The Rich Texas Cake That Features An Entire Cup Of Mayonnaise

Making a cake with mayonnaise may sound odd, but for Texans, it's a staple. The Texas mayo cake, also dubbed a mayonnaise cake, is typically a chocolate cake that uses an entire cup of the thick sandwich spread. This creamy addition makes for one of the most moist and delicious desserts you can imagine. And while Texans might think it's redundant to point out, adding mayo to a cake is not unique to the Lone Star state or to the South. The first printed recipe for a mayonnaise cake appeared in a California publication back in 1927. To be fair, it was more of a walnut, date, and spice cake, and it definitely featured an egg and oil whipped together, but still, it bore the name of Mayonnaise Cake. 

But 1927 just marks the mayo cake's humble beginnings. It didn't really become in vogue until World War II. Necessity is the mother of invention and the practice of adding mayo in cakes was born out of need. During this era when items like dairy, oil, and eggs were in limited supply, using mayo was an easy substitution for eggs and butter, hence why a full cup was necessary. Comprised of egg yolks, oil, and vinegar, this emulsifier helps to create a rich flavor and smooth texture as the batter bakes. And what about the tang of the vinegar? Well, it is hardly noticeable.

Mayo marketing

A savvy wife of a Hellmann's Mayonaise sales distributor is credited with developing the recipe and making this cake popular among the masses. She created a recipe using the brand to make a chocolate cake, and from there, the idea of using mayo in baking took off. This famous mayo cake is also known as the $100 cake. The legend goes that a woman dining at the Waldorf Astoria forked out a cool Benjamin Franklin so she could get the recipe for this yummy creation and recreate it whenever the craving hit. Soon, adding mayo to cake batter became mainstream.

While chocolate cake is probably the most popular cake that can benefit from a cup of mayo, you don't have to reserve it for just this flavor. It can be added to vanilla cake, as well as apple spice cake, with the end result being a tender, moist crumb. You can even use it to replace the oil and eggs in some cookie recipes (although we recommend finding an exact recipe). One of the great benefits of using mayo in your cakes and cookies is it will preserve the freshness of your baked goods, maintaining moisture and flavor for far longer than a traditional cake. Give it a whirl and see what you think!