If you've had a chance to visit Amish Country in Lancaster, PA, you might be familiar with shoofly pie. This Amish Shoofly cake recipe is similar to the shoofly pie. It is a deliciously moist molasses cake.
Shoofly cake has a lot of the same ingredients as the pie, including that wonderful molasses flavor. But pies take a little longer to make, especially if you use homemade crusts. And baking a pie may feel more intimidating than baking a cake.
So here is a recipe for shoofly cake that is super easy and quick to make.
Pennsylvania Shoofly Cake
Shoofly cake and shoofly pie are both very popular with the Lancaster County Amish.
Many Amish homes serve shooflies for breakfast. And we always ate ours covered in milk, almost like it was cereal. We poured milk on to add moisture to the dry crumbs that were on the top. And I still like to eat it with milk, although I like it even more with a cup of coffee.
This shoofly cake recipe is great to eat at any time of the day or night :). I love it with coffee for breakfast, but you can also serve it for dessert with any meal.
I didn't make any shoofly for a long time, and I forgot how much I love it! It is addicting! Whenever I make it, I can't stop eating it.
And I'll probably make this shoofly cake quite frequently because it takes very little time and effort to make, and I am in love with it. I know, it's not healthy and I shouldn't eat it. But it's so good!!
Molasses Crumb Cake
I never thought of it before, but I guess as Amish in Lancaster County, we ate quite a bit of molasses in different recipes that we often used. And I love the flavor of good molasses, especially in baked goods.
Some of the Amish make their church peanut butter spread with Karo syrup, but we always made ours with molasses. Find my Amish peanut butter recipe here.
There is a Golden Barrel Molasses Company in Honey Brook, PA (my hometown), so we had access to good molasses locally. And we always used their molasses, which is some of the best tasting.
Here is an affiliate link for Golden Barrel molasses, in case you're interested...
King syrup is another great light-tasting option.
Cake with Molasses
This Amish molasses cake recipe is easy to make. Simply mix the brown sugar, flour, and butter to make fine crumbs. You can crumble this mixture in your Kitchen Aid mixing bowl with the paddle attachment or use a pastry blender.
Save two cups of crumbs for the top.
In a separate bowl, combine the boiling water and soda. Then add the salt and molasses. Mix well.
Add this mixture to the remaining crumb mixture. Stir or whisk to combine. And pour the mixture into a greased 9x13" pan.
Starting at the edges, sprinkle the reserved crumbs on the top. Bake at 350 degrees for about 40 - 45 minutes. Cool.
And that's it, now you have an Amish shoofly cake (molasses cake) to enjoy!
You can store this cake at room temperature for at least a week. It's never lasted any longer than that at my house, so I don't know exactly how long it will last?
But if you don't think you'll get it all eaten within a week, I would suggest putting a few pieces in the freezer to keep it fresh for later.
Updated Recipe (July 2022)...
Prior to creating this blog post, I had made this shoofly cake several times. It always turned out great, but I noticed that it never turns out exactly the same.
Now I've made this shoofly cake several times since then, and I've been trying to figure out what makes the difference in the results? (Sometimes it's wetter on the bottom, sometimes most of the crumbs sink, etc.)
I've been playing around and updated the recipe. You may notice the difference in my latest photo. Hope you enjoy it!
You may also want to try my Wet-bottom Shoofly Pie recipe or my Amish sticky buns recipe
Amish Shoofly Cake
- 2 scant c. brown sugar
- 2 sticks butter (or 1 c. shortening)
- 4 c. all-purpose flour
- 2 c. boiling water
- 2 1/2 tsp. baking soda
- 1 1/2 c. Golden Barrel unsulfured baking molasses (or any light-tasting molasses)
- 1 tsp. salt
- Preheat oven to 350°.
- Mix brown sugar, flour, and butter with a pastry blender until you have fine crumbs.2 scant c. brown sugar, 4 c. all-purpose flour, 2 sticks butter (or 1 c. shortening)
- Reserve two cups of the crumbs for the top.
- Combine the boiling water and baking soda, then add the molasses and salt. Mix well.1 1/2 c. Golden Barrel unsulfured baking molasses (or any light-tasting molasses), 2 c. boiling water, 2 1/2 tsp. baking soda, 1 tsp. salt
- Mix the molasses mixture with the remaining crumbs. And pour this into a greased 9x13" baking dish.
- Starting at the edges, scatter the reserved 2 cups of crumbs over the top.
- Bake for about 45 - 50 minutes. Cool and enjoy.