Shortbread Cake

My mom has always told me about this cake she grew up with my Grandma making. She would go on and on about the simplicity of it but how delicious she remembered it being. I finally got around to making this cake and trying it out for myself. It is like a soft shortbread cake.

The recipe itself comes from my grandma’s cookbook, which she titled in the cookbook, “Cherry Cake”. Let me be frank with you for a minute. I am not a cherry person. Gasp! I know right? So I of course used a different pie filling. After one bite, I could not get the word “Shortbread” out of my head. It tasted like a soft and fluffier version of Shortbread cookies (recipe coming later this week). So I retitled it “Shortbread Cake” and I think you will agree with me! It is such an easy recipe, with simple flavors that will keep you fork coming back for more. Even I, a true die-hard chocolate lover, have a great fondness for this cake.

Shortbread Cake from ...This cake is a soft and fluffier version of shortbread cookies. It is super simple to make and tastes absolutely delicious!

5.0 from 1 reviews
Shortbread Cake
This cake is a soft and fluffier version of shortbread cookies. It is super simple to make and tastes absolutely delicious!
Recipe type: Dessert
  • 1½ cups sugar
  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 cups sifted flour
  • 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 can pie filling, I used blackberry
  1. Cream butter and sugar together.
  2. Add eggs one at a time, beating at a medium speed.
  3. Add flour and lemon juice and mix well.
  4. Pour into a greased jelly roll pan and spread evenly to cover.
  5. Drop pie filling by the spoonful into cake batter. (4 rows by 5 rows. More or less rows depending on how many servings you want.)
  6. Bake at 350 degrees F for 40-45 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool for 5 minutes.
  7. Sprinkle with powdered sugar until covered.
  8. Serve with ice cream if desired.


If you make this recipe, snap a photo and hashtag it #chefintraining and/or #chefintrainingblog. I would love to see how these recipes take shape in your kitchens.

Filed under: cake, dessert, grandma cookbook

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  1. Averie @ Averie Cooks

    I love that this recipe is passed down to 3 generations and your grandma probably learned it from someone in her family! And how wonderful she had a cookbook or documented her recipes somehow. Mine did not and so many things are now gone forever. Such a pretty cake, Nikki! pinned

  2. Elizabeth

    this is todays dessert for my you I too have a lot of my Mom's and Nana's recipes and I cherish them...I made a cookbook with all the recipes and my girls favorites I have made them over time and will give it to them when the time is right...I think this is a great gift that they can hand down ...thanks for all your DELICIOUS recipes you share with all of us

  3. Ala

    Generational recipes are the absolute best--unfortunately, the generations before me apparently think cooking is just a magical gut-feeling trait that gets passed down through some unspeakable medium (NOT the case with this gal), so we don't have too much beyond lots of guestimating to go on, but I love this measured recipe cake! Looks delish!

  4. Liz

    Thank you Nikki. I love this recipe. Have a Happy Monday!

  5. Shannon {Cozy Country Living}

    I love recipes that have a family history and have wonderful memories passed down along with it. This cake looks great! I'm not a huge fan of cherries either but the blackberry filling sounds perfect. I can't wait to try it:)

  6. cindee

    I would love to make this for my daughter because shortbread are her favorite cookie.I have 3 sizes of jelly roll pan and do not know what size to use for this recipe.

  7. susan

    My fave cookie is shortbread ,too so I made this today...using peach pie filling and adding some some vanilla and almond extracts in place of lemon....QUITE YUMMSY! AND EASY

  8. Kathleen

    Please provide size of the jelly roll pan....also, want to make sure I understand because it almost sounds too press the cake into the jelly roll pan. Then just scoop on the pie filling. Does the dough just rise and create the depth? It looks layered.
    This looks delicious can't wait to make it!

