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Dreamy Watergate Cake Recipe

Watergate cake is a great dessert for summer. This pistachio sheet cake recipe has been enjoyed by my family for years, and it’s creamy and luscious thanks to boxes of pistachio pudding mix and Dream Whip.

If you like Watergate Salad, then you’re going to love this cake! It’s topped with a delicious frosting that keeps the cake cold—perfect for hot days when all we want is something refreshing.

slice of Watergate cake

How To Make Watergate Cake

For this pistachio cake recipe, you need the following ingredients:

  • 2 boxes (3.4 ounces each) instant pudding mix, pistachio flavored
  • 1 box white cake mix
  • 1 cup 7-Up
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1 cup oil
  • 1½ cups milk
  • 2 envelopes of Dream Whip

If you have never worked with Dream Whip, don’t let it intimidate you.  Dream Whip is a commercial powdered mix to make whipped cream.  If you have a mixer, you won’t have any problems with it.

box of Jell-O pistachio pudding and box of Dream Whip

To make Watergate Cake, start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees (Fahrenheit).  While it is warming up, grease and flour a 9×13 cake pan.  Alternatively, you can use Baker’s Joy to prep the pan.  Just spray a light layer over the bottom and inside.

For the cake, blend one box of instant pistachio pudding mix, a box of white cake mix, 7-Up, egg whites, and oil in a mixer for 5 minutes at medium speed.  Pour the cake batter into the prepared cake pan and bake for 30 – 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

Cool the cake completely before making the pistachio whipped topping.

pudding and whipped topping mixture on beater

For the topping, beat 1 box of pistachio pudding mix, milk, and the Dream Whip. Beat until it is thick and peaks form.

Spread the topping on top of the cake and place it in the refrigerator.  This cake will need to be kept cold at all times.

Watergate cake in a 9x13 pan

If you plan on taking it to a family get together, church potluck, or some other event, pack it in a container and include ice packs.  Remember, the icing is made with a dairy product and needs to be kept cold.

slice of cake
4.42 from 53 votes

Watergate Dream Cake

This recipe for Watergate Cake has been enjoyed by my family for years. It's creamy and luscious and will have you wanting more.
Course Desserts
Cuisine American
Keyword Watergate Cake
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 12 cake
Calories 436kcal
Author Lynda


  • 1 3.4 ounce box instant pudding mix pistachio flavored
  • 1 box white cake mix
  • 1 cup 7-Up
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1 cup oil

Whipped Topping

  • 1 3.4 ounce box instant pudding mix pistachio flavored
  • cups milk
  • 2 envelopes whipped topping Dream Whip


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 9 x 13 inch cake pan.
  • Blend 1 box of pistachio pudding, cake mix, 7-Up, egg whites and oil in mixer for 5 minutes. Pour into prepared pan.
  • Bake for 30 – 35 minutes. Cool completely.
  • Beat 1 box of pistachio pudding mix, milk and whipped topping. Beat until thick and peaks form. Ice/frost cake. Keep cake chilled.



Serving: 1slice | Calories: 436kcal | Carbohydrates: 45g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 24g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 44mg | Sodium: 422mg | Potassium: 56mg | Sugar: 30g | Vitamin A: 109IU | Calcium: 158mg | Iron: 1mg

Why Is It Called Watergate Cake?

The cake is similar to Watergate Salad which is made with pistachio pudding, canned pineapple, whipped topping, crushed pecans, and marshmallows.

There are two possibilities of how “Watergate” landed in the name that unites both dishes, though no one knows for sure.

The first possibility is that the Watergate Salad recipe was developed by the chef at the Watergate Hotel – yes, that one that made the news thanks to Richard Nixon.

According to Southern Living, the other explanation is that “the cake version has icing to ‘cover up’ any mistakes and, like politics, is chock full of nuts.”

slice of Watergate cake

Would you prefer Watergate Cake or Watergate Salad?

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