Tuesday, October 11, 2011

If It Says Gooey And Butter It Has To Be Good!

Sunday was the brunch celebration we hosted for our youngest son's girlfriend Cortney.  She just finished her BS in nursing.  This is one of the menu items served and I cannot tell you  - or stress enough - how absolutely divine this Gooey Pumpkin Butter Cake is!   I have been making gooey butter cake for years from a recipe in a cook book my children gave me called St. Louis Days, St. Louis Nights.   Three of our children went to Webster University Conservatory in St. Louis and they gave me this book as a gift (because I love recipes and cookbooks).  It is a compilation of recipes by the Junior League of Saint Louis and many of the recipes are from local restaurants.  In the forward to the book, it says 

"The title Saint Louis Days...Saint Louis Nights symbolizes the diversity of culinary specialities prepared in St. Louis kitchens.  Since its humble beginning as a French fur trapping outpost more than 300 years ago, the city has attracted people with wonderfully rich ethnic traditions, and St. Louis cuisine, which is as varied as day and night, has been strongly influenced by this melting pot of nationalities and customs.  The incredible array of outstanding restaurants which covers the metropolitan area proves St. Louisians love to eat.  It includes everything from Midwestern meat and potatoes, to the mighty Mississippi's contribution of catfish, to the renowned Italian specialities from "the Hill," to the latest trends in fine cuisine.

St. Louis famous culinary firsts include the ice cream cone and hot dog, which both originated from the 1904 World's Fair, toasted ravioli created by the Italian chef on "the Hill" who accidentally knocked a plate of ravioli into a pan of hot grease; and the sinfully rich Gooey Butter Cake that came from the German bakers in South St. Louis."

So now you know where Gooey Butter Cake originated and this is the recipe I have used again and again..  Renowned cook, Paula Deen, has put her spin on Gooey Butter Cake by creating several variations on a theme.  I am posting the original recipe and the one I used on Sunday, which is her recipe for Gooey Pumpkin Butter Cake and it is outstanding.  Enough said.

Original  St. Louis Gooey Butter Cake Recipe


1 cup all purpose flour
3 tablespoons sugar
1/3 cup butter or margarine


1 1/4 cups sugar
3/4 cup butter
1 egg
1 cup all purpose flour
2/3 cups evaporated milk
1/4 cup light corn syrup
1 tsp vanilla 
powdered sugar

Crust:  In a mixing bowl, combine flour and sugar.  Cut in butter until mixture resembles fine crumbs and starts to cling.  Pat into the bottom and sides of a 9x9x2 greased baking pan.


In a mixing bowl, beat sugar and butter until light and fluffy.  Mix in egg until combined.  Add alternately flour and evaporated milk, mixing after each addition.  Add corn syrup and vanilla.  Mix at medium speed until well blended.  Pour batter into crust-lined baking pan.  Sprinkle with powdered sugar.  Bake at 350 for 25 to 35 minutes or until cake is nearly set.  DO NOT overcook.  Cool in pan.

Here is Paul Deen's recipe for Gooey Pumpkin Butter Cake



  • 1 (18 1/4-ounce) package yellow cake mix
  • 1 egg
  • 8 tablespoons butter, melted


  • 1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
  • 1 (15-ounce) can pumpkin
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 8 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 (16-ounce) box powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Combine the cake mix, egg, and butter and mix well with an electric mixer. Pat the mixture into the bottom of a lightly greased 13 by 9-inch baking pan.
To make the filling: In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese and pumpkin until smooth. Add the eggs, vanilla, and butter, and beat together. Next, add the powdered sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and mix well. Spread pumpkin mixture over cake batter and bake for 40 to 50 minutes. Make sure not to overbake as the center should be a little gooey.
Serve with fresh whipped cream

I made one change in this recipe.  I am not a big fan of nutmeg, so I doubled the cinnamon which is delicious!  Otherwise, it is a really easy recipe to make and even easier to enjoy.  Because it is so rich and decadent, I cut it into 2x2 inch pieces that are easy to pop in your mouth.  If you want bigger servings, just simply cut it into bigger pieces.  It doesn't matter how you serve it, it is scrumptious.  This is how good it is.  One of our son's friends who was in attendance had never eaten pumpkin pie but agreed to try the pumpkin gooey butter cake.  He ate one, then another and said if I wanted to send some home with him he would gladly take it (which I did)!  How's that for a testimonial?
With the holiday's rapidly approaching, this is a fantastic and easy desert to serve.  Actually, it's wonderful anytime throughout the fall and winter season.  Give it a try, you will love it and it's easier than making pumpkin pie with the same delicious results.  Enjoy!

Everyday Donna

Things to Remember:
 You can only lose something that you have, but you cannot lose something that you are.” ― Eckhart Tolle

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