How to Make Chocolate Cake

It's easier than you thought to make a chocolate cake from scratch. Our simple recipes and helpful tips show you how.

Don't let the proliferation of cake mixes on supermarket shelves lead you to believe that you need to start with a box to whip up a delicious chocolate cake. You probably have the needed ingredients in your pantry right now -- and you can't go wrong with this failproof recipe from Better Homes and Gardens. Once you've checked out this basic recipe, scroll past the recipe to find 20 more of the best chocolate cake recipes on the Web.

Meanwhile, these tips will help pave your way to chocolate cake perfection:

  • Use the exact-size pan called for in your recipe.
  • Bring all ingredients, including eggs, to room temperature before mixing.
  • Be careful not to mix longer than your recipe tells you to -- overbeating may make your cake dry and tough.
  • Always bake cakes on the center rack of the oven.


Servings: 12
Prep: 5 minutes
Total: 35 minutes


  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 cups cold water
  • 2/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • Ice cream (optional)
  • Whipped cream (optional)
  • Powdered suger (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a large mixing bowl combine flour, granulated sugar, the water, the vegetable oil, cocoa powder, baking soda, white vinegar, salt, and vanilla. Beat with an electric mixer on medium to high speed until well combined. Pour batter into a greased 13x9x2-inch baking pan.
  2. Bake for 35 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. If desired, serve with ice cream or whipped cream, or dust with powdered sugar.


Calories 359, Total Fat (g)13, Saturated Fat (g)1, Sodium (mg)406, Carbohydrate (g)59, Fiber (g)2, Protein (g)4, Calcium (DV%)1, Iron (DV%)11. Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000-calorie diet.

Here are 20 more of the Web's best recipes for chocolate cake.

Best-Ever Chocolate Cake

When you want a really good dessert, make this triple-layer chocolate cake with rich, creamy frosting.


Rich Double-Chocolate Cake

Dessert lovers will rejoice when you serve this elegant double-chocolate layer cake with white chocolate frosting. Chocolate curls add the finishing touch.


Deep Chocolate Cake

Loaded with chocolate, this euphoric dessert recipe creates an astounding birthday cake or special-occasion dessert.


Double-Fudge Layer Cake

Fill and frost this chocolate cake with a cooked chocolate frosting that tastes just like fudge.


Chocolate Mousse Layer Cake

The simplest way to decorate this cake is to press chopped, toasted walnuts onto the sides. For a more dramatic look, try wrapping the cake in a chocolate band and topping it with white chocolate curls.


Black-and-White Cake

Rich chocolate cake contrasts nicely with a sweet cream cheese filling and vanilla chip drizzle.


Oreos 'n' Cream Cake

Chocolate cake layered with a cream cheese filling and topped with a creamy vanilla frosting make up this eye-catching dessert. A sprinkling of crushed chocolate sandwich cookies makes it a kid-favorite recipe.


Chocolate Sour Cream Cake with Fudgy Frosting

With fudgy frosting holding together this hefty cake, it's ideal for potlucks and tailgates.


Chocolate Stout Cake

Rich, dark, and toasty stout beer plus deeply flavored molasses give the chocolate flavor of this cake some wonderful nuance.


Chocolate Peppermint Cake

This rich, three-layer chocolate cake has a festive cream cheese and peppermint candy filler.


Luscious Cranberry-Chocolate Cake

Decadence! This dense chocolate layer cake includes dried cranberries, cranberry jam, and a little strong coffee for added flavor.


Chocolate Syrup Cake

For a moist, delicious dessert, try this chocolate cake recipe that makes a sensational presentation drizzled with chocolate buttercream frosting.


3-Tier Featherlight Chocolate Cake

A fluffy whipped chocolate frosting is the crowning glory to this three-layer, light-as-air cake.


Chocolate-Cherry Cake

Soak plump dried cherries in brandy or orange juice for this luscious chocolate-glazed cake.


Ultrarich Chocolate Cake

This dense, fudgy chocolate cake, coated with whipped cream frosting, is about as indulgent as a cake can be. You can make the cake and frosting a day ahead.


Chocolate Sheet Cake

The frosting on this rich one-layer cake is made with Mexican Ibarra chocolate, which is flavored with almonds and cinnamon.


Double-Chocolate Lava Baby Cakes

Dense chocolate cake hides a rich torrent of caramel in these pint-size desserts.


Devil's Food Layer Cake

Devil's food cake is renowned for being dark, dense, and delicious. This classic recipe, made with dark chocolate and cocoa powder, exceeds expectations.


Chocolate-Cherry Stack Cake

Try this decadent dessert recipe that features the delicious blend of chocolate and cherries.


Cinnamon-Caramel-Ganache Layer Cake

Make the filling and the frosting first, letting the former chill and the latter thicken slightly at room temperature while the cake is baking and cooling.



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