Tantalizing Tennessee Tea Cakes Recipe: A Southern Classic

Tennessee tea cakes recipe is a classic southern dessert that’s easy to make and tastes delicious. Mix flour, sugar, butter, vanilla, and eggs; refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Roll dough into balls, then bake for 15-20 minutes. Dust with powdered sugar while still warm. Tennessee tea cakes are a dessert that can take you back in time. They’re perfect for parties, gatherings, or as a tasty treat at the end of a long day.

This simple recipe can bring a touch of southern hospitality to your table and make your guests feel like they’re at an old-fashioned southern meal. With a few easy steps, you can create a homemade dessert that’s sure to satisfy your cravings for something sweet. Whether you’re an experienced baker or a beginner, these tea cakes are a delicious addition to any menu.

Tantalizing Tennessee Tea Cakes Recipe: A Southern Classic

Credit: tortugarumcakes.com

What Are Tennessee Tea Cakes?

Tennessee tea cakes are a beloved dessert in southern cuisine, with a rich history and cultural significance. These tender, buttery cookies are often enjoyed with a cup of tea or coffee as a sweet afternoon treat.

A Brief History Of Tennessee Tea Cakes

Tennessee tea cakes are believed to have originated in the southern united states during the 19th century. These simple yet delicious cookies were a staple in many households, as they were affordable and easy to make with basic ingredients such as butter, sugar, flour, and eggs.

The name “tea cakes” comes from the tradition of serving them with tea, which was a popular beverage at the time. As the recipe for tennessee tea cakes has been passed down from generation to generation, many variations have emerged, but the classic version remains a southern favorite.

Cultural Significance Of Tennessee Tea Cakes In Southern Cuisine

Tennessee tea cakes hold a special place in southern cuisine, not only because of their delicious taste but also because of their cultural significance. Here are a few key reasons for their importance:

  • Family tradition: Many families in the south have been making tennessee tea cakes for generations, and the recipe has often been passed down orally. This has helped to preserve a sense of family heritage and cultural identity.
  • Community gatherings: Tennessee tea cakes are often served at community events such as church socials, picnics, and potlucks. They provide a sweet and comforting treat that brings people together.
  • Symbol of hospitality: Hospitality is an important part of southern culture, and tennessee tea cakes are often served to guests as a gesture of welcome and generosity.
  • Connection to history: Eating tennessee tea cakes can be a way of connecting to the past and honoring the traditions of earlier generations.

Tennessee tea cakes are more than just a dessert – they are a cherished part of southern culture and a reminder of the importance of family, community, and hospitality. With their soft, buttery texture and delicate flavor, these cookies are sure to remain a southern staple for years to come.



The quality of flour used in the tennessee tea cakes recipe plays a significant role in the final result. Here are some tips for selecting high-quality flour:

  • Choose all-purpose flour as it is perfect for making tea cakes.
  • Always check the expiration date before buying.
  • Opt for unbleached flour as it has more nutrients than bleached flour.
  • Make sure that the flour does not have any lumps or strange odors.


Sugar is the key ingredient that makes tea cakes sweet and delicious. Here are some tips for selecting high-quality sugar:

  • Choose granulated or caster sugar for the tea cake recipe.
  • Opt for organic sugar to avoid any harmful chemicals and enjoy a healthier option.
  • Always check the label for the manufacturing and expiration dates.
  • Ensure that the sugar crystals are fine and not clumped together.


The butter used in preparing tea cakes should have a rich and smooth flavor. Here are some tips for selecting high-quality butter:

  • Always choose unsalted butter as it allows for better control of the salt content in the recipe.
  • Opt for organic butter to avoid any harmful chemicals.
  • Look for butters made from grass-fed cows as these are of higher quality.
  • Ensure that the butter is cold before using it to make the tea cakes.

Other Essential Ingredients:

Apart from flour, sugar, and butter, there are other necessary ingredients needed for making delicious tea cakes. Here are some tips for selecting high-quality ingredients:

  • Use fresh eggs at room temperature as they blend better with the other ingredients and give the tea cakes the required consistency.
  • Make sure that the milk used is fresh and has not been subjected to high heat for extended durations.
  • Always use high-quality vanilla extract to add flavor to your tea cakes.
  • If you’re using baking powder, make sure that it has not expired and is aluminum-free.

