Sunday, June 6, 2010

Chocolate Sheet Cake

Last week was hubby's birthday, so I baked him his favorite cake - chocolate with chocolate icing. Now, most people like chocolate cake with chocolate icing because it's incredibly sweet, but my husband doesn't like really sweet. Just a little sweet is his preference. Or not sweet at all, since he drinks his unsweetened tea with no added sugar.

This cake is the perfect balance of chocolate and not-too-sweet. The cake itself is made with bittersweet chocolate and is light, not dense. The icing has much of the sugar, but it's not overpowering or thick. It serves a lot of people, too, so it's just right for a not-too-heavy dessert after a dinner party or gathering.

Here's what you need for the cake:

1 cup butter, softened
2 cups sugar
4 eggs
2 tsp vanilla
2 1/4 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 cup buttermilk (see tip below)
3 (1oz each) bittersweet chocolate squares, melted

In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar.

Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla.

In another bowl, combine the flour, baking soda and salt. Add to the creamed mixture alternately with the buttermilk. Beat in the melted chocolate.

Doesn't that chocolate look yummy! Here's what your mixture will look like after the chocolate is added. I could slurp it up with a straw!

Pour the batter into a greased 15x10 pan and smooth out.

Bake at 350 degrees for 22-27 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. My cake overflowed just a bit, as you can see. What to do with the excess chocolate cake? Hmmmm, let me would be a sin to waste chocolate cake. Maybe you can trim off the extra and taste it to be sure it's worthy of being served to the birthday boy? Well, that's exactly what I did! And it was worthy!

Tip: I rarely keep buttermilk on hand, so I make my own. Place 1 TBSP lemon juice or vinegar in a measuring cup, then add enough milk to equal one cup. Allow to stand for 10 minutes. And now you have the buttermilk you need for this recipe!

While the cake is cooling, prepare the icing. You'll need:

1/4 cup cocoa
1/3 cup milk
1/2 cup butter, cut into pieces
1 tsp vanilla
3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 chopped pecans, optional

In a saucepan, bring cocoa and milk to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly. Make sure you use a saucepan that's large enough to add 3 1/2 cups of powdered sugar to later!

Remove from the heat and stir in butter and vanilla. Keep stirring until the butter is completely melted.

Whisk in the powdered sugar until smooth.

Stir in the nuts. Pour icing over cake and spread quickly to the edges.


For a printable recipe, click here.


  1. I love this cake! Somehow, though when I make it my kitchen is a complete disaster...and yours looks so neat.