Malaysian Honeycomb Cake Recipe

Updated February 25, 2008

Originally posted December 7, 2006

No, this is not a section of an ant colony. This delectable item is a cake that you simply must try!

Malaysian Honeycomb Cake

Malaysian Honeycomb Cake

In Malaysia, this is called a “honeycomb cake”. It gets its name from the interesting honeycomb-like patterns caused by bubble trails baked into the cake. The texture is like a sponge cake, with more bounce and less crumble.

Malaysian Honeycomb Cake is similar to the Indonesian Bika Ambon but the Malaysian recipe calls for the sugar to be caramelized first, giving it a darker color. The cake is sweet with a hint of bitterness from the caramel. That’s one of the reasons I like this honeycomb cake so much.

The other thing I like about it is, it doesn’t call for a lot of ingredients, and is fairly easy to make. The only hard part is making the caramel sauce. Other than that, it’s a piece of, well, cake!

This Malaysian Honeycomb Cake recipe comes from Jo’s Deli Bakery, an excellent site for baking enthusiasts.

Malaysian Honeycomb Cake Recipe


210g sugar
240g water
80g butter
6 eggs
160g condensed milk
180g all-purpose flour
2½ tsp baking soda

(What’s that? Still haven’t gotten that digital kitchen scale yet? Tsk tsk!)


1. In a saucepan over low heat, caramelize the sugar until it turns a dark golden brown.

Making Caramel Sauce for Malaysian Honeycomb Cake

 Making Caramel Sauce for Honeycomb Cake

2. Slowly and carefully pour the water into the caramel. CAUTION! The caramel is very hot and the water will quickly boil and steam. Stir until the caramel is dissolved in the water and it becomes a thin syrup. Remove from heat.

Pouring Water Into Caramel Sauce for Malaysian Honeycomb Cake

Pouring Water Into Caramel Sauce for Malaysian Honeycomb Cake

3. Add the butter and set the pan aside to cool.

Melting Butter in Caramel Sauce for Malaysian Honeycomb Cake

 Melting Butter in Caramel Sauce for Malaysian Honeycomb Cake

4. Preheat oven to 350*F.

5. Mix together the egg and condensed milk in a bowl.

6. Sift the flour and baking soda together into the egg and milk. Mix well.

7. Pour the caramel butter sauce into the batter and mix well.

Pouring Caramel Butter Sauce in to Malaysian Honeycomb Cake Batter

 Pouring Caramel Butter Sauce in to Malaysian Honeycomb Cake Batter

8. Pour the batter into a greased, 9-inch round cake pan. Let it sit for 5 minutes for the bubbles to begin developing.

9. Bake at 350*F with bottom heat only (no convection!) for 1 hour or until a skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean.

10. When the cake is cool,turn it out onto a plate. Slice and serve.

Malaysian Honeycomb Cake

 Malaysian Honeycomb Cake

Here’s a video I did a couple years ago of the whole process of making the Malaysian Honeycomb Cake:

I’d like to see you readers out there try this Malaysian Honeycomb Cake recipe out for yourselves. You won’t be disappointed!

Aloha, Nate

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106 Comments Post a Comment
  1. Esmeralda says:

    >Hi Ann..
    It’s me again. I’m also a fan of honeycomb cake. Do u mind to post the recipe here? Thanks.

  2. Nate-n-Annie says:

    >Hi Esmerelda,

    Go to our YouTube video. It has the ingredients and instructions.

  3. Sophie says:

    >Hello, this looks so delicious!!! MMMMM…. Can I have a piece right now with my morning coffee? Thanks!!!

  4. Pierce says:

    >Hi there! Thanks for visiting my site – I can look at your posts on Foodbuzz but can not get to this site during hours. Frustrating because I love looking at food and recipes.

    I’ll visit you on Foodbuzz today!


  5. Zue Murphy says:

    >Beautiful honeycomb cake. I love this cake. Thank you for sharing.

  6. kk 稼稼 says:

    >I’m not sure whether there is any fruit pies. (I’m not cake lover). You can visit Secret Recipe website @ to check it out.

    I love the way you take picture on your food!

