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Eat Something Delicious turns seven years old today and I can't think of a better way to celebrate than by making my fifth variation of gooey butter cake. Or rather - I can't think of a better excuse to make gooey butter cake than to celebrate my blog's "birthday". Something like that.
Honestly, I can't even believe I made that many. At this rate, these will probably have their own category on my blog. Or not. I mean... how often am I posting, every few months now? Fun fact: posting more to the blog was the only new year's resolution I made for 2021. My work hours doubled last year and it has made doing anything like this near impossible. However, maintaining this site is so incredibly expensive that I can't justify keeping it online if I'm not taking time to enjoy using it. (Why did I have to pick an expensive hobby?!) The good news is, I could never bear to part with my site so it's here to stay for now - static or not. The other good news is I have three more recipes already made and photographed that I plan on sharing when I get the time. One of them I made eight months ago. Whoops.
Now that I've made so many gooey butter cakes, I'm thinking I have a few tricks to improve some of my previous recipes. They're all great as-is but I enjoy experimenting either way. Revisions are also a good opportunity to improve photos that I'm not happy with. Oh and an opportunity to eat more dessert of course. I think you know where most of my motivation for recipe re-dos comes from.
If you're unfamiliar with them, gooey butter cake has a soft bottom layer made from cake mix, egg, and butter while the top is.....gooey? I have a hard time describing it. It has cream cheese and butter (in this case, dairy free), eggs, vanilla, and no shortage of powdered sugar. After baking, it gets a subtle flaky crust on top, similar to a brownie.
Anyways, what I'm trying to get at is that my favorite gooey butter cake variations keep that gooey top layer as close to the original as possible. This recipe does that. The yellow cake mix gets swapped out for spice cake and carrots and raisins are mixed into that. The gooey layer is the same as the original except that I sprinkle some cinnamon and raisins on the very top. No change in texture though.
That's why I'm thinking of modifying my pumpkin pie gooey butter cake recipe. It has pumpkin mixed into the gooey layer and the texture changes to midway between gooey butter cake and pumpkin pie. I know a lot of people loved that one but I'm ready to change that top layer and work in the pumpkin a different way.
Here are all the other gooey butter cake variations if you want to try one:
A gooey butter cake that uses carrot spice cake for the base and has been converted to be gluten free and dairy free.
Bottom cake layer:
- 18 oz gluten free, dairy free spice cake mix
- 1 large egg
- ½ C earth balance soy free buttery sticks, melted
- 1 ½ C shredded carrots
- 1 C raisins
- 8 oz (one package) Daiya plain cream cheeze style spread, softened
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 lb powdered sugar
- ½ C earth balance soy free buttery sticks, melted
- additional raisins, to taste
- cinnamon, to taste
- metal 9x13 pan (nonstick is fine but not dark)
- electric mixer (stand or hand-held)
- Preheat oven to 350ºF and grease a lightly colored, metal 9×13 inch pan.
- Using either a hand mixer or stand mixer, combine the cake mix, one egg, and ½ C of melted dairy free butter alternative.
- Fold in the shredded carrots and raisins by hand. It will make the mixture more wet but that's ok. Spread the mixture evenly into the 9x13 pan.
- Using a mixer again, beat the cream cheese alternative until it is as smooth as possible (it may stay a little lumpy but you will be able to completely smooth it in the next step).
- Add the two remaining eggs, the other ½ C butter alternative, and vanilla extract and beat until completely smooth.
- Gradually mix in all of the powdered sugar. The end result should be like a smooth batter. Pour this over the cake layer and use a spatula or gently tap the pan on the counter to get it to spread out evenly.
- Top with a sprinkle of cinnamon and extra raisins, both amounts to your preference.
- Bake for 35-50 minutes. Be careful not to overbake. The center should still be a little jiggly and finish setting once it’s removed from the oven (like a baked cheesecake). Additionally, some oil may pool on the top of the cake – don’t confuse this oil with undercooked batter or you could end up over cooking it.
- Allow cake to cool before slicing and serving.
- Potential allergens contained in this recipe may vary due to brands of ingredients used, product reformulations, etc. Please verify that all your ingredients are safe for you to consume and always be mindful of allergen cross contamination while cooking.
- The cake mix I used was large so I just measured out 18 oz and saved the rest for making individual mug cakes or other recipes.