{taste this} pig pickin’ cake in a jar – a sweet Southern summer dessert

Now that summer is nearly here (or maybe it just feels like it in Florida!), my taste buds are craving light desserts that can be packed up and taken on a road trip, picnic or shared at a BBQ on a sunny day!  So, when I came across a recipe for a pig pickin’ cake … it seemed like a perfect choice for a Southern summer get together. And because everything is cuter in a mason jar, I decided to skip the layered version and make individual servings in wide mouth half pint mason jars  Now, I know you may be saying, “What is a pig pickin’ cake?”

pig pickin' cake in a jar - mandarin orange cake with pineapple topping at shakentogetherlife.com

Simply put, a pig pickin’ cake is a moist mandarin orange cake that is topped/layered with a fluffy vanilla pineapple topping.  Traditionally, this light fruity dessert was served at a Southern pig roast – or pig pickin’ – so that is most likely how this cake got its name.  I just call it plain delicious!

pig pickin’ cake in a jar
recipe found on About.com
Yield:  24 cupcakes/cakes in a jar

mandarin orange cake
1 box yellow cake mix
11 oz. can of mandarin oranges with juice
4 eggs
1/2 cup vegetable oil

fluffy pineapple topping

One 9 o.z tub of Cool Whip, thawed
One 8 oz. can of crushed pineapple, with juice
One 3.4 ounce (4-servings) box of instant vanilla pudding

In mixing bowl, combine cake mix, mandarin oranges (with juice), eggs and oil. Beat for 2 minutes with electric mixer. Pour the batter into cupcake pans with foil cupcake papers.  Bake for about 18 -20 minutes at 350* or until a toothpick comes out clean. Allow cupcakes to cool.

For the topping:  using a hand  mixer on low, combine Cool Whip, pineapple (and juice) and vanilla pudding mix.
Cut each cooled cupcake in half.  Place the bottom of the cupcake in a wide mouth half pint mason jar.  Spoon a layer of topping over it.  Top with the other half of the cupcake and add another layer of topping.  If you are packing these up for a get together, you can reduce the amount of topping so the lid fits on the jar or add the rest of the topping just before serving.  But if you are eating these at home, pile it high and enjoy!
pig pickin' cake in a jar - mandarin orange cake with pineapple topping at shakentogetherlife.com
Here are some of my favorite summer time desserts!


  1. This sounds so good, and you know how much I love things in jars!

  2. I love anything in a jar – this is cute! Looks yummy too!


  3. I had to click over just to see what this was. You do not disappoint, yum!

  4. Looks yummy and adorable!!!

  5. Oh, this looks SO GOOD!! Yumm!! :)

  6. Yum, Keri! Love the combination of flavors … it sounds like such a great summer dessert! Thanks for sharing with us at Project Inspire{d}.

  7. I have to admit that I came over just to see what Pig Pickin Cake was! lol Sounds good to me- although I thought maybe bacon was in there- I think the orange sounds better!

  8. What a wonderful dessert idea! Can’t wait to try this–thanks for sharing the recipe!

    Planting Daffodils

  9. Wowzers. This looks like the yummiest dessert EVER. I am dying to try it!! YUMMM!

    ~Jen @ Yummy Healthy Easy

  10. This must be Delicious!!!! Yummmmm

    Hope you are having a lovely day

    Cami @ TitiCrafty by Camila

  11. they sound so good! I need to try the mandarin orange cake idea!

  12. I love jars! Adds character to your foods nicely! I would love for you to link to http://hickorytrailblog.blogspot.com/2013/05/assets-and-efforts-linky-party-2.html


  13. I would love for you to share and link up at my TGIF Link Party.


    Hugs, Cathy

  14. looks soooo good!

  15. These look incredibly delicious!!!! Both the cake and the topping sound so good!

  16. My California is showing a bit here, cuz I had no idea what a Pig Pickin’ cake was, but this thing looks awesome! I’m pinning this and sharing it on my Facebook page this week! Thanks so much for linking it up to my party!

  17. I have never heard of this kind of cake before, and I am so intrigued to try this recipe! Thanks for linking up to our Make Bake Create party! I have featured them today on my blog!


  18. This looks so yummy! I would love it if you would come and link this up at my link party
    Dandelion Wishes Wednesday. I’m also pinning this!

  19. Thanks so much for linking up this delicious treat to The Weekly Creative last week! I’m featuring it tomorrow in my 9 Sinfully Delicious Treats round-up. I hope you stop by. :) XOXO

  20. Look yummy – gotta try this recipe, now that fruit season is coming! =)

  21. This cake has been around since the 70’s (you tell how old I am). but I thought it would have to be refrigerated? Have you made it and not kept it refrigerated for a number of hours?


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