I make this cake frequently; it's a standard recipe that makes the rounds at church regularly--at home in Texas. Now, I'm in Pennsylvania and am introducing it to my northern friends and fellow church-goers:). Enjoy it again! EXCELLENT with vanilla bean ice cream.

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Recipe Summary

prep:
20 mins
cook:
25 mins
additional:
15 mins
total:
1 hr
Servings:
18
Yield:
1 - 9x13 inch cake
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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 one 9x13 inch cake pan.

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  • In a small saucepan, combine 1/2 cup butter, 1/2 cup shortening, 2 ounces chocolate, and water. Heat until chocolate is melted; set aside.

  • In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, cinnamon, and baking soda. Make a well in the center, and pour in buttermilk, eggs, and vanilla. Add melted butter/chocolate mixture, and beat until smooth. Pour batter into prepared pan.

  • Bake in preheated oven for 20 to 25 minutes, or until cake tests done. Five minutes before cake is done, make frosting.

  • To make frosting: In a saucepan, combine 1/2 cup butter, 2 ounces chocolate, and 6 tablespoons milk. Heat until bubbles form around the edge; remove from heat. Beat in confectioners' sugar, 1 teaspoon vanilla, and nuts. Frost cake while still warm. Allow to cool totally before cutting.

Nutrition Facts

463 calories; protein 4g 8% DV; carbohydrates 61.4g 20% DV; fat 24.4g 38% DV; cholesterol 48.5mg 16% DV; sodium 161.6mg 7% DV. Full Nutrition
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Reviews (57)

Read More Reviews

Most helpful positive review

Rating: 5 stars
07/27/2007
This is one of the best and easiest 'from scratch' cakes I've ever made. It's definitely a No Fail recipe made exactly as is. Believe it or not, it tastes even better the next day (If there's any leftover!) I usually skip the nuts in the frosting because I prefer it plain. Also, if you don't have buttermilk on hand, you can make your own by mixing 1 Tbsp white vinegar or Lemon juice with 1 cup of milk. Let it sit until it clots (about 5 to 10 minutes) and add according to recipe instructions. One last thing is the frosting usually cooks a little strange. As I'm cooking it on the stove about the time it's supposed to get bubbly around the edges, it seems to 'separate'. However, once I beat in the powdered sugar with my mixer, everything is fine. The first time I made it, I threw it out because I thought it was ruined when it seperated, but when I made my second batch and it happened again I decided to just beat it with the powdered sugar to see what happened and it turned out perfectly. Read More
(45)

Most helpful critical review

Rating: 2 stars
11/03/2003
WAYYYYYY too much cinnamon in this recipe. I'd probably drop it out completely if and when I make this again. Otherwise it's a nice moist cake with good frosting but the overwhelming cinnamon flavor blew it for me. Read More
(4)
70 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 58
  • 4 star values: 6
  • 3 star values: 4
  • 2 star values: 2
  • 1 star values: 0
Rating: 5 stars
07/27/2007
This is one of the best and easiest 'from scratch' cakes I've ever made. It's definitely a No Fail recipe made exactly as is. Believe it or not, it tastes even better the next day (If there's any leftover!) I usually skip the nuts in the frosting because I prefer it plain. Also, if you don't have buttermilk on hand, you can make your own by mixing 1 Tbsp white vinegar or Lemon juice with 1 cup of milk. Let it sit until it clots (about 5 to 10 minutes) and add according to recipe instructions. One last thing is the frosting usually cooks a little strange. As I'm cooking it on the stove about the time it's supposed to get bubbly around the edges, it seems to 'separate'. However, once I beat in the powdered sugar with my mixer, everything is fine. The first time I made it, I threw it out because I thought it was ruined when it seperated, but when I made my second batch and it happened again I decided to just beat it with the powdered sugar to see what happened and it turned out perfectly. Read More
(45)
Rating: 4 stars
06/12/2005
Makes a nice cake. Based on my experience making the recipe I would suggest the following changes: 1) Increase the chocolate by a 1/2 oz 2) Add an extra 1/2 cup flour 3) Omit cinnamon 4) Replace some water with prepared coffee 5) decrease amount of frosting by 1/2. Read More
(26)
Rating: 5 stars
06/08/2003
I couldn't believe how easy this recipe was! I made it for a family get together and it was a huge success. This cake was wonderfully moist and delightfully chocolatey! My nine year old even asked me to save a piece to put in his lunchbox the next day. Not surprisingly when I asked the crowd if anyone wanted to take home some leftovers everyone requested cake. The only problem was there was nothing left of it but a few crumbs in the bottom of the pan! I have a feeling that I am now the official "dessert bringer" for all family get togethers and that this recipe will be used again and again... Read More
(18)
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Rating: 5 stars
01/25/2003
My family has loved this cake for 30 years. There are many variations but this seems to be the best proportions. A chocolate fantasy! Read More
(10)
Rating: 5 stars
07/05/2006
This recipe is very good. I took the advice of previous reviews and increased the flour by 1/2 cup and decreased the cinnamon by 1/2 teaspoon. However I kept the chocolate at 2oz. and the fudge quality of the icing made up for the mild chocolate with the hint of cinnamon flavor of the cake. Will make again with no more alterations than I already made! Read More
(8)
Rating: 5 stars
01/24/2005
Words cannot describe this cake. I took the previous advice...cut cinnamon in half; added 1/2 c more flour. For extra special treat I used good Italian chocolate with 75% butterfat! This will be in my permanent repetoire. Thanks. Read More
(5)
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Rating: 5 stars
07/06/2007
Yummy!! However I did omit the cinnamon and used buttermilk for the frosting recipe as well. Very good and oh so sinful!! Read More
(5)
Rating: 5 stars
09/07/2007
my grandmother made a very similar cake and she's from Oklahoms go figure..great cake...i use Dutch process cocoa not baking chocolate (use the conversion chart on the back of the tin of cocoa) and toast your pecans for extra flavor. who has buttermilk on hand? 1 tablespoon white vinegar or 1 tablespoon lemon juice added to 1 cup milk (let sit for 10-20 minutes) does just as well. great childhood memory cake and everyone raves about it! Read More
(5)
Rating: 2 stars
11/02/2003
WAYYYYYY too much cinnamon in this recipe. I'd probably drop it out completely if and when I make this again. Otherwise it's a nice moist cake with good frosting but the overwhelming cinnamon flavor blew it for me. Read More
(4)
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