Crazy Cake or Wacky Cake Recipe

This Crazy Cake or Wacky Cake Recipe is a delicious simple chocolate cake recipe that has no eggs and no milk but bakes up into a moist, decadent cake!

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Crazy Cake or Wacky Cake, also known as Depression Cake or Vinegar Cake, is a simple chocolate cake recipe that happens to be vegan thanks to a lack of eggs, milk and butter. This one bowl simple cake is so dense and delicious that you won’t believe that you can mix it up in mere minutes!

IF you are looking for another easy vintage cake, try my root beer soda cake!

slices of Crazy Cake or Wacky Cake in a blue designed dessert plate

How to Make Crazy Cake or Wacky Cake

This is literally the easiest chocolate cake that you are ever going to make. I swear that every Girl Guide has made this at one point or another as you can take the ingredients camping with you – there are no perishable ingredients! To make a wacky cake you need to:

  • Combine all of the cake ingredients into a bowl and mix it up. If you were in Girl Guides you would literally mix it in the pan to save a bowl!
  • Bake in the oven until a cake tester or toothpick inserted comes out clean.

That is IT. The easiest chocolate cake ever!

2 slices of Wacky cake in a plate ready to enjoy!

Wacky cake is a great cake to whip up in a hurry or when you don’t want to use a cake mix to bake a cake up for a recipe. It’s a great one to have in your back pocket for emergencies! It’s also perfect for people that are vegan or have dairy or egg allergies as they can have their cake and eat it too! To frost it you can make my Buttercream Frosting recipe or my Vegan Buttercream Frosting if you are looking to make an entirely vegan cake.

Who else made this cake as a kid? I swear it was in a Girl Guide handout or something, that’s what I remember it from! Or wait, maybe did we all make this for a baking badge or something?? Hmmm. That might be it!

Happy baking!



Crazy Cake or Wacky Cake Recipe

This Crazy Cake or Wacky Cake Recipe is a delicious simple chocolate cake recipe that has no eggs and no milk but bakes up into a moist, decadent cake!
4.94 from 32 votes
2 slices of Wacky cake in a plate ready to enjoy!
Prep Time
5 minutes
Cook Time
25 minutes
Total Time
30 minutes
Karlynn Johnston


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


  • Preheat your oven to 350 °F.
  • Whisk together the dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl. 
  • Add in the wet ingredients then stir until smooth.
  • Pour into an ungreased 9×13 pan.
  • Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes or until a cake tester inserted comes out clean.
  • Cool in the pan and serve from the pan.

Recipe Notes

This is a great recipe for the kids! 

Nutrition Information

Calories: 299kcal, Carbohydrates: 43g, Protein: 2g, Fat: 14g, Saturated Fat: 11g, Sodium: 305mg, Potassium: 76mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 25g, Calcium: 9mg, Iron: 1.5mg

All calories and info are based on a third party calculator and are only an estimate. Actual nutritional info will vary with brands used, your measuring methods, portion sizes and more.

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This Crazy Cake or Wacky Cake Recipe is a delicious simple chocolate cake recipe that has no eggs and no milk but bakes up into a moist, decadent cake! #chocolatecake #vegan #cake

Karlynn Johnston

I’m a busy mom of two, wife & cookbook author who loves creating fast, fresh meals for my little family on the Canadian prairies. Karlynn Facts: I'm allergic to broccoli. I've never met a cocktail that I didn't like. I would rather burn down my house than clean it. Most of all, I love helping YOU get dinner ready because there's nothing more important than connecting with our loved ones around the dinner table!

Learn more about me

Site Index Chocolate cake Vegan Vintage recipe

Reader Interactions

Comments & Recipe Tips Share a tip or comment!

  1. Em P says

    I came across this recipe while stuck inside due to the weather and having a bare kitchen. I added an extra 1/4 cup of cocoa and an extra teaspoon of vanilla extract. I topped the cake with a boiled cocoa icing. It was absolutely delicious. So moist and fudgy. It’s my husband’s new favorite cake.5 stars

  2. teresa wojdyla says

    Very good moist cake! I have made this cake many times but could not find my recipe. I followed this one which is pretty much the same as mine was except for the baking time of 25 min is not long enough. I checke at 30 mins and it was not even close to being done. I would say 45 to 50 mins is more like the tme, andI have a fairly “hot running” oven.4 stars

  3. Irene Tomko says

    Mom and I made these Crazy Cakes 70 years ago. My Dad loved dessert after every meal and my Mom loved chocolate. This is a great, moist cake that doesn’t take a lot of care (like many desserts require!) nor many ingredients but it is soooo good. Mix it up before my oven can reach temperature; it’s that simple!5 stars

  4. Alayne says

    My English mother called this whacky cake. First cake I ever baked 45 years ago. Still as good as ever!5 stars

    • April Leasa says

      Actually it’s not the easiest way. We grew up making this cake and the original recipe is mixed right in the cake pan you bake it in. So no mixing bowl required.

  5. JACKIE CARON says

    can the cake be halved and one part made with rum and one part made with burbon?

