chocolate cake

Ultimate Chocolate Cake

  • Author: Glenda Embree
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 24 servings 1x


  • 1 cup butter
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup cocoa powder
  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup boiling water


  1. Cream together butter and sugar.  I do this in my stand mixer, but the recipe can be made by hand.  I have done it that way, before.
  2. Add the eggs and milk and beat hard.  (Don’t fret if it looks a little “curdled” after this step.  There will be tiny flecks of butter throughout the mixture.)
  3. Add the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt.
  4. Beat hard to incorporate all the ingredients and to create a very thick batter. (Be sure to scrape down the sides of your bowl and be sure everything is well mixed.
  5. Add the boiling water and vanilla.  (This is the step that bakes in all that lovely moisture and keeps the cake tender.) 
  6. Mix just until the water has been incorporated into the batter.
  7. Pour the batter into a greased 9×13 pan (or *9×9 squares or rounds) and bake at 350°.  The 9×13 will take 35-45 minutes depending on your oven.  The small pans will take 25-30 minutes.  The cake will begin to pull away from the sides of the pan and a toothpick in the center will come out clean, when the cake is done.


This cake will raise rather round and high in the center as it bakes, but when you pull it out of the oven to cool it will settle to a flat-topped cake, because of the high moisture content.  Don’t panic.  That’s exactly as it should be.  The cake is dense and moist and the way cakes tasted before the advent of mixes.  It will remind you of Sunday dinner at your grandma’s.

  • Category: Cake, Dessert
  • Cuisine: American