Can anyone recommend a chocolate cake recipe that starts with a cake mix and is very chocolatey tasting yet durable?
Durable enough that you could use it for stacked cakes and possibly carved, 3-D cakes.
Do a search in the recipes section for the durable chocolate cake. I use DH chocolate fudge cake and chocolate fudge pudding and it came out awesome!
If you could make a cake that is 100% Cool Whip, you can stack it ... because it's not the cake that supports the upper tiers ... it's your support system, be it dowels, hidden pillars, SPS, straws, whatever works for you. So ANY cake will work for a stacked (or pillared) cake.
I haven't carved a cake yet, so I can't address that part of it for you.
I love the darn good chocolate cake recipe on here! It tastes great and will work for carving (leave out choc. chips if carving!)
BC or DH choc cake mix of your choice (my fav are dark choc, devil's food, and butter recipe fudge)
double the oil called for on the box's directions
1 cup water
number of eggs called for on the box's directions + 1
1 small (4 serving size) package chocolate or devil's food flavor instant pudding mix (not sugar free)
Here's a thread that has a link to EVERY doctored cake mix recipe on this site (and then some...):
Kakeladi's *original* WASC recipe using chocolate cake mix is YUMMO!!! Instead of just flour I use 2/3c cocoa and 1/3c flour. Then just vanilla instead of vanilla and almond. Seriously, just that easy. Its chocolatey, its moist, and several of friends will push each other over for it... hubby is in there too!