Sock It To Me Cake


Everyday Culinary Delights 👩‍🍳


The Sock It To Me Cake is a delightful dessert that combines rich, buttery flavors with a tantalizing cinnamon-pecan streusel filling. This Southern classic has been a favorite in many households, often served during holidays and special occasions. Its unique name and irresistible taste make it a must-try for any baking enthusiast.

The cake’s popularity stems from its moist texture and the perfect blend of sweet and nutty flavors. Originating in the 1970s, this cake quickly became a staple in Southern cuisine. The name “Sock It To Me” is believed to be inspired by the catchphrase popularized by the television show “Laugh-In,” adding a fun and memorable twist to this beloved dessert. Today, it continues to be a cherished recipe, enjoyed by generations.

Ingredients and Preparation

Ingredients Overview

Creating a Sock It To Me Cake requires a combination of essential ingredients that contribute to its unique flavor and texture. Here is a detailed list of the ingredients needed for the cake, filling, and glaze, along with the importance of each:

For the Cake:

  • 1 package yellow cake mix: Serves as the base of the cake, providing structure and sweetness.
  • 1 cup sour cream: Adds moisture and richness, resulting in a tender crumb.
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil: Contributes to the cake’s moistness and helps bind the ingredients together.
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar: Enhances the sweetness of the cake.
  • 1/4 cup water: Helps to achieve the right batter consistency.
  • 4 large eggs: Provide structure, stability, and richness to the cake.

For the Filling:

  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar: Adds a deeper, molasses-like sweetness.
  • 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon: Delivers a warm, spicy flavor that complements the sweetness.
  • 1 cup finely chopped pecans: Adds a crunchy texture and a nutty flavor, enhancing the overall taste experience.

For the Glaze:

  • 2 cups powdered sugar: Creates a smooth, sweet topping.
  • 1/4 cup milk: Thins the powdered sugar to a pourable consistency.
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract: Adds a subtle, aromatic flavor to the glaze.

Each ingredient in this recipe plays a crucial role in achieving the perfect balance of flavors and textures, making the Sock It To Me Cake a delightful dessert that is both nostalgic and delicious. For additional baking tips and recipes, check out Baking Tips.

Step-by-Step Preparation

Preparing the Bundt Pan

To ensure your Sock It To Me Cake comes out perfectly, start by preparing your bundt pan. Grease the pan thoroughly using non-stick spray or butter, making sure to cover every ridge and cranny. After greasing, dust the pan lightly with flour to help the cake release easily once baked. This step is crucial to prevent sticking and to achieve a beautifully shaped cake.

Mixing the Cake Batter

In a large mixing bowl, combine the following ingredients:

  • 1 package yellow cake mix
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 4 large eggs

Using an electric mixer, beat the ingredients on low speed until they are just combined. Increase the speed to high and continue beating for about 2 minutes until the batter is smooth and creamy. Avoid overmixing to ensure the cake remains light and fluffy.

Preparing the Cinnamon-Pecan Filling

In a small bowl, mix together:

  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup finely chopped pecans

This filling adds a rich, nutty flavor and a delightful crunch to the cake. The combination of cinnamon and pecans is a classic, bringing warmth and texture to each bite.

Layering the Batter and Filling

Pour two-thirds of the cake batter into the prepared bundt pan, spreading it evenly. Sprinkle the cinnamon-pecan filling over the batter layer. Pour the remaining batter on top of the filling, smoothing it out with a spatula to cover the filling completely.

Baking Instructions

Preheat your oven to 375°F (190°C). Place the bundt pan in the oven and bake for 45 to 55 minutes. To check for doneness, insert a toothpick into the center of the cake; it should come out clean when the cake is fully baked. Allow the cake to cool in the pan for about 25 minutes before inverting it onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Making the Glaze

Ingredients Needed for the Glaze

To make the perfect glaze for your Sock It To Me Cake, you will need:

  • 2 cups powdered sugar: This forms the base of the glaze, adding sweetness and smooth texture.
  • 1/4 cup milk: Helps achieve the desired consistency, making the glaze pourable.
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract: Adds a rich, aromatic flavor that complements the cake.

