Novel oatmeal camping cake

Old-Fashioned Oatmeal Cake with Broiled Topping

Oatmeal Cake (a.k.a. Camping Cake)

from the kitchen of Fran McCormack and Libby McCormack Cooper

I’m not sure where the original came from, but Mom called it “Oatmeal Cake.” My girls call it “Camping Cake” since we always took it camping. Mom made it in an aluminum pan with a sliding lid, like the one pictured below, so even on camping trips it stayed wonderfully moist and un-squashed. No small feat. It is definitely not figure-friendly, but it does contain oatmeal, so perhaps Mom thought it qualified as healthy for that reason alone.

*Note: If you leave the knife in the pan, the cake seems to disappear by inches, not whole slices. Just sayin’.


1 cup oats

1 ½ cup hot water

½ cup butter or margarine

1 cup brown sugar

1 cup white sugar

2 unbeaten eggs

1 ½ cups flour

1 tsp. soda

1 tsp. cinnamon

½ tsp. salt

  1. Pour water over oats. Set aside.
  2. Cream butter sugars and eggs until smooth
  3. Add dry ingredients. Add oatmeal last. Beat well.
  4. Pour into greased 9×12 pan.
  5. Bake 30 min. @ 350

Broiled Icing:

¾ cube of butter

1 T. milk

¾ cup brown sugar

1 ½ cup coconut

1 cup chopped walnuts, pecans, or almonds

  1. Melt butter in a saucepan and add sugar
  2. Cook for one minute.
  3. Add coconut & nuts.
  4. Spread on warm cake & broil. Watch closely!
  5. Cool completely before serving or covering.

5 thoughts on “Novel oatmeal camping cake

  1. I remember the pan as well. Every time one of them appeared at a family gathering, the smart folks knew to position themselves as near to it as possible for the big reveal, because it was going to be something good and there would be a frenzy…

    Liked by 1 person

  2. You’re right! Everything from an enchilada casserole, a layered jello concoction, or refrigerator cake could be in there. Somehow the current versions of the pan, with their plastic snap-on covers just don’t measure up. Mine is at least sixty years old. Practically indestructible.

    Liked by 1 person

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