One Pan Chocolate Pumpkin Thanksgiving Wacky Cake

One Pan Chocolate Pumpkin Thanksgiving Wacky Cake

A few days ago, my mom suggested that I try out my grandma’s wacky cake recipe.  Wacky cakes were developed during the Depression to deal with the scarcity of staples like eggs and butter.  Wacky cakes are good recipes to add to your arsenal since they can be made inexpensively with items you typically keep in the house.

This Thanksgiving dessert is a play on my grandma’s wacky cake recipe and adds pumpkin puree to an already moist and delicious cake.  And, if that wasn’t enough, you can make the whole dessert in one pan, without dirtying a single bowl!

one pan wacky cake

That’s right!  You mix up all the ingredients for the wacky cake RIGHT IN THE 9×13 PAN!  No need to dirty a mixing bowl for this bad boy.  Begin by adding all the dry ingredients to the pan and mixing them all together.  Use a fork to create three troughs in the dry mix.

add wet ingredients to wacky cake

Add the vinegar to one trough, the oil to the next, and the vanilla to the third.  I don’t know why you do this.  My grandma’s recipes says to, so just do it, mkay?

mix wacky cake in the pan

Finally dump in the pumpkin and water and stir everything together until it is totally mixed.  You will probably get some mess on the sides of the pan.  Don’t worry about that because the cake will rise pretty well in the pan.

Bake the whole thing for 45 minutes in a 350 degree oven.  A toothpick inserted into the middle of the cake should come out clean when it’s done.

chocolate pumpkin wacky cake

This cake is unbelievably moist and delicious.  It’s far more pudding-y than cake-y, which is ideal in my book.  The pumpkin takes a backseat to the cocoa, but you can definitely tell that it’s in there.

The cake really DOES NOT need frosting; just a light dusting of powdered sugar would serve you just fine.  However, I had half a container of Bettercreme frosting in my fridge left over from my daughter’s Mickey Mouse party, so I decided to go big.

Chocolate Pumpkin Wacky Cake Thanksgiving Dessert

This recipe is also great if you are feeding people with dietary restrictions, as it contains NO milk or eggs.  Technically, it is also vegan, depending on your feelings about how white sugar is processed.  Finally, you can rationalize having a second piece of cake by telling yourself that it contains vegetables and is, therefore, healthy.

I’m here to serve, friends.

Thanksgiving Recipes to Be Thankful for

Speaking of which, if you are looking for more delicious treats, check out these Thanksgiving recipes from some of my bloggy friends!  Just add turkey and stuffing!

APPETIZER:  Douple Dipping: Homemade French Onion & Beef Dips on Always Expect Moore

VEGETABLE:  Creamy Corn Casserole on The Country Chic Cottage

SALAD:  Cranberry Apple Pineapple Salad on Mom Endeavors

DESSERT:  Oven-Fried Apples on Mrs. Greene


2 cups flour

2 cups sugar

1 1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 cup cocoa

Mix all these dry ingredients together in an UNGREASED 9×13 pan.  With a fork, create three trenches in the dry mix.  Add the following ingredients, each it its own trench:

1 1/2 tsp vanilla

1/2 cup oil

1 1/2 T. vinegar

Dump one 15 ounce can of pure pumpkin and 1 cup of water on top of all.  Mix thoroughly in the 9×13 pan.

Bake at 350 for 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean.

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Thanks,  Jessica Hill

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