Steps to Prepare the Glaze

  1. In a medium-sized bowl, combine the powdered sugar and milk.
  2. Stir the mixture until smooth. If the glaze is too thick, add more milk, one teaspoon at a time, until you reach the desired consistency.
  3. Add the vanilla extract and mix thoroughly.

Tips for Achieving the Perfect Consistency

  • Consistency Check: The glaze should be thick enough to coat the back of a spoon but still pourable. If it’s too thin, add a little more powdered sugar. If it’s too thick, add a bit more milk.
  • Temperature: Ensure the cake is completely cooled before drizzling the glaze. Pouring glaze over a warm cake can cause it to become too thin and soak into the cake.
  • Application: Use a spoon or a small whisk to drizzle the glaze evenly over the top of the cake, allowing it to drip down the sides for a beautiful finish.

Baking Tips for the Perfect Cake

Achieving the perfect Sock It To Me Cake involves a few critical steps to ensure it turns out moist, flavorful, and beautifully shaped.

Importance of Not Overmixing the Batter

Overmixing the batter is a common mistake that can negatively impact the texture of your cake. When you mix the batter too much, it develops gluten, which can make the cake dense and rubbery. To avoid this, mix the ingredients just until they are combined. Using an electric mixer, blend the ingredients on low speed initially, then switch to high speed for about 2 minutes, but no longer. This will help maintain a light and airy texture, resulting in a tender and moist cake.

Tips for Greasing and Flouring the Bundt Pan

Proper preparation of your bundt pan is essential to ensure your cake releases easily after baking. Follow these steps for the best results:

  1. Grease the Pan Thoroughly: Use non-stick spray, butter, or shortening to coat every part of the pan, including all the ridges and crevices. This prevents the cake from sticking.
  2. Dust with Flour: After greasing, add a small amount of flour to the pan. Tilt and rotate the pan to ensure an even coating. Tap out any excess flour. This step creates a barrier between the cake and the pan, aiding in easy release and maintaining the cake’s intricate design.

Common Mistakes to Avoid

  • Using Cold Ingredients: Ensure all ingredients, especially eggs and sour cream, are at room temperature. This helps in achieving a smooth batter and even baking.
  • Incorrect Oven Temperature: Preheat your oven to the correct temperature before baking. An improperly preheated oven can cause uneven baking and affect the cake’s rise.
  • Skipping the Cooling Time: Let the cake cool in the pan for about 25 minutes before attempting to invert it onto a wire rack. This allows the cake to set and makes it easier to release without breaking.
  • Not Testing for Doneness: Always test the cake’s doneness by inserting a toothpick into the center. If it comes out clean, the cake is done. This ensures the cake is fully baked without being overdone.

Variations and Add-Ons

The Sock It To Me Cake is versatile and can be customized with various ingredients and toppings to suit different tastes. Here are some delightful variations and add-ons to enhance this classic dessert.

Alternative Ingredients

  • Walnuts Instead of Pecans: For a slightly different nutty flavor, substitute walnuts for pecans in the cinnamon-sugar filling. Walnuts add a rich, buttery taste and a slight crunch that complements the cake well.
  • Almonds or Hazelnuts: If you prefer, you can also use chopped almonds or hazelnuts. These nuts bring unique flavors and textures to the cake, offering a tasty twist on the traditional recipe.

Flavor Variations for the Glaze

  • Chocolate Glaze: Replace the vanilla extract in the glaze with cocoa powder to create a rich chocolate glaze. This variation adds a decadent touch to the cake, making it even more indulgent.
  • Maple Glaze: Substitute the milk in the glaze with maple syrup. This provides a sweet, caramel-like flavor that pairs wonderfully with the cinnamon-pecan filling.
  • Citrus Glaze: Add a tablespoon of lemon or orange juice to the glaze for a refreshing citrus twist. This variation adds a zesty brightness that balances the sweetness of the cake.

