Slice of tomato soup cake with cream cheese frosting and walnuts on white plate.
Cakes,  Recipes

Old-Fashioned Tomato Soup Cake Recipe

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Step into the charming world of bygone kitchens with our exploration of a timeless treasure: the Tomato Soup Cake. Nestled within the pages of old recipe books and passed down through generations, this unusual concoction harks back to an era of culinary ingenuity. As we dust off the pages and delve into the history of this forgotten gem, prepare to uncover a delightful fusion of flavors that showcases the creativity and resourcefulness of generations past.

Tomato soup cake with cream cheese frosting topped with walnuts.
Tomato soup cake.

This blog post invites you on a journey through time as we unravel the secrets of this peculiar yet surprisingly delicious cake. While tomato soup might not be the first ingredient that comes to mind when baking, it’s this very element that lends a subtle sweetness and moisture to the cake, making it a fascinating testament to the resourceful spirit of homemakers from yesteryears. Whether you’re a history enthusiast or simply seeking an unconventional baking adventure, this recipe promises a flavorful trip down memory lane that you won’t want to miss.


Ingredients for tomato soup cake on wooden board.
Tomato soup cake ingredients.
  • Shortening
  • Sugar
  • Baking Soda
  • Tomato Soup
  • Flour
  • Cinnamon
  • Nutmeg
  • Cloves
  • Baking Powder
  • Raisins
  • Walnuts
  • Cream Cheese
  • Powdered Sugar
  • Vanilla
Ingredients for cream cheese frosting on wooden board.
Ingredients for cream cheese frosting.

Equipment You May Need

Frequently Asked Questions

What exactly is a Tomato Soup Cake? A Tomato Soup Cake is a classic dessert recipe that dates back several decades. Despite the surprising inclusion of tomato soup, this cake offers a unique combination of flavors, resulting in a moist, subtly spiced treat reminiscent of carrot cake.

Can I taste the tomato soup in the cake? No, the tomato soup primarily adds moisture and sweetness to the cake. Once baked, the tomato flavor melds with the spices and other ingredients, resulting in a well-balanced and delicious dessert.

What type of tomato soup should I use? It’s recommended to use condensed tomato soup, without any added flavors or ingredients. This ensures the authentic taste and texture of the vintage recipe.

Can I make this cake ahead of time? Yes, you can bake the cake a day in advance and store it in an airtight container at room temperature. Add the cream cheese frosting just before serving for the best texture and taste.

How should I store the cake? Store the cake in the refrigerator if you’re not serving it immediately. Make sure it’s covered with plastic wrap or stored in an airtight container to prevent it from drying out.

Can I freeze the cake? Yes, you can freeze the cake (unfrosted) for up to two months. Thaw it in the refrigerator before adding the cream cheese frosting.

What occasions is this cake suitable for? Tomato Soup Cake is a versatile dessert that can be enjoyed on various occasions, from family gatherings to special celebrations. Its unique flavor and history make it a conversation starter at any event.

Close up of creamed shortening and sugar in mixer.
Creamed shortening and sugar.
Baking soda and tomato soup mixture.
Baking soda being stirred into tomato soup.
Mixture of shortening, sugar, baking soda, and tomato soup in silver bowl.
Mixture of shortening, sugar, baking soda, and tomato soup.
Mixture in silver bowl.
Mixture of shortening, sugar, baking soda, tomato soup, flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and baking powder.
Mixture in silver bowl.
Mixture of all ingredients before transferring to cake pan.
Mixture in cake pan.
Before going into the oven.
Tomato soup cake in glass cake pan.
Tomato soup cake fresh out of the oven.

Substitutions and Variations

Spice Variations: Adjust the spices to your preference. Increase or decrease the amounts of cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves to customize the flavor.

Sweet Additions: Fold in shredded coconut or chopped dried fruits (apricots, dates, cranberries) for extra sweetness and texture.

Frosting Variations: While cream cheese frosting is classic, you can also use vanilla buttercream or a simple dusting of powdered sugar for a lighter option.

Flavor Extracts: Enhance the cake with a touch of vanilla, almond, or maple extract for additional layers of flavor.

Toppings: Garnish the cream cheese frosting with chopped nuts, a sprinkle of cinnamon, or a drizzle of caramel sauce.

Other Recipes You May Enjoy

If you like Tomato Soup cake, you might like my Mashed Potato Cookies or my Cinnamon Raisin Bread. Another cake you may enjoy is my Cinnamon Crumb Cake. Chai Spiced Sheet Cake and St. Louis Cake are also delicious options. These Kitchen Sink Cupcakes are yummy too.

Final Thoughts

While this cake may sound like an odd idea, it is actually very flavorful and delicious. You cannot taste the tomato soup at all. It enhances the spices and adds to the moisture of the cake without affecting the flavor. If you are curious and like spice cake, you should definitely give it a try.

Slice of tomato soup cake with cream cheese frosting and walnuts on white plate.

Tomato Soup Cake

Heidi Bruaw
Tomato soup cake is a classic cake that tastes like a spice cake with warm spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves. Unexpectedly delicious!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Cooling/Frosting Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 15 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 12


  • ½ Cup Shortening
  • 1 Cup Sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 1 10 ¾ ounce Can Tomato Soup undiluted
  • 2 Cups Flour sifted
  • 1 teaspoon Cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon Nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon Cloves
  • 2 teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 1 Cup Raisins
  • ½ Cup Walnuts chopped

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 1 Package Cream Cheese 3 ounces, softened
  • 1 Cup Powdered Sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla


  • Preheat oven to 350℉.
  • Grease 9-inch square cake pan and set aside.
  • With a mixer, cream shorteningand sugar.
  • In a separate bowl, stir the baking soda into the tomato soup.
  • Add the tomato soup mixture to the creamed mixture and blend with the mixer.
  • Sift the flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and baking powder and then stir into the other mixture.
  • Stir in the raisins and the nuts.
  • Spoon the batter into the 9-inch square cake pan.
  • Bake at 350℉ for 50-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  • Cool completely on a wire cooling rack before frosting.

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • Use a mixer to blend softened cream cheese, powdered sugar, and vanilla.
  • Spread evenly on the cooled cake.
Keyword Tomato Soup Cake
Pinterest pin for tomato soup cake.

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