake:

  • 1 ¼ cup cake flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 6 whole eggs
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoon lemon juice
  • ¾ cup canola or vegetable oil

For the Meringues:

  • ¼ cup pasteurized egg whites
  • ¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract

For the Whipped Cream:

  • 2 cups heavy cream, chilled
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For the Assembly:

  • 3 to 4 cups fresh berries, washed and dried


Make the Cake:

  1. Preheat oven to 350F degrees.  Grease and flour two 8-inch cake pans and set aside.
  2. Sift together the cake flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.  Set aside.
  3. In the bowl on an electric mixer, combine the whole eggs, egg yolks, sugar, and vanilla.  Using the whisk attachment, beat on high for about 5 minutes or until the batter resembles pale ribbons.
  4. Stop the mixing and remove the mixing bowl form the stand.  Sift the dry ingredients over the top of the batter.  Whisk by hand until just barely combined.
  5. Pour in the lemon juice and oil and whisk by hand until combined (taking care to not deflate the batter as much as possible).
  6. Evenly distribute the batter between the two pans and bake for about 35 to 38 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
  7. Let cool on a wire rack before removing the cakes from their pans

Make the Meringues:

  1. Preheat to oven to 215 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, place the egg whites and cream of tartar.  Using the whisk attachment, begin whipping the whites on medium-low.
  3. Once the egg whites begin to foam, slowly add in the sugar and gradually increase the speed to medium-high.
  4. Continue to whip egg whites until stiff, glossy peaks.  Add in the vanilla and mix for an additional 30 seconds until combined.
  5. Spoon about 2/3 of the meringue onto the parchment paper into disks (about 3 inches in diameter – these will be broken up, so no need for them to be perfect).
  6. Fill a piping bag fitted with a star tip with the remaining meringue.  Pipe meringue “kisses” on the parchment (use two baking sheets if necessary).
  7. Bake the meringue for about 45 to 75 minutes, or until crisp on the outside and meringue can easily peel off the parchment.

Make the Whipped Cream:

  1. In the bowl on an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat the cream on medium-high until it begins to thicken slightly.
  2. Gradually add in the sugar and vanilla and bump mixer up to high.
  3. Continue to whip the cream until medium-soft peaks.

Assemble the Cake:

  1. Once the cakes have cooled, carefully slice them in half (horizontally) using a long serrated knife.
  2. Break up the meringue disks and set aside.
  3. Place a bottom layer of cake on a cake plate or serving dish. Spread on 1/4 of the whipped cream.
  4. Top the cream with mixed berried and a generous amount of meringue pieces.
  5. Top with the next layer of cake and repeat until all cake layers are used.
  6. On the very top of the cake, spread on the remaining whipped cream. Top with berries and meringues kisses.


  • Meringues can be made in advance and stored in an airtight container for four to five days at room temperature. If they become sticky or chewy, bake again for 10 minutes at 200 degrees to restore crispness.
  • Whipped cream can be stabilized to hold consistency for up to 24 hours by adding 1 tablespoon Instant ClearJel to the sugar.
  • Whipped cream can also be stabilized by sprinkling 1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin over the cream before beating.