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Monday, August 27, 2012

Wacky Cake Recipe

The story goes that Wacky Cake came into being during World War II, when home bakers wanted to make dessert without breaking into precious rations. A combination of cheaper ingredients – vinegar, vanilla, oil, and water – was used in place of milk and eggs, which not only created a moist, chocolaty cake, but reduced the overall price drastically. Even today, Wacky Cake costs a little over a dollar to make, and is just ever-so-slightly more complicated than using a boxed mix.
Incidentally, Wacky Cake is also excellent for vegetarians, vegans, and kids with dairy allergies. Top it with a little powdered sugar, and you're good to go.

Read more:

If the economy continues on its downward course, this might be a good recipe to have. If I had a limited number of eggs, I would want them for breakfast, not chocolate cake!

Does this sound like a water cake recipe? I don't feel like getting up to get mine.

Your turn
Have you made a wacky cake or a water cake? Have you tried many Depression era recipes that have substitutions or leave out items we expect in our food?


  1. I love wacky cake. Oh, my gosh, just reading your post about it is making me crave it like crazy!

    I use spelt flour (sensitive to wheat) and it's still good. My neice gave me the greatest idea to add peanut butter frosting lighly sprinkled with coarse salt to top it. Sweet/salt, chocolate/peanut butter ... yummy!! Good grief, Linda, you are going to have me ruining my healthy eating regime! lol

  2. Sue,
    YOU are now making me want it with peanut butter frosting!

    I read a theory that people who are sensitive to wheat might be suffering because it is GMO wheat. Have you ever heard that idea or do you give any credence to it?

    1. I have heard that. That's why I would like to tell everyone I know to give up the commercial wheat (which is cheap) and go back to the older strains (which is more expensive). I think everyone should stop eating GMO's. Most people where I live don't even know what a GMO is. They just look at me like I'm a crazy extemist or something. (It's a very conservative, financially depressed area, and people are set in their old ways.) I just keep my mouth shut now.

      By the way, I'm picking up the ingedients for wacky cake today :-)

  3. Sue,
    You know you have to be careful of those acronums. They could be as radical as the SDS or as tame as the PTA. SDS-Students for a Democratic Society--radical, and dangerous 1960's group for those younguns who don't remember. Or, it could be as tame as the PTA.

    I live in a very conservative area, too. Mostly, it is financially depressed, the second whitest county in the state, and along with that other county, the leading meth cookers and dealers.Thankfully, I live away from that kind of trouble.

    Good, you can eat cake for me! Let us know how it turned out.

  4. Wacky cake was one of the first recipes that we were taught in my junior high home economics class. I LOVED it then and still make it occasionally. The only problem is the cake doesn't keep well.

    I don't think I have ever seen a package of flour that mentions GMOs. I'm guessing that I need to look in a different section than the regular bake isle. Where do you find your flour?

  5. Janet.
    Chocolate cake in Home Ec? I don't think we ever made anything so good! I would have loved it,too.

    I just use regular flour. Sue mentioned non-GMA. I don't seem to have a health problem with flour. I have no idea how to determine if it is GMO. If you figure it out, let me know. Even though I am opposed, I supposed I am not actively avoiding GMO wheat.

  6. I love to bake wacky cake because its one of the few recipes from my grandma that I can make without any vegetarian alterations. It makes me feel close to my mom and grandma.

    Have you ever made it with coffee? My grandma's recipe says you can use cold water or coffee. I never have since we don't have coffee around the house, but I've always been curious.

    For me the excessive use of pesticides and herbicides in wheat cultivation are just as much of a concern as their genetic modification to not be susceptible to the effects of those poisons. Fortunately there is a local Montana grower who, while not certified organic, does not use pesticides/herbicides. Since its not certified it is not much more expensive, but you still lack avoid the questionable bits.

    I might have to go make a nice wacky cake this afternoon now. Yum. I have such a sweet tooth.


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