Written by: Maureen Devenny
Recipes for funnel cake can be traced back to Europe as early as the 1390s. Funnel cake came to United States when Germans settled in Pennsylvania in the 1700s (they later became known as the Pennsylvania Dutch). They made funnel cake by pouring batter into a bowl with a hole in the bottom, and then holding that bowl over a pot of hot oil. The cakes were finished when they were golden brown, and then sprinkled with powdered sugar and salt (hey that sounds pretty good–we’re going to put a dash of salt on our next funnel cake and report back!).
Funnel cake really got put on the map when it was served at the Kutztown Folk Festival in 1950, a huge celebration of Pennsylvania Dutch culture. The funnel cakes sold like, well, hot cakes, and started to be served at more festivals with street food.