Jelly Cake: Great Grandma’s Secret Hungarian Recipe


Jelly Cake

I have wonderful childhood memories of going over to my great grandma Dora’s and eating this simple yet scrumptious jelly cake with her at her kitchen table. It’s similar to coffee cake yet has a shortbread twist. One thing I love about this dessert is it’s not too sugary. It has just the right balance of sweet, savory and buttery components. Great grandma’s jelly cake also has a wonderful combination of textures – the cakey and buttery shortbread at the bottom topped with a layer of gooey jam and on top of that are the sweet and buttery crumbles. Yum-O!

Jelly Cake Baking Tips

This dessert doesn’t have that many ingredients but does require attention to detail when making it. Make sure the dough is slightly more moist than your typical pastry dough so that it’s more crumbly and less flaky. Also be sure to be gentle when spreading the jelly/preserves onto the dough so you don’t tear through it. One last thing…don’t over flour the crumbles which will make them too dry.


  • 3 1/2 c. flour
  • 1/2 lb. crisco shortening
  • 1 c. white sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Coat a medium sized cookie sheet with either butter or a non-stick spray
  3. Using an electric mixer, combine flour, shortening, baking soda and sugar until you form a pastry dough consistency
  4. Add in the eggs and vanilla until dough is smooth
  5. Roll or pat 3/4 of the dough onto the cookie sheet all the way up to the sidesjelly cake dough
  6. Spread your favorite jam or preserves on top of the rolled out doughjelly cake assembly
  7. Add some flour to the remaining dough until it’s crumbly
  8. Generously sprinkle the crumbles on top of the jelly/preserveshungarian jelly cake
  9. Lightly sprinkle the crumbles with white sugar
  10. Bake at 350 degrees until the top is golden brown (approximately 30 minutes)
  11. Let the jelly cake cool for 10 minutes and enjoy!jelly cake

Try a piece of this jelly cake with a cup of coffee and you’ll thank me later!

The next time you throw a party surprise your guests with this simple yet deliciously unique jelly cake! It is like nothing anyone has had before.

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