This chocolate cake with coconut-pecan frosting is a favorite dish at all of our potlucks.

Recipe Summary

prep:
40 mins
cook:
30 mins
total:
1 hr 10 mins
Servings:
24
Yield:
1 - 9x13 inch cake
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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). Line bottom of 9x13 pan with parchment paper.

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  • Microwave chocolate and water on high for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes. Stir halfway through. Stir until all is melted and smooth.

  • In a medium bowl, mix together flour, soda and salt. Set aside.

  • In a large bowl, cream 1 cup butter and 2 cups sugar until light and fluffy. Add 4 egg yolks one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in chocolate and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Add flour mixture alternately with buttermilk. Beat after each addition until smooth.

  • In a separate bowl, beat egg whites on high until soft peaks form. Gently fold into batter. Pour into 9x13 inch pan.

  • Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 30 minutes, or until toothpick inserted into center of cake comes out clean. Cool completely, then frost with coconut-pecan frosting.

  • Combine milk, 1 1/2 cup sugar, 3/4 cup butter, 4 egg yolks and 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla in large saucepan. Cook and stir on medium heat for about 12 minutes, or until thick and golden brown. Remove from heat. Stir in coconut and pecans. Cool to room temperature, and spreading consistency.

Nutrition Facts

430 calories; protein 5.2g; carbohydrates 48.1g; fat 25.4g; cholesterol 108.8mg; sodium 239.3mg. Full Nutrition
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Reviews (160)

Read More Reviews

Most helpful positive review

Rating: 5 stars
12/29/2008
A couple of pointers if you're considering trying this recipe for the first time. ICING-1.) Make the icing FIRST. You're essentially making candy (creamy caramel) with this icing, which means it will be very hot when done. It takes a LONG time to cool to spreading consistency. If you make it first and then put it to the side, once your cake layers have cooled, it will be ready to spread. 2.) For a nice texture, cut the chopped pecans in a food chopper to small pieces. 3.) Is my icing thick enough? Don't follow the 12 minutes exactly. Instead, stir constantly and remember, think candy. Once the sauce has thickened and begins to come to a soft-rolling boil, it's ready. It should have a creamy caramel look and coat the spoon completely when you dip it and take it out. 4.) Use room temperature egg yolks and mix them well. Cold egg yolks may curdle and cook. You'll see them, they'll be the yellow pieces of rubber swimming around in the sugar mixture. CAKE-5.) Use cake flour and sift the dry ingredients together (take pride in your cake!). 6.) The same ingredients will make and frost a 3-layer 9-inch round cake. 7.) This is a light & moist cake, so remember that the layers will crack easily. Don't worry, just use the icing to "spackle" it back together. Your guests will be too busy licking the cake off Read More
(437)