Additional Toppings and Mix-Ins

  • Candied Pecans: Sprinkle candied pecans over the glaze for an extra layer of sweetness and crunch. These add a delightful caramelized flavor that enhances the overall taste.
  • Chocolate Chips: Mix chocolate chips into the batter or sprinkle them on top of the glaze. Choose from dark, milk, or white chocolate to suit your preference.
  • Dried Fruit: Add a handful of dried cranberries, cherries, or raisins to the batter for a burst of fruity flavor. These mix-ins provide a chewy texture and complement the cake’s richness.

Serving Suggestions

The Sock It To Me Cake is a versatile dessert that can be enjoyed in various ways to enhance its delightful flavors. Here are some of the best ways to serve this classic cake:

Best Ways to Serve Sock It To Me Cake

  • Room Temperature: Serve the cake at room temperature to appreciate its moist texture and the rich, buttery flavor. This allows the cinnamon-pecan filling to shine.
  • Slightly Warmed: For an extra comforting treat, warm individual slices in the microwave for about 15-20 seconds. This enhances the aroma and makes the cake even more indulgent.

Pairing Suggestions

  • Coffee: The warm, spicy notes of the cinnamon-pecan filling pair perfectly with a robust cup of coffee. Whether it’s a simple black coffee or a creamy latte, this combination is a sure winner.
  • Tea: Pair the cake with a hot cup of tea, such as chai or Earl Grey. The spices in these teas complement the flavors of the cake beautifully.
  • Milk: For a classic pairing, enjoy a slice of Sock It To Me Cake with a cold glass of milk. This simple combination is particularly enjoyable for children.

Presentation Tips for Special Occasions

  • Garnish with Fresh Fruit: Add a touch of elegance by garnishing the cake with fresh berries or sliced fruit. This not only enhances the visual appeal but also adds a fresh flavor contrast.
  • Dust with Powdered Sugar: A light dusting of powdered sugar over the glaze can add a festive touch, making it perfect for holidays and special gatherings.
  • Serve on a Decorative Cake Stand: Present the cake on a decorative cake stand to elevate its appearance. This is especially effective for celebrations such as birthdays or anniversaries.

Storage and Shelf Life

Proper storage of the Sock It To Me Cake ensures it remains fresh and delicious for days.

Room Temperature

Store the cake in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days. This method keeps the cake moist and ready to serve at a moment’s notice. Ensure the container is well-sealed to prevent the cake from drying out.

Refrigeration and Freezing Guidelines

  • Refrigeration: To extend the shelf life, refrigerate the cake in an airtight container. It will stay fresh for up to a week. Before serving, let the cake sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes to soften.
  • Freezing: For longer storage, freeze the cake. Wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and place it in a freezer-safe container or bag. It can be frozen for up to 3 months. To thaw, move the cake to the refrigerator overnight or leave it at room temperature for several hours. Glaze the cake after it has thawed to maintain its texture.

Reheating Instructions

To enjoy the cake as if it’s freshly baked, reheat individual slices in the microwave. Heat for 15-20 seconds until warm. This quick reheating method revives the cake’s buttery richness and soft texture, making it perfect for a cozy treat.


Can I use different nuts in the filling?

Yes, you can definitely use different nuts in the filling. While the traditional Sock It To Me Cake recipe calls for pecans, you can substitute walnuts, almonds, or hazelnuts based on your preference. Walnuts add a rich, buttery flavor, while almonds provide a slightly sweet and crunchy texture. Hazelnuts bring a unique, slightly earthy taste to the cake. Experimenting with different nuts can add a new dimension to the cake’s flavor and texture.

How long does Sock It To Me Cake last?

The Sock It To Me Cake can last for several days if stored properly. At room temperature, the cake remains fresh for up to 3 days when kept in an airtight container. If refrigerated, it can stay fresh for up to a week. For longer storage, you can freeze the cake for up to 3 months. Ensure it is wrapped tightly in plastic wrap and placed in a freezer-safe container to prevent freezer burn.

Can I freeze this cake?

