This is an old-fashioned, but easy-to-make devil's food cake recipe. Pound cake like texture and sinfully chocolately. This is from an old Philadelphia Bakery. Great when frosted with Chocolate Fudge Buttercream Frosting.

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Ingredients

24
Original recipe yields 24 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease and flour one 9x13 inch pan or two 9 inch round pans.

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  • In a small pan melt the butter or margarine with the unsweetened chocolate. Set aside to cool slightly.

  • Cream together the sugar and the eggs until light in color. Add the chocolate mixture to the eggs and temper mixture by beating well (so you don't end up with scrambled eggs!) Add 1 cup boiled water (still warm) and blend well. Mixture will be very liquid.

  • Mix together the flour, baking soda, and salt. Add this mixture to the chocolate mixture and blend well.

  • Mix together the vinegar and the milk and stir into the chocolate batter. Pour into prepared pan(s).

  • Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cake divides well for filling with mousse, or ganache, or black forest fillings. The best clue to this cake being nearly done is that you will start to smell the aroma of chocolate filling your house!

Partner Tip

Reynolds® parchment can be used for easier cleanup/removal from the pan.

Nutrition Facts

166 calories; 6.2 g total fat; 26 mg cholesterol; 138 mg sodium. 26.8 g carbohydrates; 2.3 g protein; Full Nutrition

Reviews (119)

Read More Reviews

Most helpful positive review

Rating: 4 stars
02/12/2014
The best chocolate cake I've ever made. If you're looking for something basic and fluffy and chocolatey this is the way to go. I've made it several times: Once the way it is written which was really good once with bittersweet chips which was also really good and once with bittersweet chips and an added 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder with the flour mixture--EVEN BETTER! It also tastes just great if you replace half the oil with applesauce for a slightly reduced fat version. Replace the eggs with a quarter cup applesauce and the milk with soy milk for a surprisingly delicious vegan version. Very versatile and exactly that "boxed mix" texture but with out the boxed mix flavor. The batter may seem a bit runny but don't worry that's what it's supposed to be like. Also don't forget to have boiling water on hand. It won't work with cold water. UPDATE: I have officially made this into Mocha cupcakes: sub boiling H2O with boiling very strong coffee (or espresso). Use semi sweet chocolate instead of unsweetened chocolate. Deelish. Makes aprox. 2 doz. or a few more. YET ANOTHER UPDATE: for some reason the wording on the recipe has changed. It used to say "1 cup boiling water" and now it just says "water." This makes a huge difference. I can't remember why. I'm sure Alton Brown could explain it. I just remember reading somewhere that this is crucial in some food sciencey way. Read More
(127)

