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What is the recipe for a chocolate perfect cake?

The Best Chocolate Cake Recipe – A one bowl chocolate cake recipe that is quick, easy, and delicious! Gluten-free, dairy-free, and egg-free choices have been added!

The most delicious chocolate cake recipe. Ever? There are several claims about the greatest chocolate cake recipe. I understand. But with one bite of this decadent, moist chocolate cake with chocolate frosting, every single person around the table commented that this was the best chocolate cake they’d ever tasted.

Thus, in my home, this chocolate cake recipe has taken over.

When the accolades poured in, I didn’t even think about telling them how simple it was to make.

In all honesty, it was one of the simplest cakes I’d prepared in a long time, but I just smiled and thanked them.

The praises kept flowing as we proceeded to eat the cake and sip our coffee or iced cold milk.

Then the requests for the recipe started.

When people ask for the recipe and tell you what occasion they want to serve it at, you know they enjoy what you’ve created.

It is, in my opinion, one of the best compliments you can get as a chef.

The Best Chocolate Cake Recipe Ever

It was wonderful to hear that they felt the cake was equally as amazing after their final mouthful as they did the first.

Here’s another amazing feature of this dish. Without the use of a high duty mixer, the cake batter may be produced in a bowl. Of course, that just makes things easier, but this is easily a recipe my Grandmother would have enjoyed making in her tiny kitchen with a whisk and a bowl. And I’m sure it would have turned out just fine.

I’m not going to kid you, this makes a very rich, moist chocolate cake recipe. Thus, if you’re a chocolate cake purist, this isn’t the cake for you.

Based on the Old Fashioned Hershey’s recipe, I sort of went a bit heavy-handed with some changes testing cake after cake until I got it just the way I wanted it, but the end result was oh so worth it. The crumbs on the plate revealed this.


You’ll need the following materials to make this chocolate cake.

  • all-purpose flour
  • sugar
  • unsweetened cocoa powder
  • baking powder
  • baking soda
  • salt
  • espresso powder – I provide additional information about espresso powder below.
  • milk – Other options include buttermilk, almond milk, oat milk, and coconut milk.
  • oil – Vegetable, canola, or melted coconut oil may be used.
  • eggs – when baking, I like to use room temperature eggs
  • vanilla extract
  • boiling water

Step-by-Step Instructions

Prep. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Prepare two 9-inch cake pans by spraying with baking spray or buttering and lightly flouring.

Whisk dry ingredients. Add flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, salt and espresso powder to a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer. Whisk to incorporate, or use your paddle attachment to whisk through the flour mixture until fully blended.

Mix in wet ingredients. Mix in the milk, vegetable oil, eggs, and vanilla extract on medium speed until fully blended. Reduce speed and carefully add boiling water to the cake batter until well combined.

Bake. Divide the cake batter equally between the two cake pans. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until a toothpick or cake tester inserted in the center of the chocolate cake comes out clean.

Frost. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for about 10 minutes, remove from the pan and cool completely. Chocolate Buttercream Frosting is used to top the cake.

The use of espresso powder in both the chocolate cake and the chocolate icing, in my view, was one of the components that truly brought this cake recipe to life.

If you haven’t tried a little espresso in your chocolate baking, you should.

The espresso elevates the tastes in the same way that vanilla extract does, and I now consider it an important element of my spice cabinet.

Espresso powder is easy to find at the grocery store or even online if your grocer doesn’t stock it normally, but I use it fairly frequently and it can become a little pricey. I began producing my own handmade espresso powder and haven’t looked back since! It’s incredibly simple to prepare and have on hand!

Trust me when I tell that it is well worth the effort to have only for those occasions when you are baking with chocolate!

Thus, if you have a chocolate cake aficionado in your midst, bake this dessert for them. If they’ve had a difficult day, this will undoubtedly lighten it for them. If they’ve had a good day, this chocolate cake is a terrific way to celebrate!

Let me repeat: this boosted traditional chocolate cake + this Chocolate Buttercream Frosting Recipe = the finest chocolate cake I’ve ever tasted!

How to Make Ahead and Store the Homemade Chocolate Cake:

The cake and the chocolate icing may both be prepared ahead of time. Allow the cakes to cool completely, wrap them well in plastic wrap and place each layer into a gallon zip-top freezer bag. The cake layers may be frozen for up to a month.

To frost the cake, simply remove from the freezer and allow to thaw in the refrigerator with wrapping intact. Once the cake has totally thawed, frost it.

Place the cake on the counter at room temperature. I like to store under a cake dome to keep the cake fresh.

Chocolate Cake Modifications You May Be Interested to Know About:

Note that I have updated the recipe to include some additional ingredients that I have tested through the years. This chocolate cake has proven to be much more flexible than I had anticipated! I’ve included some of the tweaks I’ve tried that I believe you may be interested in.

As a Gluten-Free Chocolate Cake Recipe:

I’ve successfully made the cake into a gluten-free chocolate cake recipe by substituting an equivalent quantity of gluten-free flour for the all-purpose flour stated in the recipe.

As a Dairy-Free Chocolate Cake Recipe:

To make the cake a dairy-free chocolate cake recipe, I’ve used almond milk as well as coconut milk in place of the dairy. Although not dairy-free, I’ve substituted buttermilk for the milk with excellent results.

As an Egg-Free Chocolate Cake Recipe:

To make the cake egg-free, I substituted 2/3 cup unsweetened applesauce for the 2 large eggs called for in the recipe. You will note that you may have to bake the cake just a few minutes more. Always use the skewer to check for doneness.

