So many of our recipes over the years hail from our moms, grandmothers, and family friends. But occasionally one REALLY GREAT recipe from our past, straight out of a book, keeps us coming back and wanting to share it. Today’s recipe not only brings back some of the fondest of memories of my childhood but also fills a very CURRENT NEED in many diets: Vegan Cake!

The I Hate to Cook Book (by Peg Bracken) had more vanilla extract stains & fingerprints on the pages than any other book on my mother’s shelf. The culprit recipe: “Cockeyed Cake.” Rich, moist, spongy, chocolate snacking cake,* I can taste it as I write about it! I baked it as a DOUBLE RECIPE ALWAYS and made it almost weekly through my youth. I have recited the recipe by heart on cue through my whole life ever since. I’d often add semi-sweet morsels to the top of the batter just as I slid the pan into the oven…oh, the gooey deliciousness upon that buzzer ringing!

*SIDE NOTE:  I figured if we called it “snacking cake” and ate it as a single layer in a boring pan (vs. layering it with icing & making it fancy), we could justify eating it weekly!

As a child in NJ, even though my mom dressed as somewhat of a hippie and ate more veggies than anyone I knew, we never had even heard the term “VEGAN.” The word was coined in the 1940’s but not flagrantly used until recently in the US.

***The term: VEGAN*** Donald Watson, founder of the Vegan Society, coined the word “vegan” in 1944 as a statement against vegetarians who ate dairy products. He took the first and last letters of the word vegetarian to create his orthodox version of vegetarianism.

Today we bake the Cockeyed Cake but simply call it our “Vegan Chocolate” and love introducing it to all of our vegan friends, clients, and employees (yes please, Kayla & Lauren)

Cockeyed Chocolate Cake Recipe (Vegan)

Made with LOVE from Elaine & Donna at Sweet Cheeks Baking Co. I made this cake every week as a child! We never considered it “vegan, ” just yummy chocolate cake.


  • 1 c. All Purpose Flour Sifted
  • 1/4 c. Wheatgerm
  • 1/4 c. Flaxseed
  • 1 c. Sugar
  • 1 tsp. Salt
  • 1 tsp. Baking Soda
  • 3 Tbsp Cocoa powder, dutch processed Sifted
  • 1/3 c. Vegetable Oil
  • 1 Tbsp White Vinegar
  • 1 tsp. Vanilla Extract
  • 1 c. Water


  • Mix all dry ingredients in bowl
  • Add wet ingredients to dry and whisk until combined.
  • Batter will flow easily and will be very dark brown
  • Spray and line pan before filling with batter
  • Bake at 350* F for 25 to 30 minutes.

**Note: A handful (or more) of Chocolate chips are great to bake into the top 🙂