Dads rule, am I right?
My dad definitely rules. And I promise he didn’t even pay me to say that!
They fix stuff for us, like deflated tires and broken hearts; they buy stuff for us, like hot pastrami sandwiches; and they teach us stuff, like by whooping our ass at Jeopardy or by offering us dudely words of wisdom. In short: dads are great.
Now let’s talk Dude Food.
Dude Food is anything that’s dudely. Manly. Messy — especially messy. Sloppy joes. Ribs. Mac and cheese. Thick hunks of cake or pie, topped with monstrous mounds of ice cream. Big portions of cheesy omelets or thick mountains of biscuits and gravy. Bacon. Dude Food. If you just realized you, too, may be a dude — you’re not alone.
With Father’s Day approaching, I thought of my dad and the Dude Food he loves that he never really gets — namely all of the above, save for the cake since cakes come and go in this house like clockwork. But the poor man doesn’t get nearly enough bacon, that’s for sure — he has to share his portion with two bacon fiends (my sister and I) and manage to save a piece for mom, too. So I figured I’d make him a cake (the man loves his cake) topped with the crispiest bacon you ever did see — a cake exclusively for him. A Dude Food cake.
Pancakes are one of my dad’s favorite foods, especially slathered generously with maple syrup and butter. And since everyone knows bacon goes with pancakes and maple like three peas in a pod, I figured I’d make a pancake flavored pound cake topped with a luscious maple icing and thick chunks of bacon sprinkled on top. Repeat after me: Dude. Fooooooood.
Oh, and serving it with beer is a must. Now make this for your dad — he deserves it!
- 1 box yellow cake mix
- 1 small box French Vanilla pudding mix (just the dry mix)
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- 4 eggs
- 1 Tbsp butter extract
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 (12 oz) pkg bacon, cooked and crumbled with 2 tsp bacon grease reserved
- 1 can cream cheese frosting
- 2 tsp maple extract
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Liberally grease a bundt pan with cooking spray and set aside. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, beat together the cake mix, pudding mix, buttermilk, oil, syrup, eggs, butter and vanilla extract with an electric mixer for about 2 minutes or until combined. Stir in 6 ounces (HALF) of the cooked, chopped bacon pieces. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan.
- Bake the cake for approx. 50-55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean or with moist crumbs. Cool for about 30 minutes in the pan and then carefully invert to a wire rack set over a sheet of wax paper.
- Into the can of frosting, add the maple extract and the reserved bacon grease. Microwave the frosting for about 30 seconds or until smooth and of pouring consistency.
- Pour the maple frosting evenly over the cake and immediately sprinkle with the remaining chopped bacon. Allow the icing to set, about 20 minutes, before cutting into slices to serve.
I remember the first time I brought my dad a maple bacon cupcake home from the bakery I worked — he looked at me with a puzzled expression and said “maple and bacon in a cupcake?!” I assured him it’d be good and after one bite, he was hooked. And no wonder — it’s a classic combination that everyone loves and it works SO well in a moist, buttery pound cake! Butter extract really helps make this pound cake shine and gives it that pancake-y flavor we all love when combined with a splash of vanilla and maple syrup stirred right into the batter. And I love the nice touch of smokiness in the icing from the bacon grease — a simple trick that makes the world of a difference. Make this for your pop, stat!
Have a fantastical day!