I’ve also had fantastic results using Bob’s Red Mill Egg Replacer.

To Use Butter and Other Oils:

I tried the chocolate cake recipe with other oils in addition to butter. I experimented with substituting melted coconut oil for the vegetable oil specified in the recipe. I’ve also tried replacing the oils in the chocolate cake with the same amount of melted butter. While it does make the cake texture slightly different, it is still delicious and worth trying if you’d prefer to use butter in place of oils in your chocolate cake.

The Best Chocolate Cake Recipe

Dessert — 45 mins

Prep Time 15 mins

Cook Time 30 mins

Servings 24

Course Dessert

Cuisine American

Recipe for the Greatest Chocolate Cake – A one bowl chocolate cake recipe that is quick, easy, and delicious! Gluten-free, dairy-free, and egg-free choices have been added!

  •  2 cups all-purpose flour
  •  2 cups sugar
  •  3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  •  2 teaspoons baking powder
  •  1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  •  1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon espresso powder, handmade or purchased
  • 1 cup of milk, buttermilk, almond milk, or coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable, canola, or coconut oil, melted
  •  2 large eggs
  •  2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  •  1 cup boiling water
  •  Chocolate Buttercream Frosting Recipe
  • Preheat oven to 350º F. Spray or grease two 9-inch cake pans with baking spray and gently dust them.

For the chocolate cake:

  • In a large mixing basin or the bowl of a stand mixer, combine the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and espresso powder. Whisk through to combine or, using your paddle attachment, stir through flour mixture until combined well.
  • Mix in the milk, vegetable oil, eggs, and vanilla extract on medium speed until fully blended. Reduce speed and carefully add boiling water to the cake batter until well combined.
  • Divide the cake batter equally between the two cake pans. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until a toothpick or cake tester inserted in the center of the chocolate cake comes out clean.
  • Remove from the oven and cool for approximately 10 minutes before removing from the pan and cooling fully.
  • After adding the hot water, the cake batter will be quite thin. This is correct and results in the most delicious and moist chocolate cake I’ve ever tasted! 

Freezer Friendly

Let the baked cake layers cool completely. Cover them tightly in plastic wrap, then foil. Freeze each layer for up to 2 months in a freezer bag. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight with the wrapper still on before serving. The layers are ready to fill and frost the following day.

High Altitude:  If you reside at a high altitude, alter the recipe to reflect your altitude.

Nutritional information is for the cake only.

Calories: 124kcal | Carbohydrates: 27g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 15mg | Sodium: 178mg | Potassium: 114mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 17g | Vitamin A: 229IU

Do let me know how you like it.

These are some more ways I like to create this cake!

Chocolate Cupcakes

If you are looking for cupcakes from this recipe, I’ve shared my recipe for the best chocolate cupcakes with vanilla buttercream frosting. This recipe yields a perfect dozen chocolate cupcakes, so you may scale it to create as many as you need! Talk about simple!

9×13 Chocolate Cake

This version is fantastic! It’s a tasty, scaled-down version that’s ideal for potlucks, reunions, tailgates, and road trips! I’ve also reduced the frosting to get the frosting-to-cake ratio that my family enjoys. That is unquestionably a winner!

Large Chocolate Sheet Cake

Scaled for a crowd, this recipe bakes beautifully in a rimmed half sheet baking sheet and is perfect for all sorts of get-togethers. Consider it the 913’s big brother! This recipe calls for Fudge Icing, but you may use any frosting you like instead!

That’s all there is to it. There are several ways to enjoy this delectable dessert. Practically one for whatever need you might have. But, if I’ve missed one, be sure to let me know and I’ll work on it for you!

Several of you have inquired whether there is a way to prepare an equally excellent Vanilla Cake Recipe. Friends, I’ve tested, tested, tested, and now I can happily declare YES! I’ve also shared the finest Vanilla Cake

Related Questions

  • What is the secret to a perfect cake?

    The seven rules for baking a perfect cake

    1. Always grease the pan and line with parchment.
    2. Allow the oven to fully preheat first.
    3. Unless otherwise stated, bake in the center of the oven
    4. Bake in the size of pan specified.
    5. Don’t try to double the recipe.
    6. Use fresh ingredients. .
    7. No substitutions.
    8. Your cake is too dense.
  • What is the secret to baking a moist cake?

    Jump to:

    1. Use Buttermilk Instead of Milk.
    2. Add Vegetable Oil.
    3. Use Instant Clearjel or Instant Pudding Mix.
    4. Use the Right Recipe.
    5. Don’t Overbake.
    6. Instead of separate cake pans, bake in sheet pans.
    7. Use a Simple Syrup or Glaze.
  • Which is the best chocolate cake?

    7 Chocolate Desserts That Every Chocolate Lovers Should Try

    1. Chocolate Truffle Cake.
    2. Sour Cream Chocolate Cake.
    3. Chocolate Lava Cake.
    4. Chocolate Oreo Cake.
    5. Ferrero Rocher Chocolate Cake.
    6. Belgian Chocolate Cake.
    7. Chocolate Fudge Cake.
  • What is the number 1 cake in the world?


    Rank​ Cake​ Total no. of monthly searches worldwide​
    1​ Chocolate 394,050
    2​ Red velvet 322,310
    3​ Carrot 313,320
    4​ Banana 192,170