The Gâteau au Yaourt, otherwise known as yogurt cake, is a very popular recipe in France for families with young children. Not that people without children can’t enjoy a good yogurt cake, it is just that the idea is that kids make this recipe themselves with or without the help of mom and dad.
It is a simple cake recipe as far as French cakes go, but the trick is in the measurements. Instead of complicated “grams, cups, and liters”, everything is measured by the size of an ordinary individual-size yogurt cup. The idea is that it is so easy, that even a child who can’t read, can understand the basic instructions and be able to participate and make his/her own dessert.
I see a lot of French yogurt cake recipes that miss this essential point, et c’est un peu dommage quand même! (it’s a shame).
☞ READ MORE: French snacks: 10 ideas for kids after-school
The cake is also perfect as part of a goûter (afternoon snack) that all French children abide by religiously. Small children in France don’t have school on Wednesdays since it is the day reserved for activities. For this reason, this cake is also called the Gâteau du Mercredi (wednesday cake), since this is the perfect time to bake a cake together for that afternoon snack.
So without further ado, here is the traditional French yogurt cake recipe. I’ve included the basic ingredients, along with instructions on how to take it up a notch by turning it into a lemon yogurt cake.
☞ READ MORE: The Gôuter: Snacking like the French
Frequently asked questions
What type of yogurt to use?
Use any unsweetened and unflavored natural yogurt in your recipe. You can also use greek yogurt if you wish.
Can you use dairy-free?
Yes, use one that doesn’t have artificial sweeteners in the same proportions as the regular yogurt in the recipe.
What size cup should you use?
You should use an individual size yogurt container. The standard size is 5.3-ounce size, but they can range up to 8-ounce sizes. For a yogurt cake, the importance is the ratio of the ingredients, not the size of the cup itself.
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup of plain yogurt
- 2.5 empty yogurt cups filled with flour
- 1.5 empty yogurt cups filled with sugar
- 1 sachet of baking powder
- 0.5 empty yogurt cup filled with vegetable oil
- 10g of butter
- 1 sachet of vanilla extract
- 1 lemon
- Preheat the oven to 180C (375F).
- Whisk the eggs in a large bowl.
- Add each ingredient slowly (except butter) and mix. In order of yogurt, flour, sugar, baking powder, vegetable oil, and vanilla extract.
- (Optional) Add a bit of the zest of lemon, and some of the lemon juice to your mixture, depending on personal preference.
- Blend thoroughly until the mixture is smooth.
- Butter the loaf pan.
- Add the mixture in the pan and place in the oven at 180C (375F) for 30 minutes, until the top looks browned and golden.
- Test with a knife to see if it is sufficiently cooked.
- Serve warm or at room temperature.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 686Total Fat: 43gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 35gCholesterol: 107mgSodium: 163mgCarbohydrates: 63gFiber: 1gSugar: 46gProtein: 14g
Note: We are not certified nutritionists and these estimates are approximate. Each individual’s dietary needs and restrictions are unique to the individual. You are ultimately responsible for all decisions pertaining to your health. This website is written and produced for informational purposes only.
☞ READ MORE: ABC of French Cuisine (the Food Dictionary)
If you enjoyed that, check out our other classic French recipes that are easy to prepare. Bon appétit and à bientôt !
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