20 Classic Cake Recipes Straight From Grandma's Kitchen

grandmas sour cream pound cake
Photo: Allrecipes

What's the secret ingredient in these tried-and-true cakes? Love. No, seriously: These recipes, which have been passed down through the generations, were submitted by the grandchildren of some very talented bakers — and the memories made in Grandma's kitchen are probably even sweeter than the cakes themselves. Whether you're in the mood for a basic Bundt or decadent chocolate dessert, you'll find a new family tradition in this collection of our very best Grandmother-approved cake recipes.

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Grandma's Chocolate Texas Sheet Cake

Chocolate lovers won't be able to get enough of this decadent Texas sheet cake. A super sweet 5-ingredient icing is the perfect finishing touch. Add walnuts or pecans for a pleasant crunch.

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Grandma Ruby's Buttermilk Pound Cake

Grandma Ruby's moist, dense, and sweet buttermilk pound cake has a subtle hint of lemon. It's fantastic alone, but recipe creator James Buddy Clower suggests serving with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

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Grandma's No-Bake Cheesecake

Grandma's No-Bake Cheesecake
Tara C

This no-bake cheesecake, which recipe creator Jennifer Horrace says has been passed down through three generations, comes together quickly and easily with just six ingredients (including cream cheese, sour cream, and a container of whipped topping).

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Grandma's Fresh Apple Cake

Looking for something delicious to bake with a bunch of fresh apples? Your search ends with this cozy apple cake with raisins and walnuts.

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Grandma Leach's Fruitcake

If you think you don't like fruitcake, thing again. This grandma-approved cake starts with a secret ingredient that makes it fruity, flavorful, and moist: applesauce. "It was moist, not too sweet, and so aromatic," says reviewer Asma.

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Grandma's Chocolate Marvel Cake

Nobody will believe it when you tell them the secret ingredient in this complex chocolate cake: puréed prune baby food! Top with your favorite chocolate frosting or a simple dusting of powdered sugar.

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Grandma's Pineapple Upside-Down Cake

Grandma's Pineapple Upside-Down Cake
Brad Pettijohn

Here's a vintage upside-down cake, with canned pineapples and jarred cherries, that has stood the test of time. Your trusty cast iron skillet is the key to its golden, pleasantly crunchy crust.

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Grandma's Sour Cream Pound Cake

grandmas sour cream pound cake

Sour cream is the secret ingredient in this incredibly moist, dense, and tangy pound cake. "Oh Grandma, you sure do know your pound cake," says reviewer Karen McCleane Mullin. "This is one of the best pound cakes that I ever made."

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Grandma Snyder's Oatmeal Cake

This old-fashioned cake is easy to make with pantry staples, such as rolled oats and evaporated milk. "Excellent, decadently sweet cake," raves reviewer SWEETSPRING. "It's even better the next day, so make it the night before. Quick, easy and delicious!"

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Grandma's Carrot Cake

This traditional carrot cake — which is chock-full of pineapple chunks, coconut flakes, and walnuts — is topped with a rich buttermilk buttercream.

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Grandma Moyer's Rhubarb and Strawberry Coffee Cake

This sweet coffee cake has an even sweeter history: "This was my Grandma Moyer's recipe," according to recipe creator BobbieRocks. "It has been missing since at least the mid 80s. I found it stuck the middle of an old book I got after my mom passed away. Everyone in the family has been trying to recreate this delicious coffee cake for years."

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Grandmother's Pound Cake II

Grandmother's Pound Cake II
wannabe chefette

This 5-ingredient, tried-and-true pound cake recipe is the real deal: It has one pound each of butter, flour, eggs, and sugar. It makes three full loaves, so it's the perfect dessert to serve a crowd.

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Grandmother's Cheesecake

Slice of cheesecake with strawberries on top and alongside

A sturdy shortbread crust is the perfect base for this rich, creamy, and citrusy cheesecake filling. To finish it off, top with your favorite fresh fruit or a decadent chocolate sauce.

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Grandma's Moist Cake

Make this simple cake with just six ingredients you probably already have on hand: butter, white sugar, eggs, self-rising flour, milk, and vanilla extract.

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Grandma's Honey Bun Cake

This deceptively simple cake starts with a package of store-bought yellow cake mix. Sour cream adds moisture and tanginess, while cinnamon and brown sugar lend cozy flavor.

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Grandmother's Buttermilk Poppy Seed Coffee Cake

This poppyseed-speckled buttermilk pound cake features a sweet cinnamon-sugar filling. It's the perfect companion to a hot cup of coffee.

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Nana's Old Fashioned Jelly Cake

In this tasty recipe, a yellow sheet cake is topped with a layer of raspberry jelly. "It is so moist, it will melt in your mouth," according to recipe creator JAYJOSE.

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Granny's Mahogany Cake and Frosting

Brewed coffee adds depth to this rich chocolate layer cake topped with a coffee-infused chocolate buttercream frosting. "I just made this cake and it is amazing," says reviewer Kyliet23. "This is now one of my favorite cake recipes."

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Granny Kat's Pumpkin Roll

This autumnal pumpkin roll has a rich cream cheese filling that's impossible to resist. "My guests couldn't believe I made it," according to one satisfied Allrecipes community member. "It is also quite impressive to look at. Thanks to Granny Kat!"

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Memaw's Lemon Sunshine Cake

Convenient store-bought ingredients, such as lemon cake mix and lemon pudding mix, make this cake as easy to make as it is to eat. A fruity glaze adds moisture and sweet flavor.

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More Inspiration

One Bowl Chocolate Cake III
One Bowl Chocolate Cake III | Photo by Dianne.

Hungry for more delicious inspiration? Explore our entire collection of Cake Recipes.

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