A to Z Challenge – P is for Poor Man’s Cake – Hand-Me-Down Family Recipe by Kaye Spencer #atozchallenge #recipes

A Month of Hand-Me-Down Recipes

Poor Man’s Cake c. 1930s

This recipe is probably older than the 1930s date I put on it. I do know both my maternal and paternal grandmothers made a variation of this recipe. This rendition is my mom’s version. Poor Man’s Cake was a common sweet-treat during the Great Depression Era. It doesn’t require a lot of each of the ingredients, and it’s easily altered to accommodate the ingredients on hand.

Until next time,
Kaye Spencer
writing through history one romance upon a time


  1. I am definitely a substituter in the kitchen, using whatever I have on hand. Sometimes I discover new masterpieces, and sometimes… not so much! I’m sure this cake is delicious – it’s hard to go wrong with those basic ingredients.

  2. Using what’s on hand (or adjusting accordingly) is a skill everyone should have. My mother learned how to modify recipes this way from her grandmother (born 1896, lived through the depression) and passed those skills on to me. It is something I have truly come to appreciate over the course of my life!

    1. Using what’s on hand is definitely a skill everyone should have. I went to school in the days when home ec was a required class from 7th grade way into high school. Those skills have served me well.

  3. I would make this recipe but i am diabetic so probably shouldn’t! I did a food theme this year but my recipes are a lot more approximate than yours -I must check out some more oy yours…

    1. The beauty of this recipe is that you can substitute ingredients, leave out ingredients, and it still comes out okay. Thank you for mentioning that you did a food theme this year. I will come visit your blog. 😉

  4. What a great representation of resilience, resourcefulness, and the need to appease a sweet-tooth. . . all in one family recipe. Haha! I have all those ingredients on hand. I might have to give this a go.

    ⮞ AnjelaCurtis.com via AtoZ Road Trip… 🚗

    1. 😉 I love the Depression Era recipes for the reasons you stated: resilience and resourcefulness with desire to provide a treat to the family.

    1. You are so right about how people then (and now) can make do with what they they had to. t was either come up with a creative solution or do without.

      So glad you stopped by on the A to Z Road Trip. I’m catching up on comments from April (hanging my head in shame), then I’ll be packing up and fueling my virtual car to take off on the Road Trip. haha

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