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Best-Ever Chocolate Cake with Fudge Frosting

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Hi Bold Bakers!

Everyone needs a master recipe for cakes that never fail you and everyone loves. I have shared with you my master recipe for Carrot Cake and Yellow Cake but I haven’t revealed my Chocolate Cake recipe with Chocolate Fudge Frosting until now.

The cake recipe is actually from the great Ina Garten. I am a big fan of her books and style and on a separate note I want to live in her barn in The Hamptons. What I love about it is there is no mixer needed which makes the cake fast to whip up, also it is increbiley  moist and rich because she uses buttermilk and oil which is my favorite kind of cake. This type of cake is known as devils food cake, black magic cake and death by chocolate, and once you cake it you will see why.

A little bonus is that you can also use this chocolate cake recipe to make cupcakes which I did last Halloween to make spooky Death by Chocolate Cupcakes. It was a really fun idea for the holidays and I think a great treat for kids parties, too.

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Best Ever Chocolate Cake- Bigger Bolder Baking

I wanted this Best-Ever Chocolate Cake to be really Big & Bold and to have the Best-Ever Fudge Frosting. This recipe yields you a rich, fudgy and soft frosting. Similar to a buttercream, this recipe is not complicated. However I know that people struggle with buttercream and getting it light and fluffy so I covered a lot of those points in the video so you will hopefully always have successful frosting

Chocolate, Fudge, Frosting, Bigger Bolder Baking, Cake, Baking, Baking videos, recipes, Gemma Stafford, eat, drink, bake

Chocolate Fudge Frosting- Bigger Bolder Baking

So the icing on this cake, is not actually the icing, it is the Homemade Sprinkles! Did you know you could make your own sprinkles? They are incredibly easy and all you need is fondant.

A few months ago, I made Marshmallow Fondant . With the leftover scraps I colored them and cut circles out with a piping tip to make my very own homemade sprinkles. They transformed my dessert from a regular cake to a cake that screams celebration!

Homemade, sprinkles, easy, fun, Gemma Stafford, Bigger Bolder Baking, Baking, Baking videos, recipes, cake

Homemade Sprinkles- Bigger Bolder Baking


4.9 from 43 reviews
Best-Ever Chocolate Cake
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: cake
Serves: 10
  • 1¾ cups (250g/9oz) all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups (400g/14oz) sugar
  • ½ cup (2oz/75g) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup (240ml/8floz) buttermilk*
  • ½ cup (120g/4oz) vegetable oil, or any flavorless oil
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup (240ml/8floz) freshly brewed hot coffee
  • Chocolate Fudge Frosting Recipe
  • 1 cup (240g/8oz) butter, at room temperature
  • 6 cups (1lb 8oz/675g ) powdered sugar, SIFTED
  • 1⅓ cup (120g/4oz) cocoa
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • ⅔ cup (51/2floz/165ml) whole milk
  1. Preheat the oven to 350oF (180oC). Butter and line 3 8-inch x 2-inch round cake pans. You can use 2 time, I just wanted 3 layers in mine.
  2. Sift the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into a large bowl. Whisk the ingredients together by hand.
  3. In another bowl, combine the buttermilk, oil, eggs, vanilla and coffee
  4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and GENTLY mix the batter just to combine. Do not over mix or beat as this cake can toughen up.
  5. Pour the batter into the prepared pans and bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean.
  6. Note: this cake cooks fast so check if after 25 minutes. You don’t want to overcook it.
  7. Cool in the pans for 30 minutes, then turn them out onto a cooling rack and cool completely.
  8. To make the Fudge Frosting: In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat room temperature butter until lightly fluffy. Add the sifted powdered sugar 1 spoon at a time and mix well. It will get light in color and bigger
  9. Add vanilla and cocoa, and the milk, scraping down the sides of the bowl as you work.
  10. Turn mixer on medium high. Beat frosting until light, fluffy and of spreading consistency.
  11. If the frosting is too thick, slowly add more milk or half and half, one tablespoon at a time, until it reaches the desired consistency.
  12. You can use the frosting immediately, or store it in the refrigerator for 3 days, or freeze if for up to 3 months. Allow frosting to come to room temperature before using.
  13. To Decorate: Place 1 layer, flat side up, on a flat plate or cake pedestal.
  14. Create a crumb layer :With a knife or offset spatula, spread the top with frosting. Place the second layer on top, rounded side up, and spread the frosting evenly on the top and sides of the cake.
  15. Put the cake in the fridge and let the crumb layer set for around 30 minutes (this will make the finished product look really clean)
  16. Take the cake from the fridge and put on another, final layer of frosting. Try and get it as smooth as you can.
  17. To finish the top of your cake, take a spoon that has been dipped in hot water and dried. Work from the outside in and create a swirl until you get to the center.
  18. Finish your cake off with your homemade sprinkles.
  19. Store at room temperature or in the fridge for up to 4 days. If storing in the fridge make sure it reaches room temperature before eating.
*you can make a replacement for buttermilk by mixing 1 cup of milk with 2 tablespoons of lemon juice. let it sit for 30 minutes at room temperature, then use.


