Bánh Bông Lan

Bánh bông lan is a light and airy Vietnamese sponge cake, often flavored with various ingredients.

Lastest Updated January 6, 2024
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Fact: Bánh bông lan’s name comes from the Vietnamese translation of “orchid”, which is “bông lan”. This connection is due to the vanilla flavor used in the cake, which is extracted from a type of orchid.

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Basic Information

Bánh Bông Lan: Basic Information


/bahn bong lahn/

Alternative Name(s)


Dish Type

Cakes and pastries, desserts




Origin and Region

Bánh Bông Lan: Origin and Region



Continent’s Region

Southeast Asia

Country’s Region

Nationwide Origin

Associated Region

Vietnam Map
A Deep Dive

Popular Bánh Bông Lan Variations

Ingredients and Preparation

Bánh Bông Lan: Ingredients and Preparation

Main Ingredients

All-purpose flour, sugar, eggs

Main Cooking Method


Preparation Process

Eggs beaten to incorporate air, mixed with flour and other ingredients for baking.
A Deep Dive

Bánh Bông Lan: A Deep Dive

Cultural Significance

A popular dessert in Vietnam




Light, airy, fluffy


Mildly fragrant


Golden brown

Serving Style

Cut into wedges or served in rolls

Serving Temperature

At room temperature


Tea, coffee


On any occasion



Special Diets

Non diet-specific


369 calories, according to MyFitnessPal for a 100-gram serving of bánh bông lan.


Vietnam, worldwide (America, Brittain, Switzerland, etc.)

Popular Similar Dishes

  1. Chiffon Cake
  2. Swiss Roll
  3. Bánh Chuối 
  4. Bánh Khoai Mì
  5. Bánh Bò

Popular Dining Area

Local bakeries and coffee stores in Vietnam

Bánh bông lan is the Vietnamese adaptation of sponge cake that possesses a soft texture and a golden brown appearance. Typically made using all-purpose flour, sugar, and egg, bánh bông lan was introduced to Vietnamese cuisine thanks to the French colonists.

Banh Bong Lan Infographic

In Vietnam, a basic bánh bông lan offers an airy texture like regular sponge cakes. However, local bakeries also introduce new fillings to the treat with a sweet and sour jam mix or herbs for an aromatic touch.

Plus, some versions even come with nuts, seeds, and raisins in the batter blend. “Bánh bông lan” is literally “orchid cake” since the vanilla flavor used in the cake is extracted from a type of orchid.

To fully comprehend bánh bông lan, explore some of its popular variants in Vietnam before learning how this treat can be made with a rice cooker.

Then, explore the positive and negative features of eating this Vietnamese sponge cake. Plus, you should uncover some dishes that are similar to bánh bông lan.

Key Points

  • Bánh bông lan is a sponge cake that is influenced by French cuisine and adapted to Vietnamese taste.
  • The cake has a soft and airy texture and a golden brown color.
  • Bánh bông lan is a popular snack or dessert in Vietnam.

Bánh Bông Lan Images

What Are the Different Versions of Bánh Bông Lan?

Vietnam offers a diverse range of bánh bông lan. Therefore, I’ll keep things simple by letting you in on 4 popular varieties of this spongy cake in Vietnam:

Banh Bong Lan Ngot

A sweet version of bánh bông lan
Typically featuring a light, airy texture with a subtly sweet flavor
Often enjoyed as a dessert or snack

Banh Bong Lan Man

A savory adaptation of bánh bông lan
Usually include ingredients like cheese, pork floss, or ham

Banh Bong Lan Cuon

This is a rolled version of bánh bông lan, similar to a Swiss roll
The sponge cake is rolled with fillings such as cream, fruit jams, or other sweet spreads

Banh Bong Lan Trung Muoi

This variation incorporates salted duck egg yolk into the cake
Create a distinctive flavor profile that balances the richness of the egg yolk with the lightness of the sponge cake

Aside from the varieties of bánh bông lan, the method of creating this cake is also interesting. In case you think that bánh bông lan is only made using an oven for baking, the ingenuity of VIetnamese has opened up a new solution by using a cooker to make this spongy treat.

How to Make Bánh Bông Lan Using a Rice Cooker?

Making bánh bông lan using an electric cooker involves a few key steps. Here’s the basic procedure to make the treat using only your rice cooker:

Step 1: Prepare the Batter

Start by mixing the cake batter. Typically, this involves beating eggs with sugar until fluffy and light, then gently folding in sifted flour to maintain the airiness. If the recipe requires, melted butter or oil can be added at this stage.

