Classic 7up Cake

In the Coal Region, we have churches and bars in almost every town –  no matter how small the town — sometimes on every corner. In the little village where I grew up – population less than 300 people — we had two churches and several bars (the number of bars at any given time depended on the decade; some closed when owners aged, retired or passed away).

In addition to the bar at the Hosie (the fire company) during the years of my youth, there were a couple of bars in town my Pappy (grandfather) frequented on a some-what regular basis – much to the chagrin of my Nana (grandmother).

Pappy was a retired bootleg miner, succumbing to the ravages of Black Lung, and in my ten-year old eyes, he could do no wrong. I often rode my bike “uptown” to go meet up with Pappy at the bar when it was time for supper and he often brought home a six pack of Coke in those little green bottles from the bar for me.  My hero!

It is funny, I remember no details about the bar other than there was one of those soda machines outside the door that dispensed bottled soda – the kind where you inserted the money, opened a long glass door, and pulled a bottle out of the dispenser. When it came time to make this cake, my Mom always sent me uptown on my bike to buy a bottle of 7up from that machine.  I will always believe that soda tasted so much better from those bottles back then.

This recipe was in my Mom’s handwriting, has been in my collection for decades and I can close my eyes and be 10 years old again, climbing on my bike to go make the soda run for her to make my favorite cake.  Lemony and delicious, my Mom’s recipe called for cake flour which I believe gives it a nice texture and crumb. If you do not have cake flour, you can create your own cake flour: take 1 cup of all purpose flour, remove 2 Tablespoons of it, add 2 tablespoons corn starch, sift it five or six times and you have created your own cake flour.  Have your eggs and butter at room temperature before starting. NOTE: the oven is set at a low temperature for this cake.

Soda vending machine of my youth.

Classic 7up Cake

Recipe by A Coalcracker in the KitchenCourse: DessertCuisine: Coal RegionDifficulty: Easy


Cooking time





Moist pound cake-like recipe made with a popular lemon-lime flavored soft drink.


  • Cake
  • 1-1/2 cups unsalted butter, room temperature

  • 3 cups granulated sugar

  • 1 tsp salt

  • 5 large eggs, room temperature

  • 3 cups cake flour

  • 1/2 cup room temperature lemon lime (original) 7 Up

  • 1 tablespoon lemon extract

  • Glaze (Optional)
  • 1 cup of powdered sugar

  • 2 tablespoons of 7- up


  • Pre-heat oven to 315 F. (Note, this cake gets baked at a low temperature)
  • Prepare a large Bundt or tube pan with nonstick baking spray, or grease well and flour.
  • In a large mixing bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the butter for two minutes on high speed until pale in color.
  • Add in sugar and salt and cream together for an additional seven minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl a couple times until very pale yellow and fluffy.
  • Add in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
  • Slowly add in flour with the mixer at lowest speed. Do not over beat at this point. Pour in 7 Up and extract and mix just until thoroughly combined. (do not over beat)
  • Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 75-85 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  • Allow the cake to cool in pan for 10 minutes, then invert onto plate. Cool completely.
  • Top with optional glaze.


  • The glaze on this cake is optional. It also looks and tastes lovely simply dusted with powdered sugar.