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Meet Gemma

Hi Bold Bakers! I’m Gemma Stafford, a professional chef originally from Ireland, and I’m passionate about sharing my years of experience to show you how to make game-changing baking recipes with over-the-top results! Join more than 1 Million other Bold Bakers in the community for new video recipes every week!

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  1. Shaiza on November 18, 2017 at 10:21 pm

    Hi Gemma!
    I started baking 2 years ago and I love your recipes! Every week I check out your website to see what you’re up to and I’ve tried out a few of your recipes, which have been nothing short of amazing.
    Anyway, I really need your advice. I planned to make your best ever chocolate cake for my Mom’s birthday/anniversary but since I don’t have an oven, I’m going to bake my cake in the microwave. The only issue is that it’s one of those old fashioned microwaves with a rotating plate and it’s of 800 watts. So how long should I bake it for? And how big or deep should my cake tin be?

    • Gemma Stafford on November 19, 2017 at 2:45 am

      Hi there Shaiza,
      First of all, that is very kind, to make a birthday cake for your Mom, I hope she has a lovely birthday.
      I have never baked this recipe in the microwave, and so I am not sure how it will work.
      The rotating plate is to assist in the distribution of the microwaves and it is very effective. The important thing is that you use a pan which is suitable for the microwave. Microwaves bake by penetrating the food, and vibrating food molecules, creating heat which is distributed through the food. They cannot penetrate metal.
      ( take a look at the recipe here, it will tell you how this works, time etc. You can add cocoa to this recipe too to make it into a chocolate cake, or you can use the Best Ever recipe. How is important though, I hope this works well for you,
      Gemma 🙂

  2. runii.h on November 17, 2017 at 6:41 am

    Hi Gemma! I need to make around 100 square chocolate cakes pieces for an event and I was wondering by what number i should multiply this recipe by and how long i should bake it for if i bake it in a rectangle pirex dish which is roughly 15inches x 10inches. Also does it affect the batter if i put half of the batter to bake and then put the other half to bake after the first batch is fully baked? Thank you 🙂

    • Gemma Stafford on November 18, 2017 at 10:18 am

      Hi there runi,
      I cannot answer this unless I know what you mean by squares!
      are you talking about individual portions?
      Do let me know,
      Gemma 🙂

  3. Tarana Khan on November 15, 2017 at 1:49 pm

    Hello Gemma Aunty❤️I wanted to ask you that for how many kgs is this cake recipe because i want to make 3kgs of cake so can you just tell me the recipe for 3kg cake please urgently needed🙏🏻I know you must be thinking why am I calling you Aunty buy im just 16 year old😉

    • Gemma Stafford on November 16, 2017 at 8:00 am

      Hi there Tarana,
      No, I know Aunty is a term of respect, and thank you for that.
      The recipe for this cake will make slightly more than 1kg of cake. You just need to multiply all of the ingredient by three.
      Write the recipe down, or print it, and multiply ever ingredient carefully. It is best to do this with the metric measurement.
      Really it is just math, but take care with it!
      Gemma 🙂

  4. Ruman Ali on November 15, 2017 at 12:53 am

    Hi Gemma,

    I have started baking recently and your recipes are very helpful… I own an OTG – not a microwave oven.. should i use the same temp settings? Also, I want to make a smaller, should I cut the quantity by half?

    • Gemma Stafford on November 15, 2017 at 2:20 am

      Hi there,
      The issue with the OTG is really capacity. This chocolate cake is a large cake, so you will need to reduce the recipe. Write it out, and make sure to divide every ingredient by 2 – 3. If you divide by 3 you will have sufficient batter for one 8inch pan. You can of course bake one, then a second, and a third.Then keep a copy for next time.
      An OTG tends to have an open element on the top, you may need to adjust the temperature downwards, by 10C or so, and bake a little longer. Other than that you can proceed as per the recipe. Perhaps try one pan as an experiment, to get your temperature and timing right.
      I hope this is of help,
      Gemma 🙂

  5. Musunuri Kanaka Mahalakshmi Sarwani on November 5, 2017 at 4:43 am

    HI Gemma!
    How many tins do we need if we want to bake this cake in 6 inch tins?

