Depression Cake AKA Wacky Cake

Dairy-free, egg-free Depression Cake is moist and delicious!

Dairy-free, egg-free Depression Cake is moist and delicious! The easiest cake you can make from scratch!

I shared a recipe a while back for a depression cake that was chocolate & coffee flavored.  The pictures were not-so-good, so I decided to make it again to take new pictures.  While I was at it, I thought it would be fun to try to make a vanilla depression cake as well, and I’m glad I did!

Yellow cake with chocolate frosting was the recipe I always chose for my birthday cake as a kid.  And while this recipe is a very light yellow cake, it is still perfectly topped with chocolate perfection.

Dairy-free, egg-free Depression Cake is moist and delicious! The easiest cake you can make from scratch!

You can use any chocolate frosting recipe you would like.  I just used the one from the back of the can of cocoa powder, and made it with shortening in order to keep with the dairy-free theme.  You could also top this depression cake with a strawberry frosting, or a white frosting, or pretty much anything!

This recipe makes a really moist and flavorful cake.  It’s easy to throw together this cake, and probably takes 5 minutes to get it ready and into the oven.  Compared to most cake recipes, this is about as easy as it gets without being from a box!

Dairy-free, egg-free Depression Cake is moist and delicious! The easiest cake you can make from scratch!

The name Depression Cake may come from the fact that eggs and dairy were in short supply during the Depression, so recipes were adapted to be able to make without them.  Or it may be due to the fact that you make depressions in the dry ingredients to add the wet ingredients.  Regardless of where the name came from, it’s a delicious recipe!

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Depression Cake
Prep Time
5 mins
Total Time
40 mins
 
Course: Dessert
Ingredients
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 3 1/4 cups + 2 Tbsp. flour
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 tsp. vinegar
  • 3 tsp. vanilla
  • 10 Tbsp. vegetable or canola oil
  • 2 cups water
  • Chocolate Frosting, Use your favorite recipe
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350º. Grease an 13x9 pan.

  2. Measure dry ingredients into the pan and stir together.
  3. Make one large depression and 2 small depressions in the dry ingredients.
  4. Into the large depression, measure the oil.
  5. Measure vinegar into one small depression and vanilla into the other.
  6. Pour water over everything and stir until no lumps remain.

  7. Bake for 35-45 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.

  8. You can cool and then frost, or for a smoother look put the frosting on while it's hot.

What is your favorite cake for your birthday?

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Dairy-free, egg-free Depression Cake is moist and delicious! The easiest cake you can make from scratch!

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  • Hil D

    Yummy! I could eat half a pan of that right now!!

    Thanks for sharing at #bloggerspotlight!!

    • It is so good! I had a hard time getting pictures, since my family was devouring it!

  • Yellow cake with chocolate frosting was always my birthday cake choice so this looks sooo good! The cake looks really fun to make too!

    • That’s what I always requested for my birthday, too! Such a yummy combo! And I love that this recipe makes it available with dairy or egg allergies!

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