This Hojicha Roll Cake is rich in roasted tea flavour, light, airy, and spongy, and filled with a hojicha cream for double the hojicha taste.
I usually don't make cakes very often.
They're often reserved for birthdays.
But, my kids have been craving roll cakes lately.
Why this recipe works
After testing this recipe 4 times, I'm confident I have the perfect recipe for this flavourful and creamy Hojicha Roll Cake.
This cake is rich in roasted tea flavour, light, airy, and spongy, and filled with a rich hojicha cream for double the hojicha taste.
Read up on my tips below to make sure your cake turns out succesfully!
What is hojicha?
It's a roasted green tea with smoky notes that's delicious in milk jam, in cookies, or even in ice cream.
I use hojicha powder to flavour this cake. You can find hojicha powder online.
It's very similar to matcha powder, which is its unroasted green tea cousin.
Type of cake to use
This recipe is based off a classic chiffon cake, which means it is similar to a sponge cake, with the addition of oil.
The oil is important as it lends flexibility, which is integral to the cake being able to be rolled up without cracking.
How to make the cake
First, separate the eggs since the whites are beaten separately from the yolks.
Beat the egg whites with sugar and cream of tartar until medium peaks.
Beat the egg yolks in a different bowl and add cake flour .
Fold the egg whites are folded into the batter to create a light, homogeneous mixture.
Bake the cake at a high temperature for a short period of time so the cake does not dry out.
6 tips to ensure success
Tip 1: Take out the eggs from the refrigerator and separate the yolks and whites. (It's easier to separate the eggs when they're cold). Let them sit at room temperature. The egg whites will beat up with more volume when they're warmer, as opposed to cold from the fridge.
Tip 2: Make sure your bowl for the egg whites is clean and free from any traces of oil. It's a good idea to wipe down the bowl and beaters with some lemon juice or vinegar to ensure they are clean. Oil inhibits the egg whites from beating up to its full volume.
Tip 3: To ensure the egg whites beat to full volume, add some cream of tartar while the egg whites are foamy. If you don't have cream of tartar, you can use a squeeze of lemon juice.
Tip 4: Fold in the egg whites using a spatula so you don't deflate all the bubbles in the mixture. There's no chemical leavener in this cake, so it's reliant on the whipped egg whites to give the cake its airy structure.
Tip 5: Tap the pan a few times before placing into the oven to disperse any trapped bubbles.
Tip 6: Drop the pan from a height of 1' once you take it out of the oven to keep the cake from shrinking.
When to roll the cake?
The trickiest part of making a roll cake is making sure it doesn't crack when you roll it.
There are lots of tips and methods out there: from wrapping it in a tea towel, to dusting it with powdered sugar.
But this is what I simply do:
Roll the cake gently in parchment paper while it is still slightly warm.
No need to roll and re-roll. A gentle, yet firm touch is needed when handling the chiffon cake roll.
After rolling the cake, it's placed into the fridge to chill and set for 1-2 hours before slicing and serving.
Have fun with the roll cake and try different flavours.
Substitute with matcha powder for a green tea version.
Or use cocoa powder for a chocolate variation.
Other roll cake recipes
If you're looking for other roll cakes, be sure to try:
Blackberry Earl Grey Cream Roll Cake
White and Blue Butterfly Pea Cake Roll
If you try out my recipe, I'd love to see your creations. Tag me on Instagram @siftandsimmer or leave me a comment/rating below.
Hojicha Roll Cake
For accuracy and precision in baking recipes, use weight (metric) measurements when available.
- 3 egg whites room temp
- ½ teaspoon cream of tartar
- 40 g granulated sugar
- 3 egg yolks room temp
- 30 g granulated sugar
- 30 g avocado oil
- 30 g whole milk
- 45 g cake flour sifted
- 10 g hojicha powder sifted
Hojicha Cream Filling
- 125 ml heavy whipping cream (36% MF [milkfat] or higher)
- 1 tablespoon hojicha powder
- 1 tablespoon powdered sugar
Make the Cake:
- Line a 9" by 13" baking tray with parchment paper. Set aside.
- Remove 3 eggs from the fridge. Separate the egg whites and egg yolks, ensuring the egg whites are added to a clean mixing bowl. Leave at room temperature.
- Preheat oven to 375°F/191°C.
- Fit the mixing bowl with the egg whites to a stand mixer with a whisk attachment. Gradually whisk on low speed until foamy. Add in the cream of tartar. Increase the speed gradually and add in the sugar in small increments.
- Beat until the egg whites reach medium peaks (when the whisk it pulled out, there will be a slight curve to its end). Set aside.
- Add the egg yolks to a large bowl. Add in the sugar and whisk together.
- Next, add in the oil and milk and whisk until combined.
- Add in the sifted cake flour and hojicha powder. Use a spatula or whisk to combine together.
- Take ⅓ of the whipped egg whites and fold it into the batter. It's OK to be a little heavy-handed for this first fold since we will add more of the egg whites later.
- Next, add another ⅓rd and continue to fold. Repeat with the remainder of the egg whites, until the batter is light and homogeneous.
- Transfer the cake batter to a 9" by 13" baking tray and smooth out the top with an offset spatula. Tap the tray a few times to remove any trapped air bubbles.
- Place into the oven and bake at 375°F/191°C for 13-15 minutes, until the top is dry and springy to the touch. (Don't overbake or it will be dry).
- Remove from the oven and carefully drop it from a height of about 1'.
- Transfer the cake over to a cooling rack, with the parchment-side down.
Make the Hojicha Cream:
- Add the whipping cream, hojicha powder and sugar to a large bowl. Whisk until the cream thickens.