    • Gemma Stafford on November 6, 2017 at 2:21 am

      Hi there,
      Though I have not tried it, it is a big mix, and you will need 4 or 5, depending on the depth of the layers.
      If you 1/2 this recipe, write it out first, to ensure accuracy. Then two pans will be good for you,
      Gemma 🙂

  6. Kesia on November 1, 2017 at 2:19 am

    Hey Gemma,
    I’m planning to make this cake. Can I reduce the amount of sugar in the cake, instead of the frosting? Because I understand that the amount of sugar in the frosting is necessary.

    • Gemma Stafford on November 2, 2017 at 4:43 am

      Hi Keisa,
      Yes, you may reduce the sugar in the cake. The cocoa tends to balance the sweetness out, but do adjust it if you wish.
      I think you could take the sugar back to 9ozs. Not too much lower than that though. try it. You could make 1/2 of this batter to see if it works for you,
      Gemma 🙂

  7. Shruti Shah on October 26, 2017 at 2:11 am

    Hi Gemma! I’m planning to make this cake for my sister’s marriage anniversary! We don’t eat eggs! So this recipe calls for 2 eggs which means I have to substitute eggs with 8 tablespoons of buttermilk. Is it correct? Please help me out here. Thank you 🙂

    • Gemma Stafford on October 26, 2017 at 7:28 am

      Hi there,
      I think you always have to consider the other ingredients in a recipe when substituting the eggs.
      For this recipe I would prefer to use applesauce, banana or flax egg/chia egg. If the wet ingredients are high in a recipe, it is best to choose a less wet egg substitute. ( do go back to this page and take a look through it,
      Gemma 🙂

  8. Rebecca on October 24, 2017 at 12:19 pm

    HI Gemma,
    Just wondering what type of sugar you use? Caster / granulated /icing? And can I use regular salt or what’s the difference between table salt and kosher?
    Thanks a mill,

    • Gemma Stafford on October 25, 2017 at 1:51 am

      Hi Rebecca,
      Kosher salt is real sea salt, that is it really. You can get a good quality table salt now, pre ground for the table.
      Sugar, this is a funny thing, as it is ground more finely here in the US, so that the granulated sugar here is the same as caster sugar in other places, there is no distinction.
      In Ireland the sugar is really coarse, usually, and so we have different grades, caster for baking, which is usually a bit more expensive too.
      Sugar for frosting needs to be icing sugar/powdered sugar, otherwise it will not dissolve in the butter/milk/cream. I have no idea why the name for this changes from place to place, it is also called confectioners sugar.
      I hope this helps,
      Gemma 🙂

  9. Faseeha Yaseen on October 24, 2017 at 9:29 am

    Will the choco fudge frosting be too sugary ?..because, i prefer much less sweetness 😊

    • Gemma Stafford on October 25, 2017 at 2:03 am

      Hi there Faseeha,
      The problem is that as you remove the sugar you unbalance the recipe, and finish up with sweet butter!
      The cocoa in this frosting is not sweet, and so provides the balance. You can reduce the recipe, cut it down, so that you do not have quite so much frosting, but it will not work so well without the sugar,
      Gemma 🙂

  10. Firenze on October 21, 2017 at 8:33 am

    Hi Gemma,
    I have a very tiny oven and if i bake at the temperature mentioned in the recipe, my cakes tend to burn at the top. Do you recommend baking at a lower temperature and using both the rods or baking at the temperature mentioned in the recipe and turning the upper rod off until the last few minutes?

    • Gemma Stafford on October 22, 2017 at 10:27 am

      bake at my temp and turn those rods off. they are what are burning your cakes.

      • Firenze on October 24, 2017 at 7:32 am

        Spot on, Gemma!! 🙂 Thanks a ton! I made a dates and walnut cake today that didn’t burn at the top 😀 But it didn’t quite match the bigger bolder standards you’ve gotten me used to! 😀 It would be awesome if you could put up a recipe for dates and walnut cake! It is a super healthy dessert option for my dad who has to watch his cholestrol 🙂

        • Gemma Stafford on October 25, 2017 at 2:27 am

          Hi there,
          Firenze, good, I am happy when you guys are happy!
          That is a lovely suggestion, I will take a look at this idea, thank you,
          Gemma 🙂

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