Do you know how long it’s been that I’ve been searching for my Grandma’s poor man’s cake recipe? Forever! A while back I was looking through all my baking supplies and low and behold, inside an old recipe pamphlet, out falls this recipe. Needless to say, I was SO HAPPY. I remember as a kid going to my Grandma Anne’s house and every time she always had some sort of baked goodies for us kids. Whether it was her “rollie pollies” made from her left over pie crust dough, or this delicious poor man’s cake, she was simply the best at baking delicious treats.
I’ve tried many times over the years trying to make this poor man’s cake like my grandmother used to make. It just never seemed to work. Until now.
This cake recipe is a vintage recipe that some of you might remember. Maybe your grandmother used to make this poor man’s cake like mine did. With this cake, no eggs are needed and basically most of the ingredients are already in your pantry. An easy cake recipe that I think you will enjoy, especially if you love raisins.
Easy Poor Man’s Cake Recipe
Probably the most shocking part of this simple cake recipe is that the star of the show is raisins! Who would have thought that “wrinkled grapes” (as my kids like to call them) could be combined with a cake mix and come out totally epic? In fact, the added sweetness of the raisins makes it a really fun bite to chew.
Don’t’ forget to add the cream cheese frosting to the top! It ties the whole cake recipe perfectly together!
Why do I have to cook the raisins for this recipe first?
There is one main reason, actually. The raisins are cooked because they are probably pretty dehydrated and dried out. And if you bake them without “plumping” them up a little bit, they’re going to dry out even more. Nobody wants a rock hard raisin hiding up in their cake!
Don’t skip this step – it’s important!
How do I know when this cake is done baking?
Just use the simple toothpick method. (or butter knife as we do sometimes in our house!) Once the timer goes off on your oven signaling that it’s done baking, take your toothpick and insert it into the middle of the cake. If the toothpick comes out clean, your cake is done and ready to be pulled from the oven.
If your toothpick is covered in batter, it needs more time to cook!
Do you have to add frosting to the cake?
You don’t have to at all, I just like that extra added bit of sweetness. I find that cream cheese frosting tastes divine with this homemade cake but you could easily do any type of flavor that you want.
If you don’t want to add frosting but are looking for something a little “extra” to add, you can easily add some powdered sugar on top as well.
Who is Grandma Anne?
Like I’ve mentioned above about my Grandma Anne, don’t we all have a “Grandma Anne” somewhere in our family history that was known for her delicious, and sometimes outlandish, cakes? This cake is meant to bring back memories of baking with Grandma to simpler times when the use of ingredients was just as simple, too.
Think of this easy cake recipe as a tribute to grandma bakers all over the world because I’m certain that they’ve probably eaten a raisin cake once or twice in their life and have fond memories of doing so as well.
How do I store leftovers of this Grandma’s Poor Man’s Cake?
More than likely, they’re going to be leftovers of this cake. All you need to do is put the cake in an airtight container and keep it stored in the fridge. This is the best way for the cake and the frosting to maintain the freshest taste and texture possible. (and if you store it in front of all your other food hiding out in the fridge, you can easily grab a piece without anybody knowing it as you walk on by!)
Have fun creating this Grandma Anne’s Poor Man’s Cake! It’s a wonderfully unique cake recipe that delivers time and time again on taste and flavor!
Try This Delicious Poor Man’s Cake Today
Here are a few more delicious and easy recipes that can be found on the blog:
Grandma's Poor Man's Cake
For The Poor Man's Cake
- 12 or 15 oz box raisins
- 3 cups water, divided
- 2 Tbs shortening
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp ginger
- 1 tsp cloves
- 1 tsp nutmeg
- 4 cups flour, divided
- 2 tsp baking soda
For The Cream Cheese Frosting
- 8 oz cream cheese
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 3 cups powdered sugar
- Preheat oven to 350° and spray two 9 x 5 baking pans or a 13 x 9 baking dish with non stick spray. Set aside.
For The Poor Man's Cake
- In a medium sauce pan, cook raisins and shortening in 2 cups water for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool. Do not drain the water.
- Once cooled, add sugar, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, nutmeg. Stir until combined.
- Stir in 2 cups of flour until combined.
- Next add 1 cup of water and 2 more cups of flour. Stir.
- Sprinkle baking soda over mixture and mix until combined.
- Pour into prepared baking dish.
- Cook at 350° for 40-50 minutes or until tooth pick inserted in the center comes out clean. *might need more time, start checking at 40 minutes.
For The Cream Cheese Frosting
- In a large bowl, beat butter and cream cheese together until smooth.
- Add vanilla, mix, then slowly add powdered sugar and beat until creamy.
- Frost cake once it has cooled completely.
Here are a couple pics that are the perfect size for pinning to Pinterest.
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