Elvis Presley Cake

Elvis Presley Cake, also known as Jailhouse Rock Cake, is a family favorite. So simple and easy to make. Start with a white cake mix and pair it with cream cheese, crushed pecans, crushed pineapple, and more.

You will love this easy white cake mix recipe, which is bursting with sweet tropical flavor. It is great for a family gathering, bake sale, birthday celebrations, and more.

rich and delicious cake slice on a white plate

Make sure to out the pineapple lush dessert. Or you might love this pineapple coconut poke cake, or my popular pineapple pretzel salad. Both are popular summer desserts.

 ❤️ Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • This is an easy and simple boxed cake mix base recipe. Dress up the cake mix to transform it into a special dessert.
  • You might already have simple everyday ingredients in your fridge and pantry.
  • Great dessert for parties and events with a crowd.
  • You will find out that this cake is a make-ahead-friendly dessert. You can make it a day ahead of time.
Elvis Presley Cake collage of different pictures of cake


Here is a quick look at what you need for this Elvis Presley cake recipe! The total cake measurements are on the printable recipe card at the bottom of the post.

  • white cake mix
  • crushed pineapple
  • granulated sugar
  • vanilla extract
  • butter
  • cream cheese
  • powdered sugar
  • crushed pecans

🔪 How to Make This Elvis Presley Cake

close up view of a pineapple cake on plate with nuts sprinkled around it on plate

Step 1: Bake Cake

Start by making and baking the cake as directed on the back of the box.

Step 2: Poke Holes and Prep Topping

Once the cake is cool poke holes all over the cake. Then in a pan add your pineapple, sugar, and vanilla. Bring to a boil, then cook for a couple of minutes.

Then pour the mixture over the cake. Place cake in the fridge to cool down.

Step 3: Frosting

Mix the cream cheese, butter, and powdered sugar in a large bowl. Add in the vanilla and mix till thoroughly combined.

Fold in the pecans and then spread over the top of the cake.

Step 4: Top with Pecans and Serve

Once you frost, add more pecans to the top. Then refrigerate the cake overnight. Then, slice and serve up the cake.

I don’t know where this cake got its name, but I can understand why it’s called “Jailhouse Rock Cake”—because it really does rock! The flavors are spot on.

slice of cake on a plate with a fork beside it and the cake in the pan behind it on table


Check out these simple changes you can make to transform the flavor of the cake a bit.

  • Use a butter cake or yellow cake mix instead.
  • Add in a mashed banana for a nice banana twist to the cake.
  • Mix in 1/4 cup shredded coconut to the frosting for a more tropical flavor.
  • Whip up cupcakes to replace a whole cake.
  • Add two tablespoons of vanilla pudding to the cake mix for a more robust vanilla flavor.
  • Swap pecans with walnuts, or leave the nuts out if you don’t want nuts.
overhead view of a elvis presley cake in a cake pan topped with pecans

🥫 Storage

You can store your cake in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4-5 days. You will find the cake is best eaten within the first couple of days of being made.

Then, you can freeze any cake you would like to save for later. Just store it in the freezer for 1-2 months. Then, thaw in the fridge before eating, or eat it straight from the freezer.

💭 Tips

  • Mix and bake up the cake as directed. Then, make sure to poke holes all over the cake evenly. I recommend the back of a wooden spoon.
  • Pour the pineapple mixture evenly over the whole cake to ensure all slices have flavor.
  • When you spread the frosting, make sure it is on a cooled cake so it doesn’t melt into the cake.


Do you have questions about this recipe? Here are the answers to the most commonly asked questions.

Can I use a homemade cake instead of a boxed cake?

Yes, feel free to bake up a white cake of your choice. This will elevate the flavor even more. Feel free to make homemade white cake or whip up boxed cake.

Is Elvis Presley cake suitable for special occasions?

You can serve this cake for a birthday party, special gatherings, or weeknight dinners, or take a gift to loved ones. There is never a wrong time to whip up this cake.


