My Mom’s Chocolate Cake


My mom is an amazing baker. My childhood is peppered with memories of unbelievably delicious desserts – this cake, butter cake, funny cake, hawaiian wedding cake, homemade eclairs, kiffles – I seriously could go on and on.  We were the luckiest kids in town.  On top of the magnificent baking skills she would then create these elaborately decorated cakes for our birthdays – for example check out this panda cake:

My mom, me with the goofy face, my Nannie (grandmother) and my Aunt Sylvia

My mom, me with the goofy face, my Nannie (grandmother) and my Aunt Sylvia

I don’t even give other chocolate cake recipes a second look – this is the pinnacle of chocolate perfection.  Airy, super chocolatey, incredibly moist and so easy to bake whether you load this into a 9×13 pan or make a huge batch of cupcakes.  The bonus? One bowl and it is a super easy recipe. Em basically made it herself.

choc cake em mix (1 of 1)

My mom even won a Hershey’s chocolate baking contest with this cake.

choc cake 1 (1 of 1)I do not have the patience to decorate cakes so I left that up to Emilie (using white sanding sugar):

choc cake em decorate (1 of 1)choc cake finished  (1 of 1)choc cake finished candles (1 of 1)choc cake finished plated2 (1 of 1)choc cake finished will (1 of 1)choc cake finished matty (1 of 1)

I'm 4!!

I’m 4!!

The kids are in pajamas because they insisted on being sung to and eating cake at 8am on their birthday. I couldn’t find a good reason to say no.  This cake should be consumed at all meals while it is in the house.

I did cheat a little bit on her amazing icing recipe for this batch because Emilie loves cream cheese. I simply added 4 oz softened cream cheese to icing ingredients listed below.

My Mom’s Chocolate Cake (and her chocolate icing)
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 1 cup hot water (I bring water to a boil in a teakettle and use that)
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 eggs lightly whisked
  • 2 cup all purpose flour
  • 2 cup white granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cocoa
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt (my addition to the original)
  • Icing:
  • 3 cups 10x confectioner sugar ( I usually just dump in entire box)
  • 1/4 cup softened butter
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 2 oz melted unsweetened chocolate
  • 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt (I use Maldon)
  • (blend all together with a hand mixer)
  1. Oven to 350 (I have to set mine to 300 to get 350 so err on the side of lower if you don’t have an oven thermometer – most ovens run hotter).
  2. Put all dry ingredients in a large bowl (flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda and powder, and salt) and whisk together.
  3. Add all the wet ingredients except hot water (butter, milk, eggs), mix well and then slowly pour in hot water while stirring. It is a very loose batter.
  4. Into either a greased (I used baking Pam) 9×13 pan or 2 cupcake pans lined. Fill cupcakes 2/3 way up.
  5. Start checking cupcakes around 15 minutes and every few minutes after. The 9×13 takes at least 30 – start checking then (I put my finger lightly on the middle of the cake or cupcake and if it feels springy it is done). Don’t overcook this masterpiece.

choc cake finished plated (1 of 1)

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