Pennsylvania Dutch Funny Cake Pie

Vegan Funny Cake Photo

Michelle’s vegan funny cake pie

Funny cake pie is an oddball. You put vanilla cake batter into a pie crust, then drizzle a chocolate layer on top…and somehow during baking, the gooey chocolate layer ends up on the bottom! The vanilla cake has a nice swirly pattern of chocolate traces left on top.

The best funny cake recipes have a few things in common. First, they allow the cocoa powder in the chocolate layer to “bloom,” by mixing it with boiling or hot water and letting it sit a few minutes before baking. The hot liquid helps the chocolate flavor develop. I added my own touch by replacing the water with freshly brewed hot coffee, to bring out the chocolate flavor even more. Second, just like “normal” cakes, you want to cream the fat with the sugar first to get some air bubbles into the mix. If you just beat all the vanilla cake ingredients together, the funny cake will be dense. Third, I prefer recipes that use a mix of butter and shortening for the fat, so the cake benefits from both the flavor of butter and the fluffy texture of shortening.

Making Vegan Funny Cake

To make vegan funny cake, I just substituted vegan margarine (I like Earth Balance Original Buttery Spread) for the butter and replaced the egg. Some funny cake recipes can be dry, so I replaced the egg with a Tbsp. of oil and 2 more Tbsp. of liquid. Ideally, this liquid is The Vegg Vegan Egg Yolk mix, which will add some “eggy” taste and color. But you can also just use 2 Tbsp. water. Finally, I added 1/4 tsp. more baking powder to make up for some rising action of the original beaten egg, again to make sure the cake layer is fluffy.

Vegan Funny Cake Recipe

Cook Time: 50 minutes

Yield: 1 9-inch pie

Vegan Funny Cake Recipe


    For the Chocolate Layer:
  • 1/4 cup sifted unsweetened cocoa (measured by lightly spooning into the measuring cup, then leveling off with a knife)
  • 1/2 cup organic sugar
  • 1/2 cup hot, freshly brewed coffee
  • 1/4 tsp. vanilla
  • For the Vanilla Cake Layer:
  • 3/4 cup organic sugar
  • 2 Tbsp. vegetable shortening
  • 2 Tbsp. vegan margarine
  • 1 Tbsp. oil
  • 1/2 tsp. The Vegg Vegan Egg Yolk (optional, but recommended)
  • 2 Tbsp. water
  • 1/2 cup soymilk
  • 1 cup flour (measured by lightly spooning into the measuring cup, then leveling off with a knife)
  • 1 and 1/4 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla
  • For the Pie Crust:
  • 1 unbaked 9-inch pie crust (I like Ina Garten's easy pie crust recipe, just replace the butter with Earth Balance Buttery Spread that's been frozen for 10 minutes, and omit the salt.)


  1. Preheat oven to 350F.
  2. Combine the cocoa powder and 1/2 cup sugar in a medium mixing bowl. Stir to mix.
  3. Add the hot coffee and vanilla, and stir together until smooth. Set aside.
  4. Using a fork or an electric mixer fitted with beater attachment, cream 3/4 cup sugar with the shortening and margarine in a large mixing bowl until light and fluffy. Set aside. Do not let the margarine soften at room temperature before creaming; margarine melts more quickly than butter and will get too soft.
  5. If using The Vegg Vegan Egg Yolk, combine it with 2 Tbsp. water in a blender and blend until smooth.
  6. In a small mixing bowl, combine the oil, The Vegg Vegan Egg Yolk mix (or water if not using The Vegg), and soymilk. Whisk together until mixed.
  7. Add part of this liquid mix to the creamed sugar mix in the large mixing bowl. Beat until smooth.
  8. Add part of the flour and part of the baking powder to the large mixing bowl. Beat until smooth.
  9. Add the rest of the liquid mix to the large mixing bowl and beat until smooth. Then add the rest of the flour and baking powder, and beat until smooth.
  10. Add 1/2 tsp. vanilla to the large mixing bowl and beat until evenly mixed.
  11. Pour the cake batter into the pie crust and smooth the top with a spatula.
  12. Slowly pour the chocolate layer evenly over the cake batter.
  13. Bake at 350F until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 45-50 minutes.