The World’s Best Chocolate Cake Recipe

 The best chocolate cake recipe, ever — this decadent, moist chocolate cake with cream cheese frosting is an old family favorite. It’s requested for birthdays time and time again, and it’s quite easy to make. You’ll never want to make another chocolate cake recipe again!

chocolate cake with cream cheese frosting

 I’m just going to say it. This is the best chocolate cake recipe ever. And I’m not just saying that to get you to try it…I truly believe this is the best chocolate cake I’ve ever eaten.

I know, I know…it’s a little bit silly to post a decadent, chocolate cake recipe right when people are starting new diets…but I couldn’t help it! It’s worth the splurge. Just start your new diet tomorrow. 

The best chocolate cake recipe ever topped with homemade, cream cheese frosting by Clarks Condensed

This chocolate cake was created, and tested, and perfected, by my great-grandmother. Growing up, I’ve always heard my dad rave about this chocolate cake. He would always talk about how it was incredibly moist (he attributed that to it having a full cup of oil. Delicious, yes. Unhealthy…I’d say so) and nothing else could be compared to its deliciousness.

Considering how often my dad told me about this cake, you’d think I would have tried it a time or two. However, that was not the case. My dad wasn’t sure where the recipe was, or if there ever was one. You see, my great-grandmother never wrote recipes down, or really measured things out in traditional methods (by using measuring spoons.) However, we were able to get a copy of the recipe, which looks like it was in her handwriting, and I knew I had to try it out for a family Christmas party on my dad’s side of the family.

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The best chocolate cake recipe ever topped with homemade, cream cheese frosting by Clarks Condensed

 I made this cake three times, and from those experiences, I discovered one thing — do not change anything. Seriously. I know there’s a lot of sugar and oil, but if you are going to make a delicious chocolate cake…you can’t really skimp in those areas! I tried using all-purpose flour and homemade buttermilk the first time, and while, yes, it was good, it wasn’t perfect. The second and third time, I followed it perfectly…and it was delicious.

The original recipe had glaze/boiled frosting on it, but we couldn’t get it quite right, so we decided to use the cream cheese frosting my great-grandmother used on other cakes. I personally loved it, and I think it will definitely be my go-to frosting from now on.

An easy and versatile cream cheese frosting recipe

Chocolate Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Yield: 10 people
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes
A decadent and moist chocolate cake with cream cheese frosting recipe. This is truly the best chocolate cake recipe around!


Chocolate Cake

  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 cups cake flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 3/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 Tablespoon baking soda
  • 1 cup boiling water

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 stick butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 pound 2 cups powdered sugar


  1. In a mixing bowl, beat together oil, buttermilk, egg, and vanilla.
  2. In a separate bowl, mix together flour, sugar, cocoa powder, salt, and baking soda until well-combined.
  3. Slowly mix the dry ingredients into wet ingredients, and mix until everything is smooth, and no chunks exist.
  4. After the wet and dry ingredients are combined, add in the cup of boiling water. Mix well. Batter will be slightly runny.
  5. Pour into a well greased, 9x13 baking dish.
  6. Bake at 350 degrees for 40-45 minutes. Let cool in pan.
  7. Frost once cool. Best served after being refrigerated for a few hours.

Cream Cheese Frosting

  1. Cream together cream cheese, vanilla, and butter until nice and smooth.
  2. Add powdered sugar in slowly and mix until combined and smooth.
  3. Refrigerate when not using.


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  • I made the cake exactly as the recipe said but it didn't turn out moist. The taste was good but it wasn't moist. I wonder what went wrong?
  • Hi. I just wanted to ask what kind of sugar you used? White, light brown, brown, or dark brown? They all make a difference in baking and I wanted to get this right. :)
  • LOVE this cake!!! Next time I will try your cream cheese icing as well (the one I used was WAY to sweet). The cake was a total hit at the party though, thank you for sharing!
  • Hi! My niece's 10 year old birthday party is this weekend and she specifically requested a chocolate cake with cream cheese frosting! Your lovely recipe popped up during my Google search! I have a question about the pan. I have 2-9 inch round cake pans, do you think that would work out okay, instead of a 9 x 13 pan? Do you think the time and temperature would have to adjust? Thank you! :)
    • Hi! This recipe I shared is basically the layered version of this cake :)
  • Hey, I love your website! All your recipes are amazing! I was just wondering... This cake looks so yummy and moist! Do you think it's stackable? Say two tiers? Or is it very soft?
    • I have made this as a layered cake! I give the instructions here: luck!
  • Just made this cake for my whole family for Mother's Day and everyone loved it! Such a hit. Thank you for the recipe :)
  • This is an amazing recipe and my husband requests it every year for his birthday. My only issue is that it seems to sinks pretty bad in the middle. Do you know why it might do that?
    • Hi, Emily! I'm glad he loves it! I had that happen when I used regular all-purpose flour instead of cake flour - are you using that by chance? Also this recipe was developed at a high altitude, which may also have something to do with it :)
  • I made this for my boss' birthday at the office today, I have to say it has to be one of the moistest cakes I've ever had! Plus, I can't believe how easy it was to make! I didn't have any cream cheese at home, so I just used store bought chocolate icing I already had (Next time I am going to try this one) Big thumbs up!!
    • Great question! It's the protein content - cake flour has less protein than all purpose flour. Cake flour is more also more finely ground, which is said to help absorb liquid better, helping it to rise better.

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