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Old-Fashioned Yellow Cake

This makes a perfect cake for a special dinner for two. I have made lots of cakes and this one is easy. There have been many suppers for two since our family has grown and flown the nest. —Diane Still, Monroe, Georgia
  • Total Time
    Prep: 15 min. Bake: 30 min. + cooling
  • Makes
    6 servings


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


  • In a small bowl, cream shortening and sugar. Add egg; beat well. Stir in vanilla. Combine the flour, baking powder and salt; add to the creamed mixture alternately with milk. Beat on medium speed for two minutes. Pour into a 9x5-in. loaf pan coated with cooking spray.
  • Bake at 350° for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pan to a wire rack to cool completely.
  • Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, melt butter. Stir in brown sugar. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cook and stir for two minutes. Stir in milk. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Cool to lukewarm. Gradually stir in confectioners' sugar. Place pan in a bowl of ice water; stir until mixture reaches desired spreading consistency. Spread frosting over top of cake.

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Average Rating:
  • Donna
    Feb 19, 2020

    The cake was delicious. Can't go wrong with homemade. But the glaze was very strange. It's a caramel base, and caramel is a very strong flavor for cake to begin with, but then the white sugar is added to the mix while lukewarm, so it never melts properly, giving it a gritty texture. So off-putting texture and overpowering flavor. I've never made penuche frosting before, so maybe that's how it's supposed to be or maybe I did it wrong. Idk. In my opinion, caramel is more appropriately paired with ice cream.

  • Ann
    Oct 19, 2019

    Mmm, not bad. I was looking for quick and easy and not too much. Did not alter the recipe except to bake in in a Corelle square baking dish. Well, my baking powder is a few months past best by date. So, it's only a thin little cake, but moist and tasty anyway. I don't mind a little crunch around the edges of this kind of cake. I made a simple buttercream frosting for it.

  • boisegrams
    Sep 21, 2019

    Okay. I remade the cake with greasing and flouring the pan first. It worked like a charm. No sticking. Oh, I also used butter instead of shortening. I think it will be perfect for my small dinner party tonight.

  • greatwithoutgluten
    Jan 16, 2018

    Easy recipe. I enjoyed the cake but I think next time I would try a different frosting. I will make again.

  • mandapandapants
    Nov 24, 2016

    No comment left

  • darcL
    Feb 5, 2016

    I just made this cake. I tweaked it a little by using salted butter instead of shortening and I only used 1/3 C of sugar as I don't like real sweet things and 1/2c would be too sweet for me. I also added a little lemon flavoring as well as vanilla. For the icing I used semi-sweet dark chocolate, a little butter and a little made a nice glossy, glazy icing. OMG! Perfect!! Nice and buttery with just the right amount of sweet. This cake is great when you don't want a big cake...just a little something to satisfy a craving. I give it 5 stars making it my way : - )

  • jacquocs
    Aug 24, 2015

    I have never made a cake from scratch before, so after hours of searching for scratch recipes, I came across this one because of the great reviews. And I LOVED it. It gets 5 stars, but it does have a slightly floury taste. Not too sure if it is from the flour or the shortening giving it a powder sort of taste. This recipe will be added to my favorites and I can't wait to use it again. I used the cake to make a pineapple upside-down cake.

  • Loiscooks
    Jul 1, 2015

    This is a good cake. I may double the recipe to make a larger cake next time. The flavor is very good. Instead of frosting the cake, I served it with a scoop of ice cream and fresh strawberries.

  • Msheard
    Dec 28, 2014

    I just made this and it is good.

  • Melissand
    Sep 25, 2014

    A family hit. Nice size for a little family treat. No adjustments, simple and basic ingredients. This recipe is a keeper.