Everyone loves birthday cake. Kids and adults everywhere can attest to the fact that the cake is one of the things we most look forward to when our special day comes. And if you’re looking to make the best birthday cakes ever, then you’re going to want to check out this great Bon Appetit video:

So to sum it up, here are the 4 secrets that will take your birthday cake to the next level:

  1. The Batter: instead of using regular brown vanilla extract, use the clear imitation variety instead. Once you’ve mixed up your batter, line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and pour the batter onto that. Bake your cake for about 30-35 minutes, remove and cool. Then you can use circular molds to cut out your cake.
  2. Birthday Crumbs: these take very little effort to make but make all the difference. Just mix together the dry ingredients of your cake (cake flour, light brown and granulated sugar). Then use a neutral-tasting oil to bind them together. Work crumbs between your fingers, then bake.
  3. Softness: a great way to make sure your cake stays moist is to use a mixture of clear vanilla extract and whole milk as a drizzle between layers of cake and frosting when you’re assembling. Also, for maximum creaminess in the frosting, make sure all ingredients are room temperature before mixing.
  4. Let it Freeze: freeze your cake for 3 hours to help it firm up after assembly.

The best thing about these secrets is that you can apply them to any cake you want to make, whether it’s homemade or boxed. However, if you’re up for trying Momofuku Milk Bar’s exact recipe, you can find it here.