Remember, using high-quality ingredients enhances the taste of the final product. With these tips, your tennessee tea cakes will be a hit among family and friends.


Tennessee Tea Cakes Recipe: Equipment

If you’re planning to bake a batch of delicious tennessee tea cakes, it’s important to have the proper equipment to achieve the best results. Here are some of the essential tools and brands we recommend for making perfect tea cakes.

Baking Trays

Using the right baking trays is vital in achieving excellent tea cakes. We recommend using heavy-duty and non-stick baking trays to ensure that your cakes don’t stick and are evenly baked. Here are some of the most popular types of baking trays for tea cakes:

  • Wilton perfect results premium non-stick bakeware standard muffin and cupcake pan
  • Usa pan bakeware aluminized steel 6 pieces set
  • Nordic ware natural aluminum commercial muffin pan

Mixing Bowls

Mixing bowls are another essential tool for making tennessee tea cakes. We recommend using stainless steel and plastic mixing bowls, as they are durable and easy to clean. Here are some of the most popular brands we recommend:

  • Cuisinart stainless steel mixing bowls with lids
  • Pyrex glass mixing bowls set
  • Oxo good grips plastic mixing bowls

Other Essential Equipment

Aside from baking trays and mixing bowls, here are some of the essential tools that you’ll need to make perfect tennessee tea cakes:

  • Measuring cups and spoons: Measuring cups and spoons are essential for getting the right amount of ingredients for your tea cakes. We recommend using stainless steel measuring cups and spoons.
  • Silicone spatulas: A silicone spatula is perfect for stirring and scraping the sides of the mixing bowl. It’s also heat-resistant, making it ideal for baking. We recommend the gir silicone ultimate spatula.
  • Cooling racks: Cooling racks are essential for cooling your tea cakes once they’re done baking. We recommend using non-stick and stackable cooling racks.

Having the right equipment is crucial in achieving perfect tennessee tea cakes. Using the recommended brands and types of equipment will ensure that your tea cakes are evenly baked, not sticking, and easy to prepare!



Preparing The Dough

Tennessee Tea Cakes Recipe: Preparing The Dough

If you’re looking for a classic cookie recipe, look no further than the tennessee tea cakes. These soft and crumbly cookies are perfect for tea time, but they are delicious any time of day. Here’s how to prepare the dough:

Mixing The Dry Ingredients

Before you start mixing the dough, you’ll need to gather the dry ingredients:

  • 2 and 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder

Mix the dry ingredients together in a bowl, making sure to break up any clumps. Sift the mixture to ensure the ingredients are evenly blended.

Incorporating The Butter And Wet Ingredients

Along with the dry ingredients, you’ll need the following wet ingredients:

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 and 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

In a separate bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until the mixture is fluffy. Add the eggs and vanilla extract, and mix until well combined. Slowly mix in the dry ingredients until the dough forms.

Kneading And Shaping The Dough

Once the dough is formed, knead it on a floured surface until it is smooth and uniform. Shape the dough into a long cylinder, and wrap it in plastic wrap. Chill the dough for at least one hour.

When you’re ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350°f. Cut the dough into slices, and shape them into small balls. Place the balls on a baking sheet, and bake for 12-15 minutes, or until the cookies are lightly browned.

Allow the cookies to cool before serving. And that’s it! With these simple steps, you’ll have a batch of delicious tennessee tea cakes ready to enjoy.

Baking The Tea Cakes

Tennessee Tea Cakes Recipe: Baking The Tea Cakes

Preheating The Oven And Preparing The Baking Sheets

To bake the tennessee tea cakes, begin by preheating the oven to 350°f (175°c) and preparing the baking sheets with parchment paper or non-stick spray. This will prevent the tea cakes from sticking to the baking sheets.

Tips For Achieving The Perfect Texture And Flavor

  • Cream the butter and sugar together until it’s light and fluffy. This will ensure a soft, tender crumb in the tea cakes.
  • Use cake flour instead of all-purpose flour for a finer texture in the tea cakes.
  • Add the flour gradually to the butter and sugar mixture. Over-mixing can cause the tea cakes to be tough and dry.
  • Chill the dough in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to prevent the tea cakes from spreading too much.
  • Roll the dough into balls and slightly press them with a fork to create the traditional criss-cross pattern on the top of the tea cakes.

