Mamon: Filipino Sponge Cake

Serves 6 | Prep: 10 minutes | Cook: 20 minutes


1 1/4 cups cake flour
1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup granulated sugar plus 2 tablespoons, divided
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon Meyer lemon zest (see notes below)
4 large eggs, yolks and whites separated
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/3 cup water
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons melted butter, divided
grated cheese for serving, if desired


Preheat oven to 325°F. Place baking cups (I used 6 4″d x 1.2″h baking cups) on a baking sheet and set aside.

In a large bowl, sift together cake flour, baking powder, 1/2 cup sugar, and salt. Mix in lemon zest.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites with the cream of tartar until it becomes frothy, and soft, fluffy peaks begin to form. Gradually add 1/2 cup sugar and beat until you have soft peaks. Slowly add the egg yolks, vanilla and water and beat until just combined.

With the mixer on low speed, gradually add the flour mixture to the batter, followed by 1/2 cup melted butter.

Divide the batter into the baking cups, place baking tray in oven, and bake for about 18-20 minutes or until the cakes are golden, springy to the touch and a toothpick inserted in the center comes clean.

Brush with remaining melted butter and sprinkle with sugar (and cheese if desired).


Mamon can be baked in individual molds if you have them, in cupcake tins, or in individual baking cups, as I have made them here.

I like adding a touch of Meyer lemon zest to add to the lightness of these sponge cakes. If you don’t have Meyer lemons, but are lucky to have calamansi, use that here. Or try a touch of orange zest. You can also omit them completely.

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