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Chocolate Cake

For variations on this cake, see our vanilla and lemon cake recipes.

  • Prep:
  • Total Time:
  • Yield: Serves 12
Chocolate Cake

Source: Everyday Food, May 2009


  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, plus more for pans
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled), plus more for pans
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 2 large eggs plus 3 large egg yolks
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup low-fat buttermilk
  • Whipped Frosting
  • Shaved dark chocolate


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour two 8-by-2-inch cake pans, tapping out excess flour. In a medium bowl, whisk flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

  2. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. With mixer on low, beat in eggs and yolks, one at a time. Beat in vanilla. Alternately beat in flour mixture and buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour mixture; mix just until combined.

  3. Divide batter between pans; smooth tops. Bake until cakes pull away from sides of pans, 32 to 35 minutes. Let cool in pans 10 minutes. Run a knife around edges of pans and invert cakes onto a wire rack. Let cool completely.

  4. Place one cake, bottom side up, on a cake stand. Tuck strips of parchment paper underneath. Using an offset-spatula or table knife, spread top with Whipped Frosting. Top with remaining cake; frost top, then sides. (Store unfrosted cakes at room temperature up to 1 day. Once frosted, serve within a few hours.)

Reviews (10)

  • Mimi S 5 Apr, 2013

    After reading the reviews, I ended up using 1 1/4 cup of dark cocoa powder and it came out great with a nice rich, deep chocolate flavor.

  • NinaGuerra 31 Jan, 2013

    I made this cake this morning and i won't make it again just because the flavor, i expected a more intense chocolate flavor and something more fluffy and moist. A cake mix from a box is better than this. The only thing that can save this cake is the greatest frosting in the world.

  • Newhomebaker 3 Sep, 2012

    Loved this cake!! Very moist!! I added more coca powder and added almond extract and it gave it a stronger chocolate flavor. Thank you!! Toped my cupcakes with Oreo buttercream

  • Foodiefoodie 20 May, 2012

    The cake itself was alright, would prefer one that had more of a chocolate flavor punch. WATCH OUT for the frosting and make sure you eat it literally within like 2 hours of frosting. I learned after the fact that there are WAY better recipes for this type of frosting. The recipe for the frosting and steps on how to make it are half-baked (no pun intended). If you want a better frosting literally search for italian meringue frosting and almost any recipe will be better. Wouldn't make it again

  • loradefries 13 Dec, 2011

    Mild chocolate flavor, but nice texture. The icing I found to be the lesser version of 7min icing. Reminded me of a soufflé actually. Overall, I think there are much better recipes out there.

  • RBicknell 2 Jun, 2011

    This wasn't too bad. I really wanted more of a chocolate taste and this just didn't have the punch that other recipes have. It was super moist and had great texture but I will probably not use it again since i have a different go-to chocolate recipe that I like much better.

  • LAngelica 22 May, 2011

    Baked this cake for my Boyfriends birthday! He loved it. Was moist. It really did look like the image of the cake. The frosting was a bit difficult. Recommend having everything ready. Would definitely bake this cake again and I recommend it. I felt it was just the right amount of chocolate.

  • agd 29 Jan, 2011

    The cake was good, but maybe put some more chocolate or put in some melted chocolate chips. It also tastes nice with whipped cream!

  • megnard 11 Jul, 2010

    This cake was fantastic! I only had 9" cake pans, so it turned out shorter than I wanted. Since I wanted it to look especially grand, I halved the recipe and added a 3rd layer. I also put a ring of rasberries around the edge on top with the chocolate shavings in the middle.

  • BreeLeeD 15 Sep, 2009

    Delicious! The frosting makes it taste even better!

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