  7. sandrine says:

    >Hi Annie & Nate,
    I have been craving this cake for years. Last year when I stumbled upon your youtube video of this recipe, I was ecstatic!! I made it on the same day. It came out really good – the taste. However, I didn't get as much 'honeycomb' only 1/3 of the cake instead of half. Any idea?

    Thank you so much again for your wonderful postings.


  8. Pearl says:

    >goodness – that honeycomb cake looks like a piece of chocolate cake!

  9. Laura says:

    >This looks sooooo good! I’m tempted to leave work early just so I can make some :)

  10. Carolyn Jung says:

    >Oh, I bet this would go perfect with a demitasse chaser of espresso. The bitter coffee flavor would probably compliment the bitter caramel flavor of the cake. I predict a match made in heaven.

  11. treasureboxkitchen says:

    >wow. i am going to have to make this very, VERY soon. thank you very much!

  12. Jennifer says:

    >Ive never had honeycomb cake before! It sounds amazing!

  13. Sippity Sup says:

    >I LOVE this cake. I’ll say it again. I love it. The photos are so tempting and the write-up so precise. I know I am making this soon. I love reading you guys. I never comment cause I don’t know what to say in comments in general. But sometimes, I must honor greatness. Thanks GREG

  14. YCT says:

    >Looks delish! Thanks for sharing your recipe

  15. Hayley says:

    >Beautiful pictures, as always. Thanks for sharing!

  16. Muneeba says:

    >Your pics for this post are INCREDIBLE! I was hooked the minute I saw the first one up top – never heard of honeycomb cake, but holy geez I wish I could have a big chunk of it right now! Thks for stopping by my blog, btw :)

  17. JennBunny says:

    >OMG, I miss this alot.

    Thanks for sharing.

  18. The Food Site says:

    >I must sound damn ignorant here but..err..I’ve not heard of it. So, wondering, you happen to know its Malaysian name? Heheheh…maybe I know it by its local name…or I’ve really not tried this cake before. **blush..and to think I’ve been in Malaysia all my life…**

  19. Lingzie says:

    >although i’m malaysian, i hardly ever eat this cake (though i do see the stalls selling them, its a lighter shade of brown though)~shame on me~
    the step-by-step photos are great!

  20. Mark Scarbrough says:

    >Bah-dah-bing! Thanks for a great recipe–especially since I’ve got everything I need right here in the house. I have to make a dessert for my partner’s knitting group (don’t ask), so here’s what I’ll make this afternoon for sure.

  21. mira says:

    >this used to be one of my mom’s favourite.. she’d make it every xmas.. we call it ‘sarang semut’ cake.. or directly translated as ‘ant’s nest @hive’ cake.. hahah.. nice one.. love this so much esp if u add loads of burnt brown sugar..

  22. Nate-n-Annie says:

    >@all – thank you so much for your comments!

    @Sophie – you’ll have to make it first ;-)

    @Tina – welcome, fellow Foodbuzzer!

    @Zue – you’re welcome!

    @KK – thanks!

    @sandrine – only thing I can think of is that the cake cooked too quickly for the tracks to go higher. Do you use convection?

    @Pearl – dare I say, *better* than chocolate?

    @Laura – well, let us know how it turns out!

    @Carolyn – that gives me an idea. I wonder how well this would do as a cupcake?

    @treasureboxkitchen – do tell us how you like it!

    @Sippity Sup – wow, thanks for the compliment! I think your site is the bomb.

    @Muneeba – thanks!

    @JennBunny – you’re welcome!

    @Foong – does “kek gula hangus” ring a bell?

    @Lingzie – would you try this recipe?

    @Mark – would love to know if they all liked it!

  23. luckytastebuds says:

    >oh my gosh! That is a ridiculously amazing looking honeycomb cake. WOW!! it looks just like a honeycomb…makes me want to try some desperately!!!

  24. Sara says:

    >That looks amazing, I’ve never seen anything like it before!

  25. Mommy Gourmet says:

    >Is that as moist and dense as it looks? I want this now!

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My Photo Annie is mistress of the kitchen while Nate is the master of the grill and smoker. We cook the homestyle Asian and Hawaiian foods of our younger days while also exploring the wider worlds of Western foods.

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