Chocolate Depression Cake

Chocolate Depression Cake

Chocolate Depression Cake is a simple, yet delicious recipe that originated during the Great Depression era when ingredients like eggs and butter were scarce. Here’s how you can prepare it:


  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup water


  1. Preheat Your Oven: Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Grease an 9-inch square baking pan or line it with parchment paper.
  2. Mix Dry Ingredients: In a large mixing bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt. Make sure they are well combined.
  3. Make Wells: Create two small wells or holes in the dry ingredients mixture. One for the vinegar and one for the vanilla extract.
  4. Add Wet Ingredients: Pour the vinegar into one well and the vanilla extract into the other. Then, pour the vegetable oil over the entire mixture.
  5. Pour Water: Pour the water over everything in the bowl.
  6. Mix: Stir all the ingredients together until they are well combined. Make sure there are no lumps in the batter.
  7. Bake: Pour the batter into the prepared baking pan. Place it in the preheated oven and bake for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  8. Cool and Serve: Once baked, remove the cake from the oven and let it cool in the pan for a few minutes. Then transfer it to a wire rack to cool completely.
  9. Optional: You can dust the cake with powdered sugar, top it with whipped cream, or drizzle it with chocolate sauce before serving.
  10. Serve: Cut into squares and serve. Enjoy your Chocolate Depression Cake!

This cake is known for its moist and tender crumb despite not containing any eggs or dairy. It’s a perfect option for vegans or those with dietary restrictions, and it’s also a nostalgic treat harkening back to simpler times.

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