New This Month

Velvet Cocoa Cake with Instant Buttercream


To make decorative icing lines, gently drag the rounded end of a butter knife up the sides and across the top of the cake.

  • Prep:
  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 12

Source: Everyday Food, May/June 2003


For the Cake

  • 12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pans
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for pans
  • 3/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup light-brown sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups buttermilk

For the Buttercream

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 jars (7.5 ounces each) marshmallow cream
  • 2/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 2/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips, melted and cooled
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract


  1. Make the cake: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and lightly flour two 9-inch round cake pans. In a bowl, whisk flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt.

  2. In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugars until fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until well incorporated. Beat in vanilla.

  3. Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture in three additions, alternating with buttermilk and beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Scrape bowl as needed.

  4. Pour batter into pans. Bake until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes. Cool in pans 10 minutes before inverting cakes onto rack to cool completely.

  5. Make the buttercream: In mixing bowl, beat butter and marshmallow cream until fluffy. Beat in cocoa, chocolate, vanilla, and 1 tablespoon water. If too thin, refrigerate about 5 minutes.

  6. Place one layer on platter. Spread top with 1 cup buttercream. Place second layer on top. Frost entire cake with remaining buttercream.

Cook's Notes

To melt chocolate, heat in the microwave for 15-second intervals until almost melted, then stir to finish melting. The cake can be frosted in advance and refrigerated.

Reviews Add a comment

  • Roslyn23
    16 APR, 2014
    I love this cake. The texture isnt too dense or too light, in my opinion it's perfect! The frosting was creamy and so smooth and yummy. This is my new favorite chocolate cake. I made cupcakes for a party and everyone loved them.
  • J3ANA
    3 JUL, 2012
    This was an incredibly easy yet delicious cake. Added in a melted square of bittersweet chocolate for extra flavor and increased cooking time. The whole family devoured it. Will definitely make again.
  • veronicachristine22
    10 MAR, 2010
    can this buttercream hold up under fondant?
  • corelasij
    24 FEB, 2009
    Easy cake, I made it for my husband's birthday. Great texdtures, I loved the frositing... will definitely make the frosting again. I think the cake could use a little more flavor. I might add more cocoa powder next time or add chocolate chips to the batter just before baking.