When I came across this recipe I knew I had to make it, and I was not disappointed! This Chocolate Cake Recipe is seriously rich and amazingly decadent. It’s my new go-to recipe! (But I still love the classics… my Perfect Chocolate Cake is my favorite for layer cakes!)

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The Best Chocolate Sheet Cake Overhead Image

The BEST Chocolate Cake

When my friend Autumn showed me this recipe of her Grandma Evie’s I was totally intrigued. The method is completely different than anything I had ever seen! She actually calls it No-Fail Chocolate Cake. So I made it that day, thinking to myself, “How different can it really be?” Well, I was pleasantly surprised at just how AMAZING this chocolate cake is.

Imagine my shock when I tried a piece the next day and it was EVEN BETTER. If at all possible, I recommend saving yourself a slice so that you can see just what a few hours will do to this crazy good recipe!

Chocolate Frosting

But first, let’s talk frosting. This is a basic Chocolate Frosting done right. I used dutch process cocoa so that my frosting would be a bit darker, but you can certainly use regular unsweetened cocoa powder. (it will also be lighter in color)

Smoothing Frosting on Chocolate Cake

Coffee in Chocolate Cake?

I have many recipes on my site for chocolate cake and most of them use coffee. Coffee will enhance the flavor of the chocolate, not overpower it. If your recipe is good (and this one is) you will not taste the coffee at all, you will only taste the richest chocolate cake you have ever had.

This recipe utilizes brewed hot coffee in the first steps and then cooled coffee in the second part. Some recipes will call for instant coffee crystals or espresso coffee, this one doesn’t.

You may substitute WATER for the coffee if you prefer, but the chocolate flavor will not be as intense.

Cutting Pieces of Chocolate Cake

Can I Turn Sheet Cake Into a Layer Cake?

While I love this recipe as a sheet cake, I also like this cake as a layer cake. It will make a 2-layer cake (using 8-inch rounds) and the chocolate frosting recipe below will cover that if you do not use too much between the layers.

Can I Make Sheet Cake Into Cupcakes?

Full transparency: I have not made this recipe as cupcakes, ( I love my Ultimate Chocolate Cupcake recipe) but if you do, you will want to fill each liner 2/3 full with batter and bake for 16-22 minutes at 350°F. Start checking at 16 minutes as you do not want to overbake the cupcakes. Cool and frost with the chocolate frosting recipe. If you want to pipe pretty designs on the cupcakes you can add a bit more confectioners sugar for a thicker consistency.

One piece of Chocolate Cake

More Chocolate Cakes

chocolate-cake-blog2
4.89 from 51 votes

Chocolate Cake Recipe

Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 35 mins
Grandma approves… and the kids beg for the last piece!

Ingredients

Chocolate Cake

  • FIRST PART
  • cup brown sugar
  • cup strong coffee
  • ½ cup dutch process cocoa
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • SECOND PART
  • cups (192g) all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ cup (1 stick, 113g) salted butter, warm but not melted
  • ½ cup (100g) granulated sugar
  • ½ cup (100g) packed brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • ½ cup cold coffee
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Chocolate Frosting

  • 3 cups (384g) confectioners’ sugar
  • 6 tablespoons (90g) Dutch Process cocoa powder
  • 6 tablespoons salted butter room temperature
  • 3-5 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions

Chocolate Cake

  • FIRST PART
  • Place all ingredients in the first part into a saucepan over low heat. Stir until they are fully incorporated, 5-7 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool a bit. It should be a little thick and similar to custard.
  • SECOND PART
  • In a medium bowl, sift flour, baking soda, and baking powder together.
  • Add 1/2 cup warm butter, sugars, eggs, cooled coffee, and vanilla to the flour mixture and mix with a hand-held mixer until fully combined. (or stir by hand) 
  • Add the chocolate mixture from the FIRST PART to the ingredients from the SECOND PART. Stir by hand until all ingredients are well combined.
  • Pour onto a prepared (sprayed or lined with parchment) baking sheet (I used a 10x15in baking sheet). Smooth out the batter and gently tap on the counter. 
  • Bake in a 350°F oven for 16-22 minutes, or until the center no longer appears wet and an inserted toothpick is removed with a few crumbs.
  • Allow to cool before frosting.

Chocolate Frosting

  • In a medium bowl, sift together the confectioners’ sugar and cocoa, and set aside.
  • In a large bowl, cream butter until smooth, then gradually beat in sugar mixture alternately with heavy whipping cream. Blend in vanilla. Beat until light and fluffy. If necessary, adjust consistency with more whipping cream or sugar.

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Meet Amanda Rettke

Amanda Rettke is the creator of I Am Baker, and the bestselling author of Surprise Inside Cakes: Amazing Cakes for Every Occasion – With a Little Something Extra Inside.Over the course of her 15+ year blogging adventure, she has been featured in and collaborated with the Food Network, New York Times, LA Times, Country Living Magazine, People Magazine, Epicurious, Brides, Romantic Homes, life:beautiful, Publishers Weekly, The Daily Mail, Star Tribune, The Globe and Mail, DailyCandy, YumSugar, The Knot, The Kitchn, and Parade, to name a few.

Reader Comments

  1. I made this for father’s day and it was so good! I subbed cherry dr pepper zero for coffee and made cherry frosting. The recipe was easy to follow too!

  2. I just made this and it reminds me of the Texas Sheet cake, I like the fact you frost after cooling, the sheet cake you pour the frosting on while the cake is hot.

  3. Do you make the cake to sell?
    Im disabled and don’t bake much, but I need the calories. Chocolate is my favorite.

  4. Can I make cupcakes using this recipe? If yes, How many would it make? How long would it take to bake? and at what temp? So sorry for all the questions. Thank you in advance. Sharron

  5. the cake looks good but I would the coffee in both part and maybe use dr pepper for one the part. I don’t drink coffee and don’t like the taste of anything with coffee.

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