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Moist Chocolate Cake

This chocolate cake recipe with coffee reminds me of my grandmother because it was one of her specialties. I bake it often for family parties, and it always brings back fond memories. The cake is light and airy with a delicious chocolate taste. This recipe is a keeper! —Patricia Kreitz, Richland, Pennsylvania
  • Total Time
    Prep: 15 min. Bake: 25 min. + cooling
  • Makes
    12 servings


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 3/4 cup baking cocoa
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup canola oil
  • 1 cup brewed coffee
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Additional baking cocoa, optional


  • Preheat oven to 325°. Sift together dry ingredients in a bowl. Add oil, coffee and milk; mix at medium speed 1 minute. Add eggs and vanilla; beat 2 minutes longer. (Batter will be thin.)
  • Pour into 2 greased and floured 9-in. round baking pans (or two 8-in. round baking pans and 6 muffin cups).
  • Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 25-30 minutes. Cool 10 minutes before removing from pans. Cool on wire racks.
  • Meanwhile, for icing, combine milk and flour in a saucepan; cook until thick. Cover and refrigerate.
  • In a bowl, beat butter, shortening, sugar and vanilla until creamy. Add chilled milk mixture and beat 10 minutes. Frost cooled cake. If desired, dust with additional cocoa.

Test Kitchen tips
  • Crunched for time? Bake layers in advance. They freeze beautifully.
  • If you're not sure whether the cake is done, insert a toothpick into the center. It should come out clean.
  • Try all 10 of our very best chocolate dessert recipes.
  • For more tips, see our chocolate layer cake guide.
  • To learn even more, see our guide for how to bake a cake.
  • Nutrition Facts
    1 piece: 636 calories, 37g fat (10g saturated fat), 61mg cholesterol, 549mg sodium, 73g carbohydrate (51g sugars, 2g fiber), 6g protein.


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    Average Rating:
    • Suzesmith
      Oct 10, 2020

      No comment left

    • blufftonnative
      Sep 4, 2020

      This for Chinyere, if you are worried about the coffee flavor in the cake, you can't tell it is there. If you don't want the caffeine, use decaf. Yes you can use regular cocoa, I used Hersheys. I made it in a regular cake pan 2 different times and it turned out great, cooking time at 325 was 40 - 45 minutes. Kick it up a notch with this icing: (be sure to double this icing recipe)

    • Cheryl
      Aug 15, 2020

      I cannot wait to try this but I would rather bake it a bundt pan. Has anyone tried that?

    • AFizzle
      Jul 28, 2020

      No comment left

    • janetsimpson
      Jul 14, 2020

      The best chocolate cake and icing ever! Moist and delicious, reminiscent of Sara Lee cakes, of days gone by. Icing is perfection, just sweet enough and super creamy, similar to seven minute frosting and easier, goodbye buttercream icing.

    • Chinyere
      Jul 13, 2020

      Please is there any substitute for the brewed coffee and can l use the normal cocoa powder

    • loverofcooking
      Jun 15, 2020

      I have been making this cake for over 30 years. It is the absolute best. Everyone loves it.

    • Eva
      May 18, 2020

      Delicious. Have been looking for a cake like this for years. Icing is amazing. Thank you!

    • Lori
      May 8, 2020

      I have been making this cake for 26 years. It’s my favorite cake and I love the frosting! It’s moist and delicious.

    • Houriya
      Apr 10, 2020

      Cake is tasty but worse icing ever - both in taste and texture. Just threw the whole lot in the bin.