March 4, 2022

Ukrainian Old-Fashioned Honey Babka

Ukrainian Old-fashioned Honey Babka: sweet, fluffy, moist; topped with a creamy frosting for that extra incredible taste. The easiest and the best honey dessert you’ll ever taste!

Jump to Recipe Leave a Review

Ukrainian Old-Fashioned Honey Babka: sweet, fluffy, moist; topped with a creamy frosting for that extra incredible taste. | olgainthekitchen.com

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy.

Babka is very often shaped into molds and baked for Easter, but it can also be made in a regular baking sheet (like I did) and served anytime of the year. It has a spongy texture and reminds me a lot of the honey sponge cake.

The sweet and honey aroma around the house during the baking process  just puts me through the roof. I was especially surprised when I saw how much my kiddos love it. The perfect square size is kid friendly and can also be served as a hand held dessert.

I remember I used to bake this babka quite often for my brothers when I was a teenager. They loved me more for making all these goodies for them all the time 🙂 . I didn’t top with any frosting back then and it was still super delicious without it. All we needed was a cup of coffee.

Honey Babka Ingredients:

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 8 eggs – room temp
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup honey – microwaved for 30 seconds
  • 16 oz sour cream – room temp
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 tablespoons white distilled vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon table salt

Honey Babka Frosting Ingredients:

  • 8 oz cream cheese – room temp
  • 8 oz cool whip – frozen
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar

How to Make Honey Babka:

1. Preheat the oven to a 350°F. Line a large baking sheet (11×17) with a parchment paper and set aside (make sure the baking sheet has an edge of approximately 1” to prevent the batter from running out). In a large bowl, beat 8 eggs, 1 cup granulated sugar and 1/2 tsp salt until light and fluffy (8-10 mins on high).

In a small bowl, combine and stir 2 tsps baking soda and 2 tbsps white distilled vinegar – it will fizz up. Microwave 1 cup honey for about 30 seconds. Then, add the baking soda/vinegar mixture, honey and 16 oz sour cream to the batter. Beat on low for 30-40 seconds just until combined (do not over-beat it). Sift 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour into the batter and with a mixer on low, beat just until the flour is combined. The batter will be runny and lose the fluffiness a bit, but make sure to not over-beat it otherwise the cake texture will turn out hard and won’t be as fluffy.

2. Pour all the batter at once into the prepared baking sheet and level to the edges with a spatula. Bake for 30-32 mins, until the toothpick inserted comes out clean. Place a cooling rack over the baked cake and flip over the baking sheet. Remove the parchment paper from bottom of the cake. Place a large cutting board onto a cake and flip over again; let the babka cool. (Do not leave the cake upside down on a cooling rack for long, or it will leave cooling rack squares on top of the cake and might break/mush the top of it). Once cooled, cut off edges with a sharp knife, and cut whole babka into an even squares, to about 1.5-2”, or your desired size.

How to Make Frosting for Honey Babka:

3. In a medium bowl, combine and beat 8 oz cream cheese and 1/2 cup powdered sugar for about 1 min on low-medium speed. Add 8 oz cool whip and continue beating on high until frosting is thick, for about 5 mins.

4. Transfer the frosting to a piping bag with Wilton tip #199 attached. Pipe the frosting onto each square.

Enjoy right away or refrigerate and keep enjoying for next 3-4 days!!

The fluffy, spongy texture…

More Cake Recipes to Explore:

Ukrainian Old-Fashioned Honey Babka: sweet, fluffy, moist; topped with a creamy frosting for that extra incredible taste. | olgainthekitchen.com

Ukrainian Old-Fashioned Honey Babka

5 from 14 votes
Servings: 20
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes

Ukrainian Old-Fashioned Honey Babka: sweet, fluffy, moist; topped with creamy frosting for that extra incredible taste.

Ingredients

Ingredients for Babka:

Frosting Ingredients:

  • 8 oz cream cheese – room temp
  • 8 oz cool whip – frozen
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to a 350°F. Line a large baking sheet (11×17) with a parchment paper and set aside (Make sure the baking sheet has an edge of approximately 1” to prevent the batter from running out). In a large bowl, beat 8 eggs, 1 cup granulated sugar and 1/2 tsp salt until light and fluffy (8-10 mins on high). In a small bowl, combine and stir 2 tsps baking soda and 2 tbsps white distilled vinegar – it will fizz up. Microwave 1 cup honey for about 30 seconds. Then, add the baking soda/vinegar mixture, honey and 16 oz sour cream to the batter. Beat on low for 30-40 seconds just until combined (do not over-beat it). Sift 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour into the batter and with a mixer on low, beat just until the flour is combined. The batter will be runny and lose the fluffiness a bit, but make sure to not over-beat it otherwise the cake texture will turn out hard and won't be as fluffy.

