This is a wonderful chocolate cake that was made in the olden days. It is absolutely delicious, yet simple.

Recipe Summary

prep:
45 mins
cook:
30 mins
total:
1 hr 15 mins
Servings:
18
Yield:
1 - 9x13 inch pan
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Ingredients

18
Original recipe yields 18 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour a 9x13 inch pan. In a saucepan, melt 1 cup of butter. Stir in 1 cup water and 4 tablespoons cocoa powder. Remove from heat and set aside.

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  • In a medium bowl, dissolve the baking soda in 1/2 cup of buttermilk. Stir in the eggs and vanilla. Mix in the cooled cocoa mixture.

  • In a large bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, cinnamon and salt. Make a well in the center and pour in the cocoa buttermilk mixture. Stir until blended. Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Ice the cake with Buttermilk Pecan Icing while it's still warm.

  • For the icing: In a large saucepan, melt 1/2 cup butter with 4 tablespoons cocoa. Stir in 1/3 cup buttermilk, and heat until almost boiling. Stir in confectioners' sugar, vanilla, salt and pecans. Remove from heat. Mix well and pour over warm cake.

Nutrition Facts

437 calories; protein 3.7g 7% DV; carbohydrates 62.3g 20% DV; fat 20.8g 32% DV; cholesterol 61.8mg 21% DV; sodium 273.3mg 11% DV. Full Nutrition
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Reviews (94)

Read More Reviews

Most helpful positive review

Rating: 5 stars
09/13/2006
Best cake ever! I omitted the pecans from the icing because I didn't have any at the time and I omitted the cinnamon. I also added a tsp. of baking powder it gives the cake a little more lift. I'll never buy another box cake again this one is so easy to make. Read More
(39)

Most helpful critical review

Rating: 1 stars
06/13/2011
In all my years of baking this is the WORST chocolate cake I've EVER made. No one would eat it it tasted like paper. Read More
(5)
107 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 76
  • 4 star values: 20
  • 3 star values: 6
  • 2 star values: 0
  • 1 star values: 5
Rating: 5 stars
09/13/2006
Best cake ever! I omitted the pecans from the icing because I didn't have any at the time and I omitted the cinnamon. I also added a tsp. of baking powder it gives the cake a little more lift. I'll never buy another box cake again this one is so easy to make. Read More
(39)
Rating: 5 stars
09/29/2006
Excellent chocolate cake I've been looking for a good recipe like this for a LOOOONG time. I didn't change anything about it. I made it the first time with the icing as suggested it was great but I found the icing a bit too heavy and the cake on its own without the icing speaks for itself. I've made it about 5 times and have taken it to parties and everyone gets at least 3rds! Read More
(21)
Rating: 5 stars
02/23/2011
Excellent cake! Love the cinnamon! I have made this well over 10 times, and it never ceases to please. During these baking sessions I have slightly modified the recipe: Now I only use 1/2 cup of butter in the cake (I swear, you won't notice), omit the pecans (not a fan of nuts in cake), and I half the icing. I'm a sugar freak, but even I thought the icing was too much originally. I've also been using baking POWDER instead of baking SODA. I noticed in some of the lower starred reviews that their cakes came out flat & dense. This could be due to using baking powder. You have to double or triple the amount of powder to equal soda. I use 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder, and the cake comes out extremely pillowy & moist. One last thing; 30 mins is not enough. 40-45 mins typically. Read More
(21)
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Rating: 5 stars
03/08/2006
WOW!!! This turned out GREAT! I live at 5K feet so usually cakes flop and turn out so gross but I made this just the way the recipe says. I omitted the cinnamon used whole milk instead of buttermilk and substituted a "yogurt spread" for the butter. And baked in two 9" rounds for 28 minutes. Turned out GREAT! I added a bit more cocoa powder and it tastes great! I didn't use the frosting sicne this is for the child I babysit and his mom is going to decorate the cake for his birthday. Thank you! It's yummy! Read More
(21)
Rating: 5 stars
12/25/2005
I made this recipe (cake only) with Splenda granular instead of sugar (and as the Splenda site suggests for all cakes with Splenda added 1/2 C of nonfat dry milk powder and 1/2 t baking soda for each C of Splenda used). This is the first chocolate cake that I have tried with Splenda that turned out well. If you substitute Splenda reduce the cooking time by quite a bit and keep a check on it - Splenda cakes cook much faster than sugar cakes. Read More
(18)
Rating: 5 stars
08/06/2006
This is a cake that I have made many times under various names, such as Mexican Chocolate Cake or Texas Sheet Cake, and most are made in an 11 X 15 pan. However I had not seen one with the buttermilk in the icing. I halved the recipe for our family of 3 and baked it in an 11 X 7 pan. The cake itself is a moist cake, and the cinnamon is just enough to perk up the chocolate; but it is the icing that makes the cake. I love the addition of buttermilk--it gives the chocolate a real depth and just adds to the richness. I did not have buttermilk so mixed a little cidar vinegar in some half & half, and it worked just fine. I also used toasted walnuts, because I can't find good fresh pecans right now. To reviewer SUSIEQ2005, my Mom says it's the best chocolate cake she's ever had too! Although I would give the cake itself a 3, the icing is a 5. However my husband and Mom rate it a 5, so that is what I'm giving it. Read More
(14)
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Rating: 5 stars
03/20/2006
Wow. "The best thing ever " according to one of my guests. The cake is very moist and good but the icing is truly amazing! I put the extra icing in the fridge... I'm eating it with a spoon. I will definitely be making this again. Small changes I made: added 1 extra tablespoon of cocoa powder to both the cake and the icing and I added about 1/3 cup of chocolate chips to the cake (because really the more chocolate the better.) Read More
(13)
Rating: 5 stars
02/22/2020
7 14 10 ... http://allrecipes.com/recipe/21266/old-fashioned-chocolate-cake/ ... This is the best MEDIUM CHOCOLATE cake. Second best is Chocolate Sheet Cake. They are almost the same recipe except for all butter vs half butter, half shortening. Use the easier directions. It tastes the same. They both are thin batter so don't roundup very much - like you'd want for cupcakes. E's FAVORITE! Note4Me: IT of two! ERIC'S FAVORITE. Chocolate sheet cake I is second. Follow the easier directions. Of Fudge Layer Cake, Chocolate Sheet Cake, Chocolate Town Special Cake, & Mom's Chocolate Cake, this is the best. Chocolate Sheet Cake is second. They are medium chocolate. ............................Try adding cherry pie filling like in cherry spice cake For darker, My Mom's Chocolate Cake is the best. Between Kim's & this one, Dodi's, Dodi's is more moist & better tasting; but both are very good. Read More
(7)
Rating: 5 stars
07/14/2006
This cake is delicious! My mom keeps telling me it's the best cake she's ever had. Definitely a keeper! Read More
(6)
Rating: 1 stars
06/13/2011
In all my years of baking this is the WORST chocolate cake I've EVER made. No one would eat it it tasted like paper. Read More
(5)
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