- Tear off a new large piece of parchment paper.
- While the cake is still slightly warm, (not too warm or the cream will melt), but not cool so that the cake won't roll.
- Carefully flip the cake onto the the new parchment paper, with bottom side facing up. Peel the old parchment paper off the cake.
- Using an offset spatula, spread the hojicha cream over the surface of the cake.
- Carefully roll up the cake and seal the ends of the parchment. Place into the fridge to chill for 1-2 hours.
- Slice with a serrated knife and serve.
The nutritional information provided should be considered as approximate and is not guaranteed. Please use your best judgment to ensure food is safely prepared and/or a good fit for your diet.
Hi! Do you think this would work with matcha instead of hojicha powder?
Yes, just substitute the hojicha powder with the same amount of matcha. Depending on the quality of matcha you have, it may appear not as intensely green after baking. Hope that helps.
Hi! Thanks for posting this 🙂 For the cake, you have granulated sugar listed twice at different amounts - is it 30 or 40 grams?
Hi there, it's listed twice since the sugar is used in both the egg whites and yolks -- 40g sugar is beaten with the egg whites and 30g sugar with the egg yolk mixture. Hope that helps.
Hi there. Just wondering what Hojicha powder brand do you use?
Hi there, I use Hojicha Co.
This cake roll looks very delicious. Will try to make it at a later date.
Awesome, be sure to tag me when you make it! 🙂
This cake roll looks and sounds soooo good with the hojicha! I've always wanted to learn how to make a cake roll but I am always so intimated so I will need to try your recipe when the time comes!
Thanks Christie! It seems intimidating, but with my tips and some practice, you'll have it down in no time! 🙂
Jessica von Ziegenweidt
Can I ask is the cake batter thick enough to pipe, i find some recipes are too thin for me to pipe but others are. I have seen piped versions which i want to try but dont know how to go about it cause those recipes have no ingredients. Also can I just leave out the Hojicha
Are you asking about the "deco" cake rolls with patterns? This batter is more "airy" than thick. And yes you can leave out the hojicha powder, just replace with the same amount of flour instead.
Jessica von Ziegenweidt
Also is cake flour self raising flour or is it just plain flour.
Cake flour is NOT self-raising flour. For this recipe, just use plain all-purpose flour, remove about 15g of the flour and replace with 15g cornstarch instead. Hope that helps.
After I flip it over onto a clean parchment paper and roll it up, the bottom seems to always stick to the parchment paper and then the skin of the cake comes off. Would you happen to know why? Did I not bake the cake long enough?
If it's sticking to the parchment, then the cake should be baked a little longer. It shouldn't stick if it's baked long enough.
Jessica von Ziegenweidt
Sorry I keep bugging you but y do i need to add cornstarch. If its just plain flour I didnt think you needed to add cornflour
Adding cornstarch to all-purpose flour = cake flour... which produces a lighter, softer cake.
i oddly can't seem to find heavy cream anywhere in vancouver... Is there a substitution i can use until i find one? or not.. thanks!
Heavy cream is also known as whipping cream -- usually has 35-36% MF (milk fat) or more. You can use a cream with at least 30% MF. Most major grocery stores in Vancouver will carry heavy cream. It's usually stored by the dairy section.
Awesome recipe ! Made this but swap up Hojicha with matcha and it’s so good!
Thanks Rachel! Glad you enjoyed the recipe!:)
hello! would it be ok to use any other vegetable oil (such as grapeseed) as a substitution for the avocado oil? thanks!
Yes, you can definitely use any light vegetable oil in place of the avocado oil. I just wouldn't suggest olive oil. Hope that helps! 🙂
Looking forward to trying out this recipe - would like to make a chocolate version of this, so I plan on swapping out the hojicha with cocoa. However, I noticed with the metric measurement of cake batter, it lists 10 g of cocoa. But when I switch to the US measurement, it goes to 2 tablespoons, which is around 30 g of cocoa. So what is the correct amount of hojicha/cocoa - 10g or 30g? Thank you!!
Use 10g cocoa, which is about 1.5 Tbsp.
Great recipe! Just right amount of sweetness and super soft
Glad you enjoyed the recipe, Bella! Thanks for sharing your re-creation with me on Instagram! 🙂
I made the chocolate version of this, but for some reason, it feels undercooked but the cake was done. And the texture when you put it in your mouth, feels clingy to your throat. But there are a lot of cracks, what do you think happened? And if I want to try a coffee version, what should I change??
Sorry to hear this. There could be a number of things that could affect the outcome. Did you make any substitutions?
Cocoa powder is inherently dry; if you add too much, it can cause the cake to become dry and crack.
Overwhipping the egg whites to stiff peaks can also lead to cracking.
The temperature of your oven can also affect the baking time.
I want to try a coffee version, what should I change in the ingredients?
Easy-to-make, even tho I'm in HK and it's my first time. Nevertheless, I'd like to increase the thickness and fluffiness of the cake 🙂
Thanks for sharing your creation with me on Instagram! To ensure fluffiness, use a light hand when folding in the egg whites and make sure not to overmix the cake batter.
I used this recipe and converted it into a 2 layered, 6" cake. Doubled the amount of Hojicha cream filling to decorate the entire cake. It was the perfect amount for a 6" cake. The Hojicha flavour really shines and the cake has just the right amount of sweetness. It's really light and fluffy!
Thanks so much for your feedback and for sharing your creation with me on Instagram, Cindy!
My family loves this cake very much. Thank you for the great recipe.
Happy to hear it! Thanks for trying the recipe 🙂
Made this cake for my grandsons and they loved it, thank you for sharing your recipe!