  6. Thomas Long says

    Crazy cake was our go to cake recipe when I grew up in the 50’s. Mixing in a 9 X 13 pan was simple for clean up AND it was a great tasting cake.5 stars

    • Deborah says

      I was checking out your site for baking time as my recipe is bare bones & slightly different than yours.only makes an 8 x 8 or whatever that standard square pan but uses only 5 tbsp oil – yours seems like a lit of oil!

  7. Barbara says

    This was the chocolate cake our school cafeteria used to serve in the early ‘60s when I was in junior/senior high school! It was so good that parents asked for the recipe and I have the original one that I still use for birthdays in our family. The recipe says to use the 9”x13” pan to mix the ingredients in so there no other mixing bowl and to mix it all up with a fork. It was called both Crazy Cake and Economy Cake and it’s the moistest chocolate cake you’ll ever eat.5 stars

  8. Gayla Cox says

    Remember mixing dry ingredients in pan, making three holes with spoon for the vanilla, vinegar and oil and pouring water over all and mixing. Taught this to many 5th grade girls In The 60’s. Today my granddaughter is Vegan and remembered this old recipe.

  9. Pat says

    Mad this xake when i was 12. Now im 60. Made it tonight. Still the same great crazy cake I remember. Let cool sprinkle with fine powder sugar. Yum5 stars

  10. Kerry says

    Hi! What do you use to measure your water and oil? The same cup for measuring flour or a liquid measurement cup? My dry measurement cup has 1 cup (236 ml) printed on it and I used that to measure both the flour and water for this recipe.

  11. Margo Haynes says

    Hi, Debbie Burgess, while I’m not Karlynn, I’m Margo Haynes & curious too so I started
    This is from the King Arthur Flour site, just copy & paste in the URL line, they also have a bunch of great looking recipes at their link for paleo flour. You also find that you can chat online with them or use their toll free number actually talk with them. I love their flours, The specialty flours you have to order from them online.
    I also found this site at They also recommend King Arthur’s Paleo Flour.
    King Arthur Flour Paleo Flour, Gluten Free Certified, Non Gmo Certified, 1-to-1 All Purpose Flour Substitute, 16 oz. by King Arthur Flour
    4.6 out of 5 stars 65 ratings | 6 answered questions
    I found also that recommends King Arthur Flour & while they have it on sale for $9 & a few cents the shipping is free but the “fly in the ointment ladies is that your purchase of the Paleo flour must be accompanied with an extra $25 in purchases.
    I have used King Arthur flour since 2009. I am 83 & even though their specialty flours are not in the grocery stores & I have to order directly from them. I don’t use anything but King Arthur flours. (they are NOT paying me to say that) You will find they produce an excellent flour. ; )

  12. says

    Do you have recipe for 8×8” square cake?

    • Amanda says

      Just cut the recipe in half. Any recipe I’ve made in the past that calls for an 8×8 pan I just double the recipe and use a 9×13 pan. So the same would work in reverse.5 stars

  13. Bruce says

    Back 65 years or so my Mother used to make this cake. This brings back a whole lot of memories. Thank you so much! Gonna make some this weekend.

  14. MaryAnn Smith says

    I make this exact cake all the time. It’s great in a pinch and can be made gluten free easily.
    A sprinkle of powdered sugar and it’s amazing with coffee.
    Yes you can have your cake and eat it for breakfast!

    Thanks for sharing!5 stars

  15. Debbie says

    I grew up on British Columbia! I know live in the USA. I have a brother and sister in Edmonton.
    I grew up making a LOT of Crazy cakes ( I was also a GirlGuide). Today I’m going to teach my 6 year old son to make a cake Father’ Dat.

    • Debbie says

      Sorry about the typos. I hate autocorrect ? My fault for not reading what I wrote….

      • Karen Meehan says

        My grandson is allergic to eggs and I found this recipe. I make homemade chocolate frosting for it. Our whole family loves it. When I told him it tasted like brownies, he was amazed at what it tasted like as he’s never had brownies before because they call for eggs. Imagine going 11 years and no brownies! Thank you so much!5 stars

  16. Lynn says

    OMG – AMAZING!!!!! I used your recipe for the Whacky Cake because I’m making your rum balls. If those turn out even half as good as this cake has my neighbors (and me) will be so happy. Planning to take these around to everyone on Christmas Eve. Thank you for sharing these recipes.

  17. DeShon says

    So happy to see this! My mom used to whip up “Wacky Cupcakes “ anytime we needed something for school. Thanks.5 stars

  18. Debbie Burgess says

    Just a quick question, can you substitute 1 for 1 gluten free flour for the all purpose flour? I have a customer looking for a recipe like this but wants to know as well as I do.4 stars

    • Nancy Kenaston says

      I do 1/2 cup brown rice flour, 1/2 cup white rice flour, 1/4 cup tapioca flour/starch & 1/4 cup sweet rice flour plus 1 tsp. xanthan gum. Works great! 🙂5 stars

4.94 from 32 votes (19 ratings without comment)

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