Old Fashioned Caramel Cake

"This cake is wonderful with a cup of coffee! Or a big glass of milk. I remember my Mom eating this cake for breakfast when I was little....she still eats cake for breakfast, but at least this one sounds a little like a caramel sweet roll! Maybe we should all follow her example....she's 82 and still running around like crazy! Special tip for preparation: Be sure to spread the caramel frosting immediately after it reaches spreading consistency because it will harden quickly and be difficult to spread."
photo by happy treats1234 photo by happy treats1234
photo by happy treats1234
photo by Charlotte J photo by Charlotte J
photo by Charlotte J photo by Charlotte J
Ready In:
1hr 15mins
1 2-layer cake




  • Beat 1 cup butter at medium speed of an electric mixer until it is creamy; gradually add 2 cups sugar, beating well. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition.
  • In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, and coca; Stir well. Then add to the butter mixture, alternating with the buttermilk and water, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Mix after each addition. Stir in 1 tsp vanilla.
  • Pour the batter into 2 greased and floured 9-inch round cakepans. Bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool pans on wire racks for 10 minutes; then remove from pans and let cool completely on wire racks.
  • For the frosting, combine 2 cups sugar, 1 cup butter, and 1 cup evaporated milk in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Cover and cook for 2 to 3 minutes to wash down the sugar crystals from the sides of the pan.
  • Uncover and cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture reaches soft ball stage or a candy thermometer registers 234 degrees. Remove from heat and add vanilla (do not stir). Let cool for 10 minutes.
  • Beat at medium speed of an electric mixer for 8 to 10 minutes or until the mixture is spreading consistency. Quickly spread the Caramel Frosting between the layers and on the top and sides of the cake.
  • Garnish with pecan halves and grated chocolate if desired.

Questions & Replies

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  1. My grandmother caramelized sugar in a black cast iron sugar to get caramel and then put in a double boiler with half and half, butter and I think more sugar and cooked to the soft ball stage. Anyway, the color of hers was caramel as in the color of caramel candies. This is too light and I don't think true caramel. Caramel is browning sugar until it is caramlized...med brown in color. However, it is not like the new recipes with brown sugar which is waaaay off. Brown sugar has molasses in it which is not caramel...just saying......
  2. This was very good, but tasted like chocolate cake, not caramel cake. I was hoping for caramel. Just as an fyi...getting the mixture to soft ball stage takes a very long time, so make sure you have that kind of time to stir non-stop.
  3. This was very good and not to hard to make. For myself this was my first time of making cooked icing. So was not to sure of what I was doing. But I'm glad to report the icing turned out fine. It was ready to spread after 4 mins of beating. I only made 1/2 of the icing as I did not want a lot but next time will make the full amount. I'll also put the cake in the freezer for a short time so I don't get crumbs in the icing as I spread it. But then maybe that is what happens when a person cuts back on the icing. Made for Everyday Is A Holiday September 2010
  4. This was delicious! It tasted a little bit like sticky toffee pudding to me, just not as dense. I didn't line my pans with parchment and the cakes came out pretty smoothly but I think next time I would just to be safe. The frosting was a bit tricky, but that is only because I had never made it like that before and wasn't quite sure how long it would take or what to look for. I had to stir for another 10-15 minutes until mine reached the soft ball stage. I don't have a candy thermometer so I just used the cold water test and I think I came pretty close to the proper temperature. Also, I had to beat it for the full 10 minutes to get to spreading consistency. The recipe is a bit time consuming but very well worth it. Thank you! Made for PRMR.



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