Making Soul Cakes during Hallowtide (All Hallows Eve, All Saints Day, and All Souls Day) has become a little tradition at our house. I wanted to share my recipe with you in time for All Souls on Sunday!
The History of Soul Cakes
As a kind of early version of Trick-or-Treating, folks would go door-to-door and ask for Soul Cakes in exchange for saying prayers for the dead. I really love the way Hallowtide puts death in context. We remember our dead, we say prayers for the souls in Purgatory, we celebrate the lives of the saints, and we remember that Christ has ultimately conquered death. It’s power was broken by the power of the Cross. Especially in our culture that seeks to avoid the topic of death, I think observing Hallowtide is really important.
So, make some Soul Cakes and celebrate!
I was inspired by this recipe and then changed it around due to what I had on hand in the pantry. The recipe is gluten-free, but if you’re not allergic like my kids, just use regular baking mix instead of the gluten-free.
Recipe: Gluten-Free Soul Cakes
Coconut oil or butter to grease muffin tin
Butter: (softened) 3/4 cup
Sugar: 2/3 cup
Eggs: 3 yolks
Gluten-Free Baking Mix: 1 3/4 cup
Pumpkin Pie Spice: 2 tsp
Milk: 1/2 cup
Dried Cranberries: 1/2 cup (plus some to decorate top)
Preheat oven to 375. Grease muffin tin (I used coconut oil). Cream the softened butter with the sugar. Mix in egg yolks. Add GF baking mix, pumpkin pie spice, milk, and dried cranberries. Fill muffin tins 2/3 of the way up with mixture. Add raisins on top in the shape of a cross. Bake for 15 minutes (longer if your muffin tin is for larger muffins, mine is for smallish ones). Check to see if your Soul Cakes are done by seeing if a knife comes out clean.
To remove them from the muffin tin without crumbling, let them cool completely. Then loosen the edges of the Soul Cakes (I used a bowl scraper) and carefully remove. Gluten-free baked goods are often crumbly, so I had the best success in flipping over the muffin tin and letting the Soul Cakes fall out that way.
It’s an easy recipe that children can help with (especially fun to add the cranberries on top!). Enjoy!
(For more recipes for the liturgical year, check out our book Feast! Real Food, Reflections, and Simple Living for the Christian Year.)
I love your super simple traditions. That is right up my alley! Also, do you happen to know why cranberries? Is there a significance?
Thanks, Jenna! The cranberries are because we ran out of raisins (the more traditional choice) and I figured they’d add a little autumnal flair 😉
These look delicious, Haley! Always love your liturgical living inspiration. Thanks for sharing this.
Thank you for sharing Haley, Ive just very recently found your blog as I am starting to learn more about Liturgical living, Its wonderful to get simple ideas like these soul cakes that are easy to make and to celebrate Hallowtide. Its something so meaningful in the midst of all the usual Halloween stuff all around us right now.
Aw, I really appreciate that, AnneMarie! I’m glad you’re here 😉
I love this simple way to celebrate All Souls’ Day! Thanks for the inspiration!
My pleasure, Laurel 😉
Haley, these look so fabulous and also simple! We’re gluten free around here so this is great. Crazily enough, I do not have muffin tins…! Do you think this would work as a cake in a 9×13??
Hi Nicole! Sorry I didn’t get a chance to respond to this before All Souls. We were out of town. Honestly…I think it would crumble if you tried to make it in a cake pan. My only idea is to try to make “drop biscuit” style little cakes on a greased pan?
It’s true on easter and its true today. Christ is risen from the dead! Trampling down death by death, and upon those in the tombs bestowing life!
We made these today and subbed the regular sugar for the splenda brown sugar and oh my delicious!!! We used Bob’s Red Mill GF baking flour, we were not sure which GF baking flour to use, thank you so much for sharing this recipe!
Oh yay! I’m so glad it worked out, Sarah 🙂
Lauren M says
I’m gearing up to make these this afternoon and, I have to ask, do you do anything with the leftover egg whites? Martinmas is too far away to keep them for meringues (which are technically Swiss not French anyway..?) Thanks!
I usually toss them into an omelette!
I grew up singing Peter, Paul and Mary’s “A Soulin'” and it never occurred to me that there could be a thing as a soul cake! I may just have to make these for Christmas though (as that was when we always sang this song)
Which GF baking mix do you use? I’ve tried a few and my baked goods end up tasting like garbanzo beans!
I’ve tried it with several. The GF Bisquick is actually pretty decent. Giving it a try with the ALDI brand today!
Made these tonight with currants leftover from my husband preparing a Christmas Cake, and they are the best gf muffins I’ve ever had! The crumb was perfect. I used a diy flour blend and accidentally cracked two whole eggs into bowl before remembering the recipe called for yolks! I didn’t have high hopes after that, but they turned out beautifully. Me and the kids don’t want to stop eating them. Thank you!