Perfect Chocolate Cake

This is my mother’s Perfect Chocolate Cake. It is a favorite of all the chocolate lovers in our lives.


  • Cake:
  • 1 C unsweetened cocoa
  • 2 C boiling water
  • 2 ½ C sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 C butter, softened
  • 2 ¾ C flour
  • 2 t. baking soda
  • ½ t. baking powder
  • ½ t. salt
  • 1 ½ t. vanilla
  • Filling:

  • 1 C heavy cream
  • ½ C confectioner’s sugar
  • 1 t. vanilla
  • Frosting:

  • 6 oz semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • ½ C light cream
  • 1 C butter
  • 2 ½ C confectioner’s sugar


  1. Cake
    In a medium bowl, combine cocoa with boiling water. Beat with a whisk until smooth. Cool completely. Sift flour with baking soda, salt, and baking powder. In a large bowl, at high speed, beat butter, sugar, eggs, and vanilla, scraping often, until light and fluffy (about 5 minutes). At low speed beat in flour mixture (in fourths) alternately with the cocoa mixture (in thirds); begin and end with flour mixture. Do not overbeat. Grease and flour three 9 ” layer pans. Divide batter evenly. Place plans in cold oven. Turn oven to 250°F and bake ~ 35 minutes. Test with cake tester. Baking at this temperature makes the layers bake flat. Remove cake from pans and cool on wire racks.

Whip cream with sugar and vanilla. Spread between cooled cake layers.

Frosting *
In a medium pan, combine chocolate chips, cream, and butter. Stir over medium heat until smooth. Remove from heat. Cool. With a wire whisk, blend in confectioner’s sugar. Set frosting in a bowl of ice for 5 to 10 minutes. With frosting still over the pan of ice, beat until it holds its shape (thin with water if necessary). Frost cake with spatula. Cover sides and then top of cake. Sprinkle with chopped nuts if desired. Refrigerate at least one hour before serving.

Refrigerate cake when it is not being served.

*Although delicious this is not a decorating frosting. It does not crust well and must be refrigerated to solidify. It is best to press pre-made royal icing, fondant, or gum paste decorations directly into the frosting.

Comments (22)


Hi there, just wondering how this recipe bakes? Does it rise much? And what about the texture? Is it very dense? Spongy? Moist? Sorry, I just want to know so I know what to expect before I bake it... thanks in advance!!!


JackiesCreations, It is not as moist or dense as a WASC cake, but not dry either. It will not rise as much as a box cake. When my mother makes it she fills it very close to the top of a jelly roll pan then cuts it in half to make a 2 layer cake.

Sabrian, I have never added almonds but I'd love to hear your results if you do!


I tried this cake tonight--couldn't get it baked--over an hour and a half in the oven and still not done through. What happened?


just double checking, c means a cup and t means a teaspoon??????? also what is confectioner' sugar??? i am from ireland and we might call it something else. thanx


Hi Crimsondover, I'm from the uk, I believe confectioner' sugar is "icing sugar" and also called "powdered sugar". C is a cup and t is a teaspoon. Hope this helps. :)


I'm going to try this recipe! Never done a chocolate cake from scratch. I have made a vanilla cake with fudge chocolate swilrs but not this one. Sounds good. Will post how it goes.


Hi I am trying to make a chocolate cake then cover it with a fondant? Would this be ideal for this to? I am trying to make the cake 10" x 10" for my daughters Birthday. As im a complete beginner at this could you tell me if this is enough ingredients to fill a 10" x 10" tin? Help :)


I made this cake for a wedding cake. I doubled the recipe because I needed a 16" chocolate layer in the cake. I found this cake rose beautifully! It was moist with a firm but tender crumb! The secret to this cake is to cream your butter til it cries lol...light and fluffy almost like whipped cream...add the sugar a half a cup at a time, beat, beat beat, then when all the sugar is incorporated add the room temp eggs one at a time, beat, beat beat.make sure all your ingredients are ROOM TEMPERATURE. Never use cold eggs or butter!!! then alternate your flour and cocoa, starting with flour and ending with your flour mix. I was pleased with the results. I threw out a box mixed chocolate cake because it did not give me a nice rise that I needed for the wedding cake, but this recipe came to my rescue...


just mixed up the batter and it looks and tastes great. hope it bakes well. i hope it would be strong enough to stack. though this batch is for some valentines cake pops for the kids class parties and some extras to sell to last minute valentines day shoppers.


I need to make a baby grand piano cake for this tuesday night(6/5). I'm 14 years old and still quite an amateur to cake decorating! Will this cake stand up to carving and fondent? I would like to make the cake tonight(5/31) and freeze it until Tuesday after school. Does anyone have any tips for making this cake ahead of time that I should know? Thanks so much!!! I'm sure this recipe will be great if it stands up to carving!