Summer Lychee Cake

8 servings
40 min

Fruit cakes, you know those simple fruit cakes with fresh fruit, whipped cream, and a deliciously soaked sponge cake? Those are the ones I’m talking about. Nothing fancy about them, but they are scrumptious! The simplicity in these cakes is what brings out their flavors.

This Lychee Cake is a simple and easy-to-make dessert. Even better, it’s a perfect make-ahead cake! It tastes the best when chilled for a couple of hours in the refrigerator.

Let’s talk about Lychee.

Many of us have heard of the popular drink Lychee Martinis. Lychee is a tropical fruit that grows mainly in China, India, and other SouthEast Asian countries. It has ruby red skin on the outside, once peeled, has a white flesh with a brown pit on the inside. It has a sweet taste similar to papaya and passion fruit. They are available in tropical states like Florida and Hawaii in the US. Many people enjoy eating lychee just as it is, like fresh fruit. It is a great fruit to incorporate into desserts.

I happened to get a bag of fresh lychees at my local Asian grocery store, and I knew I wanted to bake a cake with it.

Ingredients needed to make this cake:

  • Vanilla sponge requires All-purpose Flour, Eggs, Sugar & Vanilla Extract.
  • Lychee Simple syrup requires Sugar, water, and lychee juice
  • Lychees: They are the best to use if you can get your hands on fresh lychees. If not, canned lychees will also work.
  • Whipped Cream is simply heavy whipping cream, powdered sugar, rose water, and vanilla extract.
How to make the cake?

Bake an 8-inch vanilla sponge cake and let cool. Sponge cake is the best choice for this cake, as it beautifully soaks the lychee syrup and tastes heavenly with fresh lychees and whipped cream! Make the simple syrup and let it cool. Meanwhile, whip the cream with sugar and vanilla extract, and place in the refrigerator till needed. Slice the lychees into halves. That’s it! Ready to assemble the cake and chill for 2 to 3 hours before enjoying a bite.

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Recipe details
  • 8  servings
  • Prep time: 30 Minutes Cook time: 10 Minutes Total time: 40 min
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Vanilla Sponge cake
  • 4 Eggs
  • 1 cup All-Purpose Flour
  • 1/2 cup Sugar
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
Simple Syrup
  • 1 cup Water
  • 1/2 cup Sugar
  • 1/4 cup Lychee juice from the can or fresh lychees check notes
Whipped Cream for layering and topping
  • 1 cup Heavy Whipping Cream check notes
  • 1/2 cup Powdered Sugar
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 1 cup Lychees, peeled,pitted, and sliced check notes
Make the cake
Preheat the oven to 400 F.Grease an 8-inch pan and lay with parchment paper; set aside.
In a stand mixer, using a whisk attachment or handheld mixer, beat the eggs till they tripled in volume and are fluffy, yellow, and pale about 10 to 15 minutes.
Add a tbsp of sugar gradually while the eggs are whisking well until all the sugar is done. Add in the vanilla extract too.
Using a sifter, slowly add a 1/3 of flour at a time,preferably from a good height, into the egg mixture, so you don't break the air bubbles. Using a spatula, gently fold in the flour without breaking the bubbles. Repeat another two more times.
Once all the flour has been incorporated well, pour the batter gently into the prepared tin. Bake for 10-11 minutes, until it's golden brown on the top and cooked in the center. Take out from the oven and cool for 5 mins before releasing onto a cooling rack.
Simple syrup
While the cake is cooling, prepare the syrup by adding water, sugar, and lychee juice to a saucepan.Bring to a slight boil and turn off the heat. Let cool completely.
Whipped Cream
In a mixer,whip the whipping cream until it has whipped well. Add sugar and vanilla extract in the between while whipping the cream. Keep in the refrigerator till use.
Slice the lychees and keep them aside.
Assemble the cake.
Slice the cake using a serrated knife halfway lengthwise. Soak the cake layers with the prepared simple syrup generously.
On one layer, put a layer of whipped cream using a spatula. Layer the sliced lychees on top.Add another layer of whipped cream on top of the lychees.
Place the second layer on top of the cream. Use the remaining cream to layer on top of the cake.Garnish with the fruit of your choice or frost completely with more whipped cream.
Chill the cake for 2 hours at least before serving.
  • This cake doesn’t use any leavening agents, the air bubbles from the whipped-up egg are what will help the cake rise. Be very gentle while folding in the flour, without breaking the bubbles.
  • You can use canned lychees as well. They are usually available in Asian and other grocery stores. Use 1/4 syrup from it, for the syrup. If using fresh lychees, while slicing them, they will release some juice, you can add that to the syrup as well.
  • If you wish to frost the cake completely with whipped cream, then increase the quantity of whipping cream to 1 1/2 cup.
Sherin thomas
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