Grandmother's Heavenly Chocolate Cake Recipe

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I remember my grandmother making this cake often—it was always my favorite. Through the years I've made it for my family, for company and for church dinners.
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 25 min. Bake: 25 min.
MAKES:12 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 25 min. Bake: 25 min.
MAKES: 12 servings


  • 1 cup shortening
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons baking cocoa
  • 2 tablespoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 3/4 cup baking cocoa
  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup evaporated milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 6 to 6-1/2 cups confectioners' sugar

Nutritional Facts

1 piece: 816 calories, 31g fat (12g saturated fat), 90mg cholesterol, 919mg sodium, 128g carbohydrate (92g sugars, 2g fiber), 9g protein.


  1. In a bowl, cream shortening and sugar. Add eggs, one at a time, and beat until fluffy. Add vanilla. Combine flour, cocoa, baking soda and salt; add to creamed mixture alternately with buttermilk. Beat until smooth. Pour into three greased and waxed paper-lined 8-in. round baking pans. Bake at 350° for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool.
  2. For icing, beat cocoa, butter, milk, vanilla and 6 cups sugar in a bowl until creamy. Spread frosting between layers and on top and sides of cake. Yield: 12 servings.
Originally published as Grandmother's Heavenly Chocolate Cake in Sweet and Scrumptious Chocolate 1994, p15

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laanfi18 User ID: 4499732 226862
Reviewed May. 24, 2015

"This recipe should be renamed "baking soda slightly chocolate cake". I was so disappointed I had wasted the ingredients on this recipe. I've never seen that much baking soda in a cake recipe before and wondered if it was an error. I followed the recipe exact but cannot eat it. My husband and I could easily taste the baking soda very strongly and hardly the chocolate flavor. This cake is crumbly and tasteless except for the very strong taste of baking soda. I will never make this again. Thankfully I had made only a two layer cake and a pan of cupcakes which we taste tested a cupcake each before wasting frosting on it. If possible not to give it any stars, I would have as I had to throw out the cake and cupcakes. I will stay with my old tried and true chocolate cake recipe."

justind04201313 User ID: 7676490 93731
Reviewed Feb. 17, 2014

"I tried it and it was the BEST cake I EVER had!!!!! Thanks for the recipe."

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