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

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This recipe appeared on a can of Hershey's Cocoa way back in 1943. I tried it, my boys liked it and I've been making it ever since. I make all my cakes from scratch, and this is one of the best! —Betty Follas, Morgan Hill, California
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 15 min. Bake: 35 min.
MAKES:12-15 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 15 min. Bake: 35 min.
MAKES: 12-15 servings


  • 2/3 cup butter, softened
  • 1-2/3 cups sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup baking cocoa
  • 1-1/4 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1-1/3 cups milk
  • Confectioners' sugar or favorite frosting

Nutritional Facts

1 piece: 257 calories, 10g fat (6g saturated fat), 67mg cholesterol, 368mg sodium, 38g carbohydrate (23g sugars, 1g fiber), 4g protein.


  1. In a bowl, cream butter and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Combine flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt; add to creamed mixture alternately with milk, beating until smooth after each addition. Pour batter into a greased and floured 13-in. x 9-in. pan.
  2. Bake at 350° for 35-40 minutes or until cake tests done. Cool on a wire rack. When cake is cool, dust with confectioners' sugar or frost with your favorite frosting. Yield: 12-15 servings.
If Cooking for Two: Freeze unfrosted cake in serving-size portions.
Originally published as Classic Chocolate Cake in Reminisce Extra June 1993, p47

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Surprisegal User ID: 8628816 260971
Reviewed Feb. 7, 2017

"To Shantea -- for heaven's sake, follow the recipe! I can tell by your question that you are not an experienced baker. If it's too much trouble to buy milk, don't make it."

Dreamluv User ID: 2396957 258327
Reviewed Dec. 18, 2016

"This cake turned out great. It is amazing and so easy to make. I whipped it together in no time. This recipe is definitely a keeper."

Universalcook User ID: 8868452 248636
Reviewed May. 25, 2016

"The cake is good. For those of you who say it is dry or had to modify it, it is you, not the recipe. You are not using the correct pan, allowing the oven to preheat, not measuring your ingredients correctly, or you are allowing it to cook too long. I pulled my out 3 minutes shy of the 35 minute mark. Every oven is different. Make sure you pan is in the center. The type of material your pan is made of also plays a part in the final outcome. Goodness sake, follow the recipe and consult Martha Stewart if you need help measuring ingredients and baking in general. It's how we all learn."

susan524 User ID: 8801921 246938
Reviewed Apr. 11, 2016


Are you sure you add 2 cups of milk over the cake or were you kidding? That seems like it would just make a mess lol
However if it's right, do you do that before or after removing it from the pan.
This was so long ago from you that here is the link to what I'm referring to."

Parisbobparis User ID: 6070195 245491
Reviewed Mar. 15, 2016

"Very dry, not moist at all"

roslina1704 User ID: 8716864 242580
Reviewed Jan. 26, 2016

"Tried it last night and the taste is awesome. Simple recipe yet fantastic results. Love From Malaysia."

RaqYsqKat User ID: 8687905 241198
Reviewed Jan. 6, 2016

"The recipe for this cake is so simple. I did not adjust anything. I made it for a birthday and everyone absolutely LOVED it! Also, it was my first time ever making a homemade cake!

This recipe was a SUCCESS!"

Toptekkie User ID: 8636136 238053
Reviewed Nov. 25, 2015

"Simple - worked 1st time"

khines1226 User ID: 7291273 237995
Reviewed Nov. 24, 2015

"My boyfriend is a chocoholic so I am always looking for easy and new chocolate recipes. This was really good. I did however make a few changes as others have suggested. I added a tsp. Of vanilla extract, I added chocolate pudding mix and I also used 2 whole eggs and one egg yolk to ensure the cake was light and moist. The cake itself was sweet so I just dusted top with powdered sugar. It was a hit and I will def. be making it for years to come. Thanks for recipe"

JoNanners User ID: 7835057 233226
Reviewed Sep. 21, 2015

"Erica Below must have really pulled an error as I have not seen anyone where the cake hasn't completed. Maybe you added too much baking powder and soda, or I have actually used self rising flour by accident on a cake recipe and ended up with your result. This cake was wonderful as I love a "quick pan cake" for a quick children's snack. PS EVaporated milk would be ok, but not sweetened condensed, sorry. PS. Adding pudding will add moistness, but if you want to use layers you will lose density. If you want a little moister, just add about 1/4 cup oil and will be much more moist and yet still very frost able."

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