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May 8, 2014 11:52 AM

Chocolatey Chocolate Cake Tips/Recipe Suggestions

So I need to bake a cake for a work event on Wednesday. I would like to bake it this weekend and freeze it and assemble it Wednesday morning to serve that afternoon. I don't get very many opportunities to bake cake, so I want to make something good--and this is an occasion that calls for chocolate. Lots of chocolate. I'd thought to do a chocolate cake with a chocolate raspberry ganache. I'm not a huge fan of buttercream frostings.

What I really want is a suggestion for a recipe that is tried and true to produce a really moist and chocolatey cake. I find some chocolate cakes don't have an intense chocolate flavor, but I've not made a lot of chocolate cakes, and fewer even from scratch.

I'm a pretty big novice baker, and don't have a stand mixer, but am willing to experiment. So suggestions are welcome for successful chocolate cake baking!

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  1. this is my favorite chocolate cake recipe. rich, moist and pretty simple to make. Really good chocolate is key. Ghiradelli's won't cut it.

    8 Replies
    1. re: bumble

      I love this cake. I have made it at least 20 times.

      1. re: bumble

        Yup, this one is the best. It makes a big cake!

        1. re: bumble

          I made this cake recently. I disagree about Ghirardelli not being good enough. If you use the bittersweet rather than semisweet it's very good for this ganache. I would not use semisweet of any sort for this - that's one necessary change to an otherwise great recipe.

          EDIT: I recommend Cacao Barry Extra Brute cocoa.

          1. re: sandylc

            Interesting on the cocoa. I've never used Cacao Barry Extra Brute, but the descriptions I'm finding online sound quite similar to Guittard Cacao Rouge, which I find to be quite excellent.

          2. re: bumble

            This does seem do-able, but I have one question. I work with a bunch of people who do not drink/consume coffee. Is there something I can substitute to still enhance the chocolate taste? I don't love coffee flavor, but these folks don't drink coffee as a religious thing, and I'd hate to offend.

            I'll need to pick up some better quality cocoa, I have the type of chocolate called for in the recipe, but not the cocoa powder.

            1. re: SarahCW

              You can use a coffee substitute that has roasted chicory root in it, like Pero, Yannoh or Teeccino. I think some Whole Foods even sell plain ground roasted chicory root in the bulk section. Just brew it up like coffee and use as directed in the recipe.

              1. re: SarahCW

                Maybe a raspberry herbal tea would work, and it might boost the raspberry flavour of your ganache too.

                1. re: SarahCW

                  Water would work. You could also try the Hershey chocolate cake which is similar w/ small variations but uses water instead.

              2. Hi Sarah, I have a few suggestions.

                The easy and tried and true Hershey's Chocolate Cake:

                The Epicurious Chocolate Cake:

                My personal go-to is this one, which I think is a mish-mash of several recipes. It produces a SUPER chocolatey cake, very very moist, with a light crumb. It goes very well with berries to cut through the chocolate. I'm asked to make it for parties. I find it's thick enough to cut into two 1" layers; you could multiply the recipe by 1.5 for 2 thicker layers, or double it for 3 normal layers.

                Makes one very thick 8" or 9" cake

                -1/2 cup butter
                -1 cup water
                -1/2 cup vegetable oil (I use canola
                )-1 1/2 cups sugar
                -1/2 cup Dutch cocoa
                -2 cups flour
                -2 eggs
                -1/2 tablespoon vanilla
                -1/2 cup milk
                1/2 tablespoon baking soda
                -1/4 teaspoon salt

                Heat butter, oil, and water in a saucepan until butter melts. Set aside.

                Stir together sugar, cocoa, and flour, then add to butter/oil/water and mix well.

                Add eggs and vanilla, then milk, baking soda, and salt. Mix just until blended.

                Pour into greased baking pan/s. Bake @ 350 for 25-35 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.

                1. There is very little difference between the Epicurious double layer cake and Hershey's chocolate other than size and the Epi one has a little more chocolate (3 oz of real chocolate) and both would be fine. You can mix both of them by hand, even, but a hand mixer would be faster. For a really easy, chocolatey frosting, try the sour cream fudge frosting.


                  1 Reply
                  1. re: chowser

                    BTW, I prefer the Hershey black magic cake to the hershey regular chocolate cake.If you do the regular cake, use coffee instead of water. Always add a little coffee flavor whether it's instant espresso, coffee to chocolate to intensify the chocolate w/out adding coffee taste.

                  2. The Hershey's cake is excellent and I have baked it and froze it ahead like you want too. That cake is my go to chocolate cake and I have had many requests over the years from family and friends and coworkers for it.

                    1. My favorite go-to deeply chocolate cake is based on a mix, and easy, easy, easy. It was published in Bon Appetit in the 70's. I have made it at least 40 times. No frosting necessary. Trust me.

                      Triple chocolate cake

                      1 18 1/2 ounce box deep chocolate or devil's food cake mix
                      1 4 oz box instant chocolate pudding
                      ¾ cup sour cream
                      ½ cup vegetable oil
                      ½ cup water
                      ½ cup toasted chopped almonds
                      ¼ cup mayonnaise
                      4 eggs
                      3 tablespoons almond liqueur
                      1 teaspoon almond extract
                      1 cup chocolate chips

                      Preheat oven 350°. Grease 10 inch bundt pan & dust with cocoa. Place all ingredients except chocolate chips in large bowl & beat two min. with electric mixer on medium speed. Mix in chocolate chips. Pour into pan. Bake 50 to 55 minutes, until toothpick comes out clean. Cool on rack 10 minutes before removing from pan.