Tomato Soup Cake

Updated on November 29, 2019
Susan May Gudge profile image

Susan May Gudge comes from a long line of generations of confectioners and bakers. She cooks the old-fashioned way, from scratch.

Tomato soup cake is perfect for a special occasion, or as a quick, anytime snack.
Tomato soup cake is perfect for a special occasion, or as a quick, anytime snack.

What Is Tomato Soup Cake?

This simple recipe is an old family favourite that has been passed down through the generations. Unlike most cake recipes, this one does not require milk, eggs or salt. It is fast and easy to make.

Many who have been offered this cake have turned up their noses at the idea of the tomato being used in a dessert. Some actually refused to even try it—even though, after all, the tomato is a fruit. Usually, when I offer it to guests I'll simply call it a spice cake. Only after hearing the moans of pleasure will I reveal that it is actually made with tomato soup. That is usually the moment when they ask if I would share the recipe.

The best soup to use is made by Campbell's Soup Company. Their soup has that special taste and texture that makes this cake work so well. It is possible that this recipe was originally on a Campbell's soup can many generations ago, and then passed from mother to daughter ever since.

The ingredients for a Tomato Soup Cake.
The ingredients for a Tomato Soup Cake.

Cook Time

Prep time: 15 min
Cook time: 30 min
Ready in: 45 min
Yields: One bread-sized loaf cake.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons margarine (or butter)
  • 1 (10 oz or 284 ml) can Campbell's tomato soup
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon powdered cloves
  • 1 teaspoon powdered cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon powdered nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 3/4 cups flour

Instructions (Overview)

  1. Prepare pan and preheat oven.
  2. Mix the ingredients together.
  3. Bake in a 350-degree preheated oven for 30 to 40 minutes.
  4. Remove the cake from the pan.
  5. Slice the cake and enjoy.

Please refer to the detailed instructions below.

Preheat oven and prepare pan.
Preheat oven and prepare pan.

Step 1: Prepare Pan and Preheat Oven

  1. Get the pan ready and turn on the oven to 350 degrees to preheat so that they are both ready when needed.
  2. Although an 8-inch round or square cake pan can be used, the best result comes from using an 8-inch loaf pan.
  3. Grease pan with margarine. Be sure to grease the corners, sides and especially the bottom. Coat it with flour. Turn the pan upside down and tap it gently to remove any excess flour. This preparation should prevent the cake from sticking to the pan on removal.
  4. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Be sure the oven is properly preheated or the sugar in the cake will easily burn the top of the cake. Once preheated, the top element in an oven will no longer light during the baking, leaving just the bottom element working to bake the cake.

Smooth as silk.
Smooth as silk.

Step 2: Mix the Ingredients

  1. Put all the dry ingredients (sugar, baking soda, baking powder, spices and flour) into a mixing bowl and stir them till they are well blended.
  2. Starting this way will make it easier to blend the mixture without clumping when the wet ingredients are added.
  3. To the dry mixture, add the last two ingredients (margarine and tomato soup). Use only the contents of the can of tomato soup. Do not add the can of milk or water that would be used if it was actually made into soup.
  4. Stir the ingredients by hand or use a hand mixer until well blended. Make sure that the finished product is both creamy and clump-free. It is a very thick, heavy mixture.

Ready for baking.
Ready for baking.

Step 3: Bake

  1. Spread the mixture as evenly as possible in the loaf pan. Bake the cake for 30 to 40 minutes at 350-degrees on the middle rack of the oven.
  2. Check to see if the cake is ready by sticking a toothpick into it. If the toothpick comes out clean, it is ready. If the toothpick comes out with wet batter stuck to it, the cake needs a little more time in the oven.
  3. It is very normal for the top to crack and a large ridge to form while baking. That just adds character to the work of art. It in no way changes the heavenly taste of this cake.

Letting the loaf cool on a wire rack
Letting the loaf cool on a wire rack

Step 4: Remove Cake From Pan

  1. Run a knife between all four sides of the loaf pan and cake. Turn the pan upside down and give it a good tap on the bottom. The cake should fall out of the pan if the pan was properly prepared before baking.
  2. Although extremely tempting, try not to cut the cake right away. Cutting the cake while it is hot can cause it to go a bit gummy at the cut edge. Let it cool on a wire rack. Wait until you can comfortably touch the top of the cake with the palm of your hand.

Ready to serve.
Ready to serve.

Step 5: Slice and Enjoy

  1. Slice it as you would slice a loaf of bread. Each slice can be eaten plain or with butter or margarine spread on it. I personally like it as two slices with margarine in between.
  2. The cooler it gets, the easier it is to cut slices. It tends to firm up well as it cools down.
  3. It can be eaten warm, cold, reheated or toasted. This cake is fast and easy to make. It is an interesting and decidedly delicious treat.

Warm Tomato Soup Cake with butter.
Warm Tomato Soup Cake with butter.

© 2019 Susan May Gudge

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