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Updated: Jul 5, 2023

This recipe was created during the great depression in the early 1930s when dairy products were scarce and expensive. It doesn’t contain eggs, butter or milk, so it’s perfect for those who are dairy intolerant or vegan. Oh, and by the way – it’s moist, rich and totally delicious!


3 cups plain flour

2 cups white sugar

½ cup cocoa powder

2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp salt

2 cups water

¾ cup neutral oil (e.g. canola, sunflower or grapeseed)

2 tbsp vinegar (any type)

1 tbsp vanilla extract


• Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F) and grease and line a 23 cm (9 inch) cake tin.

• Sift the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda and salt into a large bowl and mix to combine.

• Make a well in the centre and add the water, oil, vinegar and vanilla.

• Mix until well combined.

• Pour into the prepared tin and bake for 30–35 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.

• When cold, ice with your favourite icing.

Serves: 12

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cooking Time: 30–35 minutes

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