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1940s Chocolate War Cake

1940s Chocolate War CakeWar cake, popularized in the U.S. during World War II, is made without eggs or milk, which were hard to get at the time. The recipe has stuck around all these years because it is moist, chocolaty and a cinch to make. It just happens to be vegan as well, so it is ideal for those with dietary restrictions. Making war cake with canola oil and half whole-grain pastry flour makes it better for you with a taste worth “fighting for.”

Recipe Ingredients:

3/4 cup whole-wheat pastry flour*
3/4 cup all purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup cold water
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
1/3 cup canola oil
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon powdered’ sugar

Cooking Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C).
  2. In 9-inch round baking pan, whisk together whole-grain pastry flour, all-purpose flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt.
  3. In small bowl or measuring cup, combine water and vinegar.
  4. Make well in center of flour mixture in pan and pour canola oil and vanilla extract into well. Pour water-vinegar mixture over top of flour and then stir well to blend all ingredients.
  5. Bake until set and toothpick inserted into center comes out clean, about 30 to 35 minutes. Place cake on rack to cool in pan.
  6. Once cool, sprinkle with powdered’ sugar.

Makes 12 servings.

*Note: Whole-wheat, all-purpose flour can be substituted for whole-wheat pastry flour.

Nutritional Information Per Serving (1/12 of recipe): Calories 180; Total Fat 7g; Saturated Fat 0.5g; Cholesterol 0mg; Sodium 200mg; Carbohydrates 29g; Fiber 2g; Protein 2g.

Recipe and photograph courtesy of