Elvis Presley Cake

Elvis Presley Cake also know as Jailhouse Rock Cake is a family favorite. So simple and easy to make.

3.92 from 400 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Desserts
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 12 servings
Calories: 515kcal
Author: Rob


  • White cake mix
  • 8 oz can crushed pineapple
  • 1 cup. sugar
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • 8 oz pkg Cream Cheese
  • ½ cup. butter softened
  • 3 cups. powdered sugar
  • ½ tsp. vanilla extract
  • 3 cups crushed pecans


  • Bake a white cake according to package directions.
  • Cool and poke holes in it with the end of a wooden spoon.
  • In a pan boil crushed pineapple with juice and 1 cup of sugar and 1/2 tsp vanilla extract for a few minutes. Then pour over cool cake.
  • In large bowl mix cream cheese, butter, powdered sugar.
  • Add remaining vanilla and 2 cups crushed pecans, mix good and put on cake.
  • Add 1 cup crushed pecans on top.
  • Let cake set overnight for best flavor or at least 6 hours. Refrigerate cake if making overnight or any leftovers.


Prepare cake at least 8 hours or overnight for best results. 


Calories: 515kcal | Carbohydrates: 87g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 18g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 10g | Cholesterol: 3mg | Sodium: 145mg | Potassium: 193mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 83g | Vitamin A: 50IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 99mg | Iron: 1mg
3.92 from 400 votes (390 ratings without comment)

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  1. remell hollin says:

    Beautiful cakes

    1. What size baking pan.
      Should you use 2 box’s the cake looks long

      1. we use a 9×13 glass baking dish and 1 box cake mix

  2. i want the recipe for this cake

    1. Pat the recipe is there just click on the link

  3. I’m wondering if you let the pineapple mixture cool or set before putting on frosting? Thanks!

    1. I pour it on the cake as soon as it has finished cooking.

  4. Jan Fusco says:

    Do you refrigerate it? I would think so with cream cheese in it.

    1. Yes refrigerate over night or any leftovers. If you making it and using it after making it for just 6 hours you don’t have to refigerate it it unless it’s a hot day then I would.

  5. Jan Fusco says:

    Do you refrigerate the cake? I would think so since it has cream cheese in it.

    1. Yes refrigerate over night or any leftovers. If you making it and using it after making it for just 6 hours you don’t have to refigerate it it unless it’s a hot day then I would.

  6. 5 stars
    Thank you for this recipe. Does it need to be stored in fridge to set and after?

    1. Yes refrigerate over night or any leftovers. If you making it and using it after making it for just 6 hours you don’t have to refigerate it it unless it’s a hot day then I would. Store any leftovers in the fridge.

  7. Your batter looks very thick in the video. The direction say to bake a white cake according to the package directions which would make the consistency more liquidy.

    1. The cake mix was mixed according to package directions. Mix your cake mix according to package directions whatever brand you use. I have used many different kinds.

      1. Karen Quinn says:

        Has anyone tried using coconut in the recipe in any fashion?

        1. You can add shredded coconut to the cake or frosting if you like.

          1. I have used coconut milk in the recipe with chopped pineapples and coconut flakes in batter as well as frosting. Awesome my pineapple coconut cake is always a hit.

          2. Sounds delicious! I love you additions

  8. Does this need refrigerated?

    1. Yes refrigerate over night or any leftovers. If you making it and using it after making it for just 6 hours you don’t have to refigerate it it unless it’s a hot day then I would.

  9. I remember making a cake similar to this but have never heard it called this name… it was so good. Thanks for posting this recipe, I’ll have to try it soon!

