Cuppa Cuppa Cuppa Cake

Close your eyes and lean back in your seat, imagining the most decadent, sophisticated dessert you’ve ever had. Was there an artful interplay of salty and sweet? A clever use of unexpected fruit? Did the richness of the chocolate evoke the rarefied air of a Swiss slope? Come back. Now travel to another place entirely. There’s Spanish moss hanging from languid trees and a swimming hole where no-necked children go kissing. You are deep in the south of the south. The dirty, swampy, stewing in their own juices states below the Mason-Dixon line, where the plot is pure Faulkner and sloe gin women bring you a slice of cake and a perspiring glass of iced tea.

Cuppa Cuppa Cuppa Cake is stickier than a French Quarter slattern. It is so wrong, so out of fashion, so vapid and irredeemable, I just had to try it. White flour, white sugar, and that snack packable fruit so unlike that which grows on the vine. It goes directly to your hips and strips your dignity as swiftly as it spikes your glucose, but on its way down it gives a little shimmy that tickles your fancy and all your other parts deserving of some fun. I thought I was too good for this cake. Then I ate the majority of it with my fingers, swabbed in freshly whipped cream. On Monday, I’m going vegan, gluten-free, casein-free, eating only whole grains and fish flakes. But for tonight, I’ll take my cake from the ladies of Chicopee Parish. Pass the armadillo.

Positive Buzzwords: Sweet, Folksy, Steel Magnolias.

Negative Buzzwords: Sweet, Trashy, Devoid of any Nutritional Value, Steel Magnolias.

Cuppa Cuppa Cuppa Cake


  • 1 cup self-rising flour*
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup fruit cocktail with juice
  • Butter for greasing the pan
  • Whipped cream for serving


Preheat the oven to 350.

Cuppa Cuppa Cuppa Cake

In a large bowl, mix self rising flour (or substitute*) and sugar.

Cuppa Cuppa Cuppa Cake

Add fruit cocktail, and stir until well combined.

Cuppa Cuppa Cuppa Cake

Pour the batter into a greased 8 x 8 pan and bake for 45 minutes. Serve with unsweetened whipped cream.

* The substitution for self-rising flour is all-purpose flour, plus baking powder (1 teaspoon per cup) and salt (1/4 teaspoon per cup).

Jillian Bedell

Jillian Bedell is a writer and mother living in a farmhouse in Cushing, Maine. She is very good at talking about herself in the third person. She is co-author of Eating in Maine: At Home, On the Town, and On the Road.


  1. Darn it to heck, I just went out in the sleet to get a can of fruit cocktail and whipping cream and got home only to learn that we only have 2 teaspoons of flour.

      1. I know, right? I had a cuppa whiskey and a cuppa beer and then another cuppa beer for dessert instead. I think that adds up to the amount of sugar I’d have consumed if I had made the cake, so there’s that.

  2. You guys make all your “so wrong, so out of fashion, so vapid and irredeemable” treats look so very good, that i not only love your recipes and writing, I love your photos.

    *What camera do you use?*

  3. It could be worse. My grandmother was completely incapable of making jello without dumping in a can of fruit cocktail. And yes, I’m from Mississippi. 🙂

    As a result, I kind of despise fruit cocktail (hate the soggy grapes!) but I think this would be amazing with canned peaches or maraschino cherries instead. 🙂

  4. Nope! It’s called Dump Cake because you dump everything in your baking dish. No mixing required!

    1 can of pie filling (I prefer apple)
    1 can of crushed pineapple – drained
    1 box of cake mix (I like yellow)
    1 stick of butter – melted (okay, so I might use 2)

    Dump the pineapple into a lightly greased 9×13 baking dish and spread it around to cover the bottom of the dish. Layer the pie filling in on top of that and then pour your dry cake mix evenly over the pie filling layer. Drizzle the butter over the dusty cake mix and bake at 350 for an hour-ish.

    It’s totally rich, super yummy and people always think you spent more than 5 minutes making it.

  5. Some of our children have necks, and we’re not all dirty and swampy. This recipe is, however, wicked sweet and sticky.

  6. I’m making this now….but the only canned fruit I had was mandarin oranges. Not my first choice of fruit for this cake…..but hey I’m desperate for sugar right now. lol I added rum & vanilla extract as well as some other spices to boost the flavor a little.

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