Classic and Easy Chocolate Cake Recipe

Easy Chocolate Cake
The Spruce
  • Total: 45 mins
  • Prep: 15 mins
  • Cook: 30 mins
  • Servings: 12 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
356 Calories
14g Fat
54g Carbs
5g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 12
Amount per serving
Calories 356
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 14g 18%
Saturated Fat 3g 14%
Cholesterol 41mg 14%
Sodium 442mg 19%
Total Carbohydrate 54g 20%
Dietary Fiber 2g 7%
Protein 5g
Calcium 134mg 10%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Everyone loves chocolate cake, and this chocolate cake recipe is a true classic. It's hard to improve on perfection.

But perfection sometimes needs some help, so we'll give you a tip. If it's been more than six months since you bought the baking powder and baking soda in your pantry, you should replace them. They lose their potency quickly, and your cake won't rise properly if it's too old. Trust me on this.

Also, if you've ever wondered why some chocolate cake recipes (like this one) call for boiling water, it's because it helps bloom the cocoa powder, giving the cake a deeper chocolate flavor.

For a softer cake, you can substitute cake flour for the all-purpose flour. Just use 225 grams of cake flour, which will be about 2 1/3 cups.


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  • 1 3/4 cups/225 grams all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 3/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup water (boiling)

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Chocolate Cake ingredients
     The Spruce
  2. Preheat your oven to 350 F.

  3. Butter and flour two 9-inch cake pans. It can help to line the bottom with a circle of parchment paper cut to fit the pan.

    Floured cake pans
     The Spruce
  4. In a large mixing bowl, stir together the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda and salt, until everything is blended.

    Dry chocolate cake ingredients
     The Spruce
  5. In a separate mixing bowl, combine the eggs, milk, oil and vanilla, and whisk to combine. Then whisk in the boiling water.

    Whisked milk and eggs in a bowl
     The Spruce
  6. Now add the wet ingredients to the dry and stir until combined.

    Wet and dry chocolate cake ingredients
     The Spruce
  7. Then pour the batter into your prepared pans and transfer them to the oven.

    Chocolate cake batter in cake pans
     The Spruce
  8. Bake for about 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, or with a crumb or two attached. You can start testing after 27 minutes because it's better to check too soon than to over bake.

  9. Cool the cakes for 10 minutes in the pans on a wire rack, then loosen the edges by running a knife along the sides, turn the cakes out onto the racks and cool for at least another hour.

    Chocolate cakes cooling on wire racks
     The Spruce
  10. Once cool, frost with your favorite chocolate frosting recipe.

    Chocolate Cake
     The Spruce
  11. Serve and enjoy.


  • Make sure that your baking powder and baking soda are no more than six months old. If they are older than that, you should replace them as they lose their potency quickly and your cake won't rise properly.
  • This chocolate cake recipe calls for boiling water because it helps bloom the cocoa powder, giving the cake a deeper chocolate flavor. Yum!

Recipe Variation

  • For a softer cake, substitute cake flour for the all-purpose flour.