Pennsylvania Dutch Molasses Cupcakes

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Recipe Information

Recipe Created By: Kathy Przywara


1 1/2 cups flour (see below for gluten free option)
1/4 cup sugar
pinch salt
3 Tbsp solid shortening
1/2 cup unsulphured molasses
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup boiling water


Combine dry ingredients in large bowl and mix thoroughly. Add shortening and work into a fine crumb mixture using hands or pastry fork. Reserve scant handful (~ 1/4 cup).

In medium bowl, combine molasses and baking soda. Beat with wooden spoon until light and taffy colored. Add boiling water to molasses — this will foam up. Mix well. Add to dry ingredients and mix well. This will be a little lumpy depending on how finely the crumbs were worked.

Divide evenly among 12 paper lined cupcakes. Top with a sprinkling of crumbs. Preheat oven to 350 °F oven, and bake for 20 minutes or until cake tests done.


Normally this would get put into a pastry shell to become a “Shoo Fly Pie”, but we often made it as cupcakes. They are nice because you don’t need an icing.

Copyright © 2001 Kathy Przywara. All rights reserved. The copyright of this recipe is retained by the original recipe creator. If you would like to publish this recipe elsewhere in print or online, please contact us to find out how to obtain permission.


This can be made as wheat or with a gluten-free flour mix. This works well with Kathy P’s All-Purpose Rice Flour Mix plus 1/2 tsp xanthan gum.
Gluten: Gluten is a protein found in specific grains (wheat, spelt, kamut, barley, rye). Other grains are naturally gluten-free but may have cross-contact with gluten-containing grains. Look for certified gluten-free products if you need to avoid gluten. Find out more about wheat and gluten substitutions.
Milk and Soy Substitutions: Alternative dairy-free milk beverages and products will work in most recipes. Find out more about milk substitutions and soy substitutions.

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