Autumn Spice

I mentioned this recipe on my Facebook page, and I thought I’d share it with blog readers. This is a very easy spice cake to make. It has a wonderful rich aroma and is very dense and moist. I found the recipe in my Grandma Norma’s cookbook from her Swedish Baptist church up in northern Minnesota. Years ago, I decided to make it and take it with me to a bring-a-dish/dessert event.

It was at that event in spring of 1994 that a man with dark hair and warm, twinkly brown eyes came up to me and said, “Are you the one who made the spice cake?” Well, it was Tom, of course. He told me how much he had enjoyed it. Well, this cake is a little part of the story of how we eventually got married. So if you’re looking for the fragrance of spices in  your home today, try this easy recipe. The caramel frosting is as simple as it gets.

2 c. sugar
2 c. water
1 c. raisins
1/2 c. shortening
1 tsp. cloves
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. of allspice
1 tsp. of salt
2 1/2 c. flour
2 tsp. baking soda
2 eggs

Bring to boil the first 8 ingredients. Let it cool off. Then add the flour, soda and eggs. Bake in a 9×13 pan at 350 degrees for 40 minutes. (Make sure the boiled ingredients have cooled enough before adding the flour or the flour will cook making little flour balls.) Frosting is just as easy:

1 c. brown sugar
1/4 c. milk
1/4 c. butter
1 tsp. vanilla
1 c. powdered sugar

Boil first three ingredients for 3 minutes. When cool, add 1 cup of powdered sugar and 1 teaspoon of vanilla.

There you have a rich, spicy cake as easy as can be! Just a warning. You may get an extra kiss from your spouse or kids if you make it…

18 thoughts on “Autumn Spice

  1. Mrs. C says:

    This sounds sooo good! I know those spices would make this house smell scrumptious! My girls and I will definitely try this soon.

    Thank you for sharing!

  2. Charlotte says:

    Hi Ingrid,

    I know you’ve talked about this before, but could you do a comprehansive blog post about all of your favorite books/book series?

    As a big time fan of Carolyn Haywood (yes, I read her books over and over as an adult), I knew instantly when you mentioned the Beany Malone series that you and I were speaking the same language. My husband had a hard time getting the first one in the series on interlibrary loan, but he did it, and I was right! Loving it!

    Would you do that, pretty please? I have this sense that the books in your repetoire are like the oldie but goodie Gospel hymns that people have forgotten about.


  3. Tammi D. says:

    Yum! I’ll be adding this to my list of dessert recipes. Our favorite fall desserts are gingerbread and raw apple cake, both are old recipes, but they wonderfully scent the house and delight the taste-buds.

  4. Charlotte says:

    Share the raw apple cake recipe, please! I’ve got a 1/2 bushel of apples here to deal with!

  5. Lisa K says:

    I have a great apple cake recipe I got off the internet – and super easy, because you leave the peels on!
    I’m wondering if this might be Tammi’s raw apple cake or similar?

  6. Marilyn says:

    Looks so yummy!

    We’ll have to experiment a little with it as my family has had the recent change to a gluten-free life. Thankfully most cakes and quick breads can be easily done, and I just discovered a perfect recipe for gluten-free pie crust!

  7. Ingrid Schlueter says:

    That’s great that there are gluten-free options now! I wanted to mention that those with really hot ovens should be careful not to overbake the cake. I left it in slightly too long yesterday and it was not as moist as usual. This cake is better when it’s slightly under baked actually. You’ll have to see how your oven does with it. Thanks for the link to the gluten-free pie crust. Can you tell me something about the gluten-free diet? Why do people go on that?

  8. Ingrid Schlueter says:

    Hi Charlotte, I can try. I don’t know how comprehensive it will be, but I can give more details if you’d like! I’ll work on it this weekend! I never tire of talking books (as if nobody has noticed…)

  9. paulacummings says:

    Ingrid, How dare you post such a delicious sounding recipe!! Anything with raisons, cinnamon, allspice and brown sugar in it rest assured I will be trying! I think I have made every spice/apple cake imaginable by this point, but just in case I’ll be trying it. There is a recipe for a caramel apple cake in the october edition of the Food Network Magazine, which used golden delicious apples (with the skin on)Here is the link: I have found this magazine to have some great recipes.

  10. Ingrid Schlueter says:

    Ha ha, thanks Paula. You know things are rough out there when spice cake recipes earn me hate mail. 😉 Thanks for your culinary back-up. I’ll check out the link that you posted. It sounds wonderful!

  11. Marilyn says:


    There are a couple of reasons for a gluten-free diet, one is gluten sensitivity (causing symptoms like irritable bowel syndrome) and the other is celiac disease.

    A person with celiac disease cannot digest gluten (present in wheat, rye and barley) and it damages the digestive tract causing malabsorption of nutrients.

  12. marilyn says:

    I made this cake and it is the best smelling and tasting dessert I have had in a very, very long time!!! Thanks for sharing.

  13. Charlotte says:

    I made the cake this weekend for a Sunday dinner with friends. Everyone LOVED it! Thanks!

  14. Melinda says:

    I made this cake this week-end, substituting dried apples for the raisins, as we are not raisin fans! It was delicious, especially the caramel icing. It reminded my DH and I of all the church dinners we went to as children. There was always a spice cake with caramel icing that one of the older ladies had made. I especially loved it when the icing would harden and crack as you cut it, like candy! Thanks for sharing this with us1

  15. Peta Slaney says:

    Made the cake yesterday and it is fantastic it gets better with age, so my husband tells me…will make that one again and again! Thank you for sharing

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