Best Chocolate Cake Recipe
Best Chocolate Cake Recipe photo by Taste of Home
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Best Chocolate Cake Recipe

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4.5 14 13
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With a tender crumb and rich frosting, a layered chocolate cake always impresses, no matter the occasion. One bite and you'll agree this cake recipe is awesome! —Elvi Kaukinen, Horseheads, New York
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 20 min. Bake: 20 min. + cooling
MAKES:16 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 20 min. Bake: 20 min. + cooling
MAKES: 16 servings


  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup baking cocoa
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1-1/2 cups 2% milk
  • 2 cups (12 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup butter, cubed
  • 1 cup (8 ounces) sour cream
  • 4-1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
  • Chocolate curls, optional

Nutritional Facts

1 slice: 578 calories, 25g fat (15g saturated fat), 89mg cholesterol, 292mg sodium, 88g carbohydrate (70g sugars, 2g fiber), 6g protein.


  1. Line three 9-in. round baking pans with waxed paper; grease and flour the pans and paper. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla. Combine the flour, cocoa, baking soda, salt and baking powder; add to the creamed mixture alternately with milk, beating well after each addition.
  3. Transfer to prepared pans. Bake at 350° for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely.
  4. For frosting, in a small heavy saucepan, melt chips and butter over low heat. Transfer to a large bowl; cool for 5 minutes. Stir in sour cream. Gradually beat in confectioners' sugar until smooth. Spread between layers and over top and sides of cake. Garnish with chocolate curls if desired. Refrigerate leftovers. Yield: 16 servings.
Originally published as Best Chocolate Cake in Taste of Home Christmas Annual Annual 2010, p56

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Lori User ID: 9122503 264027
Reviewed Mar. 29, 2017

"I thought this cake was awesome."

schamberlain User ID: 8299832 252671
Reviewed Aug. 14, 2016

"The frosting was to die for but the cake, i don't know if it was because i used a 9X13 pan but it came out really dry. I will make the frosting again."

agwife User ID: 5636564 226022
Reviewed May. 7, 2015

"I just made this cake. I baked it in a 9X13 pan for about 25-30 minutes. The recipe makes a ton of frosting. I didn't even use half of it to frost the cake. I don't know how the cake tastes, but the frosting is a very tasty. I put the rest of it in the freezer for another use."

[email protected] User ID: 5947940 188667
Reviewed May. 14, 2013

"This cake was just OK. I did love the frosting recipe. I made cupcakes so I could freeze them. I think my all time favorite chocolate cake is the German chocolate cake. I haven't been able to find anything that matches."

linkaellison User ID: 6308518 104430
Reviewed May. 4, 2013

"Has anyone made this in a oblong cake pan instead of a layer cake?"

GdaSchwartz User ID: 7238491 171469
Reviewed Apr. 23, 2013

"This cake was so good! I will definitely make it again.. it was the "best" homemade cake I've made thus far."

CalgaryMomTo3 User ID: 6024905 186971
Reviewed Apr. 19, 2013

"I love this recipe. I use for cupcakes and cake. Every time I make it, I get asked for the recipe. And I've made it many, many times. And the cupcakes freeze fabulously."

hrlygirl56 User ID: 1082777 171616
Reviewed Apr. 18, 2013

"This was the best chocolate cake i`ve ever had. If ur baking powder is old the cake will not rise. So make sure u check it before making the cake."

lisatvc15 User ID: 7149597 146601
Reviewed Feb. 24, 2013

"I made the recipe exactly as stated and my cake was dry and the frosting way too sweet. It is a thin batter and it doesnt rise in the oven which leaves you with three very small layers. I cooked it for 20 min (directions say 20-25 min) I usually make the hersheys magic cake with coffee. I will not make this again."

Pantheress User ID: 7104912 187971
Reviewed Jan. 25, 2013

"Last weekend I have used this cake recipe to make chocolate Tuxedo cake for the housewarming party of my good friend. Awesomeness moist,rich,cakerie flavoury to die for as many invitees has said OH MY GOD!! now this cake is famous for! will use it again!! thanks a bunch!"

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