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Vietnamese Honeycomb Cake - Banh Bo Nuong

This Vietnamese honeycomb cake or banh bo nuong is one of the most iconic cakes in Vietnamese cuisine. The name comes from the distinct honeycomb structure created by pockets of expanding gas which can be seen when you cut a cross section of the cake.
Course Dessert, Snack, Treat
Cuisine Vietnamese
Keyword banh bo nuong, Honeycomb Cake
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 8 servings
Calories 303kcal
Author Scruff


  • 1/2 tsp canola oil (for greasing the tin)
  • 1 cup coconut cream
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pandan extract / vanilla extract (available at Asian groceries) (Note 1)
  • 150 gm white caster sugar / brown sugar (Note 1)
  • 1 tbsp canola oil (for the cake mixture)
  • 5 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 160 gm tapioca starch (available at Asian groceries)
  • 10 gm rice flour (available at Asian groceries)
  • 2 tsp cream of tartar
  • 1 tsp bicarb soda


  • Preheat the oven to 180 C / 356 F fan-forced.
  • Grease the bottom of a  20 cm / 8 inch round cake tin with the 1/2 tsp of oil and leave it in the oven to heat up. 
  • In a bowl, add the coconut cream and salt. 
    If making the pandan version then add pandan extract and white caster sugar to the mixture. If making the brown sugar version then add the vanilla extract and brown sugar to the mixture.
    Put into the microwave for 1 minute, then mix until combined. Add the tbsp of canola oil and set aside. 
  • In another bowl, crack the eggs. With a pair of scissors, cut the egg yolks into small pieces. Add the eggs into the bowl with the coconut mixture. 
  • Sift half of the tapioca starch and rice flour into the egg mixture and gently whisk while keeping the whisk touching the bottom of the bowl at all times. After about a minute, add the remaining tapioca starch and flour and continue whisking for another minute.
  • Sift the cream of tartar and bicarb soda into the mixture. Mix for roughly 30 seconds.
  • Take the cake tin out of the oven and place it on a heat-proof surface.
  • Press the cake mixture through a sieve and into the hot cake tin. Grab your oven mitts or a thick tea towel, and drop the cake tin from a height of roughly 2 cm onto your work surface a few times to get the air bubbles out.
  • Put the cake into the oven and bake for 40 minutes.
  • Set up a cooling station by placing a cooling rack on a couple of mugs, or something else that will give the cooling rack some height. See picture above to see what I mean. This is to allow plenty of air to circulate under the cake to reduce any condensation as it cools upside down.
  • After 40 minutes, take the cake out of the oven and immediately rest it upside down on the cooling station. 
  • After about 45 minutes of cooling, or once the cake feels lukewarm, remove from the tin and serve.


  1. Use pandan extract or paste for the pandan version and vanilla extract for the brown sugar version.  Please refer to my tips for which pandan extract to buy.


Calories: 303kcal | Carbohydrates: 40g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Cholesterol: 102mg | Sodium: 250mg | Potassium: 259mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 19g | Vitamin A: 149IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 19mg | Iron: 1mg