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Chop Suey Cake

Chop Suey Cake - An easy, vintage recipe made with crushed pineapple and walnuts, topped with cream cheese icing.

If you’re a regular reader here at A Family Feast, then you already know that Jack and I both have a soft spot in our hearts for vintage family recipes.

In this case, seeing the recipe card for this Chop Suey Cake in my mom’s old recipe box sparked a long-forgotten memory from my childhood – and I have a feeling all of you will love this recipe too!

Chop Suey Cake - An easy, vintage recipe made with crushed pineapple and walnuts, topped with cream cheese icing.

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I don’t know exactly why this delicious cake is called “Chop Suey Cake.” If it’s like our American Chop Suey recipe – then perhaps this cake got its name from being made with a mixed bag of ingredients: crushed canned pineapple, walnuts and coconut.

Looking online, I also saw this recipe referred to as Polish Chop Suey Cake (although I’m not sure why it would be considered a Polish recipe…) and Church Lady Cake – dating back to the 1940’s – so I suspect this cake has made an appearance at many church functions!

Chop Suey Cake - An easy, vintage recipe made with crushed pineapple and walnuts, topped with cream cheese icing.

This Chop Suey cake couldn’t be any easier to make – just stir everything together in a big bowl! And it’s interesting to me that this cake has no butter or oil in the batter. But the large can of crushed pineapple – with all of the juices added too – more than does the trick making this cake sweet and deliciously moist.

Chop Suey Cake - An easy, vintage recipe made with crushed pineapple and walnuts, topped with cream cheese icing.

A wonderful cream cheese butter cream icing tops this Chop Suey Cake. You’ll spread the icing on the cake while it is still warm from coming out of the oven – then sprinkle on some walnuts for garnish. The entire cake is chilled before eating – and I think the longer this Chop Suey Cake sits, the better it tastes! Enjoy!

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Chop Suey Cake


  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 35 mins
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 20 servings

Ingredients

  • Shortening, for greasing the pan
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 20-ounce can crushed pineapple in natural juice, undrained
  • 1 cup walnuts, coarsely chopped
  • ½ cup flaked coconut (sweetened)

For the icing

  • 1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 cups confectioner’s sugar
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup chopped walnuts, for garnish

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Grease a 9×13-inch baking pan with the shortening. Set aside.
  3. In a very large mixing bowl, with a wooden spoon, stir together flour, sugar, eggs, baking soda, pineapple and juices, walnuts and coconut. (Do not use an electric mixer.) Stir until completely combined.
  4. Pour batter into the prepared baking pan, then bake for 30-35 minutes until golden brown on top.
  5. Remove baking pan from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool.
  6. While the cake is cooling, mix softened cream cheese and butter together with a mixer until well blended.
  7. Gradually add confectioner’s sugar, milk and vanilla mixing until well blended.
  8. Using an offset spatula, spread the icing on the cake while it is still warm. Sprinkle the chopped nuts over the top of the icing.
  9. Cool cake completely, then refrigerate until you are ready to serve. Store any leftovers in the refrigerator.

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links.

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Chop Suey Cake - An easy, vintage recipe made with crushed pineapple and walnuts, topped with cream cheese icing.

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  1. Love the name of this cake! It looks so tender and moist….delicious. Pinned. Making soon. Thanks for sharing.

  2. This is one of my all time favorite cakes. So easy to make and the flavor is out of this world.

  3. Looks like a prune cake, which I love

  4. Liked the cake but now I can’t eat nuts-will it still come out good if I eliminated the nuts or do I need a substitute

  5. I’ve always called this cake the “Preacher Cake”. It’s so good, too.

  6. Mary Weyand :

    Planing to make this for our family reunion coming up soon.

  7. We always called this recipe Amish Wedding Cake up in Cleveland. Delicious.

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