Step 2: Prepare the Rice Cooker

Line the rice cooker’s base with parchment paper if it’s not non-stick. Some people also place a small stand or an inverted steel bowl at the bottom of the cooker to elevate the cake tin from the direct heat.

Step 3: Pour the Batter Into the Cake Tin

Transfer the prepared batter to the rice cooker. Make sure to leave some space at the top, as the cake will rise during cooking.

Step 4: Cook the Cake

Close the lid and turn it on. Most rice cookers don’t have temperature settings, so you’ll cook the cake using the basic cook function. The time it takes to cook can vary depending on the cooker and the cake size.

Step 5: Check for Doneness

After the estimated cooking time, check if the cake is done by inserting a toothpick or a knife into the center. If it comes out clean, the cake is cooked. If not, you can continue cooking it.

Step 6: Cooling the Cake

Once the cake is done, turn off the cooker and carefully remove the cake. Let it cool for a few minutes, then transfer it to a wire rack to cool completely.

Step 7: Serving

Once cooled, the bánh bông lan can be sliced and served. It can be enjoyed plain or with toppings like powdered sugar, fruit, or a glaze as per your preference.

After exploring the basic procedure for making bánh bông lan using a rice cooker, it’s also important to consider the overall impact of enjoying this delightful treat.

Pros and Cons of Eating Bánh Bông Lan

To enjoy bánh bông lan worry-free, you should have a look at the good and bad features that this Vietnamese sponge cake offers:


  • Versatility: This cake is versatile in terms of flavors and ingredients. It can be adapted to include different flavors.
  • Light Texture: Its light and airy texture makes it a pleasant dessert that’s not too heavy, ideal for those who prefer less dense cakes.
  • Comfort Food: For many, bánh bông lan can serve as comfort food after a meal or as a snack.


  • Sugar and calorie content: Like most cakes, bánh bông lan can be high in sugar and calories, which might not be ideal for those on calorie-restricted diets or managing blood sugar levels.
  • Processed Ingredients: Depending on the recipe, it may include processed ingredients like refined flour and sugar, which are generally recommended to be consumed in moderation.

Next, stick around to look at some of the concerns of the other readers that revolve around bánh bông lan.

Bánh Bông Lan FAQs

Yes, it can be frozen for up to a month. Thaw at room temperature before serving. However, people tend to keep the cake cool instead for later consumption.

Generally, yes, as it’s made from vegetarian ingredients like eggs, flour, and sugar. However, it’s not suitable for vegans due to the use of eggs.

It usually stays fresh for a few days when stored in an airtight container at room temperature. Refrigeration can extend its freshness.

Ensure you don’t open the oven door too early, and avoid over-mixing the batter, as these can cause the cake to collapse.

This could be due to under-beating the eggs and sugar, over-mixing the batter, or incorrect oven temperature.

Similar Dishes of Bánh Bông Lan

Banh Chuoi

Bánh chuối is a Vietnamese dessert, essentially a sweet banana cake or bread pudding, mainly made with ripe bananas or plantains, rice flour, coconut milk, and sugar.

Banh Khoai Mi

Bánh khoai mì is a Vietnamese cake made from grated cassava, sugar, and coconut milk, baked until it forms a golden crust.

Banh Bo

Bánh bò is a Vietnamese sponge cake, known for its sweet taste and chewy texture with a honeycomb-like interior.

Truc Tran (Kris)

Truc Tran (Kris)

Senior Food Editor


Home Cooking, Meal Planning, Recipe Development, Baking and Pastry, Food Editor, Cooking-video Maker, Vietnamese Food Evaluation Expert


  • Hospitality (Commercial Cookery) at TasTAFE
  • Culinary Arts at Kendall College (Australia Branch in Sydney)
  • Vietnamese Cuisine Head Chef at HNAAu School (Vietnam, International Joint Training Program)

Truc Tran (Kris), an experienced food writer and editor, is great at exploring and describing global cuisines, from simple street food to fancy dining. In her writing, she skillfully mixes different flavors, cooking methods, and culinary traditions, showing the unique character of various cultures through their food and drinks. On azcuisines.com, Kris highlights her knowledge, especially in Asian cuisine and worldwide traditional dishes.

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