Vanilla Crazy Cake gets its name from how CRAZY easy it is to make! This delicious white cake is egg-free, dairy-free, and hassle-free. Best of all, this adapted recipe makes just two small slices–perfect for a quick & cozy indulgence! Adapted from Totally the Bomb.
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of crazy, it was the age of crazy cake, it was the epoch of belief that this crazy cake is the best thing that will happen to you this year.
While it still irks me that one of the most famous sentences in all of English literature is a grammatical run-on, I’ll forgo my inner Christmas Scrooge for a moment so that we can appreciate the wisdom of Dickens’ dessert choices here. Although Charles Dickens would have you believe that most Victorians ran around gobbling up “goose and plum pudding” for Christmas (see A Christmas Carol!), most holiday fare was considered a luxury and premium items such as fresh butter, eggs, or milk would have been in short supply for most ordinary folks. So, as I was saying…
Haaave you met this Vanilla Crazy Cake?
Vanilla Crazy Cake gets its bizarre name from–I kid you not–its crazy simplicity. While it wasn’t actually a popular cake during the Victorian Era, it was a hit during the Great Depression, a time when fresh ingredients such as eggs and butter were mostly inaccessible. All you need is flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, vinegar, oil, and vanilla!
These days, though, I find the idea of baking a full cake–even a crazy easy cake–exhausting, especially since it’s just Wallflour Boy and me hunkering down together, fighting a never-ending battle against the (increasingly less) stretchy bands of our sweatpants. So instead of making one ginormous cake that we’d be eating for weeks on end, I made this adorable two-serving layer cake instead.
Vegan, two-slice vanilla cake? Hark, the New Year’s Resolution Angels sing!
If the idea of a two-slice layer cake sounds crazy–well, it kind of is, and I’m kind of head-over-heels in love with the concept! Erika from The Pancake Princess (who is a true baking goddess, by the way–definitely check out her blog ASAP) has been making single-slice layer cakes since 2013 and I’ve always admired her towering single-serve creations from afar, so we were particularly excited to try this baking hack.
Our verdict? A resounding YES to single-slice cakes forever. While I prefer to make two 3-layer cake slices (ostensibly so that I can share–but sometimes I devour both slices anyway), you can always turn this into a single-slice 6-layer cake if you’re feeling extra indulgent.
After all, it’s been a crazy year. And crazy times call for Crazy Cake, right?
Finally, a cake that even Ebenezer Scrooge could be proud of.
Happy holidays, everyone!
For the cake:
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup white sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- A pinch of salt
- 1/3 teaspoon white vinegar
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1/3 cup water
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
For the cake:
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line an 8-inch round baking pan with lightly-greased parchment paper and set aside.
- In a small mixing bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt. Add remaining ingredients until just combined. Pour batter into prepared pan.
- Bake in preheated oven for 17-23 minutes, until toothpick inserted in center comes out mostly clean with moist crumbs clinging to it. Allow cake to cool for 10 minutes before removing from pan, carefully peeling off parchment paper, and transferring cake to cooling rack.
- Once cake has cooled completely, cut it into six even wedges. Frost one wedge with your choice of frosting (I personally love this cream cheese frosting, but feel free to use vegan buttercream to keep it vegan-friendly), then stack a second wedge on top. Frost second wedge as well, then top with third wedge to create your first cake slice. Repeat with remaining wedges and frosting for second slice. Enjoy!