  2. Pour all the batter at once into the prepared baking sheet and level to the edges with a spatula. Bake for 30-32 mins, until the toothpick inserted comes out clean. Place a cooling rack over the baked cake and flip over the baking sheet. Remove the parchment paper from bottom of the cake. Place a large cutting board onto a cake and flip over again; let the babka cool. (Do not leave the cake upside down on a cooling rack for long, or it will leave cooling rack squares on top of the cake and might break/mush the top of it). Once cooled, cut off edges with a sharp knife, and cut whole babka into an even squares, to about 1.5-2”, or your desired size.

  3. TO MAKE THE FROSTING: In a medium bowl, combine and beat 8 oz cream cheese and 1/2 cup powdered sugar for about 1 min on low-medium speed. Add 8 oz cool whip and continue beating on high until frosting is thick, for about 5 mins.
  4. Transfer the frosting to a piping bag with Wilton tip #199 attached. Pipe the frosting onto each square. Enjoy right away or refrigerate and keep enjoying for next 3-4 days!!

© Olga in the Kitchen owns the copyright on all images and content and does not allow for its original recipes and pictures to be reproduced anywhere other than at this site, unless authorization is given. If you enjoyed the recipe and would like to republish it on your own site, please re-write it in your own words, and link back to my site and recipe page. Read my FAQ and Copyright Policy.

Leave a Comment or Review

Recipe Rating




Comments

  • Lucretia

    Easy to make. Delicious! Am making this for our Ukrainian art auction. The auction runs in October…14th-22nd, but we’re have an in person grand afternoon finale that will be Ukrainian desserts. This one is definitely a keeper!!

    • Olga in the Kitchen

      I have not, but if you do decide to try, would love to know the results. Thanks

    • Olga in the Kitchen

      I haven’t tried it myself, but I don’t see why not it wouldn’t work. You might have to adjust baking time since it will be thicker in size. Check with a wooden toothpick in the center of baked cake before taking out, to make sure it’s fully baked.

  • Grace

    Delicious! I wanted to make a Ukrainian cake for some youth for tonight. They are making up emergency supply kits for some Ukrainians coming this way. I wanted them to realize a little the difference in cultures…I’m pretty sure I’ll be making this again. Simple, tastes like honey!

    • Olga in the Kitchen

      Thank you for sharing that with us, Grace! I’m so glad you enjoyed it 🙂

  • Lesley

    Hi Olga, I intend making this lovely cake at the weekend, so 2 questions, what size are the eggs and what is cool whip ? I’m in the UK. Thanks

    • Olga in the Kitchen

      Eggs are large in this recipe and cool whip is whipped cream, it’s sold in tubs in our stores. You can substitute cool whip for the same amount of heavy whipping cream (at least 30% fat) and add a bit of vanilla to achieve the very similar (almost same) result. Since cool whip is slightly sweet, you might consider adding a bit more powdered sugar to the frosting if you prefer sweeter frosting. The cake itself is sweet and very delicious without the frosting as well.

  • Lizzie

    Hi Olga,
    I’m planning to bake this traybake tomorrow for a church fundraiser for Ukraine 🇺🇦 at the weekend.
    In UK, sour cream is sold in millilitres… is 16 oz in the recipe actually 16 fluid ounces (volume measurement) or 16 ounces (in weight)? I’m nervous of getting it wrong as it could spoil a good cake!
    Thanks,
    Lizzie in Cornwall

    • Olga in the Kitchen

      Hi Lizzie! The 16 oz is the size of the sour cream pack (453g) (there is a photo within a post for reference). 🙂

  • Kim

    Would this work ok with a wheat free flour? My daughter has a wheat allergy. Thanks!

    • Olga in the Kitchen

      Hi Kim! Without experimenting myself, I wouldn’t know how it would affect the texture. You can try cutting the recipe in half in case you decide to try it out.

  • Eileen

    I have been so sad about Ukraine. My heart aches. Thank wanted to make a Ukrainian dessert for my bookclub. This got rave reviews. It was delicious. I will definitely make it again. ❤️💔

  • Stephanie

    This is such an easy recipe. I made it yesterday morning and shared with my neighbors. They loved it. It’s fluffy and soft. Also gave me a chance to use eggs from my fridge that were about to expire. This will now be my go-to honey cake recipe. Thanks Olga!

    • Olga in the Kitchen

      I’m so happy to hear you enjoyed this recipe, Stephanie!

  • Cindy M

    Such a delicious cake! I wouldn’t change a thing. My family ate the whole thing and asking me again. It’s a great dessert to make ahead of time, saves nicely and so easy to transport. Thanks Olga!

    • Olga in the Kitchen

      I’m so happy to hear you enjoyed this recipe. Cindy!

  • Nat

    Hi Olga,
    Thank you so much for the recipe.
    Can the babka be frozen?
    Thank you!

