Gooey Butter Cake Recipe From Scratch

The St. Louis recipe lives up to its name

Tamara Keefe had never had gooey butter cake before moving to St. Louis. But now, it's the main component in one of her best-selling ice creams at local microcreamery Clementine's, called (naturally) gooey butter cake. And while many recipes rely on a cake-mix base—a move that surely has its time and place—everything is made from scratch in this recipe. The aptly named treat was invented by accident, but lives in the St. Louis culinary canon right next to sweet-crusted ribs and toasted ravioli. Here's wishing all our baking fails result in something so edible.

To learn more, read "Arch Madness."

Recipe adapted from Tamara Keefe, Clementine's, St. Louis, MO

Gooey Butter Cake
3.9 from 77 ratings
Learn how to make this classic St. Louis gooey butter cake from scratch, courtesy of Tamara Keefe, owner of Clementine's Creamery.
Prep Time
Cook Time
Total time: 70 minutes
  • For the Crust
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1½ cups granulated sugar
  • ½ cup nonfat dry milk
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 12 tablespoons melted butter
  • For the Filling
  • 1 cup (8 ounces) cream cheese
  • 3 eggs
  • 4 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°. Lightly grease a 9-by-13-inch baking pan and set aside.
  2. Make the crust: Mix the flour, sugar, nonfat dry milk, baking powder, baking soda and salt together. Then, add the eggs and butter, and mix together to form a sticky ball. Press evenly into the bottom of the pan and set aside.
  3. Make the filling: Set aside 4 tablespoons of confectioners' sugar. Place the cream cheese in a large bowl and whip it to soften using a hand mixer. Gradually add the eggs, the remaining confectioners' sugar and vanilla extract, and blend until smooth. Pour the mixture evenly over the crust in the pan.
  4. Bake on the middle rack of the oven for 40 to 50 minutes, until golden brown. The filling should be "gooey" when removed from the oven. Cool completely and cut into squares. Sprinkle with the reserved confectioners' sugar and serve.
Calories per Serving 733
Total Fat 28.6 g
Saturated Fat 16.6 g
Trans Fat 0.6 g
Cholesterol 170.0 mg
Total Carbohydrates 112.1 g
Dietary Fiber 0.8 g
Total Sugars 89.2 g
Sodium 449.7 mg
Protein 9.6 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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