Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Apple Crazy Cake (No Butter, Eggs, Milk or Mess) ~ Inspired by the Depression Era Recipe (aka Wacky Cake) w/ GF Option

“In Heaven, it is always Autumn".”
~ John Donne

This is my most favorite of our crazy cake creations yet! The brown sugar sinks a bit to the bottom giving the cake a "layered" caramel apple taste of fall! And what better way to use up those mealy apples than in a seasonal surprise for your family! It is easy to make in 7 steps -- and don't forget that it is frugal, egg-free, butter-free, milk-free and can even be gluten-free (meaning you will most likely have all the ingredients in your basic pantry!).

Dry Ingredients: 
  • 1 1/2 c. + 2 tbsp. flour  (all purpose or gluten-free flour blend)
  • 3/4 c. white sugar
  • 1/4 c. brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. baking soda (use 1 1/2 tsp. is using gluten-free flour blend)
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
Wet Ingredients:

  • 5 tbsp. vegetable oil (we use sunflower)
  • 1 tsp. white vinegar (use apple cider vinegar for gluten-free version)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 c. water
  • 1 1/2 c. shredded apples

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease an 8 by 8 inch square baking pan.

Measure out and mix all the dry ingredients together in your prepared baking pan. Make three wells in the baking pan (making sure one is large enough to contain the oil). Pour the oil into the largest well and the vinegar and vanilla separately into the other impressions. Pour water over all the contents, add the shredded apples and carefully mix your ingredients until combined and smooth. 

Bake for 35 - 40 minutes (it is finished when a toothpick inserted inside the center comes out clean). Cool on wire rack. Once it is completely cooled, you may frost it. Recipe can be doubled – just use a 9 by 13 inch baking pan.

You will find your free printable recipe HERE! Happy homemaking!

For other recipes featuring PANTRY ONLY ingredients, you may also be interested in our Zucchini Crazy Cake, Chocolate Banana Crazy Cake, Banana Crazy Cake, Carrot Crazy Cake, Old Fashioned Pie Crust and for more inspiration -- Frugal Homemaking Lessons from the Great Depression.


  1. That cake looks so delicious. I must try it. Thanks for sharing and thanks for hosting a pre blog party. Happy Autumn.

  2. A good morning to you, sweet friend! I have not made an apple cake in ages! This one looks simply wonderful!

    It was so good to sop by for a visit. I hope you've had a nice summer and I trust you are enjoying your time away with family right now.

    Hugs to you, dear JES!

  3. This cake looks delicious. I've been hungry for something with fresh apples. This just might be it!

  4. Thank you so much for sharing! I love making wacky cakes and we make them into lemon and orange cakes as well. Now we can make them with apples. Yum! We just got fresh orchard apples at the grocery store, so perhaps it's the perfect time to make one!

  5. So nice to see other flavors of Wacky Cake! My mom always made the chocolate version when I was a child and I don't like it.
    Saving this to my recipe file :-)

    Davette B.

  6. Yum! Saw this on the Homestead Hop. Thanks for sharing.

  7. This looks easy to make,I'll try it out.It looks healthier and I like the frugal bit.Thanks

  8. Thank you for this! :) I'm going to print it out and give it a try one day soon! :)

  9. This looks really good. I'd like to try it sometime with apples from my orchard. Pinning for later when I deserve a treat.

  10. JES wanted to let you know I made this cake when my house filled with family evacuees from Hurricane Irma. I used some ripe pears I had on hand in place of the apple, ginger instead of cinnamon and the cake drew raves. Adults all had second pieces (I doubled the recipe) and children ate all of their pieces. The double recipe easily fed 10 folks two meals of desserts plus the extras the adults had as a snack the first evening.

    1. So glad to hear that!!! Your substitions sound wonderful! I so appreciate you sharing the feedback! Have a lovely week :)

  11. Thank you for posting this! I made it and it was excellent! I think the recipe is foolproof, because I mixed up the wet ingredients in a bowl and added the apples, took a break, then came back and stirred in the dry ingredients.

  12. This may be a silly question, but how do you shred the apples? Could you use apple sauce or would that mess with the consistency of the cake?

    1. Hi there! I used a cheese grater to shred them. Using applesauce would probably add in too much liquid into the cake which may affect positive results... I hope this helps! ~ JES :)

  13. Thank you for the cake recipe. x

  14. Looks really moist and delicious. I think I may need to make some this weekend!

  15. Hi JES! :)
    Wow this looks yummy! What kind of frosting is on the cake?

    1. This was a traditional cream cheese frosting -- completely taking away the dairy-free on the cake ;) but it sure was good!!!


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