Chocolate Vinegar Cake


Growing up, my mom often made what she called Vinegar Cake. As a kid I didn’t think the name was strange. Now I realize that what she called Vinegar Cake is more often called Depression Cake or Crazy Cake. During the Depression Era, this cake was a favorite since it didn’t need eggs, butter, or milk, which were all in short supply.

Chocolate Vinegar Cake


3 cups all-purpose flour

2 cups white sugar

1 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons baking soda

1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

3/4 cup vegetable oil

2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

2 cups cold water


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

Sift flour, sugar, salt, soda, and cocoa directly into a 9″x13″ un-greased cake pan.

Make three wells in the dry ingredients that are in the pan. Pour oil into one well, vinegar into the second well, and vanilla into the third well.

Pour the cold water over everything and stir with a fork to mix completely.

Bake the cake right away because the chemical reaction from the vinegar and baking soda produces bubbles of carbon dioxide and causes the cake to rise.

Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Allow the cake to cool before frosting.

Servings: 18

Coffee Buttercream

1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup butter, room temperature
1/3 cup cocoa powder
1/4 cup brewed coffee
With a mixer, whip the powdered sugar, butter, cocoa, and brewed coffee.

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