Most helpful critical review

Rating: 3 stars
09/06/2011
The cake is just OK. I would not eat it alone and will not make it again (far to labor intensive for a just so-so cake). However, the frosting was out-of-this-world!!!! It was extraordinary! Next time I plan to make the frosting and use it on a different chocolate cake. Read More
(6)
199 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 160
  • 4 star values: 28
  • 3 star values: 6
  • 2 star values: 2
  • 1 star values: 3
Rating: 5 stars
12/29/2008
A couple of pointers if you're considering trying this recipe for the first time. ICING-1.) Make the icing FIRST. You're essentially making candy (creamy caramel) with this icing, which means it will be very hot when done. It takes a LONG time to cool to spreading consistency. If you make it first and then put it to the side, once your cake layers have cooled, it will be ready to spread. 2.) For a nice texture, cut the chopped pecans in a food chopper to small pieces. 3.) Is my icing thick enough? Don't follow the 12 minutes exactly. Instead, stir constantly and remember, think candy. Once the sauce has thickened and begins to come to a soft-rolling boil, it's ready. It should have a creamy caramel look and coat the spoon completely when you dip it and take it out. 4.) Use room temperature egg yolks and mix them well. Cold egg yolks may curdle and cook. You'll see them, they'll be the yellow pieces of rubber swimming around in the sugar mixture. CAKE-5.) Use cake flour and sift the dry ingredients together (take pride in your cake!). 6.) The same ingredients will make and frost a 3-layer 9-inch round cake. 7.) This is a light & moist cake, so remember that the layers will crack easily. Don't worry, just use the icing to "spackle" it back together. Your guests will be too busy licking the cake off Read More
(437)
Rating: 4 stars
03/28/2007
This cake turned out really well. I had gotten sick of paying 2.50 per slice at the grocery for German Chocolate cake so thought it was about time I made my own. The sponge is light and moist. The frosting is yummy and I had to be careful not to eat it all before it went on the cake. Just a word of warning make sure you seperate the egg yolks really well for the frosting. I got a little white in the mix and ended up with boiled egg type lumps in the frosting. Fortunately they were big enough to pick out and didn't spoil the frosting. The recipe is a little fiddly compared to a standard sponge and take a little while but the texture makes it worth the time investment. I would recommend making this recipe. Read More
(64)
Rating: 5 stars
03/24/2008
I used the frosting recipe, but only used 1 C. sugar. This turned out great. The store was out of german choco. squares so I bought a german choco. box cake. I modified it by making it a bundt recipe (a more dense cake) by using 1 sm. pkt. instant choco. pudding, 4 eggs, 1/2 C. oil, and 1 C. water. Spread evenly in 2 round pans and bake as instructed on box. I used instant chocolate mousse for the sides and decoration. It gave the cake additional flavor and texture. Who needs ice cream when you have chocolate mousse. Read More
(57)
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Rating: 5 stars
03/31/2008
I made this cake for my Wifes 5oth Birthday. It was great. I change the serving size from 24 to 16 and cooked in two 9" round cake pans for 25 mins. What did the trick was I still used 4 of the 1oz German Chocolate Squares instead of the 3 when reduced the serviing size. My Wife said I have to cook for her next 50 Birthdays. Read More
(45)
Rating: 5 stars
04/11/2011
I've been making this cake for many years. The recipe is straight off the box of Baker's German Sweet Chocolate. I bake mine in 3 9-inch round pans for approximate 30 minutes. I do make one tweak to the icing though. I always wondered why my mother-in law's cake turned so much better than mine since we used the same recipe. She finally told me her' secret'. Add 2 oz. of the Sweet German Chocolate squares to the frosting. It makes a world of difference. One more thing since there's just 2 of us we can't eat the whole cake so I cut it into individual slices freeze them on a cookie sheet then vacuum seal the slices. Works really well and we can have a slice of cake when we want it. Read More
(30)
Rating: 5 stars
02/19/2007
Everyone loved this cake even my father-in-law who can be pretty critical of cooks sometimes. The only change I had to make was that it took nearly an hour to cook all the way through in a 9x13. It still turned out lovely but something to keep in mind. Read More
(27)
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Rating: 5 stars
10/03/2002
This was a delicious and very easy german chocolate cake. I have to make it every year for my husband's birthday. This recipe was very time saving and just as good as the 3 layer one but much quicker to make. This recipe is GREAT!! Read More
(20)
Rating: 5 stars
08/14/2011
I made two of these for a large birthday party. I incorporated some changes with each in order to experiment and have some words of advice as a result. I compared the two cakes with the changes and here are my best recommendations: 1. I made my frosting first in order to give it time to cool to spreading consistency. 2. I also added 2 oz of melted chocolate to the frosting for a deeper flavor-this made an amazing difference. 3. I toasted my pecans and coconut at 350 for 15 min 4. I increased the amount of chocolate in the cake to 6 oz 5. It is extremely important not to over-mix the batter from the point of adding the flour mixture. I did this with only one of my cakes and it was dry and crumbly-the other one was moist and delicious. 6. I do not think the chocolate on the top was necessary and did not add to the the overall taste of the cake. I also came across an interesting fact while researching: German Chocolate Cake has nothing to do with Germany. It is an American creation. Sam German was a 19th century chocolate maker. In 1952 General Foods the makers of Baker's chocolate used his name when creating the recipe which was originally called German's Chocolate Cake. Overall this recipe is delicious and with the changes that I incorporated it was incredible. Read More
(20)
Rating: 5 stars
05/26/2007
Wowee!!! This was a great recipe. I'll definately make this one for years to come. The cake is very moist great chocolate taste it is also rich. I did have frosting left over. Look no further for a german chocolate cake recipe! This one is perfect Read More
(16)
Rating: 3 stars
09/06/2011
The cake is just OK. I would not eat it alone and will not make it again (far to labor intensive for a just so-so cake). However, the frosting was out-of-this-world!!!! It was extraordinary! Next time I plan to make the frosting and use it on a different chocolate cake. Read More
(6)
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