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

Classic Chocolate Cake Recipe

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4.5 33
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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 serving (1 piece) equals 257 calories, 10 g fat (6 g saturated fat), 67 mg cholesterol, 368 mg sodium, 38 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 4 g 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

Nutritional Facts

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

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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."

Reviewed Sep. 19, 2015

"I really want to make it but I only have sweetened condensed milk can I use it"

Reviewed Sep. 10, 2015

"Great recipe, with and without changes. I have been making this cake for over two years now. My first attempt came out a bit dry, but still tasty. After that first try here are my adjustments for a perfect cake: reduce the sugar to 1 and 1/3 cup (could possibly go down to just 1 cup), reduce the baking cocoa to 1/3 cup, and add a package of instant chocolate pudding mix. The cake is sweet and moist!! I just made this cake with these changes last night and it turned out great. My oven is a bit older so my cooking time was closer to an hour. Could be the addition of the pudding, but I'd rather 20 more minutes of cooking than a dry cake:)"

Reviewed Aug. 29, 2015

"Very delicious! This recipe was very simple to make, and the cake turned out to be very tasty. It was perhaps a bit on the dry side, so next time I will try some sort of trick in order to make it more moist."

Reviewed Aug. 9, 2015

"cooked it a little too long so it was a little dry but other than that it was delicious!"

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