Through The Magic Door

Distractions aplenty

Tomato Soup “Phoenix” Cake

I was recently asked (via the Through The Magic Door Facebook) to find a recipe for a cake that used a tin of tomato soup. I was a more than a little surprised to discovered that this was actually a real thing and even more surprised to discover it is actually quite a popular thing.

The general consensus seemed to be that if you didn’t tell someone there was tomato soup in the cake then they would never guess. I didn’t quite see how that could be possible so was desperate to try it.

I scoured through all the recipes I could find and my final product is a mixture between a couple of them.

I think in the future I am going to name this “Phoenix Cake” as it truly did rise out of the ashes of what I thought was total disaster. The mixture smelt so wrong and so strongly of tomato when I was making it that I thought there was no way on earth I was going to eat any of what came out of the oven half an hour later…but in the end my curious side got the better of me and I am thrilled it did. This is the most delicious, soft, moist and moreish cake I have ever eaten in my entire life! And it really is true that you would never guess it contained tomato soup! It really reminded me of carrot cake, so if you’re a fan of carrot cake I can assure you, you will absolutely love this.


1 can Campbell’s condensed tomato soup
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
200g light brown sugar
1 egg
75g unsalted butter
190g self raising flour
5 – 6 tsp cinnamon (I didn’t actually measure how much I put in but it was a lot!)

For the icing –

50g cream cheese
2 tbsps unsalted butter
90g icing sugar

  • Preheat the oven to 170°C
  • Grease and line a 10 inch square baking tray with greaseproof paper
  • Cream the butter and sugar together until smooth and then beat in the egg
  • Add the tomato soup and mix thoroughly
  • In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, bicarb and cinnamon and then sieve that mixture into the wet ingredients a little bit at a time and stir until fully combined
  • Pour into the cake tin and bake for approx 45 minutes. Test if it is done by inserting a skewer into the center and seeing if it comes out clean
  • Remove from tin (very carefully as it is extremely soft) and cool on a wire rack
  • To make the icing, beat together the cream cheese and butter and then sieve in the icing sugar. Leave to harden slightly in the fridge for 15 minutes before spreading over the cake.


6 comments on “Tomato Soup “Phoenix” Cake

  1. Anastasia
    February 28, 2012

    Wow! Never heard of tomato soup sweets!

  2. Lynne Edwards
    February 28, 2012

    Wow, will have to make one! I feel almost famous, as I asked the question!!!

  3. Kate
    March 1, 2012

    This was super popular in the 70’s. My mom and her friends would make it using a spice cake mix. Many kids were “tricked” at birthday parties, as the secret ingredient was revealed only after they had eaten it.

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This entry was posted on February 28, 2012 by in Baking and tagged , , , , , , , .

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