Burnt Sugar Cake (Betty Crocker: Circa 1956)

READY IN: 1hr 25mins
Recipe by Cindy Lynn

This recipe is in response to a request for the Betty Crocker (1950-1960) version of the cake. I have tried to retain the authenticity of the period, hence the repetition of the ingredient amounts throughout the recipe. I hope you enjoy it. Mom used to make this one sometimes too!

Top Review by taylortwo

this cake was fabulous. real full flavor...very rich tasting.no wonder it's been around so long. i followed the recipe exactly, but i did substitute the butter for the shortening and i did not have softasilk cake flour so i substituted (1 cup sifted cake flour=3/4 cup sifted bleached all-purpose flour plus 2 tbs. cornstarch). couldn't stop eating the frosting.

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Syrup: To make syrup first caramelize the 1/2 cup sugar in a heavy skillet over low heat until clear and medium brown, shaking pan gently to keep from burning.
  2. Remove from heat.
  3. Add slowly, stirring constantly, 1/2 cup boiling water.
  4. Stir over low heat until lumps are dissolved.
  5. Measure and add water to make 1 cup liquid.
  6. Cool.
  7. Cake: Sift together into bowl, 2 1/4 cups sifted Softasilk flour, 1 cup sugar, 3 teaspoons baking powder and 1 teaspoon salt.
  8. Add 1/2 cup soft shortening and 2/3 cup cooled caramel-water mixture.
  9. Beat 2 minutes.
  10. Add remaining 1/3 cup cooled caramel-water mixture, 2 eggs and 1 teaspoon vanilla.
  11. Beat 2 more minutes.
  12. Pour into greased and floured pans (2 8-inch pans, or 2 9-inch pans, or 1 9 X 13 oblong pan).
  13. Makes a small cake.
  14. Bake until cake tests done.
  15. Cool.
  16. Finish with Creamy Burnt Sugar Icing.
  17. Preheat 350°F (moderate oven) 8-inch layers 30-35 minutes 9-inch layers 25-30 minutes oblong 9 X 13 35-40 minutes.
  18. Creamy Burnt Sugar Icing: First make another caramel sugar-water mixture following directions in recipe above.
  19. Caramelize 1/2 cup sugar.
  20. Add 1/4 cup boiling water.
  21. DO NOT ADD any more water!
  22. Melt in saucepan 1/2 cup shortening (part butter).
  23. Remove from heat and add 2 1/2 tablespoons Softasilk flour and 1/4 teaspoon salt.
  24. Stir in slowly caramel-water mixture.
  25. Bring to boil stirring constantly.
  26. Boil 1 minute.
  27. If mixture curdles, do not be alarmed.
  28. Remove from heat.
  29. Beat in alternately, 3 cups sifted confectioners' sugar and about 3 tablespoons water.
  30. Set saucepan in bowl of cold water.
  31. Beat until consistency to spread.
  32. Stir in 1/2 teaspoon vanilla.
  33. If it becomes too thick to spread, add a little water.

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