Most helpful critical review

Rating: 2 stars
07/26/2007
After reading all the comments on this recipe I was convinced it was going to turn out terrific. I followed the directions exactly. After 30 minutes I checked the cake; it shook like Santa's belly when I began to remove it from the oven. I therefore kept it in a few more minutes and then checked it more. Still not done. This time the sides were more cooked but the middle was completely uncooked. Next time I checked it (after a few more minutes) the entire middle portion of the cake sunk! I let it bake until it was done but the cake was ruined. I verified that my oven temperature was set properly and that there's not a problem with the internal temperature setting. Overall what a disappointment. I'd say it was me but other recipes have turned out just fine. What's so distressing is that I live in Japan and ingredients are hard to come by and are expensive when you can find them... what a wate of time and money. Read More
(40)
135 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 73
  • 4 star values: 31
  • 3 star values: 13
  • 2 star values: 4
  • 1 star values: 14
Rating: 4 stars
02/12/2014
The best chocolate cake I've ever made. If you're looking for something basic and fluffy and chocolatey this is the way to go. I've made it several times: Once the way it is written which was really good once with bittersweet chips which was also really good and once with bittersweet chips and an added 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder with the flour mixture--EVEN BETTER! It also tastes just great if you replace half the oil with applesauce for a slightly reduced fat version. Replace the eggs with a quarter cup applesauce and the milk with soy milk for a surprisingly delicious vegan version. Very versatile and exactly that "boxed mix" texture but with out the boxed mix flavor. The batter may seem a bit runny but don't worry that's what it's supposed to be like. Also don't forget to have boiling water on hand. It won't work with cold water. UPDATE: I have officially made this into Mocha cupcakes: sub boiling H2O with boiling very strong coffee (or espresso). Use semi sweet chocolate instead of unsweetened chocolate. Deelish. Makes aprox. 2 doz. or a few more. YET ANOTHER UPDATE: for some reason the wording on the recipe has changed. It used to say "1 cup boiling water" and now it just says "water." This makes a huge difference. I can't remember why. I'm sure Alton Brown could explain it. I just remember reading somewhere that this is crucial in some food sciencey way. Read More
(127)
Rating: 4 stars
02/12/2014
The best chocolate cake I've ever made. If you're looking for something basic and fluffy and chocolatey this is the way to go. I've made it several times: Once the way it is written which was really good once with bittersweet chips which was also really good and once with bittersweet chips and an added 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder with the flour mixture--EVEN BETTER! It also tastes just great if you replace half the oil with applesauce for a slightly reduced fat version. Replace the eggs with a quarter cup applesauce and the milk with soy milk for a surprisingly delicious vegan version. Very versatile and exactly that "boxed mix" texture but with out the boxed mix flavor. The batter may seem a bit runny but don't worry that's what it's supposed to be like. Also don't forget to have boiling water on hand. It won't work with cold water. UPDATE: I have officially made this into Mocha cupcakes: sub boiling H2O with boiling very strong coffee (or espresso). Use semi sweet chocolate instead of unsweetened chocolate. Deelish. Makes aprox. 2 doz. or a few more. YET ANOTHER UPDATE: for some reason the wording on the recipe has changed. It used to say "1 cup boiling water" and now it just says "water." This makes a huge difference. I can't remember why. I'm sure Alton Brown could explain it. I just remember reading somewhere that this is crucial in some food sciencey way. Read More
(127)
Rating: 5 stars
05/30/2005
well if the vineger in this recipe is giving you pause don't let it! this chocolate cake recipe was my THIRD try--that's right 3rd! the first two were HERSHEY recipes one turned out screaming dry and the other..? over-moist and soft like baby food. ick--(shame shame hershey.) i don't know why i didn't just log on here sooner! this recipe is perfectly moist and oh so chocolat-ee. the only thing is i only had semi-sweet choc. left in my pantry so the cake was more medium brown than that great dark dark devil's food look for which i was searching. but i'm not worried there will be more chances for me to attempt that dark chocolate look. oh yes i'll be making this again and again!--thanks debra! Read More
(101)
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Rating: 5 stars
01/19/2006
I have to say this was very likely the best devil's food cake I have ever baked and eaten. Moist loved the texture. I added about 1 tsp of vanilla and baked it in two 8" round pans. Turned out nice and high. Perfect chocolate cake. Read More
(52)
Rating: 2 stars
07/25/2007
After reading all the comments on this recipe I was convinced it was going to turn out terrific. I followed the directions exactly. After 30 minutes I checked the cake; it shook like Santa's belly when I began to remove it from the oven. I therefore kept it in a few more minutes and then checked it more. Still not done. This time the sides were more cooked but the middle was completely uncooked. Next time I checked it (after a few more minutes) the entire middle portion of the cake sunk! I let it bake until it was done but the cake was ruined. I verified that my oven temperature was set properly and that there's not a problem with the internal temperature setting. Overall what a disappointment. I'd say it was me but other recipes have turned out just fine. What's so distressing is that I live in Japan and ingredients are hard to come by and are expensive when you can find them... what a wate of time and money. Read More
(40)
Rating: 1 stars
03/04/2007
A little time consuming to put together. Didn't come out right at all. After the time for baking was over it was still raw in the middle. Sank in the middle as well. Didn't even taste chocolaty. I made this recipe twice and still had the same disappointing results. Read More
(23)
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Rating: 5 stars
10/15/2006
This was one of the best chocolate cakes I've made yet! It was unanimous that everyone loved it(which is rare!). Absolutely no taste of vinegar whatsoever. I also used bitter-sweet chocolate and cut back 1/2 cup off the sugar. Turned out sooo great! thanks sooo much for this awesome recipe!I used the satiny glaze on it...beautiful! Read More
(22)
Rating: 4 stars
04/24/2004
The cake was very good. It had a great chocolate flavor. It was very moist and stayed good a long time--I made it Wednesday and it was still good on Saturday. I'd definately make it again! Read More
(18)
Rating: 5 stars
08/15/2005
I made this cake for my mother-in-law's birthday and frosted it with Snow Peak Frosting. This was a great combination. I made the cake the day before and it was good and moist the next day when I served it. It smells incredible when it is baking! Read More
(18)
Rating: 4 stars
02/07/2007
this cake is pretty good--it has a good flavor and a nice texture. I did however add 8 oz of chocolate (instead of 3) and replaced the water with milk. I also replaced half of the butter with applesauce (this reduces the fat and makes cakes moist). i filled it with buttercream frosting and topped it with chocolate ganache from this site. a good basic chocolate cake. Read More
(16)