Spanish Bar Cake

Spices, applesauce, raisins and cocoa combine to make one very moist cake! It is so good and brings back many memories for me.
This cake is an old family favorite from the A+P stores where I grew up. Mom would buy one as a special treat. I decided to try making it years ago when I saw a recipe that sounded good. The recipe wasn’t quite right so I have improved it every time I’ve made it. I think it is perfect now, right down to looking like the original. I hope you enjoy it too! Does it bring back any memories for you?
Spanish Bar Cake

The cake is baked in a 9×13 pan. I cut it length ways and made it two layers, because that is how A+P sold theirs. I think it makes it just a little more special. The fork marks on the top are also what I remember…
Spanish Bar Cake
More important than how it looks, is the wonderful flavor. The combination of the spices and a little chocolate makes this cake very special. An icing that is  not too sweet  really compliments the cake. A cream cheese frosting would be good too but it just wouldn’t be authentic on the A+P Spanish Bar Cake.

Spanish Bar Cake
This cake is worth making and may become a favorite, even if you have never had the original!!

Pinterest Photos ~ the perfect size for boards
Spanish Bar Cake  Spanish Bar Cake

Spanish Bar Cake

  • Servings: 9-12
  • Difficulty: Medium
  • Print

Ingredients:Spanish Bar Cake  1 012  edit 1
2 c. flour
3/4 C sugar
3/4 C light brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
2 Tbsp. cocoa (I used Dutch process)
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. allspice
1/2 tsp. ground cloves
1/2 C oil
2 C applesauce
2 eggs
1 1/2 C raisins (plump in hot water for 15 minutes and drain)

Preheat oven to 350°. Spray a 9 x 13 baking pan with baking spray.

Whisk first 8 ingredients together in a large bowl.

Stir in oil, applesauce and eggs, mix well. Add raisins, stir just until combined.

Bake at 350 degrees in 9×13 inch pan for 30-35 minutes.

Cool completely before spreading with a butter cream frosting.

Note:  If you would like to make the cake like the original Spanish Bar Cake, cut the cake length ways into two halves. Spread the frosting between the layers and on top. Use a fork to make the lines on the top.

Nancy Copyright 2014

24 thoughts on “Spanish Bar Cake

  1. I made the cake from another recipe on pinterest…yep i don’t remember cream cheese frosting…, having read your recipe i think it sounds more like it…next time I’ll try your recipe. Mine is good but not quite the same. The search continues, lol

  2. Made this for my Nieces baby shower. It was delicious! I used the american butter cream recipe from Wicked good Kitchen. PERFECT. Thanks!

  3. I live in Canada and A&P sold it here also. I loved it as a kid and continued to buy it for my kids. I am making this soon

  4. Is the baking soda supposed to be bicarbonate of soda or baking powder? And is the flour plain or self raising? Thanks!

  5. Well—here I go. I’m making this for my son and his children. All too young to remember A&P or their cake. So, maybe it is really for me!!! I remember it well. Wish me luck.

  6. I’m almost 70 and I remember going to the A&P in Bethlehem, Pa. Loved their Spanish Bar Cake but also don’t remember it having chocolate. Who cares, will try it anyhow.

  7. Oh Nancy! Thank you so much! I’ve been deaming of this cake since the ACME store where I lived went out of business when I was a little girl. Oh the memories shared eating this cake around the dinner table are priceless. Can’t wait to make it tomorrow. Bleass your heart! :)

  8. WoW! This also brought back fond memories for me. Our A&P was in South Fork, Pa in the late fifties. I couldn’t get enough of the famous Spanish bar cake! I don’t remember the chocolate though. Could it be omitted? Tanks for sharing

    • You could leave out the little bit of cocoa with out any problems. You don’t really taste any chocolate, but my taste memory of the original thinks it was there. It gives the cake a certain depth of flavor.

  9. Thanks for posting this!!!! Yes I remmember having it as a kid, and it was my older brother’s favorite! I also think it came from A&P Cleveland area when we were so young, as A&P has been gone forever here! I am making this for his birthday for sure….love spanish bar cake!!!

  10. Oh my gosh! I came onto your site to fetch another recipe but then “Spanish bar cake ” caught my eye and I just HAD to look. I have a very strong childhood memory of a delicious store bought cake- most probably A&P( this was 1960s Cincinnati)- that reminds me also of my Mom. Thank you for posting this- I can’t wait to try it!!

    • You said everything I was thinking, except it was in 1957 in West Chester, Pennsylvania. My Mother just died at 90 years old on April 4th so I’ve been doing lots of walks down Memory Lane and thought of this cake. Isn’t it crazy what you remember from childhood? Anyway I am going to be making this cake real soon and will enjoy it with my family. Thanks.

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