Tomato soup spice cake is topped with a luscious cream cheese frosting for a classic dessert that’s easy to make.
Based on a recipe printed on Campbell’s tomato soup cans in the 1950s, magical tomato soup cake is an old-fashioned favorite.
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Most of us are pretty content when served a slice of old-fashioned carrot cake but would probably think twice before diving into a slice of tomato soup cake. It’s funny how our minds readily accept one but not the other.
I concur that it sounds a little wacky, but Campbell’s tomato soup cake is a tasty spice cake with a deep rich flavor and a warm, slightly reddish hue, thanks to the secret ingredient.
What does tomato soup cake taste like? If you are a little hesitant, rest assured that the tomato soup merely adds moisture, so your cake won’t taste like tomatoes.
The flavors of the cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice are what really shines through. I promise you’ll have no desire to dunk a grilled cheese sandwich into the batter.
This old-fashioned spice cake (with optional walnuts and raisins, if you’d like) is topped with a decadent cream cheese frosting. This scrumptious dessert is comfort food and perfect for a picnic, church supper and even for serving guests.
It’s a “mystery cake” that’s sure to satisfy your sweet tooth!
More Old-Fashioned Desserts
- Easy Preacher Cake
- Homemade Granny Cake
- Vanilla Mayonnaise Cake
- Old Fashioned Peanut Butter Cake with Chocolate Frosting
- Southern Apricot Nectar Cake
Tomato Soup Cake History
Have you ever used a recipe you found on a can?
In the 1950s, a recipe for tomato soup cake appeared on the can of Campbell’s Tomato Soup for a spice cake that used, you guessed it, tomato soup.
The strange ingredient gained popularity, and many versions of the magic cake appeared in Campbell’s cookbooks throughout the 50s and 60s, and then later in community cookbooks.
Interestingly, the tomato soup cake recipe was the first recipe to appear on the back of a soup can.
And while the original recipe no longer does appear on the can, it remains one of the most requested recipes at the Campbell’s test kitchen.
This vintage recipe creates such a unique cake that will keep people guessing what the mystery ingredient is!
How to Make Tomato Soup Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting
It’s really easy to make this delicious spice cake.
Ingredients You’ll Need:
- For the Cake:
- Unsalted Butter
- Granulated Sugar
- Vanilla Extract
- Condensed Tomato Soup
- All-purpose Flour
- Baking Soda
- Baking Powder
- Ground Cinnamon
- Ground Nutmeg
- Optional: Raisins, Chopped Walnuts or Pecans
- For the Frosting:
- Cream Cheese
- Powdered Sugar
- Vanilla Extract
- Milk or Whipping Cream
How to Make It:
(Full printable recipe is available below)
Prepare the Wet Mixture. First, you’ll cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. You can do this in the bowl of a stand mixer, or in a large bowl with an electric mixer.
Add eggs one at a time until just combined and then mix in condensed soup.
Prepare the Cake Batter and Bake. Next, you’ll combine the dry ingredients in a separate mixing bowl and then blend them into the wet mixture, using the mixer’s low speed.
Pour the batter into a prepared cake pan and bake for 28-30 minutes.
Make the Frosting. Next, you’ll prepare the cream cheese icing. Combine cream cheese and butter until smooth using an electric mixer. Mix in the powdered sugar until smooth, then add the vanilla and the milk.
Frost the Cake. Last, you’ll spread the frosting on the completely cooled cake.
Serve and enjoy!
This tomato soup spice cake recipe is great for feeding a crowd, for serving at holiday meals, or whenever a slice of spice cake strikes your fancy!
Notes and Adaptations:
- For easier mixing of both the cake and the frosting, bring all of your ingredients to room temperature.
- Don’t over mix the ingredients. This will ensure a light and fluffy magic tomato soup cake.
- Dried fruit such as a 1 cup raisins or cranberries is a delicious add-in.
- Chopped walnuts or pecans add a nice crunch.
- I use Campbell’s soup, but any condensed tomato soup should work fine.
- For the Cake:
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 10.75-oz can condensed tomato soup (undiluted)
- 1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp allspice
- Optional: 1 cup raisins or chopped walnuts or pecans
- For the Frosting:
- 8-oz cream cheese, softened to room temperature
- 1/2 cup butter, softened to room temperature
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 Tablespoon milk or whipping cream
- Preheat oven to 350F and grease a 9x13" pan with cooking spray or butter.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, prepare cake batter by combining butter and sugar. Mix on medium-high speed until creamy.
- Add eggs, one at a time, mixing after each addition until just combined, followed by vanilla extract.
- Add condensed tomato soup and mix just until incorporated.
- In a separate mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, ground cinnamon, ground nutmeg, and allspice.
- With the mixer on low speed, gradually add the dry ingredients, mixing just until evenly combined.
- Pour batter into prepared baking pan and smooth out the top. Bake for 28-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean or the center springs back when pressed gently with your finger. Allow cake to cool completely before frosting.
- Prepare frosting by using an electric mixer to combine cream cheese and butter until smooth.
- Add powdered sugar gradually, mixing until incorporated.
- Add vanilla extract and milk or whipping cream and mix until smooth.
- Spread over cooled cake.
- Do not dilute the can of condensed soup with water. We only need the contents of the can for this recipe.
- Feel free to add raisins or nuts to this cake if desired. You can also garnish with additional chopped nuts sprinkled over the frosting if desired.
Inspired by Campbell's Tomato Soup Cake
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 294Total Fat: 15gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 56mgSodium: 239mgCarbohydrates: 39gFiber: 1gSugar: 27gProtein: 3g
Nutrition information is automatically calculated and is not guaranteed for accuracy.
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