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Old-Fashioned Butterscotch Cake with Penuche Frosting Recipe

Old-Fashioned Butterscotch Cake with Penuche Frosting Recipe

My aunt, who was born in the 1920s, passed this recipe down to me. She made the cake from scratch from start to finish because she didn't have modern amenities to help her in the kitchen. The penuche frosting goes with the cake nicely. —Beth Vorst, Columbus Grove, Ohio
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 25 min. + cooling Bake: 25 min.+ cooling YIELD:18 servings


  • 1-1/2 cups packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup 2% milk
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 cup butter, cubed
  • 2 cups packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup 2% milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 cups confectioners' sugar


  • 1. In a large bowl, cream brown sugar and shortening until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla. Combine the flour, baking powder and salt; add to the creamed mixture alternately with milk, beating well after each addition. Stir in pecans.
  • 2. Transfer to a greased 13x9-in. baking pan. Bake at 350° for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool completely on a wire rack.
  • 3. For frosting, in a small saucepan, melt butter. Stir in the brown sugar, milk and salt. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 3 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Cool to room temperature, about 20 minutes. Gradually beat in confectioners' sugar. Frost cake. Yield: 18 servings.

Nutritional Facts

1 piece: 455 calories, 16g fat (5g saturated fat), 38mg cholesterol, 323mg sodium, 76g carbohydrate (61g sugars, 1g fiber), 4g protein.

Reviews for Old-Fashioned Butterscotch Cake with Penuche Frosting

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sunsugar User ID: 1535565 237942
Reviewed Nov. 23, 2015

"This cake was delicious! I made this for my husband because every year his Mother would make penchant fudge at Christmas. I love that candy but would cut the frosting in half. Just a little to much at once."

DottieRigo User ID: 1445788 230760
Reviewed Aug. 5, 2015

"This cake was delicious, not dry at all. Way too much frosting, though. Next time I'll make only half as much frosting. It's almost like having brown sugar fudge on top of the cake."

rpw54 User ID: 7946941 228071
Reviewed Jun. 16, 2015

"cake was plain and dry

icing was fair to good"

RedRain User ID: 702637 226240
Reviewed May. 12, 2015

"OMG! I've been looking for this recipe for years! My Grandmother made this cake but we all know it simply as "Mexican Brown Sugar cake." There is also a Mexican candy called penuche and this frosting exactly mimics the taste of that great candy which is usually made in straw-like form. Can't believe I found this recipe after all these years! Thanks TOH!"

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