    • Olga in the Kitchen

      Hi Nat! I have not tried freezing this cake, but I did freeze similar ones without the frosting. So I don’t see why it wouldn’t work. Just make sure to wrap it properly once cooled. Hope this helps!

  • Colleen

    Hi Olga! Can I double the recipe and bake in a long shallow restaurant insert? How long should it bake? My first try at this recipe and making it for 40 long term care residents.

    • Olga in the Kitchen

      Hi Colleen! Without experimenting myself, I cannot really say. The cake is already too big for 1 serving. I would probably suggest just doing double serving.

  • Kaitlyn McKay

    Hi Olga! Is it possible to make two 9 inch cakes and layer them with this recipe? With some of your frosting in between?

    Thank you!

    Making it today for a friend’s 30th birthday. She is from Ukraine 🙂

    • Olga in the Kitchen

      You definitely can. I haven’t tried it, but I don’t see why it wouldn’t work. Just make sure to adjust the bake time.

  • Linda

    Hi Olga, can you let me know what an alternative to Cool Whip would be . I am in Australia and it is not readily avaliable.

    • Olga in the Kitchen

      You can use heavy whipping cream (same amount, I usually do 40%, but 36% works too). Since cool whip has a bit of vanilla flavor to it and extra sweetness, I would add about 1/2 tsp vanilla extract and increase powdered sugar to 3/4 cup, unless you don’t like sweet frosting, then you can definitely keep it at 1/2 cup.

      • Lori Kurochkina

        Hi Olga, I am in Russia and we definitely do NOT have Cool Whip here 🙂 But I have seen 33% cream (maybe higher). So would I need to use an electric hand mixer and whip this cream first before mixing together with the cream cheese? Thank you!

      • Olga in the Kitchen

        You can definitely replace it for the same amount of heavy cream. I usually beat cream cheese for about a minute, add powdered sugar or sugar and beat for another 30 seconds. Then heavy cream and beat couple minutes until fluffy (together with cream cheese). I don’t beat it separately.

  • Bri

    This looks terrific! I have some small cake molds I would like to use. How would you modify cooking time or anything else for smaller molds? Or should I just stick with the sheet pan? Thanks!

    • Olga in the Kitchen

      See my Honey Cupcake recipe. This recipe was based off this sheet cake. I wouldn’t recommend making something as small as mini cupcakes though because this cake/cupcakes have sour cream so the texture is not as soft as sponge cake texture. When made so small, they will turn out a bit harder to bite as opposed to standard size cupcakes (or molds).

  • Olena Pchinka

    Love this recipe!!! In Ukraine we call this Medivnyk, your recipe is duzhe smachne. Keep up the great work! 🙂

    • Olga in the Kitchen

      I’m happy to hear you enjoyed this recipe, Olena! Yes, people call it different names: babka, honey cake, medovik – we always knew it as babka, but it is like medovik 🙂

  • Choice

    Made this tonight. Tasted better after being in the fridge. Awesome! It’s perfect. I’m not Ukrainian but in love with Ukrainians.

  • Tonya

    This is the easiest honey sheet cake I ever made. The taste is amazing! A little of frosting on the top goes a long way. I made it for sister’s engagement and they looked so elegant on the table. It was so so good and disappeared from the table in seconds.

    • Olga in the Kitchen

      That’s so wonderful, Tonya! Thank you for sharing that with us!

  • Elizabeth

    Olga this cake is WOW! My husband loved it so much, he asked me to make it again and again. It’s sooo easy and works great for regular dessert or even for special occasions. Everything was perfect about this recipe.

    • Olga in the Kitchen

      That’s wonderful, Elizabeth! Thank you for sharing that with us :).

  • Karmyn

    This babka cake is so easy to make and the results are satisfying. Kids chose these bars over cupcakes. I wasn’t surprised. Love the texture, the flavor and the frosting. YUM!

    • Olga in the Kitchen

      Thanks Karmyn, I’m so happy to hear you enjoyed this recipe 🙂

  • Alyssa

    This honey babka recipe is a staple in my home. I make it at least once a month because I have 4 kids and this is the first honey dessert they fell in love with. Thank you for another excellent recipe!!!!

    • Olga in the Kitchen

      I’m so happy to hear it’s a staple at your home. It is definitely kid-friendly dessert!! 🙂

  • Lizzie

    This is such delicious and easy to make cake. I love how fluffy it is and the honey taste is to die for. The frosting on top gives it such elegant look. I made this for our church gathering and it was a huge hit. The cake was gone in under 10 minutes. I keep making it again and again. Thank you Olga!

    • Olga in the Kitchen

      Thanks Lizzie, I’m glad you liked it so much; it’s one of my favorite cakes as well. Kids love it too 🙂

  • Taste of Home
  • Food Gawker

Get recipe updates, tips, menu ideas and more straight to your inbox.