Fruit Cocktail Cake is moist, rich but not too sweet and very easy to make. If you are craving for cake and you have a can of fruit cocktail in your pantry, you can easily whip up this cake recipe.
It is simple and quick to make and you’ll be amaze how delicious it is.
My mom made this all the time when we were growing up. It is a versatile recipe that at times she’ll use canned peaches or pineapple.
I guess I got the habit from my mom, I like to stock up my pantry with a few canned goods like fruit cocktail so whenever I need it, it is already on hand.
When we were young, if she’s not using this canned fruits to make cakes, she’s serving it as a cold dessert.
I was anxious to have this cake and took only a few images. When I was transferring the pictures to my external drive, it dawn on me that I was missing some pictures. The raw files were there but not the jpeg files.
Uhg, I guess I deleted some of the images accidentally. How did I do that? I’m usually careful before I delete anything. Oh well.
That really bugged me. I had to looked online for a free software that can retrieve deleted images from the SD card. If this ever happens to you, as long as your SD card is not corrupt, luckily there is a way to get these pictures back.
For a while, I lost my appetite but once I got all my images back, I happily devoured a couple of pieces of this delicious fruit cocktail cake.
This brings back childhood memories while having a bite. I don’t think I liked to cook then but I like being around my mom and curious about what she’s doing.
I wish she is here with me so she can have a bite. She will love it! Maybe this cake can trigger something in her taste buds and remember she used to make it. With her dementia, I doubt she’ll remember the name of the cake!
Tips in Making Fruit Cocktail Cake
Do you know that this cake is also referred to as Dump Cake?
Use a whole can of fruit cocktail including the syrup.
I used toasted grated fresh coconut but you can always substitute with sweetened coconut flakes.
If you have a sweet tooth, add ½ cup of granulated sugar in cake and sauce mixture.
It is delicious on its own but topping it with vanilla ice cream or whip cream and maraschino cherry is a real treat!
Let me show you
How to Make Fruit Cocktail Cake
You can easily make this cake by hand, no need for a hand or stand mixer.
I haven’t had this cake for years until recently I thought about it. I opened a big can of fruit cocktail and didn’t know what to do with the leftover.
Then I remembered those good old days when my mom made this cake. I went through her cookbooks but no luck in finding the recipe. My mom probably has some of her recipes still in the Philippines.
My other alternative was to look online and guess what, I found it. There are a few food bloggers who posted similar recipes with the same measurement.
This classic Fruit Cocktail cake also known as Fruit Cocktail Dump cake was posted on a box cake mix or flour packaging in the 60's or even earlier.
Here are the steps:
(1-2) In a large bowl, combine the sugar, beaten eggs, vanilla, baking soda and salt.
(3) Mix in flour.
(4) Add fruit cocktail with syrup.
(5) Combine but don’t over mix.
(6) Lightly grease pan with butter. Bake and do the toothpick test between 38-40 minutes to check if done. If toothpick comes out clean then remove cake from oven.
(7 – 8) In a sauce pan, combine butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar, milk, vanilla, shredded coconut and pecan. Bring to a boil continue cooking for a minute or two then turn off heat.
(9) Pour sauce and spread evenly over hot cake.
My cake topping will look different from other images you see online. I have leftover toasted grated FRESH coconut that I used which I prefer. Why? It is fresh and no sugar at all. I can't stand a very sweet cake!
Substitutions or Tweaks I Made - This Cake is Not Too Sweet
(1) I have adjusted the amount of sugar. If you have a sweet tooth, you may add 1/2 cup more of granulated sugar in cake and topping mixture.
(2) I used fresh grated coconut. I was able to cut down on sugar with this ingredient instead of using sweetened coconut flakes.
Fruit Cocktail Cake
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 large eggs lightly beaten
- 1 teaspoons vanilla
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 can 16-ounce fruit cocktail with heavy syrup, undrained
Cake Sauce or Topping:
- 1/2 cup butter
- 1/2 cup brown sugar firmly packed
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 cup evaporated milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 1/2 cups sweetened shredded coconut flakes or toasted fresh coconut
- 1 cup pecans or walnuts chopped
- Lightly grease a 9x13 inch pan with butter and preheat oven at 350 degrees F.
- In a large bowl, combine sugar, beaten eggs, vanilla, baking soda and salt. Mix well then stir-in flour. Add fruit cocktail with syrup. Combine well but don’t over mix.
- Pour cake mixture into pan and bake for 40-45 minutes. Do the toothpick test between 38 - 40 minutes. Insert toothpick at the center of cake, if it comes out clean then cake is done. Remove from oven. Note: oven temperature may vary slightly.
- While cake is baking, prepare cake topping or sauce.
- In a sauce pan over medium heat, combine butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar, milk, vanilla, shredded coconut and pecan. Stir and bring to a boil. Continue cooking for another minute or two then turn off heat.
- Pour warm sauce over warm cake. Evenly spread sauce over cake. Let cake soaked in sauce before serving.
- Serve it warm, room temperature or cold. Top it with whip cream and maraschino cherry or vanilla ice cream which ever you prefer. Even without it, it is luscious!
- My images will differ from pictures you see online. I used grated FRESH toasted coconut instead of SWEETENED coconut flakes. Use what you have on hand, don’t let it go to waste! Plus coconut have NO added sugar!
- Cake sauce will be a lit bit runny but once poured over cake, it will soak and add deliciousness to your cake.
- Fruit cocktail in heavy syrup is already sweet so I cut down sugar from the original recipe.
- I cut down 1/2 cup granulated sugar in cake mixture and another 1/2 cup on topping. If you like it sweeter, add more sugar to cake and topping mixture.
There are other similar recipes online with the same measurements but adapted Kathleen's recipe topped with whipped cream and maraschino cherry. Glad to find it, thank you!