Ooey Gooey Butter Cake

Ooey Gooey Butter Cake From Scratch is a simple classic cake with a  shortbread like crust and creamy, pudding like filling. No frosting needed…just a dusting of powdered sugar will do! 

homemade ooey gooey butter cake on a plate

Just look at those layers. This ooey gooey butter cake  really needs no introduction. It’s a classic recipe that many have fallen in love with over the years. No frosting needed on this sweet cake…just a simple sprinkling of powdered sugar makes it look pretty!

Where did gooey butter cake come from?

I love reading the history of how different foods were created. The gooey butter cake dates back to the 1930’s when a baker’s cake recipe went all wrong and ended up with a pudding-like filling. It’s a brilliant mistake really. Rich, buttery and crazy sweet!

Ooey Gooey Butter Cake from Scratch

Often times gooey butter cake is made starting with a cake mix, but today we’re sharing a recipe that is totally from scratch. Don’t let those words scare you off. It’s really easy…I promise!

  • Make your buttery crust. Be sure to use melted butter so it comes together easily. Using a food processor helps those eggs and butter get perfectly blended so that your crust stays together.
  • Use the same food processor (just rinse it out!) to make the creamy filling. Soften the cream cheese so that the filling ends up smooth.
  • 4 cups of powdered sugar? Yes. 4 cups. This is one cake that will completely satisfy your sweet tooth!
  • To easily remove the cake from the pan, we recommend lining the pan with foil and spraying it with cooking spray. Allow the foil to hang out over the edges of the pan. After the cake is baked, you can lift up on that foil and pull the bars out of the pan as a sheet so that you can make clean, even cuts.
  • The toothpick test does not work on this cake because you want it to be ooey gooey! So how do you know the cake bars are done? The top will be golden brown and start to “puff” a little.
  • Don’t sprinkle the cake with powdered sugar until it is completely cooled. If the cake is warm at all, the powdered sugar will melt in instead of dusting the top.

steps to make gooey butter cake in a collage

How do you store gooey butter cake?

Because of the gooey filling in this cake, we recommend storing gooey butter cake in the refrigerator. It will be ok at room temperature for a few hours, but be sure to store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for best keeping.

gooey butter cake bars cut in slices

Butter Cake Recipes

Tools to Make This Cake

  • Ninja Food Processor: This blender/food processor system can do it all! We use ours for everything from smoothies to milkshakes to crushing ice to chopping veggies.
  • 9”x13” Baking Pan: One of my most used kitchen pans.
how to make gooey butter cake from scratch
how to make gooey butter cake from scratch

Ooey Gooey Butter Cake

4.78 from 22 votes
Ooey Gooey Butter Cake From Scratch is a simple classic cake with a  shortbread like crust and creamy, pudding like filling. No frosting needed...just a dusting of powdered sugar will do! 
Servings 18
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes


Crust Ingredients

Top Layer Ingredients


  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and prepare a 9x13-baking dish. Line your baking dish with foil and spray the foil with a non-stick spray.
  • Using a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Pour this mixture into a large food processor, along with the 2 eggs and butter. Pulse until well combined and your dough is crumbly.
  • Pour the dough into your prepared pan and lightly pack it along the bottom. Set aside.
  • In the same food processor, rinse it out and add the cream cheese. Pulse until the cream cheese is smooth and creamy. Add in the 3 eggs and vanilla, mixing again until well combined. Now, add in the powdered sugar and mix on high until all the clumps are gone. Pour this mixture over the base in your pan.
  • Baking for 50 minutes, or until the top is a golden brown color. Don’t use the toothpick test! You know the bars are done once color has been reached and the top has started to puff up.
  • Allow to cool completely before cutting, the top layer is gooey so if you cut when warm it will be messy. Once cooled, chill in the fridge for a couple or hours, or freeze for 30 minutes. Dust with powdered sugar and enjoy!


The calories shown are based on the cake being cut into 18 pieces, with 1 serving being 1 slice of cake. Since different brands of ingredients have different nutritional information, the calories shown are just an estimate.


Calories: 362kcal | Carbohydrates: 57g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 82mg | Sodium: 192mg | Potassium: 123mg | Sugar: 43g | Vitamin A: 475IU | Calcium: 53mg | Iron: 1.2mg
Author Julie Clark
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Calories 362
Keyword bars, butter, cream cheese, shortbread

A piece of cake on a plate, gooey butter cake title image

About Julie Clark

We are Julie, Maddie, and Kinslee – a mother and daughter team sharing with you the best cakes to satisfy any need or sweet craving that you may have. Welcome to our family’s kitchen!

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4.78 from 22 votes (21 ratings without comment)
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4 stars
I just made these today and they’re so good! Very rich and sweet, I had to stop myself from eating another. From my own experience, these are best enjoyed cold with a hot drink. I can’t wait to share them.