Tomato Soup Cake (Oklahoma, 1970s)


This bizarre spice cake recipe has a minor cult following online, a trend that Campbell’s has embraced wholeheartedly.   Campbell’s takes credit for inventing the recipe in the late 1920s and making continuous tweaks and updates to “evolve the recipe with trends in the culinary world”.   I personally have no nostalgia for this cake.  Condensed soup was certainly not beneath us, but my mother didn’t bake and my grandmother simply had good judgment.

Truth be told it is not awful, just unnecessary.  I can think of an easy way to improve on it:  omit the tomato soup and make a decent spice cake.

For interested parties an updated version from the Campbell’s company is available online.

Tomato Soup Cake (Oklahoma, 1970s)

  • Preparation: 15 min
  • Cooking: 30 min
  • Ready in: 45 min

Ingredients

For the cake

For the icing

Instructions

For the cake

  1. Mix dry ingredients thoroughly. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Cream shortening, sugar, and egg. Add about a quarter of the dry ingredients and mix, followed by a small amount of the undiluted soup. Continue adding dry ingredients and soup alternately, stirring with each addition, until all ingredients are well mixed. Add ingredients to a lightly greased 8x8 pan.
  3. Bake at 350 F for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

For the icing

  1. Bring the cream cheese to room temperature. Add vanilla, then whisk or mix in powdered sugar until icing reaches desired consistency.

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