Smith Island Cake - History of Smith Island Cake

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Photo from the Bayside Inn Restaurant, Smith Island, MD.

Smith Island CakeUnless you are from Smith Island (Maryland's only inhabited off-shore island), in Chesapeake Bay, you probably have not heard of Smith Island Cake.

This decadent cake can contain anywhere from 6 to 12 pencil-thin yellow cake layers that are layered with chocolate fudge icing. This cake has also been know to be called frosting with cake. The number of layers is determined by the baker. As you can probably guess, you don't need a big slice to get your cake and chocolate fix!

The origins of this cake are unknown. Residents just say, "It's always been here." Some people think that the cake was brought to Smith Island by settlers in the late 1600s. The cake was originally four layers, but the women started to stack the cake even higher as a form of competition.

It has been the area's dessert of choice for residents and visitors of this island for generations. It is definitely a distinctive regional tradition spanning many decades.

In 2008, Senate House Bill 315 in Maryland's legislature approved Smith Island Cake as Maryland's official dessert.



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