Devil’s Food Snacking Cake with Marshmallow Frosting

From Jessie Sheehan's cookbook, Snackable Bakes

Devil's food snacking cake

The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati

Prep: 20 mins
Cook: 40 mins
Total: 60 mins
Servings: 12 to 14
Yield: 1 (8-inch) square cake
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
357 Calories
19g Fat
45g Carbs
3g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 12 to 14
Amount per serving
Calories 357
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 19g 24%
Saturated Fat 8g 38%
Cholesterol 44mg 15%
Sodium 223mg 10%
Total Carbohydrate 45g 16%
Dietary Fiber 1g 3%
Total Sugars 29g
Protein 3g
Vitamin C 0mg 0%
Calcium 29mg 2%
Iron 2mg 10%
Potassium 28mg 1%
*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.)

Okay, now don’t freak out, but there is mayonnaise in this cake. I know; crazy. But it takes the place of the oil in the recipe, as well as the eggs (though, yes, I do throw in one, for good measure). And the texture is so perfect, as well as the flavor, that you need to put any mayo-phobias behind you and get baking. The marshmallow frosting here is epic, but if you’re just not feeling like pulling out your stand mixer for it, I totally understand and suggest you glaze this cutie with a cream cheese glaze instead.

This recipe appears in Snackable Bakes, reprinted with permission.

"Mayo in a cake? It sounds like it wouldn't work, but it definitely works so well! Chocolate cake with vanilla frosting, but adding the marshmallow frosting takes this delicious cake to another level! Try it and I promise you will consider adding mayo to all your favorite cakes!" —Kiana Rollins

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A Note From Our Recipe Tester


For the Cake

  • Baking spray or butter, for greasing

  • 1 cup hot tap water

  • 1/2 cup (40 grams) Dutch-processed cocoa powder

  • 1 teaspoon espresso powder, optional

  • 3/4 cup (150 grams) full-fat mayonnaise

  • 1 cup (200 grams) granulated sugar

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

  • 1 large egg

  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

  • 1/8 teaspoon baking soda

  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 1 1/2 cups (195 grams) all-purpose flour

For the Frosting

  • 3/4 cup (170 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature

  • 7 ounces (198 grams) marshmallow creme

  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 3/4 cup (90 grams) confectioners' sugar

  • Pink sparkling sugar, for decorating (pink because it’s my everything, but you do you)

Steps to Make It

Make the Cake

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients to make a Devil's food snacking cake

    The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati

  2. Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat to 350 F. Grease an 8-inch square cake pan with cooking spray or softened butter. Line with a large sheet of parchment paper that extends up and over two opposite sides of the pan.

    A greased 8 inch cake pan lined with parchment paper

    The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati

  3. Whisk together the water, cocoa powder, and espresso powder, if using, in a liquid measuring cup and set aside.

    Cocoa powder and espresso in a measuring cup

    The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati

  4. Whisk together the mayonnaise, granulated sugar, and vanilla in a large bowl for 30 seconds; whisk in the egg.

    Mayonnaise, sugar, vanilla, and egg in a mixing bowl

    The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati

  5. Sprinkle the baking powder, baking soda, and salt into the bowl, one at a time, vigorously whisking after each.

    A hand whisking in baking soda and baking powder into the batter

    The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati

  6. Whisk half of the flour into the bowl, followed by the cocoa mixture, then whisk in the remaining half of the flour. The batter will be thin.

    Flour and espresso mixture being added to the bowl

    The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati

  7. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 25 to 30 minutes, rotating the pan at the halfway point. The cake is ready when a wooden skewer inserted into the center comes out with a moist crumb or two.

    Devil's food cake batter in the prepared 8 inch cake pan

    The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati

  8. Remove from the oven and let cool in the pan until you can safely lift the cake out by the parchment overhang without burning yourself, about 20 minutes. Run a butter knife around the edges if it resists. Let cool to room temperature before frosting.

    Cooked devil's food cake, removed from the cake pan

    The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati

Make the Frosting & Serve

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients to make marshmallow frosting

    The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati

  2. Beat together the butter, marshmallow creme, vanilla, and salt on medium speed in the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until fluffy, 1 to 2 minutes, scraping the bowl with a flexible spatula, as needed.

    Butter, marshmallow cream, vanilla, and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer

    The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati

  3. Beat in the confectioners’ sugar. Increase the speed to medium-high and continue to beat for 2 to 3 minutes until light and fluffy.

    Confectioners sugar added to the marshmallow cream mixture

    The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati

  4. Generously frost the cake, then sprinkle with sparkling sugar. Slice and serve.

    A hand frosting the devil's food cake with the marshmallow frosting

    The Spruce Eats / Bahareh Niati

Recipe Variations


  • Keep the cake, wrapped, on the counter for up to 3 days—and FYI, she is an excellent traveler, and does very well in hot weather (basically, she’s a dream).
  • For longer storage, keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 7 days.

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