Sunday, August 30, 2009

Sunday Favorites # 19 --- Rerun of an oldie-- Gooey Butter Cake

Sunday Favorites is a meme that allows us to drag one of our old posts out of mothballs and into the light of a new day. After all, only so many posts can be on the first page and once they move down the stack they are seldom ever looked at again. It may have been fantastic or just so-so but, if it was posted on a bad day or slow week it might have had very few readers before falling into the pit called, "Older Posts".

You can check out this new Sunday meme at Happy to Design hosted by Chari. Heck, you might find some great stuff to read. Now for my re-run of an old post.

What is Gooey Butter Cake?

It's a scrumptious only-in-St. Louis treat served for breakfast, lunch or dinner -- ala mode or plain. What could be more sensuous and decadent than a gooey dessert, the kind that when you bite into it drips down your chin? When it comes to gooey desserts, perhaps the champion is the aptly named Gooey Butter Cake, though, surprisingly, it is little known outside my home region. Perhaps that's because the Gooey Butter Cake was invented here in St. Louis and possibly the recipe has been understandably safeguarded ever since.

Like many a delicacy -- fudge, brownies and chocolate chip cookies among them --the Gooey Butter Cake was created by accident. Sometime in the 1930s, legend has it; a German baker in St. Louis inadvertently put too much sugar into his cake batter and was too thrifty to waste it, so he just baked it instead.
The glutinous result was a hit and today there's hardly a bakery in St. Louis or the surrounding region that doesn't offer a version. The old Heimburger Bakery on South Lindbergh was especially famous for it.

You can find Gooey Butter Cake in bakeries all over the St. Louis area, but what's someone from out-of-town to do? Here's the answer. Enjoy making one of St. Louis' popular, quirky foods.

There appear to be at least two different approaches to making Gooey Butter Cake at home. One starts with a yeast-based dough over which a filling consisting chiefly of butter, sugar, milk and often corn syrup is poured. Similar to Philadelphia German butter cake, which may well have been the original version. More recently a version starting with a packaged cake mix has become popular. Its filling consists mainly of cream cheese and powdered sugar.

Bon Appetit!

Recipe attached.

1/2 cup butter
1 box yellow cake mix
3 eggs
1 - 8 oz. package of cream cheese
1/2 t almond extract
4 cups of confectioners' sugar

Preheat oven to 350. Lightly grease one 9x13 cake pan. Melt butter. Empty cake mix into a large bowl. Stir melted butter, along with one egg, into the cake mix. Press mixture into pan. In a large bowl, mix cream cheese, almond extract, confectioners sugar and the remaining two eggs. Beat for three minutes with an electric mixer set on medium high speed. Spread over top of the cake mixture in the pan. Bake at 350 for 35-45 minutes until golden brown on top. Allow cake to cool. Dust the top with confectioner’s sugar. (Cake will be gooey on the top, so don't over bake!)

"This a very rich cake, but mmmmmmmm so good. Best when eaten with milk or coffee. You can also make it a Chocolate Gooey Butter Cake if desired. Just use a chocolate cake mix in place of the yellow."

Check out what Wikipedia has to say about this cake.


  1. Paula Deen makes all kinds of gooey butter cakes. I'd never seen them when I lived in St. Louis, but I've seen them on Paula's cooking show many times.

  2. I'll have to ask my Asst. G.M. Steve about this ... he's more than a little proud to hail from Missouri (pronounces it, "Miss-ur-ah"). If so, HE's tapped to bring it to our next pot-luck!

  3. Gooey butter cake? GOOEY BUTTER CAKE? This native New Yorker is swooning. . . wow, that looks good.

    If the olive oil in a pizza is supposed to drip down your chin, why not the butter in a cake?

    thanks -- we may try this!

  4. Butter Yum:
    I am familiar with Paula Deans version of our native Gooey butter cake. I have even made a few. They are very good and also very close to the original. So sorry to hear that you missed getting the St. Louis version when living here. We have a local bakery that is the protector of what is thought to be the original recipe and next time you are here you should check it out.

    There is a lot of controversy over the pronunciation of our state. It has even come to a vote by the legislature, who, decided to not adopt one version over another. The state is now about 60/40 divided over the correct pronunciation. The Old Salt always says "Miss-ur-ah" but I swing both ways depending on who I am speaking with. It can be a very touchy subject with some here. But, I tend favor the "Miss-ur-ee pronunceation


    No may about it. This is a much try.

  5. Why is everyone re-blogging food posts today?? I'm starving!! HA.


  6. I had to copy the recipe. It sounds so good! Thanks...Christine

  7. Hi Rita...

    So happy to have you join in with the fun of Sunday Favorites again this week, my friend!

    Oooooh...what a great post to reshare with all of us...and of course, it's new to me! I must admit that I've never heard of or tasted a "Gooey Butter Cake" but it sounds heavenly!!! Really!!! Eeeks...especially now since I've been on a low-fat diet for a couple of months! Hehe! I think that I could manage your recipe since it calls for a pkg. cake mix! All of that cream cheese topping sounds soooo good...and I love almond flavoring!!! Thank you so much for sharing this recipe with us...I have already copied it to my computer...would love to give it a try!!!

    Have a super Sunday, my friend!


Thank you for stopping by my site. Without your visits there would be no incentive to continue posting. So, having you here and reading your comments is the highlight of my day.

I regret that time does not always allow me to return visits to everyone who stops by, but, I will certainly do my best to get to everyone. I will definitely answer any questions you leave me.

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