For the cake: 

14 ounce can mandarin oranges (1/2 cup juice reserved, drain the rest) 

15.25 ounce box yellow cake mix 

1 stick unsalted butter (1/2 cup), softened to room temperature 

1/2 cup mandarin orange juice 

4 large eggs 

1 teaspoon vanilla extract 

For the topping: 

20 ounce can crushed pineapple (3/4 cup juice reserved, drain the rest really well) 

3/4 cup juice from the crushed pineapple 

4 ounce box vanilla instant pudding mix 

½ cup powdered sugar 

4 ounces Cool Whip (whipped topping) (half a regular tub) 

extra mandarin orange slices, for garnish 


Preheat oven to 350F degrees. Spray a 9×13-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. 

Drain the can of mandarin oranges, setting aside 1/2 cup of the juice (discard the rest of the juice). 

For the cake: combine 15.25 ounce box yellow cake mix, 1 stick unsalted butter (1/2 cup), 1/2 cup mandarin orange juice, 4 large eggs and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract. Beat for 3-4 minutes on medium-high. 

Add drained 14 ounce can mandarin oranges and gently stir until combined (leaving some of the oranges chunky). 

Spread batter into prepared baking dish and bake for about 25-30 minutes. Remove from oven and cool completely or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean (oven times can vary). 

For the frosting: 

Drain the can of crushed pineapples very well, set ting aside 3/4 cups of the juice (discard the rest of the juice). 

Once cake is cool, in a bowl, stir together 3/4 cup juice from the crushed pineapple with 4 ounce box vanilla instant pudding mix. 

Stir in ½ cup powdered sugar. Then fold in 4 ounces Cool Whip (whipped topping). 

Finally, stir in drained 20 ounce can crushed pineapple. Note: if your frosting seems a bit too “liquidy” just add in a little more of the Cool Whip until you get a stiffer consistency. 

Spread frosting on cooled cake. To help the frosting finish setting up, place cake into the refrigerator for at least 3-4 hours before slicing. 

When cooled, slice cake into 12 pieces (while in the pan) and then top each slice with extra mandarin orange slices,. Note: I like to put the cake into the refrigerator for about an hour to help set up the frosting.