    1. Hi Susie I’m not sure where to name came from. We have been making it for years and have always know it as Elvis Presley Cake or Jail House Rock Cake. Maybe it was an Elvis favorite 🙂

  10. Judy Dailey says:

    I’m a bit disappointed, as my cake is already in the oven. When I went back to the to video to review the her “hole poking”, I realized you had added the whole egg to the batter. Your written recipe says to bake as cake mix package directs. My mix called for egg whites only. Did yours call for egg whites only? This is probably why yours looks richer..

    1. I have never seen a cake mix that didn’t use the whole egg except for Angel Food Cake. I would think it will still taste good if you normally use that cake mix and like it. the pineapple mixture and frosting will make it tasty enough

      1. Sheila Flanagan says:

        White box cake mixes all say to use “whites” only and that if you use the yolks, do not expect it to be white, but yellowish.

        1. As you can see the cake is yellow. It has pineapple in it. You could even use a yellow cake mix but we have always used white

      2. White cake mixes only ask for egg whites to keep cake white. When you add the time it turns it yellow. Wedding cakes etc.. Just a look thing taste doesn’t change.

        1. Yes we know what it asks for but that is what we use. If you want to use a different cake mix like yellow for instance you can. but we arent going for color we are going for flavor

    2. My cake mix called for 3 egg whites.
      First time making and it was delicious.

      1. So glad you liked it. Any cake mix works just follow the directions

  11. How long do you boil the pineapple mixture for?

    1. Bring to a boil for a few minutes.


    Can you use walnuts instead of pecans?

    1. Yes of course. We have used walnuts before and its just as delicious.

      1. Faye Waters says:

        When do uou add the coconut cream?

        1. There isn’t any coconut cream in this recipe. Where are you seeing this. The recipe ard has the ingredients and instructions

      2. I’m so glad someone mentioned about adding walnuts instead of pecans. I was wondering the same thing. I prefer walnuts over pecans.

  13. 5 stars
    I would add that little can of coconut cream.

    1. Maybe condensed milk? Or do you think that would make it too sweet?

      1. The cake is pretty sweet. I wouldn’t use it.

  14. Karen Pittman says:

    I wonder about putting a couple of mashed bananas in the pineapple mixture? It sounds good but I don’t know if it would work or not.

    1. Honestly I don’t know we have never done that and don’t know how the banana and pineapple would taste together, The cake is definitely
      moist enough that you don’t need the banana’s.

    2. 5 stars
      Love it!
      It is my new go-to dessert. I can’t remember the last time I enjoyed a cake so much. Elvis had great taste (along with his singing).
      Thank you, Maria, for sharing this recipe.

      1. Thankyou Sherri. It is one of our favorites too

  15. Janice Tyler says:

    What do you use to poke holes in cake after cooked. Do you poke small or large holes. Do you let the cake cool after you cook it before poking holes in side the cake.

    1. We use the end of a wooden spoon. We find the bigger holes work well

  16. This recipe looks great and I’m looking forward to trying it. I’m not a fan of super sweet things, so I’m going to opt for not adding sugar to the pineapple juice, as I have always thought that pineapple juice is plenty sweet itself. My kids and I have always enjoyed drinking the juice from canned pineapple as is.

    1. The pineapple juice is cooked on the stove and gets thickened with the other ingredients. The cake won’t taste the same with plain pineapple juice but you can make it as you like

    2. Hey Sharon. I read your reply about not adding sugar to pineapple. Could you tell me how it turned out? I also think that the cake would be terribly sweet with sugared pineapple and frosting.
      Thanks, Sandy

    1. I hope you love it when you make it. It is definitely one of our favorites!

  17. Can you make this and refrigerate 48 hours before you serve it?

    1. We have never made it 48 hours ahead but we have had had it leftover for a couple of days and it has been delicious! Normally we make it the night before we need it.

  18. Karen Fasano says:

    3 stars
    My icing didn’t come out looking nice and smooth like yours does. It was so lumpy I had to use my hands (like I would to make meatloaf). Then it stck to my hands and the powdered sugar went everywhere. I think I am going to have to put it in the oven again tomorrow so it will spread better. I sure hope it tastes good.

