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Thursday, July 28, 2011

Chocolate Sheet Cake in a Pie Dish | Warm Chocolate Icing Recipe

This is what the cake looked like after I took 2-3 photos... couldn't resist
Everyone's heard of Texas Sheet Cake, right?  If you haven't heard the name, you've had it at countless potlucks and family dinners, I'm sure.  It is a very moist chocolate cake topped with a generous portion of chocolate frosting poured on while the cake is still hot.  A lesser informed person might even think it was a frosted brownie.

This is what I call an 'eating' cake.  She's not a looker, but oh is she good!  
I love it so much, I could eat an entire Texas-sized pan full of it, so I decided to half the recipe so I would have a more manageable portion tempting me all week.   I baked it in a pie dish to make it a little dressier than a brownie/sheet cake.  You may have noticed that I like to use pretty pie dishes instead of square bakeware any chance I get... and sometimes I don't use a pie dish when I bake pies, ala peach crostata... I know, what a rebel!

The icing on this cake is really the star of the show.  It is almost like liquid fudge, poured on a warm cake, then the top hardens into a crust.  I can remember when my Mom would make this (sheet cake version) and we would run our fingers around the edge of the icing as the cake was cooling - the icing would melt over where we had stolen our swipes.  See, I told you this cake is perfect.

Chocolate Cake : 

1 cup flour 
1 cup sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 stick butter
2 tablespoons cocoa
1/2 cup boiling water
1/4 cup buttermilk
1 whole beaten eggs
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Chocolate Icing : 

1 stick butter
tablespoons cocoa
3 tablespoons milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
3-4 cups powdered sugar (desired consistency)

For the cake, begin by combining flour sugar and salt in the bowl of your KitchenAid.  Then, in a saucepan, melt 1 stick of butter.  Add 2 tablespoons of cocoa, stir, add boiling  and cook for 30 seconds.  Remove from heat.  Pour the chocolate mixture into the dry ingredients.  Add buttermilk, eggs, soda and vanilla and gently stir together until combined.  Do not over beat.

Pour into a round pie dish.  Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes, until cake tester comes out almost clean.  I like to under bake this cake to make sure it is nice and moist. 

While the cake is baking, prepare the icing.  In a saucepan, melt 1 stick of butter.  Remove from heat and add cocoa.  Stir in milk vanilla and powdered sugar.  Start with 3 cups of powdered sugar, then add more if you'd like it to be thicker.  Pour icing over warm cake and spread out.  Let it cool slightly before serving... if you can wait that long.


  1. This looks divine. The classics are usually the best. I found you through Kinfolk and I can't wait to read up. I'm already loving your blog.

  2. Looks delicious! Have to try it!

    Kisses from Hong Kong,

  3. I love chocolate sheet cake, the only difference in my family's recipe is we add cinnamon to the cake and icing! It's divine!

  4. kelly in georgia6:21 PM

    I have always loved this cake! It was a staple in our apartment in college. The only difference was we added pecan halves to the icing...and you are is so like "liquid fudge". Yum!

  5. Anonymous5:00 PM

    How many eggs does this recipe need? You have listed: 1 whole beaten eggs. Then in the recipe you said to add eggs (plural--more than one). I'd like to try the recipe soon. Thanks!

  6. Anonymous12:10 PM

    Just made this for my dad for fathers day! He loves chocolate so I knew this would be perfect! Love your blog


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