Cool The Cakes And Serve

Once the tea cakes are done baking, remove them from the oven and let them cool on the baking sheets for 5-10 minutes. This will give them time to set and make them easier to remove from the baking sheets.

Transfer the tea cakes to a wire rack to cool completely. Serve the tea cakes as is or with a dusting of powdered sugar.

Remember, following these tips will ensure the perfect texture and flavor in your tennessee tea cakes. Happy baking!


Tennessee Tea Cakes Recipe

If you are looking for a delightful, easy-to-make snack with a subtle sweetness and a hint of spice, tennessee tea cakes might be just what you need. But once you have made these treats, how should you store them to keep them fresh for longer?

In this section, we will share tips on how to store your tea cakes properly.

How To Store Your Tea Cakes

To ensure that your tea cakes stay delicious, you need to store them properly. Follow these steps to keep them fresh and tasty for longer:

  • Allow the tea cakes to cool to room temperature before storing them.
  • Place them in an airtight container. If you don’t have one, you can use a resealable plastic bag instead.
  • Store the container in a cool, dry place. Avoid keeping the tea cakes in a warm or humid environment, as this can cause them to become soggy or spoil quicker.
  • If you must refrigerate the tea cakes, be sure to use an airtight container. However, keep in mind that storing them in the fridge could potentially dry them out.

Tips For Keeping The Cakes Fresh

Here are some extra tips to help keep your tea cakes fresh and delicious:

  • Consume the tea cakes within 2-3 days of making them. Freshness is key, and the tea cakes are at their best during this timeframe.
  • Do not store the tea cakes with other food items that have a strong scent, as they can absorb the smell and affect the taste of the tea cakes.
  • If your tea cakes become slightly stale or dry, you can revive them by heating them up in the oven for a few minutes or lightly sprinkling them with water before serving.

By following these guidelines, you can enjoy your tennessee tea cakes for a longer period while maintaining their taste and freshness.


Tennessee Tea Cakes Recipe – Variations

Who doesn’t love a classic tennessee tea cake recipe? It’s a nostalgic dessert loved by many, but that doesn’t mean you can’t add your own creative spin to the recipe. Here are a few variations that will elevate your tea cake game and make it even more delicious.

Ways To Personalize And Add Variety To Your Recipe

You can customize your tea cake recipe in many ways. Here are some tips on how to give it your own unique touch:

  • Substitute all-purpose flour: Want to add a little more nutrition to your tea cake recipe? Try using whole wheat flour or spelt flour instead of all-purpose flour. You can also experiment with gluten-free flour if you prefer.
  • Use different extracts: Instead of vanilla extract, try using almond or lemon extract. This will give your tea cake a unique and refreshing flavor.
  • Add a touch of spice: Spices like cinnamon and nutmeg can be added to the batter for a slightly spicy kick. You can experiment with different spices to find your perfect blend.
  • Change the shape: Instead of the traditional round shape, you can use cookie cutters to create different shapes and sizes. You can also use a muffin tin to make mini tea cakes.

Popular Tennessee Tea Cake Variations

If you’re looking for inspiration on how to further enhance the flavor of your tennessee tea cakes, here are some popular variations to try:

  • Lemon tea cakes: Adding lemon zest to the batter gives the tea cake a zesty lemon flavor.
  • Chocolate chip tea cakes: Adding chocolate chips to the batter will make your tea cakes even more indulgent.
  • Buttermilk tea cakes: Using buttermilk instead of regular milk will make your tea cakes more moist and fluffy.
  • Brown sugar tea cakes: Using brown sugar instead of white sugar will give your tea cakes a deep and rich caramel flavor.

Now that you have these ideas, it’s time to get creative with your tennessee tea cakes recipe. Give them a try and let us know which variation is your favorite in the comments below.

Why Tantalizing Tennessee Tea Cakes Are A Southern Classic

Tennessee tea cakes recipe: why tantalizing tennessee tea cakes are a southern classic

If you’re looking for a dessert recipe that is easy to make, delicious, and steeped in southern culture and history, look no further than tennessee tea cakes. Tennessee tea cakes are a beloved southern classic that have been enjoyed for generations.