    1. Sorry you had that problem. I’ve never heard of anyone having this problem. When frosting isn;t spreading just add more water or milk. It’s an easy fix.

      1. I always sift powder sugar. Make sure to measure after you sift. Makes a smooth icing.

  19. Brenda Hardy says:

    I going to make it for and surprise my mom because she Loves the King Elvis

    1. We hope she loves it as much as we do!

    1. Thanks so much! We’re happy you enjoyed it 🙂

  20. 5 stars
    All of the recipe s looks so delicious. Can’t wait to start making some of them .😍🤩

  21. Doris Rice says:

    5 stars
    What else could you use besides pecans or nuts.

    1. If you don’t like nuts you can leave them out. You could try chocolate chips on top or add some toasted coconut

  22. Can I use a 20 oz can of pineapple?

    1. It might make the cake a little more “wet” but most cans are that size now. We usually spoon a bit out

  23. Drema L Stevens says:

    4 stars
    Thank you for the great recepies.

    1. Your so welcome! We hope you enjoy the ones you try 🙂

      1. 5 stars
        I have never seen so many people who don’t read and ask the same questions over and over.
        Your patience is remarkable I plan to try this recipe soon I know it will be delicious
        Thanks for sharing

        1. Barbara we hope you love it! Please let us know if you do 🙂

  24. Kathy Sager says:

    I can’t buy pineapple in an 8oz. can only sell it in the 20 oz. can at my store. Can I use the whole can and double the sugar and vanilla?

    1. No that’s way too much pineapple! Your cake will never cook right it will be much too much pineapple. Just use 8 oz. and save the rest for something else. Or look at a different grocery store if you can.

      1. Wow! Are any of these ppl asking questions able to think for themselves? It’s so simple. You have such patience. I’d have to stop answering them or become very sarcastic.

        1. Jane….
          I was thinking the same thing. If these people can’t think for themselves they shouldn’t be baking. OMG!

  25. Would walnuts work as well for the Elvis Presley cake?? Sounds delicious.

    1. Yes that would work fine. We use walnuts or mixed almonds and walnuts a lot.

  26. The Supermelon says:

    This Elvis Presley Cake recipe looks absolutely delicious and I can’t wait to give it a try!

    1. I hope you love it as much as we do

  27. Ethan at Love Manor says:

    This Elvis Presley Cake recipe seems like a delicious treat that would be perfect for any Elvis fan or dessert lover!

  28. Sandie Paris says:

    I can’t wait to make this Elvis Presley Cake! I love everything about Elvis so now gotta try this cake! Sounds so good!

  29. Lucinda Winn says:

    First time I made this cake they called it”Better Than Sex” cake. I like Elvis Presley cake better. I didn’t agree with the better than sex part. Lol

    1. lol a many cakes are called that but I agree with you!

      1. Donna Smith says:

        Better than sex is also a drink which you have while making the cake. You have the patience of a Saint. I would have a header saying, read the directions 3 times before baking it.

        1. Sounds like aa a great combo! When I make a new recipe from another blogger I think I always read it at least 4 times. 🙂

  30. Candi Mayes says:

    So it needs a full teaspoon vanilla extract cause it says 1/2 t twice

    1. No it says 1/2 in cake and 1/2 in frosting in the recipe card

  31. Mary Thurmsn says:

    All the recipes look delicious I can’t wait to try a lot of them

    1. Thank you so much Mary 🙂

  32. 5 stars
    Love it!
    It is my new go-to dessert. I can’t remember the last time I enjoyed a cake so much. Elvis had great taste (along with his singing).
    Thank you, Maria, for sharing this recipe.

  33. Have you ever added bananas and peanut butter? I believe that is what Elvis is known for.

  34. Debby Coleman says:

    Thank you for sharing. Sounds delicious 😋. Can’t wait to try the cake.YUMMY YUMMY 😋😋