Shoofly Cake Recipe, Amish Molasses Cake


Shoofly Cake

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.

shoofly cake ingredients

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 9×13″ 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.

Amish Shoofly cake

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

Shoofly Cake is a moist molasses cake that is similar to shoofly pie. This is a well-known breakfast dessert among the Lancaster County Amish. It pairs perfectly with a cup of coffee.
4.67 from 3 votes
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 45 mins
Total Time 1 hr
Course Breakfast, Dessert
Cuisine Amish
Servings 20 people
Calories 305 kcal


  • 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 9×13" 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.


If you prefer, you can mix the flour, brown sugar, and butter in your mixer with the paddle attachment to make the crumbs. 
Store at room temperature for up to a week. And you can also place some into an airtight container and freeze it for later.
This recipe has been edited (July 2022).


Serving: 1servingCalories: 305kcalCarbohydrates: 49gProtein: 5gFat: 10gSaturated Fat: 6gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 24mgSodium: 345mgPotassium: 313mgFiber: 1gSugar: 13gVitamin A: 282IUCalcium: 47mgIron: 3mg
Keyword Amish Molasses Cake, Amish shoofly cake, Shoofly Cake recipe
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12 thoughts on “Shoofly Cake Recipe, Amish Molasses Cake

  1. 4 stars
    Just made this for the first time. Took 50 minutes and most of the crumbs stayed on top. Can’t wait to try this. I Love shoofly pie.

  2. I love this recipe. This cake is so delicious and moist. My only problem is 75% of my crumbs sink. I have tried keeping more crumbs out, I have tried baking it 15min. then putting more crumbs on it, but neither of the options have worked. Do u have any ideas. Thanks

    1. To tell you the truth, I have baked this cake numerous times and it never turns out exactly the same. I’ve been trying to figure out what makes the difference and I have not gotten it figured out yet. It’s always good, just not exactly the same.

  3. Just wanted to say I was born and raised in Lancaster (still live here, near Mountville) and really love your blog if recipes! I also enjoyed reading your story. Glad you decided to take up blogging 🙂 I’ve always appreciated a good, home-cooked meal and I know the local PA Dutch make some amazing foods!

  4. 5 stars
    EASY. and just like a true wet bottom pie but in cake form without rolling dough. 9 x13 pan means larger quantity at one time baking it.

  5. SO glad to find this cake versus pie recipe for shoo fly. Made this cake using Golden Barrel Supreme unsulfured baking molasses in 9×13 aluminum cake pan. 45 min at 350. Since i assume you have made this several times, would like your suggestions for next time i make this. i see directions say ‘about 45 min’. When i took out of oven at 45 min and did toothpick check in center of cake, toothpick came out clean so i assumed it was ‘done’. However, when cutting the cake, the corner edges were runny without a crumb bottom (like a wet bottom shoo fly) but the closer you get to the center there is a perfect crumb bottom. So question is … when you pour the hot liquid molasses mix over the crumb layer, even tho doing it slowly, should it be perhaps be cooled down a little first ? It was hard to decide to let it bake a little longer since center was perfect and the dark color (from molasses) that comes thru on the edges when taking out of oven makes you think ‘it’s done on edges’. Perhaps it was even my thicker bottom aluminum pan causing this. Anyhow… this turned out as a perfect wet bottom pie in cake form if omitting about 4 inches in from the 9 x 13 pan runny areas.

    1. Honestly, I made this three times in the past few months. Each time it turned out a little differently. I will play around more with this recipe to see if I can figure out what makes the difference. Sometimes it’s wetter on the bottom than others. I will try mixing my crumbs and liquid, except some for the top. I’ll adjust the recipe as I figure it out.

      1. 5 stars
        made AGAIN and turned out great. and the last time, i divided the batter into three 2 lb aluminum loaf pans and baked at same time in oven and they all came out perfectly. had one to eat, one to freeze and one to give away.

  6. I purchased the black strap molasses. What is the difference between it and the baking molasses. Can they be used interchangeably?

    BTW, I’m from Lancaster & Chester counties in PA. We moved to TN 7 years ago. I’m enjoying your blog.

    1. Blackstrap molasses has a lot stronger flavor. You may want to add corn syrup to it to tame it down a bit unless you love that strong flavor. I’m glad you are enjoying my blog!

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