    1. Chef in Training

      Its a 10x15x1 jelly roll pan. I apologize, I didn't know there was more than one size jelly roll pan. I will specify that in the recipe :)

  9. Nicole | Culinary Cool

    I made a version of this for Valentine's Day using Nutella and fresh strawberries. The base of this cake is incredibly versatile and goes well with just about anything!

  10. Pamela

    I'm backed up in getting to TONS of emails so I'm just now getting to ones where I KNOW I'll want to be printing and keeping recipes, ones that I just can't glance at and go. This is one of them. I'm VERY anxious to try this one although I will have to try it the second time for myself with gluten free flour substitute. The first time I make a new recipe I always follow the original instructions and then share that cake with someone somewhere and get their feedback. Then, I can try it for myself making it gluten free. It's a pain in the tush but that's one of the curves life has tossed me. Anyway, I wanted to say that if the bulk of your opinion of not liking cherries is based on that disgusting, vulgar, gloppy, repulsive canned pie WONDER you don't care for cherries. Honestly, that stuff is so repulsive it should have a ban on it from ever being sold. How people eat this stuff and SAY they enjoy it passes beyond my human understanding. It's SO dang gone easy to make pie filling from scratch, or partially if you must use frozen cherries, but that's allowed. All a person needs to do is during REAL cherry season, which is short so you can't procrastinate, buy as MANY cherries as you can afford. Trust me, you will regret it next winter if you were stingy when getting your cherries this coming cherry season in June and July (depending on where you live). You have your choice of sweet cherries (my personal favorite for obvious reasons) and sour (or pie) cherries. Our family has a recipe known as "Cherry Pudding" (I haven't a clue why it's called this when it's actually a cake) that is SO unique and I like it best when made with sweet cherries.

    When buying sour cherries in bulk these are often sold by the bucket. If you live near any "pick-your-own" orchards this is a fun and more economical route to go. It's also a great way to teach children how their food gets on this planet. For 10 years I was a Big Sister to a young girl (she's now a34 year old special education school teacher and we're still good friends) who had led a pretty sheltered "city" type of life. Our first June together (we just missed strawberry season the first year being matched in July) I took her strawberry picking. On the way to the farm she asked me, "what sort of trees do strawberries grow on?" I almost wrecked the car trying to keep from hysterically laughing because I knew it would hurt her feelings. THAT is how sheltered MANY of these town and lower income kids are in today's world. I learned there were SO MANY things in life I took for granted, I had experienced and been exposed to as a child that she didn't have a clue. (anything to do with church and God was another one - but that's another story).

    Anyway, after you buy this hugh bulk of cherries, purchase or borrow a cherry pitter. You can do it by hand but my thumbs get sore pitting all of those cherries. Then follow the instructions in your canning and freezing guide for freezing the cherries. It's up to you if you go ahead and add sugar or anything else or pre-make any steps of the pie filling. Next......if you want to learn to like cherries (hope you do better than I ever have done TRYING to learn to like raisins - I've given up after 50 years), get a big bowl of SWEET cherries, plop down in the hammock, on the porch, some place warm, comfortable and quiet, and just let yourself pig out on them. They are another one of nature's candies.

  11. Avril


    Nikki - I almost cried when I took a bite; this basic cake recipe (minus the fruit) is the one I have been searching for for years! As a child I remember my Nana (dad's grandmother) making a simple cake that could only be described as a sugar cookie cake. By the time I had a family in the early 80's Nana had died and the recipe was lost. I've spent years trying to find the right recipe to no avail. When I read your recipe I thought maybe this will work. I did not drop in any fruit but I did sprinkle the top with the large sparkling sugar. It was just what I remembered! It is perfect with a cup of coffee or a glass of tea. Because I like anise I am going to flavor it with that next time.
    I started following you on Pinterest and you have some of the best looking recipes. I haven't tried many though since I rarely have to cook for anyone anymore. Oh well Thanks for sharing!!!

  12. N

    I live in the uk your measures are in cups can you tell me what the measures are in ounces or trams thanks