Close your eyes and imagine a tender, moist cake perfectly seasoned with the warm flavors of cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg. Now imagine that it’s one of the quickest cakes you’ll ever make, and it doesn’t even need butter, milk or eggs.
Preheat oven to 350°. Mix all dry ingredients thoroughly, add wet ingredients and mix thoroughly. Bake 35-45 mins until done.
Make It Your Own:
– Add dried fruit: raisins, craisins, dried apricots
– Add grated orange or lemon zest
– Serve with cream cheese icing, maple icing, caramel sauce, whipped cream, or fruit compote
Close your eyes and imagine a tender, moist cake perfectly seasoned with the warm flavors of cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg. Now imagine that it’s one of the quickest cakes you’ll ever make, and it doesn’t even need butter, milk, or eggs.
This was one of the very first things I learned to bake as a child. It’s a riff on the ubiquitous chocolate wacky cake (a.k.a. depression cake or crazy cake) that seems to be everywhere lately. My mother created it because my dad isn’t a huge fan of chocolate (silly dad!), but they loved the texture and ease of the wacky cake. Mom always added raisins, but I leave them out to suit my husband’s preferences.
Don’t let the simplicity of this cake fool you. It’s rare that you get a combination of a cake that is so well suited to beginning bakers, but has an amazing flavor and texture. Without icing, it’s a perfect snacking (or breakfast!) cake, or slather with your favorite icing or cooked fruit. Regardless of how you plan to serve it, just be sure to prepare yourself for the intoxicating smells that will waft from your oven as it bakes.
Spice Wacky Cake
- 3 cups All-Purpose Flour
- 1 3/4 cups Brown Sugar
- 2 teaspoons Baking Soda
- 1 teaspoon Salt
- 2 teaspoons Ground Nutmeg
- 2 teaspoons Ground Cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon Ground Allspice
- 1/2 teaspoon Ground Ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon Ground Cloves
- 3/4 cups Vegetable Oil
- 2 cups Water
- 2 teaspoons White Vinegar
- 2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
- MAKING A 9″X13″ CAKE:
- (See below for alternate instructions for layer cakes or cupcakes.)
- Directly in a 9″x13″ pan (no need to grease and flour the pan), add all dry ingredients and mix thoroughly, being careful to break up any clumps of brown sugar. Add remaining ingredients and mix thoroughly (check the corners of the pan for pockets of flour).
- Bake at 350° for 35-45 minutes, until the cake pulls away slightly from sides of pans and when touched lightly, the top of the cake springs back.
- FOR LAYER CAKES:
- Makes two 9″ round layers.
- Grease and flour the cake pans thoroughly. Mix batter together in a mixing bowl, then pour into pans. Bake 30-40 minutes until the cake pulls away slightly from sides of pans and when touched lightly, the top of the cake springs back.
- FOR CUPCAKES:
- Makes 24 cupcakes.
- Place cupcake liners in a baking tin. Portion batter out to evenly fill all the liners.
- Bake 22-28 minutes until top of cupcakes spring back when touched lightly.
- And here’s the video!