Yes, you can freeze the Sock It To Me Cake. To freeze, wrap the cake tightly in plastic wrap and place it in a freezer-safe container or bag. This helps maintain its moisture and prevents freezer burn. The cake can be frozen for up to 3 months. When you’re ready to enjoy it, thaw the cake in the refrigerator overnight or leave it at room temperature for several hours. For best results, glaze the cake after it has thawed to maintain its texture and flavor.

Why is it called Sock It To Me Cake?

The name “Sock It To Me Cake” comes from a popular catchphrase in the 1970s, “Sock it to me!” made famous by the comedy show “Laugh-In.” The phrase means to deliver something with vigor or intensity, which suits this cake perfectly due to its rich flavors and delightful texture. The name adds a fun, memorable twist to this beloved dessert, making it as intriguing as it is delicious.

Can I use a cake mix for this recipe?

Yes, using a cake mix is a common and convenient way to make Sock It To Me Cake. Many traditional recipes start with a yellow or butter cake mix, which simplifies the process and ensures a consistent outcome. To enhance the flavor and texture, ingredients like sour cream, eggs, and oil are added to the mix. This method saves time without compromising on the cake’s deliciousness.

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Sock It To Me Cake

  • Author: Naomi
  • Total Time: 1 hour 35 minutes
  • Yield: 12 servings


The Sock It To Me Cake is a classic Southern dessert that combines the richness of a buttery yellow cake with a sweet, nutty cinnamon-pecan filling. This cake is traditionally baked in a bundt pan, giving it a beautiful, fluted shape that is perfect for any special occasion.


For the cake:
1 package yellow cake mix
1 cup sour cream
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup water
4 large eggs
For the filling:
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
1 cup finely chopped pecans
For the glaze:
2 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract


Preheat and Prep Pan: Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C). Grease and flour a 10-inch bundt pan.
Mix Cake Ingredients: In a large bowl, combine cake mix, sour cream, oil, sugar, water, and eggs. Beat on low speed until ingredients are blended, then on high speed for 2 minutes.
Add Batter to Pan: Pour two-thirds of the batter into the prepared bundt pan.
Prepare Filling: In a small bowl, mix brown sugar, cinnamon, and chopped pecans. Sprinkle this filling over the batter in the pan.
Add Remaining Batter: Top with the remaining batter and smooth out the top.
Bake: Bake for 45 to 55 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean.
Cool: Allow to cool in the pan for 25 minutes, then invert onto a wire rack to cool completely.
Make Glaze: To make the glaze, combine powdered sugar, milk, and vanilla in a bowl until smooth. Drizzle over the cooled cake.


  • Ingredient Quality: Using high-quality ingredients, such as real vanilla extract and fresh pecans, can significantly enhance the flavor of the cake. Make sure your baking powder and baking soda are fresh to ensure the cake rises properly.
  • Room Temperature Ingredients: For best results, ensure that all your ingredients, especially eggs and sour cream, are at room temperature. This helps in creating a smooth batter and even baking.
  • Mixing: Be careful not to overmix the batter. Overmixing can lead to a dense and tough cake. Mix the ingredients just until combined to maintain a light and fluffy texture.
  • Bundt Pan Preparation: Grease and flour your bundt pan thoroughly to prevent sticking. This is crucial for the cake to release easily and maintain its beautiful shape.
  • Filling Distribution: When adding the cinnamon-pecan filling, make sure it is spread evenly over the batter layer. This ensures that every slice of the cake has a good amount of the delicious filling.
  • Baking Time: Oven temperatures can vary, so start checking the cake for doneness at the 45-minute mark. Insert a toothpick into the center; if it comes out clean, the cake is done.
  • Cooling: Allow the cake to cool in the pan for about 25 minutes before inverting it onto a wire rack to cool completely. This helps the cake set and makes it easier to handle.
  • Glazing: Make sure the cake is completely cool before adding the glaze. If the cake is warm, the glaze may melt and become too thin. Adjust the consistency of the glaze by adding more powdered sugar if it’s too thin or more milk if it’s too thick.
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 55 minutes
  • Category: Dessert
  • Cuisine: American


  • Calories: 460 kcal per serving

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