We’ll explore what makes tennessee tea cakes so significant to southern culture and history, as well as how you can honor this heritage in your own home.

Significance Of Tennessee Tea Cakes In Southern Culture And History

Tennessee tea cakes have a rich history that dates back to the early settlers in tennessee. They were traditionally served with a hot cup of tea and were a symbol of hospitality and warmth. Over the years, tennessee tea cakes have become a staple in southern culture, often served at family gatherings, church socials, and other community events.

Here are a few key points that highlight the significance of tennessee tea cakes in southern culture and history:

  • Tennessee tea cakes are a symbol of southern hospitality: They are a simple but delicious dessert that is often served with tea when someone drops by for a visit. They represent the warmth and hospitality that is so important to southern culture.
  • They have a long history in tennessee: Tennessee tea cakes have been enjoyed for generations in tennessee. They are a part of our state’s cultural heritage and represent the traditions of our ancestors.
  • They are a beloved southern classic: Tennessee tea cakes are one of the most popular desserts in the south. They are a staple at family gatherings, church socials, and other community events.

How To Honor This Heritage In Your Own Home

If you want to honor the heritage of tennessee tea cakes in your own home, there are a few things you can do. Here are some key points to keep in mind:

  • Make tennessee tea cakes from scratch: Making tennessee tea cakes from scratch is a great way to honor this beloved dessert. There are many recipes available online that can help you make your own delicious tennessee tea cakes.
  • Use traditional ingredients: To get the authentic taste of tennessee tea cakes, it’s important to use traditional ingredients. This includes flour, sugar, butter, eggs, and spices like cinnamon and nutmeg.
  • Serve with tea: Tradition has it that tennessee tea cakes should be served with a hot cup of tea. This is a great way to honor the hospitality and warmth that has been associated with tennessee tea cakes for generations.
  • Share the recipe with others: Sharing the recipe for tennessee tea cakes with others is a great way to honor this beloved dessert. It allows you to pass on the tradition and keep it alive for generations to come.

Tennessee tea cakes are a delicious and beloved southern classic that have been enjoyed for generations. They represent the warmth and hospitality that is so important to southern culture, and they are a part of our state’s cultural heritage. By making your own tennessee tea cakes from scratch and serving them with tea, you can honor this heritage and keep the tradition alive for generations to come.

Frequently Asked Questions On Tennessee Tea Cakes Recipe

What Are Tennessee Tea Cakes?

Tennessee tea cakes are traditional southern cookies that are slightly crispy on the outside, soft on the inside, and coated with powdered sugar.

What Ingredients Do I Need To Make Tennessee Tea Cakes?

You will need all-purpose flour, sugar, butter, vanilla extract, and salt to make these delicious cookies. Additionally, you can add chopped nuts or raisins for extra flavor.

How Do I Make Tennessee Tea Cakes?

To make the cookies, cream the butter and sugar, then mix in the dry ingredients. Chill the dough, shape it into balls, and bake for 12 minutes. Roll in powdered sugar while still warm.

Can I Freeze Tennessee Tea Cakes?

Yes, these cookies can be frozen either before or after baking. You can store them in an airtight container or freezer bag for up to 3 months. Thaw them at room temperature before serving.

What Should I Serve Tennessee Tea Cakes With?

Tennessee tea cakes are perfect with a cup of tea or coffee, or as a dessert served with ice cream. They’re also great for holiday gift-giving or as a snack anytime you need something sweet.


If you are a fan of southern cuisine, then this tennessee tea cakes recipe is a must-try. It is a perfect combination of the old-fashioned sweet cake and the southern charm. This recipe is simple, easy to follow, and requires only a few ingredients, which can easily be found in your pantry.

Preparing the tea cakes will not only fill your house with a pleasant aroma but will also leave your taste buds wanting more. The best part is that you can enjoy these cakes at any time of the day with your favorite beverage.

With this recipe, you have the freedom to experiment with different flavors that bring out the unique taste of the south. So, go ahead, follow the recipe and treat yourself to this delightful dessert that represents the sweetness of the beautiful tennessee region.


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