Better than sex cake
A better than sex cake
Alternative namesBetter than Robert Redford cake
Place of originUnited States
Serving temperatureChilled, or just cooled
Main ingredientsFlour, sugar, baking soda, water, eggs, vegetable oil, crushed pineapple, vanilla pudding, whipped cream, coconut flakes
Variationschocolate, caramel, toffee

Better than sex cake is a cake baked using yellow cake mix, with a juicy pineapple center, covered with layers of vanilla pudding and sweetened whipped cream, and sprinkled with coconut flakes.[1][2][3] A variant using chocolate cake mix, caramel topping, and crumbled toffee is known by similar names such as better than Robert Redford cake.[4][5][6]

The cake's moist center is typically created by inserting a fork into the cake several times and filling the holes with a mixture containing sugar and pineapple in its juice. It is traditionally baked using a 13 by 9 by 2-inch pan and then refrigerated and eaten cold.[1][7] The cake was featured by Paula Deen on her series Paula's Home Cooking.[8][9][10]

The cake's popularity was spreading in the west coast of Florida and in Charlotte, North Carolina when it came to the attention of the 1981 St. Louis annual convention of the Newspaper Food Editors and Writers Association.[1][2][11] It was published as a pair of cake recipes, with the other one from Indianapolis called "next best thing to Robert Redford" cake and featuring layers of chocolate pudding and whipped cream, with grated chocolate candy bar sprinkled on top.[1]

A variant topped with caramel and crumbled chocolate-coated toffee bars

By 1990, several versions existed.[12] The basic recipe for the cake has been altered depending on the tastes of the person making the cake and alternates include chocolate, banana, or candy flavors.[13][14] A 1998 Kansas variant used chocolate cake mix, sweetened condensed milk, caramel ice cream topping, and crumbled toffee.[4] The less-explicit "better than Robert Redford" name came to be applied to both variants.[15][5][6]

See also


  1. ^ a b c d "Just deserts? These have a little extra zing". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. July 22, 1981. Retrieved April 23, 2023.
  2. ^ a b Greene, Bert (1993). Bert Greene's Kitchen: A Book of Memories and Recipes. Workman Publishing Company. p. 184.
  3. ^ Powell, Mary Alice (May 25, 1983). "Cakes Worth The Wait". The Blade. Retrieved April 23, 2023.
  4. ^ a b "Better Than Sex' Recipe Takes The Cake In Contest". Lawrence Journal-World. Oct 28, 1998. Retrieved 23 September 2013.
  5. ^ a b Dave Monroe, Fritz Allhoff (2007). Food and Philosophy: Eat, Think, and Be Merry. Wiley-Blackwell. p. 166. ISBN 978-1405157759.
  6. ^ a b "East meets west on Susan Chartier's Island". KCAW. September 7, 2013. Retrieved 23 September 2013.
  7. ^ Holland, Barb (Oct 21, 1992). "Pineapples make cake 'better than sex'". Toronto Star. Archived from the original on 5 May 2016. Retrieved 23 September 2013.
  8. ^ Moskin, Julia (February 28, 2007). "From Phobia to Fame: A Southern Cook's Memoir". The New York Times. Retrieved April 21, 2022.
  9. ^ Moskin, Julia (June 21, 2013). "Food Network Drops Paula Deen". The New York Times. Retrieved April 21, 2022.
  10. ^ Horwitz, Tony (2020). Spying on the South: An Odyssey Across the American Divide. New York: Penguin Books. p. 46. ISBN 9781101980309. Retrieved April 21, 2022.
  11. ^ "America's food fads in summer of '82". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. August 18, 1982. Retrieved April 23, 2023.
  12. ^ Schwartz, Marlyn (April 29, 1990). "Can food be better than sex?". Dallas Morning News. Archived from the original on 13 May 2016. Retrieved 23 September 2013.
  13. ^ Bennet, Bev (February 18, 1993). "'Better-Than-Sex' Takes the Cake". Chicago Sun-Times. Retrieved 23 September 2013.
  14. ^ "Several ways to make cake better than sex". Austin American-Statesman. April 13, 1994. Retrieved 23 September 2013.
  15. ^ Byrn, Anne (1999). The Cake Mix Doctor. New York, NY: Workman Publishing Company. pp. 169, 171. ISBN 0-7611-1719-9. Retrieved April 10, 2023.